This week our Meet the Maker section finds out more about the very talented artist Wayne O’Connor. I’ve seen Wayne at work on a number of occasions, he’s a fantastic storyteller as well as a fantastic artist. Here’s more about Wayne in his own words:
I am an Irish artist, living in Sligo. My work has always been inspired by fantasy, sci fi and Mythology but to be honest, I really just draw whatever comes into my head. I’m lucky to live in an area that is rich in myth and beauty and filled with so many creative people from all areas of the arts. Having that all so easily accessible on my doorstep is a constant inspiration in itself.
I embraced the digital medium in the last 8 years or so, having previously worked in Pen and Ink predominantly. Digital Art has allowed me to pursue a process that suits my creativity perfectly…in my own work, I rarely have an idea prior to beginning an image…the image process is a series of small “eureka” moments, seeing a line or shape or colour that triggers an idea and digital allows me a very fluid way to try different ideas and variants before I find something that sticks.
I’m a big gamer of the tabletop kind, having been introduced to “Dungeons and Dragons”, “The Lord of the Rings” and more via my interest in Myth. I’ll often sit down and draw warriors and dragons and all that and for years it was the main type of thing I drew but in recent years a lot of my work has stepped a little back from these overtly fantasy tropes. The “fantasy” elements are less to the fore but the imagery I think still has a mystical quality in terms of ambiance and my relatively new embrace of colour. I can sometimes do very stark black and white imagery and the next day do something that’s full of vibrant colours. I also tend to work in a variety of styles dictated again by my immediate response to an idea or concept or just a need to try something new.
Besides all that I work a lot in an educational capacity teaching workshops in art and hosting storytelling sessions where I get to share stories that have in turn inspired me. I’m very lucky that it all very much feeds each aspect of my creative lifestyle.
You can find Wayne over on his Facebook page and he’ll also be one of the artists taking part in the Art Show at Rathcormac in June.