Over many centuries, the Cornish people have travelled the world, spreading their mining and seafaring skills, but that has done little to diminish the region’s association in our minds with mythical kings, pirates, smugglers and romance. From the legends of King Arthur to tales of shipwrecks and bounty hunting, and from its close links with Brittany to its peculiarly Celtic brand of Christianity, this narrow peninsula at the southwest tip of the British Isles retains an ‘otherness’ that its people are fiercely keen to protect, and that gives it its unique appeal to artists like me.
A tension is created where the land meets the sea. There is a clear border between two worlds, sometimes softened and blurred by light and calm, while at others broiling waters dash against the shoreline. Cornwall makes a fascinating subject for artists, because it is both an ancient landscape and an extremity – a destination, not a thoroughfare. Away from the picturesque fishing villages and sweeping beaches, there is a dramatic interior of moorland and hidden valleys that provide endless opportunities for me to capture its magic.