At what age did art become your passion?
I suppose school days.. and especially high school days you'd find me in the art room after hours working on projects. Then after living in London I had this sudden urge to paint and express all the inspirations and ideas that London living got out of me, the upbeat, exciting, hectic, happening city that it is.
How does living in the south west influence your work?
I guess the serenity and chilled out lifestyle down here gives me the extra time and inspiration to work lots and create freely in such a beautiful peaceful setting. Also the amazing beaches are a constant inspiration for my seascape works.
How has your style changed over the years?
I think I have fine tuned my skills a bit more and and the end product is actually becoming closer to what I envisage it to be in my head...which is always a good thing.
What is your preferred medium and why?
I use acrylic and oil paints. Acrylic is easy to work with and I can work quite quickly and layer upon layer which I like. Then I sometimes use oil paints on top of the acrylics as I find the colours tend to have a bit more depth and they dont seem to darken with time like acrylics do.
Sim's portrait of Andy Lee was a finalist in the Shirley Hannan National Portrait Awards in 2014
Tell us about your former life in magazine publishing...
Ironically I worked for two magazines called SW Magazine and Living South Magazine which were Property/Lifestyle Magazines for the South West London area. My job involved graphic design work for the magazines, flat planning, photography work and writing restaurant reviews for various London restaurants. A few of my paintings were chosen for the front covers of the magazines which prompted my first painting commissions and gave me the desire to paint more and get my stuff out there.
What is your creative process like?
I will paint whatever inspires or excites me, which could range from cows and dogs to people and places to crazy abstracts or a mix of the lot. Fish & figuratives are fun too.
A lot of my commission works are whatever my clients want me to paint which are generally something special and something that means something to them, like a person, a pet, a special place or memory. Which I love doing. When a painting touches someone's heart on a deeper level and there's tears it is the ultimate and makes it all worthwhile.
When you're not at the easel, what do you like doing with your time?
I love hanging out with my friends and family & doggies, beaching, lunching, paddle boarding, swimming, playing tennis & pong, running, boxing, dancing, going to music events or any art events/ exhibitions. I really love travelling and would travel non stop if I could. New places and new people inspire me and the world and all its craziness is freekin awesome.
Where can we see your work in the south west?
You can check out my work at Wills Domain gallery in Yallingup. I also have a few pieces up at Wise Winery and Eagle Bay Brewery. My website will generally show all my works as will my Facebook page- 'Sim' and Insti- @simcpope.