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Cars The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists

15:07  13 february  2018
15:07  13 february  2018 Source:   autocar.co.uk

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The art of the speed : meeting one of Britain ' s best car artists In this age of digital cameras, mobile phone photography and Instagram, what role the humble

The art of the speed : meeting one of Britain ' s best car artists By J.News In this age of digital cameras, mobile phone photography and Instagram, what role

“If my house burned down, this is the painting I’d save” © Autocar “If my house burned down, this is the painting I’d save” In this age of digital cameras, mobile phone photography and Instagram, what role the humble artist with his paints and brushes?

Study Martin Tomlinson’s motorsport paintings and the answer stares right back at you. No Photoshop trickery here – just skill and talent laid bare in paint.

The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists © Autocar The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists Take his picture of Mike Hawthorn pitting his Ferrari Squalo 555. The overhead perspective places you right on top of the action. You can feel the heat of the engine.

“If my house burned down, that’s the one painting I’d save,” says Tomlinson. “Actually, no – I’d let the whole lot go up and claim on the insurance.”

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Speed painters: Tomlinson isn’t the only motoring artist able to immortalise yours or a favourite car in paint. Here are three more famed art talents. Read more. Insight: the fine art of car detailing. The cars that are also cults.

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“I saw this actual Jaguar E-Type race in the early 1960s, so to see it race again at the Goodwood Revival brought back many happy memories” © Autocar “I saw this actual Jaguar E-Type race in the early 1960s, so to see it race again at the Goodwood Revival brought back many happy memories” Tomlinson’s sense of humour is never far away, deployed the instant he detects a whiff of hubris, which isn’t often. It’s probably borne of those years in the early 1970s when he went racing, towing his Formula Ford single-seater to meetings with his Ford Zephyr – and towing it home again, confidence sorely tested. (“I got a works drive but then the money ran out.”)

Before that, he studied fine art at Harlow Art College, where he found himself painting against the tide.

“Only four examples of the 1964 Ferrari 330 GT ‘Nembo’ Spider were built. Proceeds from the sale of this car (£609,500) were presented to East Anglian Air Ambulance” © Autocar “Only four examples of the 1964 Ferrari 330 GT ‘Nembo’ Spider were built. Proceeds from the sale of this car (£609,500) were presented to East Anglian Air Ambulance” “I wasn’t sure what planet the tutors were on but they taught me nothing about the subject,” he says. “Instead, I learned that passion for what you’re doing can take you a long way. I’m virtually self-taught.”

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This is a partial list of artists active in Britain , arranged chronologically ( artists born in the same year should be arranged alphabetically within that year).

Paying a mortgage and raising a family meant abandoning a career in art while he developed his graphic design business. He continued to paint, though, and remained active in the racing world, commentating at Brands Hatch and, with the exception of Giuseppe Farina and Alberto Ascari, witnessing every Formula 1 world champion in action.

“I am artist in residence for auctioneers H&H Classics and was asked to paint this Jaguar E-Type in the condition it was found after 40 years stored in an old barn” © Autocar “I am artist in residence for auctioneers H&H Classics and was asked to paint this Jaguar E-Type in the condition it was found after 40 years stored in an old barn” Slowly but surely, his twin passions – painting and racing – came together. Carol Shelby and John Surtees are among the motorsport legends who commissioned works from him. Sir Stirling Moss, Phil Hill, Juha Kankkunen and Roy Salvadori were among those who signed prints of his work showing them in action.

Now aged 67, Tomlinson has for the past three years given his business interests a back seat as he turns his attention squarely to painting motorsport. He reckons he’s produced more than 100 works in this period. His clients have included Moss, former F1 driver Mark Blundell, Zak Brown (the executive director of McLaren Technology Group) and former Dragon’s Den star Theo Paphitis.

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The painter of the first art car should not be forgotten, the great American modern artist , Alexander Calder. His fascination with movement and color made him the ideal person for French racer Hervé Poulain to approach in 1975 when he wanted his 3.0 CSL to be turned into a high- speed canvas.

Banksy’ s work is not real art , which should be complex and difficult, writes Guardian art critic Jonathan Jones.

Tomlinson does research, sketches and then painting © Autocar Tomlinson does research, sketches and then painting “Someone will ask me to paint a picture of a car either in period or with them in the driving seat,” Tomlinson explains. “I do lots of research not just of the car but, if the context is a famous race or a racing track, of the event because my clients are sticklers for detail.”

Tomlinson then does a pencil sketch to plan the composition and check that it all works: “Now it’s ready to paint. I work in gouache, a water-based medium, painting directly on to board. It dries quite quickly but that suits me, especially when adding speed effects, where quick flicks of the brush are necessary.”

The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists © Autocar The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists The whole process takes around two weeks from start to finish. Depending on the composition, Tomlinson charges from £250 for a sketch to £1000 for a painting.

“It’s hard work – I’m at my easel from 7.30am to six at night – but I love it,” he says. “My partner says I’m grumpy, though. She’d like me to paint flowers but I won’t.”

Speed painters:

The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists © Autocar The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists Tomlinson isn’t the only motoring artist able to immortalise yours or a favourite car in paint. Here are three more famed art talents.

Elise Christie set to overcome injury and compete in the 1000m heats

  Elise Christie set to overcome injury and compete in the 1000m heats Great Britain’s Elise Christie looks set to make a remarkable recovery from injury to participate in the 1000m heats as she looks to secure a Winter Olympics medal. Christie suffered a nasty looking injury on the weekend as she crashed out of the Short Track Speed Skating Ladies’ 1500m semi-finals. After being stretchered away, it was revealed that she had suffered soft tissue damage to her ankle. However, she made it through a light training session today, which is giving her hope of performing well in the 1000m. Christie will undertake more serious testing tomorrow morning ahead of the 1000m heats and if she does qualify, then she has two full days to recover properly. Team GB Chef de Mission Mike Hay said: “I’m cautiously optimistic and the reason for saying that is she was on the ice today. That was purely to see if she could put the boot on and skate around a little bit. She will go through a training session tomorrow. If she comes through that – and it’s still a big if – then she will compete tomorrow evening. Certainly the indications that we‘ve got for now, she is very keen to skate. We just need to make sure that medically everything is ok.” The 27-year-old specialises in the 1000m and will feel confident of winning a medal in her favourite event if she is fit enough to compete.

Important Art and Artists of Young British Artists . Japanese performance artists Yuan Chai and Jian Jun Xi enhanced the piece' s notoriety when they jumped and pillow fought on it while it was on display at Tate Britain , London.

The Art of the United Kingdom refers to all forms of visual art in or associated with the United Kingdom since the formation of the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707 and encompass English art , Scottish art

NEIL PODBERY - “I’m a photo-realist painter. I just have this passion for getting things precise and accurate and achieving almost photo-like quality.” Visit neilpodberyfineart.co.uk

TIM LAYZELL - “I’m well known for my poster style. I like to think it’s a simple but accurate look with a strong period feel.” Visit timlayzell.com

The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists © Autocar The art of the speed: meeting one of Britain's best car artists NICHOLAS WATTS - “I’ve been painting professionally for 25 years. The great Alfredo de la Maria is the automotive artist I aspire to become. Composition is everything.”

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