Sarah Spencer VPNEAC RAS paints the places, people and things with which she is most familiar. The coast where she has lived most of her life is a recurring source. Current NEAC Vice President.

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Artist Statement

Sarah paints the places, people and things with which she is most familiar. The coast where she has lived most of her life is a recurring source. She is drawn to the quality of ‘atmosphere’ in sky and landscape that is both visual and emotional. The artist aims less at capturing an impression of one moment, and more towards making a work corresponding in some respect to the intimate and intense qualities of well-known territory.  She paints portraits and landscapes by commission, and is intrigued by the experience of responding to places or people which are dear to another, but as yet unknown or less-known to her.

 

Method of Working

Sarah’s landscape works begin with a series of small sketches made outside in oil paint on cardboard. These plein air works are rarely the end goal but the vital source for larger studio works. The process and approach in the studio is very different to that outside: The artist is not battling challenges of changing light and weather or her antipathy to working in public view. The practice of painting indoors is more contemplative. Glazes can be built up over impasto layers over weeks or months. Composition is often changed, and re-arranged. She is not interested in recapturing a scene so much as playing with the elements gathered until they make a picture that seems compelling. A work is often composed from elements gathered from different sketches: a sky from one sketch and foreground from another, the picture needing only to correspond to the idea of the landscape in the artist’s head.