“It was on Christmas morning, when I was twelve years old, that my mother gave me one of the best presents I have ever received – an oil painting set. That was the start and I have been painting ever since.”
Bob Barker, a Yorkshire artist, was initially inspired by watching Keith English and Tom Gower paint in Cornwall. Conversations between the artists and a young Bob opened up a new world in the mind of a small boy. However life keeps on moving and between a marriage and children painting remained a hobby for over 20 years.
Bob first began selling his paintings in 2000. Five years later he exhibited at the Autumn Fair in Birmingham and was introduced to Glyn Washington of Washington Green and the rest, as they say, is history.
Bob is spurred by nostalgia to paint, looking back on childhood memories with an adult eye. This allows a freedom to his paintings to portray dark, northern streets and yet allow that atmosphere to add to the tender scenes within the pieces.
“In my neck of the woods, with the subjects I paint, most people see soot blackened stone and polluted skies. I see colour. Like wet Sienna cobbles and Prussian blue shadows with burnt umber and cadmium skies. I view the world, along with my memories, in the subtle blended hues of my paint box.”