A self-confessed ‘unlikely artist’ with no formal art training or experience, 36-year-old Tom Davies
, a PE teacher from Shrewsbury attributes his late break into the art world courtesy of an ‘I can do that!’ attitude and a chance encounter with a builder. Let us explain…
Painting by Tom Davies
Let’s start from the beginning – why did you first pick up a paint brush?
The nitty gritty of it was that back in 2016, my partner had spotted a piece of art she liked and was seriously considering spending around £700 on something I felt was within my capabilities of creating for her. I straight away bought a canvas and some paints and that’s when it started! It’s probably not your average route - I didn’t go to art school or anything and the main subject I teach at secondary school is PE.
So, what’s this about a builder?
We were considering an extension on our house and a builder came around to quote. He saw a piece of my work on the floor leaning against the wall and he liked it! I ended up selling it to him and that’s when I realised I wanted to do more paintings and sell them.
What is your style of painting?
My style is modern and abstract, I take a lot of inspiration from Jackson Pollock.
Any other influences?
I am a Stone Roses fan and I like other Indy bands too, as well as urban stuff. If you look at their first album cover, you can see it reflects Pollock’s splattered paint style – it’s called Bye Bye Batman and it’s one of my favourites. I also saw Roy Lichtenstein’s work at the MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) in Manhattan and I really like his work too.
Out of your own collection, what is your favourite piece of work?
My favourite is probably ‘Native’ – it’s one that I like to refer to as a ‘happy accident’ - I was trying out a new technique called pouring which I hadn’t quite mastered, I wasn’t happy with the outcome but left it and when I returned to it I liked the effect it had created, albeit unintentional.
Where do you work?
I work in my shed at the bottom of my garden, I find it’s easier there – it helps keep all my mess contained and I can get lost in the music I listen to which helps motivate me.
How do you start your work from a blank canvas?
I start with an idea usually based on a colour scheme. For commissioned work, I am often given something to work with, album covers are a regular kind of brief! My ‘London City Scape’ piece is one that was commissioned and it’s another one of my favourites.
How often do you paint?
Around 2 -3 times per month. I have been known to overdo it timewise on occasion, so I find I need a break.
How do you price your art work?
Because I don’t create work as a business per se – I do it in my spare time – I am not het up with pricing. As a rule of thumb, I tend to look at the basic cost of my materials and I factor in the value of what I believe I am giving a buyer, which is mainly originality.
What do you think of the Framd experience so far?
It’s very Tinder-esque isn’t it? Very user friendly. It’s a platform I’ve used to connect with other artists and sell my work. I also use Instagram and I have used other art-selling platforms in the past. One of which charged 25% which I’ll admit, did sting, it kind of took the shine away from the joy of me selling something.
How much have you sold on Framd?
I have sold three pieces to London based buyers and one to a buyer in Glasgow since becoming a member in 2017.
Check out more of Tom's work here >>