PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 April 2014
©Peter Symonds-Artist/Tony Barrett-Repro
Peter Symonds has made a career of capturing nature’s untamed beauty. Arts Editor CAROL BURNS discovers more about the man behind these beautiful coast-scapes
Peter Symonds’ work is a timely reminder of the wonders of living by the coast; his work captures the essence of Devon and its glories at any time of year. Taking inspiration from his passion for the great outdoors, especially in Devon, Peter’s work is a celebration of mountain, coastal, cliff and estuary scenes.
His paintings are born out of an urge to capture the drama of remote and wild landscapes throughout the varied seasons and weather conditions, for which Britain is so renowned. His aim, he says, is for his paintings to grab the attention of the viewer, often through the use of strong tonal variations and an interesting play of light and colour.
The jagged cliffs and white beaches of Devon feature prominently within Peter’s current collection. A vibrant painting of North Sands, Salcombe captured in high summer, featuring its indented coastline and glistening sea, while a family explores its sands, will resonate with anyone who has embraced the South West as a holiday destination or second home, or who is lucky enough to live here.
“For nearly 30 years I have been painting the magnificent coastal scenery between Dartmouth and Newton Ferrers in South Devon,” says Peter. “Despite knowing Salcombe so well, last year was the first time I have ever painted North Sands beach just to the south of the town. It was September and most of the summer crowds had gone. The clear, sharp light that morning, playing over the ever-wet sands that the beach is known for was superb,” he remembers.
"Despite knowing Salcombe well, last year was the first time I have ever painted North Sands"
A self-taught artist, Peter paints exclusively in oils on canvas, and his work has been exhibited widely, and hangs in many collections both here in the UK and throughout the world. Many of Peter’s paintings have been reproduced by the Fine Art publishers Solomon and Whitehead.
Peter travels widely, both at home and abroad, in search of his subjects – but it is to wild and remote places that he is particularly drawn. His paintings are fundamentally born out of a deep love for the great outdoors – and he is passionate about the landscapes that he interprets in his work. Although he has to be moved by the scenery itself, it is normally the play of light on it that most excites him.
Peter’s work of Devon and further paintings of the British Isles and Europe can be viewed at fine art dealers, Gladwell & Patterson, 5 Beauchamp Place, Knightsbridge, SW3 1NG. Or view online at gladwellpatterson.com
Paintings start from £1,250