Behind the Scenes


I paint when I'm not playing the jazz violin.  The two go hand in hand.  One sets the other on fire.  When I feel good about my playing at night, the next day in my studio the painting always goes well. Painting should improve as the artist matures, just as in jazz the more you play, the more you understand the value of improvisation and a greater sense of confidence can emerge.  This allows the artist to make a direct statement from within.  With jazz less can be more, as in painting five strokes can say as much as five thousand.

I consider myself an abstract painter.  I draw my inspiration from nature, from colours, textures, shapes, surfaces and remembering these, I can at a later date produce them with feeling on canvas.

I like my work to have a certain amount of spontaneity to it.  This helps me in feeling that I am the guide of the brush rather than the master. I try not to have a pre-conception of what the picture will look like, I'll pick a certain size of canvas, deal with the necessary materials and then let an image grow from this.  Of course this also applies in playing jazz improvisation.  It helps to allow the feeling of notes you imagine to pass through you rather than trying to arrange them for the listener.  In that way, they can play themselves and the painting can really paint itself.

Click here for Richard’s chronology, paintings, projects and commissions.