87 Tina Spratt
Tina Spratt is an award-winning figurative painter from Somerset, England. She studied illustration, graduating with honors from the University of Wolverhampton. She's won two first prizes from Pastel Journal and a Staff Award from the Art Renewal Center where her works are regularly exhibited (often chosen as finalists). Tina both paints in oils and draws with pastel, and her technique is so precise and careful that she's one of the few artists where, unless I see it in person, I can' tell if it's an oil on canvas or a pastel! In her profile on Saatchiart, Tina states, "I have always been fascinated by the skill and draughtsmanship in painting. In my own work a great emphasis is placed on the execution, I tend to paint in many layers to build up the glow of light
Tina states on her website that she's drawn to the female figure, saying, "I hope to recreate the beauty and integrity of a simple, everyday intimacy." She does this, basing her work on one of life's greatest mysteries: what do women think about when they are alone? While Tina does not answer directly, she does provide certain clues. "I am interested in capturing that fleeting time when a person is unaware of being observed, there is something very honest and private about that moment." Spratt's use of light plays a large part in intimating the story. She says, "I also love playing with light in my work and it’s ability to tell it’s own story."
In this interview with RC Dhruba (Lucky Compiler, 2013), Tina talks about the support she got as a child for her art:
"I grew up in very loving and supportive family and from a very young age I was encouraged and given the freedom to explore my creativity. One of my earliest childhood memories, at the age of six, was when my drawing was pinned to the wall at school and I felt extremely proud, it has become an obsession and passion ever since. There weren’t any artists in my immediate family, apart from my sister and I who both pursued a career in art, although I have been told my grandfather was very talented. The first time I remember seeing a Rembrandt painting I must have been around 14 years old and on a school trip, ‘Self portrait at the age of 34.’
'Self Portrait, age 34', by Rembrandt van Rijn (click here for high-res version)
I thought it was the most amazing painting I had ever seen, I could not believe the effect of light he had captured with paint, and how he had manipulated paint to create such depth. The effect of light on a figure became a constant theme in my own work."
'Do You Remember?' Pastel
Tina has studied past masters for guidance and inspiration. She writes (Saatchiart), "I was inspired very early on by the dramatic use of light in the work of Rembrandt, and later the paintings of Caravaggio. Both had a huge impact on me and have stayed with me to the present day, the lighting being an important part of my own work. I also greatly admire Andrew Wyeth for the atmospheric and domestic settings he portrays, the feeling of an honest moment captured with beautiful lighting."
Tina Spratt provides an excellent example of art making that begins with the artist and ends with the viewer. In her Lucky Compiler interview she says, "I like to leave my narratives ambiguous so that the viewer can come to their own conclusions and maybe relate their own personal experience and a chance to reflect on their selves."
"I love portraying vulnerability, not necessarily in a weak way, but as the strength it gives a person to truly be themselves without any pretence or guarded feelings, I think that’s an amazing and powerful thing, at the same time creating the space to be calm and peaceful, if I capture it right it will make a connection with the viewer."
(Lucky Compiler) "Painting can be the most amazing thing in the world, I love the early stages that are full of possibility and excitement as I’m trying to get what I imagine out onto canvas. It can also feel like a battle or struggle, as inevitably this happens at some stage during the painting process. I paint in many layers over several weeks so quite often as a painting is drawing near to being finished, I become overly critical. I do know that if I’m not emotionally connected with the painting, then it won’t be in the painting either, it really is a mirror of how you are feeling as an artist."
(Lucky Compiler) "My favourite holiday destination is the Scottish Highlands, I love the rugged, dramatic landscape and it’s where my husband and I spent our honeymoon. George R R Martin’s Game of Thrones seems to stir my imagination every time I read it. When I’m painting I often listen to artists such as Kate Bush or various female folk singers. I also enjoy listening to rock music. With all its intensity red happens to be my favourite colour."
NOTE: The following links contain nudity
'Sleeper in Red'
'As the Light Fades'
'Black Dress IV'
Sleeper Series (not sure of the number)
'I Can't Forget'
'Private Commission', Charcoal & Pastel