Martin was raised in Shirebrook, a coal mining village in NE Derbys, and developed his love of art at an early age. He is almost wholly self-trained, his only formal qualification being an Art “O” level from his schooldays. Even so he has sold work to private collectors around the world and secured coveted gallery space both in London and in local Derbyshire galleries.
Like many artists he came to professional art late. After University in Birmingham (honours degree in Economics) he had a brief spell in finance before joining the Fire & Rescue Service in Derbyshire in 1977. Although he never really stopped painting he only committed himself fully to art in 2008 after retiring from the Service.
Mainly an artist in oils Martin’s output is diverse & wide-ranging. It covers landscapes & urban scenes to more figurative/abstract work and portraiture, but whatever the work his painterly style is characterized by his trademark vibrancy of colour and an attention to fine detail, often accompanied by a slightly surreal twist.
He is a member of the Society for all Artists and a founder member of the Derbyshire Artists’ Guild.
“Painting for me is a kind of ecstasy, an intense & personal struggle to bring to life a private world of accumulated memories & images. It is often both exhausting and exhilarating but it also acts as a balm, calming my soul like nothing else can.
The inspiration for my artwork is twofold; firstly the effects of light on colour and form but also my emotional response to words. Direct influences and inspiration for specific paintings can often arise from images (or even words or phrases – especially from poetry) in current affairs and the world around me. This is especially so if they strike a chord with my own past or trigger distant personal memories.
I try to use my sense of colour and love of form to raise the spirits. One of my abiding hopes is that, like music, art can serve to engender a greater sense of wellbeing - in observer and creator alike. I believe that at its best it can be a simple, joyful experience as well as a vehicle for asking more difficult and fundamental questions about the human experience.”