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Born in Glasgow Joe studied drawing and painting at Glasgow School of Art from 1970-74 under Danny Ferguson RSW. RGI., James Robertson RSW.RGI.RSA.PAI. and Dr. David Donaldson RSA.RP.RGI.LLD.D.LITT (Queens Limner). Joe is proud that his skills were honed in one of the greatest periods of Scottish artistic training; when drawing and painting and how to use materials were rigorously taught. He describes taking several hours to complete a single study of a model and then being asked to finish multiple fifteen minute paintings of the same model in the afternoon – which in turn challenged him to depict the difference between a tight and a more energetic, spirited drawing. He asserts that many of his best drawings were when he used his instincts rather than using every last detail of observation. You get some insight into how he has chosen to apply his training roots when he references renaissance art and the romantic period and uses such terms as ‘elegant’, ‘swashbuckling’ and ‘aspirational’. The character ‘Sniffy’ follows Joe throughout his paintings, he looks bumptious but likeable and he has now become almost universally famous. In creating the personality, who someone suggested ‘looked a bit sniffy’, he was unaware that the character would provoke such a strong response and positive reaction. The character allows him to create humorous narratives or little playlets as he invites the viewer to pour over his studies and interpret the various symbolic devices and metaphors contained within his little ‘happenings’ or compositions. Sniffy is always in profile and as of now, Joe is unsure of where Sniffy's journey is going, or when it will end. Joe's paintings combine the old Masters which influence with the new styles in modern art to produce ‘tongue in cheek’ surreal situations for you to enjoy.


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