Ray Balkwill is a well-known West Country artist
whose watercolours, pastels and oils are much sought after. Born in Exeter in 1948,
he graduated from Exeter College of Art, thereafter making a career in advertising
as an Art Director.
In 1990 demand for his paintings led him to give up his job to become a professional
artist. He has held numerous successful solo exhibitions, as well as showing in group
and open exhibitions including the RI, RWA and the South West Academy. He was also
a prizewinner in the inaugural Open Exhibition of the South West Academy in 2000.
His paintings can be found in private collections and galleries all over the country as
well as abroad. In 2006 he was elected an Academician in the South West Academy and has
been a member of the St. Ives Society of Artists since 1999.
Sunset On The Exe, Mixed Media
For the past two decades he has also tutored painting holidays and is a regular
contributor to The Artist magazine. He is author of six art books: Watercolour
Plus... (David & Charles 2002), Learn to Paint Coastal Landscapes (Collins 2006),
Painting Landscapes with Atmosphere (David & Charles 2006), Ray Balkwill's Exe Estuary
(Halsgrove 2004), A Picture of Devon (Halsgrove 2008), and A Picture of Cornwall (Halstar 2010).
His work also features in a number of other books and magazines. In 2005 APV Films made an art
instruction film of him sketching and painting on the Exe Estuary.
He is a strong advocate of painting en plein air and his main objective is to
capture the mood and 'spirit' of a place. Living as he does on the coast,
it is little wonder that the wide-open spaces of sea, estuary and sky have been the
mainspring of his art.
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