Focus LDN interviews Peckham based painter Mark Pearson

Mark Pearson was born in London in 1956. His training started at the City & Guilds of London Art Schools, London, where he obtained a First Class Diploma. Mark then went on to take a three year Post Graduate Diploma at the Royal Academy Schools, where he was taught by renowned painters such as Sir Rodger De Grey, Peter Greenham, Sir Hugh Casson & Ruskin Spear. At the Royal Academy he was awarded college and national prizes, along with travelling scholarships to Barcelona and Madrid. After graduating Mark attended the New York Schools of Art. He lived in New York for several years, returning to London in the mid 1980s.

Convertible Rye Lane, acrylic & ink on panel, 30 x 42 cm

Convertible Rye Lane, acrylic & ink on panel, 30 x 42 cm

When did you realise you wanted to be an artist?

I have been drawing and painting since I was a young child. Probably at around 10 years old I understood the concept of what an artist was, so from then I would say.

Which living artist’s work do you admire the most?

Peter Doig – I like the way he portrays the world.

At what age did you sell your first painting, and to whom?

At my graduate show, aged 22, to the staff (including Roger de Grey).

From where do you derive your main source of inspiration?

Currently on my way to the studio in Peckham, and out and about in London – a single moment where image, movement and light comes together.

In which part of the creative process do you take the most satisfaction?

When it goes wrong! Then I can respond to it in a more immediate way and I find that the most creative – solving the process and ‘working outside the box’

What has been your biggest obstacle as an artist?

My upbringing and schooling, particularly to end of secondary education, where I was made to feel stupid for believing it possible to make a career as an artist.

What advice would you give to an artist trying to break into the industry?

Be true to your ideas. Art goes through fashions, stick to your guns!

More examples of Mark's work can be found on www.markpearsonartist.com

Drinks at the renaissance bar, oil on canvas, 95 x 95 cm

Drinks at the renaissance bar, oil on canvas, 95 x 95 cm