Under A Northern SkySize: 50 x 38 cm
This was the first painting I did for this series of new works and when I’d finished it I felt like it was taking me on a new journey into something a little different. I cant explain why that was the case it just felt that was when I did it.
I’ve spent the last 35 years now living in Newcastle upon Tyne and only just remember Wallsend shipyard having the cranes break up the skyline like you see in this scene but I talk to a lot of folk who have lived in the Toon for much longer and tell me all about what it was like back in the industrial days when huge ships were built and launched from the Tyneside slipways, ships that were so large they would hide the sun from shining on to the street below while children played in the streets. All of this everyday life would continue under the shadow of the cranes and ships that they built and it was all taken for granted that this was their lot in life and you might as well just get on with it for there was nothing else. Nowadays people like to complain or demonstrate about every little thing. Maybe it’s a good thing maybe its not. However with the demise of shipbuilding in the UK all we are left with is memories of how life once was and the odd black and white photo to show for it.
I’ve always been drawn to these industrial scenes as I find them quite beautiful as the atmosphere around them was usually filled with smoke and industry and when it played with the light either from the factory floodlights of form the sun as it broke through the clouds it would always fill the scene with an ambiance as if it came straight out of a film noir. Maybe that was the seed that sparked a new journey for me into this new range of images that feature a more gritty view of life back then.
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