Ian Hedley is a graphite artist based in Dorset. He is self taught and takes much of his inspiration from the beautiful natural landscape where he lives. His work is sold and exhibited across Dorset. Ian’s portraits have gained national recognition from the Society for Graphic Fine Art.
“Corfe Castle Through the Trees“
“How did you first become a graphite artist?“
When I was young I was always drawing. One of my favourite ways to pass my time was to sit by a river and sketch. I was quite the rebel. I loved art and I was fairly good at it but I didn’t pursue it because my art teacher said I was too slow. While she probably had a point – I still take forever to finish a drawing – I regret that decision.
I dabbled with drawing, never quite stopping altogether, for many years, until a change of career a little while ago game me the time to pursue art seriously. I decided to concentrate on graphite pencil because that’s where my skills lie and because, for me, no other medium quite connects me in the same way to the picture.
“Waiting for Christmas“
“Can you tell us more about your portraits and your method of creation?“
My portraits are pictures of a person at a moment in time and I hope that they suggest a story: something about what has just happened and what is about to happen.
I use paper with a sight texture and lots of cross-hatching. Everything is cross-hatched! It takes an extraordinarily long time. Some detail is sacrificed in exchange for a sense of light, movement and life. I like realistic pictures but I don’t aim for photorealism. That’s what cameras are for. I hope that my portraits always show a sense of affection for my subject, too.
“Can you tell us more about this work and the different techniques you have used?“
This is one of a series of pictures representing Weymouth and Dorset. I’m incredibly lucky to live in such an interesting and beautiful part of the world. Weymouth of course has a rich maritime history and so the lifeboat, one of the south coast’s busiest, is a natural subject.
I use smooth paper, sharp pencils and a lot of patience. It is quite literally a matter of drawing one brick at a time on a picture like this. Good music and frequent tea breaks are essential but I find that after a while I get into a groove and it’s quite a meditative process.