Stephen Bennett,  England and Donegal

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Accordian Session
Accordian Session, Mixed Media on Board, 48 x 35 ins
Paddy O'Rourke
Paddy O'Rourke, Mixed Media on Board, 21 x 15 ins
Banjo and Accordian Session
Banjo and Accordian Session, Acrylic on Board, 38 x 33 ins
You could be right
You could be right, Acrylic on Board, 23 x 17 ins
Lady with Gold Earring
Lady with Gold Earring, Acrylic on Board, 37 x 35 ins
Portrait of an Old Man
Portrait of an Old Man, Oil Pastel on Mount Board, 23 x 32 ins
In his Own Place
In his Own Place, Acrylic on Board, 25 x 16 ins
Glamour Girl
Glamour Girl, Mixed Media on Board, 23 x 17 ins
A Memory of Rosbeg
A Memory of Rosbeg, Acrylic on Board, 32 x 12 ins
Looking over the Bay
Looking over the Bay, Mixed Media on Canvas, 40 x 36 ins
Evening View, Carn
Evening View, Carn, Acrylic on Board, 15 x 12 ins
Donegal Bogland
Donegal Bogland, Acrylic on Board, 37 x 35 ins

Stephen Bennett Art (Download The Catalogue)

I always wanted to be a painter but having completed a course in Graphics, Design and Illustration I graduated from Barking College of Art, London in 1973 and then began a career as a commercial artist, spending the next 18 years working for leading London advertising agencies. I worked as a visualizer/illustrator on the accounts of companies such as British Airways, Cadbury's, B.P. etc. and was part of award-winning creative teams while working for Saatchi and Saatchi and other top agencies and that is where I learned my trade.

It was a very good grounding for what I really wanted to do which was fine art. When I left advertising in 1992, with the romantic idea of living as a painter in Donegal, my father's birthplace, I had no idea what a struggle it would be to find my own way of painting. Eventually I realized that I needed to please myself in my work and, with that realization, I began to find the spontaneity for which I was searching. Twenty odd years on, I paint almost every day and some days I'm really happy with what I produce. When I'm on song I don't have to think, the paintings seem to dance onto the board themselves. On a day like that, I use any tool be it brush, palette knife or oil pastel, so long as it can move speedily.

The medium doesn't matter but the need to achieve spontaneously is always there and my palette is all important to me, in bringing life to my paintings. After all these years in Ardara my inspiration still comes from the people and landscape around me. Their fascination for me has always endured and I hope that my work will serve in some way as a historical record of these people.

I still regard myself as a figurative painter but, on a good day, surrounded by the ever moving landscape of Donegal, I enjoy the landscapes just as much.