Artist focus: Becky Bradley

Becky Bradley may be a friend from way back in the days of West Kirby Grammer School for Girls where the length of your skirt and colour of your socks were all that mattered, but she is also an object of my artistic envy and I couldn’t possibly start a blog without featuring her fabulous work.

Becky moved from drizzley England to the picturesque scenes of New Jersey (I can’t possibly imagine why…) where she now studies Fine Art at the William Paterson University. The change from grey cityscape to the film-like backdrops of Denville seemed to have ignited her artwork and caused an explosion of magnificence that I absolutely love!

When asked about her greatest influences…

 …Becky told me how the Surrealist art movement inspires her work and how she looks to the likes of Greg Simkins, Alex Pardee and the great, Salvador Dali when composing her kooky pieces. Becky’s work most definitely has a signature style, which is completely undeniable and displays the vivid imagination and ability to physically express your most fantastical thoughts that gives Surrealist artists their name.

I asked Becky about her preferred medium and she told me how…

…she is totally devoted to Prismacolour colouring pencils and has developed a close affinity with the medium after many years of practice (and blistered fingers, no doubt) which is reflected in her seamless pencil work. All those childhood afternoons spent with head buried in a colouring book must have paid off, there’s no going out of the lines here! Becky has also worked with mixed media to elevate her art to three-dimensions; multi-sensory experiences which satisfy visual and touch,  as well as oil pastels and paint. Indian Ink is a substance she has experimented with, enjoying the endless, creative possibilities it has to offer and the vibrant, colour pigmentation so synonymous with Surrealist artworks.

Becky creates her masterpieces in a makeshift ‘studio’ in the corner of her bedroom and while she finds this “cramped” and seeming almost apologetic, I find this brings a more personal and authentic quality to the pieces adding to the gripping, raw emotion that grabs your attention so aggressively.

I was also extremely intrigued to know about what triggers Becky’s imagination, as you can imagine and…

…after her revealing her interest in animals, it seemed ridiculous that I hadn’t noticed the presence of animals, from upright meerkats to inflight ladybirds, in almost every single one of her pieces. Even without the obvious depiction of an animal, there are constant references to the natural world with Becky’s inclusion of 3-D elements such as petals and feathers. She explained to me how she enjoys the possibilities of translating a human stereotype onto a non-descript animal; a notion which I can both admire and relate to and how animals are far more biologically fascinating than us humans.

Becky is also interested in the building of ones own character which explains her recurring motif of using herself as the study for her artworks’ subjects. Dreams are also a topic close to Becky’s heart and she translates this theme into psychedelic, visual extravaganzas, expertly abandoning reality and providing an oasis for escapism.

Becky tells me of her latest venture…

…which is yet another project that will join the many commissions that she has already recieved. I don’t want to say too much and ruin the surprise as it is a work in progess, but if you can’t take the suspense then direct yourself to Becky’s Facebook page where you can view her full portfolio (this is also where you should contact Becky).

Achieving first place in craftsmanship for her business card design, winning a $20,000 scholarship for her art work at University and appearing in the ‘Celebrating Art‘ publication is, no doubt, the beginning of the road for this young artist and I suggest you watch this space!

Thanks for the images Becky – remember me when you’re famous!

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