Bren Head


Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th May 2019


On day 1 we will be developing self- portraits. Loosely building surface and texture  you will be encouraged to experiment, take risks, and have fun, with a variety of media including acrylics, oils, wax, fabric, and charcoal on several different types of grounds, using simple techniques and approaches. Nothing complicated... this course will suit all levels.

On day 2 we will be observing  and working from a clothed model with one pose all day. You will be free to interpret the pose in whichever style you prefer, using information gleaned from day one.

About Bren

"After an early  retirement I  developed an interest in painting  which resulted in a degree in fine art.

Most of my  life has been spent in the catering industry --- a perfect way to observe and analyse people.

I am fascinated by the human form. However, my  paintings tread the line somewhere between figurative and abstract.

I endeavour  to suggest an emotional and intimate response and an 'essence' of the sitter , rather than capturing an accurate and faithful likeness. The subjects are almost always solitary, establishing contact or connection with the viewer from a direct gaze. My paintings have frequently been described as 'haunting'. 

I work from intuition rather than pre meditation.

Through a process of creation and destruction the paint and mark making often dictate what appears. I employ a variety of media, acrylic, oil, wax, plaster, fabric and collage and explore texture and surface.  Scratched, scarred, and often destroyed and re worked, I return to the work many times until I am satisfied with the finish.  Layers and glazes  produce tactile elements within the painting.

I take pleasure in breaking the rules and taking chances, and favour  taking risks to manipulate the surface. 

I  have shown widely in the  U.K. and have exhibited with The Royal Society of Portrait Painters, The Ruth Borchard Portrait Prize and in 2015 was shortlisted for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.

I have work in the Priseman Seabrook Collection of 21st. Century Painting and was recently selected for the Contemporary Portrait Award at The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle.

I work from my studio in Ravenscar, near Scarborough where I have been selected for North Yorkshire  Open Studios  since 2011.