- Peter Wileman
Over the years I have discovered that I work better at some times of the day than others and that my creative energy is not a 9 to 5 commodity! For this reason, a typical working day for me starts early – I am usually in my studio by 7am. This is the time when I work on paintings in progress, refining the images to achieve the precise effects I need to communicate the particular subject. Then after a short break for lunch I work on new compositions. I find this is the most productive time of day for me, when I am best able to give full concentration to my painting without any distractions. This period requires a great deal of energy however, and when 4 o’clock arrives I am usually ready to stop for the day – and start looking forward to that Vodka and Tonic… Of course I also spend a great deal of my working life out and about; while I love to paint locally, I have also travelled extensively around the UK and Europe in search of inspiration.
For me inspiration comes from confrontation with nature which demands a response; a sunset, a heavy shower, powdered snow, sunrise over a loch, any or all of these elements might dictate the form that the response will take. I contemplate the landscape with amazement as it changes hourly, yet remains fundamentally the same. This is a concept I love to explore in my paintings – a blazing sunset reflected in a calm sea carries the implication of impending darkness, while heavy clouds in an overcast sky might predict an imminent storm…
I have painted since childhood, so I have a long history of creative influences; the two most lasting however have been Fred Cuming RA and Ken Howard RA.
I have always been attracted to coasts and seascapes in general, as I love the sense of infinity and endless searching that they give me. The subject of my next work will usually come to me when I am out by the sea, feeling at one with nature and the elements, and at this time I know what direction the composition will take. Back in my studio the painting begins to take shape in reality, and I aim to recreate both what I have seen and my own emotional response to it. I prefer to paint using oil as I find that this is the medium most adaptable to changes of light and mood.
Peter was born in 1946 in Middlesex. On leaving school he went straight into his first job as a studio junior for a card company, where his innate artistic talent was recognised. Here he spent five years studying lettering and design – his first artistic training – which gave him a solid grounding in colour awareness and formal structure. Peter then moved on to become art editor on a number of magazines, until finally he tired of the rat-race and set himself up as a freelance illustrator. His years of experience stood him in good stead, covering as they did, all aspects of design and illustration, from greeting cards and posters through to portraits and Limited Edition Prints. Working freelance gave Peter the opportunity to concentrate on his painting, and he has produced a substantial body of highly expressive work inspired by Britain’s coves and harbours. His large-scale compositions have a painterly quality derived from the apparent vigour of the brushstrokes and the impression of spontaneous creativity, which make them both dramatic and uplifting. Peter’s work has been recognised with various awards including the Frank Herring award at the Mall Galleries in London and the Cornellisen Prize for Outstanding Work 2002. Over the last six years he has exhibited regularly at a number of prestigious art venues including the Royal Society of Marine Artists, the New England Art Club and the Royal Institute of Oil Painters of which he now holds the position of president.