Enigmatic portraiture, animals and outdoor scenes – British illustrator Michael Frith uses his painting skills and expressiveness to produce watercolours with vibrancy and a sense of immediacy. Unafraid of using bold brush strokes and rich colours, his work makes an impact, while maintaining its classic feel.
Living near Chichester on the South Coast of England, Michael gets a lot of his inspiration from the sea – looking at it, painting it and sailing upon it. His influences include Henri de Toulouse Lautrec, Winslow Homer and Edgar Degas. Michael has a degree in Graphic Design and studied at both St Albans and then Canterbury College of Art.
For Michael, drawing is the scaffolding needed to construct a painting. He tries to keep his technique simple, using one brushstroke or mark instead of many, and he doesn’t worry about splatter or bleed. They make his images unique. Michael pushes the boundaries of the medium by painting at much larger formats than most other artists.
Immediacy and freshness are strong characteristics in Michael’s work, and he tries to establish a connection with the subject that’s felt in the image. His portraits are much in demand, but he also does still life and nature, and creates plenty of amazing paintings of yachts in full sail.
Some of Michael’s clients include The National Portrait Gallery, The Bank Of England, The Times, The Sunday Times, LIFFE and The Masterworks Foundation in Bermuda.