Profile of Simon Claridge
After graduating from the University of Reading in a BA Fine Art, Simon spent every opportunity to draw and paint wherever and whenever he could. His determination to become an artist eventually built up his courage and led him to the door of Washington Green gave him the tools to realise his dream.
Simon Claridge has a fascination for the female figure and does not deny his pleasure in gazing at beautiful women as part of his work. Observing the human body biologically and trying to understand how it all works composes a large part of Simon's inspiration.
Equipped with his sketchbooks, Simon starts his paintings with predatory work which involves a formal reduction of the source material. Aesthetically, Simon captures the abstract forms and voids of the human shape within a predetermined field of the canvas boundary. Simon rarely knows which way his compositions will turn out despite having a clear idea at the start.
The most exciting and challenging part of his work comes when the composition reveals itself through pencil marks which is then applied to the canvas where Simon adds more changes before covering the canvas with acrylic paint in order to get the colours and tones he is looking for. Once this is done, he then proceeds with great patience to building it up in layers of paint in order to achieve a flat finish and eventually starts to take a life of its own. By adding the sharp lines on the canvas surface, the line between reality and fantasy start to disappear.
Simon Claridge's passion for his work makes it difficult for him to know when to take a break. Starting early in the morning stopping only for coffee, coco or his pug dog. With no set routine, Simon let's each day dictate itself which will usually lead to late nights in the studio, wishing for more hours in the day. When he feels that he is no longer getting anywhere, a well deserved beer and spending time with Ruth is all he needs to recharge and prepare for the following day.