Creating an artistic style of your own

Cityscape canvases by Jenny Drinkwater

One of the most consistent aspects of my painting is to continually push the boundaries of what I feel is safe and move it into the unknown. 

'Paris' cityscape by J.D.
Using different materials and experimenting with various types of paints and mediums. I like to see what unexpected application results can bubble up to create a unique element. I like to turn my paintings upside down and create quirky compositions so they interest the viewer. Like any great artist that  inspires me, I am on a never-ending road of artistic development and when combined with my strong ongoing personal motivations, it makes for an interesting journey to be on.

This blog isn’t a dictatorial list on how to convey a strong sense of artistic identity. I believe this lies deep within each of us and will depend on what inspires us, for example, I don’t have a passion for botanical art but there are a lot of artists who simply excel in this field and for whom it comes naturally, and this is the key. I like to believe that my own style is quirky and unique. Even these city illustrations that I provide as examples represent my way of thought and of depicting things in a new light. Its second nature to me. When something comes natural to you you’re onto a winner as you tend to be able to get into the ‘flow’ of painting much more easily and as a result, so do the ideas.

I recently went to a preview evening of a new touring exhibition at The Gallery at Bank Quay House where I met the artist Jane Barwood. I was immediately struck by her paintings as they were different to the norm and quite
simply, a breath of fresh air. Her ability to come up with a series of deeply rooted paintings based on a sense of place, of isolation and dislocation, one that creates a sense of unease in the landscape was really interesting. I was also drawn to her use of strong colour and bold graphical lines and shapes. When speaking to Jane, I discovered that she has always painted but taken it more seriously over the past 14 years, initially starting out at St Helens college before graduating in 2012 with a BA(Hons) First Class in Fine Art. Even from the start Jane always enjoyed the use of colour in her work. Once she grabbed onto the main idea of houses and how they represent people in the landscape, her paintings really started to come together. From then on her practice developed, looking to American painter Edward Hopper and Scottish born artist Peter Doig for inspiration, along with the integration of old childhood holiday photos. These additional influences have emerged into her current series of paintings.

Jane Barwood's art at The Gallery at Bank Quay House

Its really useful and important as a working artist to constantly see other examples of an artist’s journey and path to discovery. We can all see that it takes time to develop a painting style unique to yourself. Even Cezanne and Degas said that they wished they had another lifetime to study the art of painting.

You can visit the ‘Python Winners Touring Exhibition’ featuring Jane’s new series of paintings in Warrington at The Gallery at Bank Quay House until 4th July, where it continues to Bolton. More information can be found at

Jane’s artwork can be viewed at


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