My Interview with Brian Towers

What an honour to interview one of the funniest masters of wit and brush, right here on the Bubble. I speak of course of the ever friendly, evergreen and consistently creative, Brian Towers. Brian, as Anne said so kindly of me, but it is actually true of him,  is a real gentleman. The time and thought he puts into all his replies and comments on our work, are testament to that fact. His answers to the interview questions are typically Brian, i.e. fantastic. Read on Bubblers.

How does being a creative person and pursuing your creativity affect other aspects of your life?

I think being an artist is very much part of personality so it is difficult to say what comes first, the egg or the chcken. I would say that being an artist affects the way we see and feel about things in everyday life. I’m certainly interested in and notice many things which perhaps are missed by my family for instance; colours, shapes, contrasts are merely the basics. I taught in school workshops for 30 years and was in industry before and after that so graphics played a large part in my world of work. I have always thought ‘drawing’ is the most universal language and I would be lost without it, not only for artwork but for expression and explanation: it was my best tool in teaching. When drawing or painting a portrait the artist has to study every tiny detail – it’s quite intrusive – and get into the personality beneath the skin. It’s much the same with other subjects as it makes the artist examine the many small parts that make up the whole. In this case its not the devil that’s in the detail but so often the joy of discovery.
Tell us about one person or moment that has made your time on redbubble particularly special or meaningful.

There are quite a few and to single any one out would be difficult. Can I list a hundred or so? No, the rules and space don’t allow I’m sure. But I certainly won’t settle for only one. To me it’s not only the wonderful artwork which these people have produced, but several other aspects of their personalities. While art is visible and obvious, one can’t help being impressed with how some members show sincerity, humour, friendliness, generosity, concern for others and that certain match-up of personality to one’s own which means we’re on the same wavelength in thought and ideas.

With some members there is naturally a shared interest in a particular medium or subject which brings them together – I’m sure my passion for space art is a case in point, not everyone’s cup of tea, but there are several groups devoted to it.
To pin down names, I have to say that the member who has been most helpful and inspiring is Barbara Keith and her wonderfully composed animal drawings. She even sent me some of her originals, and you can’t get much more generous than that. But then I can’t not name my brother-in-arms Tom Godfrey, not only for his great imaginative artwork created both on paper and computer, but for his sense of humour and his concern for the injustices in this world. His art lightens our lives with its humour and yet he can also use his art to make a profound statement.
If there had been no other advantage in joining Redbubble, meeting these two people alone would make it worth the joining fee alone. Yes, I know it’s all free, but that makes it of even more value.

Being pinned down to one, or in my case two, members who have impressed me, does not diminish my respect for so many others.
RB is a wonderful Friendly Society as much as an Art Club.
Show & tell us about five works on redbubble that have moved or inspired you

Barbara Keith

Tom Godfrey

Dave Edwards

Neil Wooding

Nate Owens

I have hundreds of favoured images on my list so picking just five on the basis of them being better than the others is impossible. My choices are based on the artists as much as their work.

Barbara Keith. Barb is an astonishing artist. She has over 400 images in her portfolio and each shows her outstanding talent, not only for drawing and painting but her wonderful compositions. Her main subjects are of animals where she captures fine detail and accurate anatomy in very attractive ways, but look too at her ‘people’ subjects, clowns, nudes and portraits, all wonderful works. She must be praised also for giving her time in producing some very helpful tutorials on RB.

Tom Godfrey. I have high regard for Tom for several reasons. Tom has a wonderful sense of humour which comes out in both his artwork and writing. As mention above, he also has real concern for his fellow beings – a true gentleman. I’ve chosen a piece of his work for which he is famous, one of his very funny space-themed creations. After having a good chuckle, look behind the humour and see what a craftsman Tom is with pencil, brush and keyboard. His imagination knows no bounds in bringing to life those great creatures. But then if we look at his traditional art, such as Polar Bears, we can see what a seriously skilled artist he is.

Dave Edwards. A personal friend, we are united in our love of drawing and painting, Dave is a clever and talented artist. I picked his drawing of Morpeth, not because I was born there, but to show his skills as an artistic draftsman. That is one end of his spectrum, but please look further to see how he has developed his contrasting style with what he calls his Whimsical art. Colourful, imaginative and full of what looks like symbolism, his works almost compel you to take a long look to find more than is obvious at first glance. His unique style is developing all the time and I find it interesting to watch its progress.

Neil Wooding (Woodie) Neil is an expert in his knowledge of aircraft and RAF history. He combines his dedicated interest with his ability to create paintings of his passion in a very artistic style, but also with such accurate detail. His depictions are often accompanied by a true story behind the scene, making them even more interesting. Perhaps oddly, I picked one of his marine painting, but my idea was to show his versatility which also extends to pet portraits and landscapes.

Nate Owens. Humour plays a big part in my life – it’s one of the best medicines one can get – and so I must include it here. There are so many good cartoonists on RB it is hard to select one, therefore I picked Nate out of a hat (the first pick was 7 ½). Nate’s work is full of action, character and exaggeration. Every line works so well and his creations are so humorous even without a caption. But ignoring the humour, his works are of fine art quality.

My thanks to Tom Godfrey for my interview. I hope I haven’t been too long-winded and that at least some members have stuck with it to the bitter end.
Regards to all fellow members of a very friendly club, Brian

Journal Comments

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