Robin Shillcock

Other Work

»The true Mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible.« ~ Oscar Wilde

In the 1970s the academy programme included still life painting. It never did much for me, not the way landscape painting did, but mastering the painter's craft through humble beginnings proved good practice. After art school I realized I needed to delve deeper where bird painting was concerned, and spent much of 1982 producing oil studies of every dead bird I picked up from the roadside. In all I painted some eighty oils, many small in scale (e.g. Duckling and Blue Tit). The work gave me a feel for painting the softness of feathers, seeing a bird not as a flat map of feather patterns but as a 3-dimensional shape in space, and learning to handle those fine details that make birds so appealing. An added benefit was that through these depictions of reality, however lifeless, I still found a way to express my love of birds. Standing back a bit I now see I was striving for truth as I saw it, and to this day believe truth (aye, a debatable term) still merits an artist’s efforts.
A lot of words to say that yes, now and then I do paint still life.