Moray Gallery

Francis Nicholls - First Impressions

3-29 March 2018

Contemporary Impressionist Paintings and Drawings

This exhibition showcases a selection of my recent oil paintings from 2017. I have also included some pencil drawings from my A6 sketch books going back over the years. The drawings are an important part of my painting process.

I use a variety of palette knives. Some are like trowels, and I really plaster the paint on in big impasto slabs.

My paintings are not always of specific places; a lot are a distillation of ideas, exploring more the colour, texture, and mark-making aspects of applying the paint. I try to capture a certain feeling or moment in time rather than accurately depicting a scene.

Some people refer to me as a colourist. A well-known artist friend remarked once that “Colour is subjective, tone is not”. That comment really opened up my mind to the idea of unshackling myself from having to paint a scene literally (in as far as colour is concerned), and allowing in an infinity of colour possibilities, limited only by my imagination.

For this exhibition, I have limited the oils to mainly the square format. Whilst having its own composition challenges, it’s a shape I really enjoy working with.