Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom
About Barbara Shepard
I have a grounding in many techniques and processes and an academic training in drawing and painting from nature, architecture and the model. I also developed abstract approaches in my early work became often using mixed media, soft relief and 3d mixed media. Gradually it got honed to painting and drawing, mainly due to studio restriction but also themes to do with the body started to emerge. I moved away from abstraction and in the late 1980's and early 1990's themes were to do with redefining the feminine and picturing the female nude from a female perspective. My current work is concerned with different aspects of human expression and especially a different face of masculinity. It seeks to re-configure the male in art. I am interested in how this translates into the aesthetics of a pictorial image, creating beauty in composition, colour and mark making. Taken from a close up perspective, they explore female desire and male vulnerability. The male model is the observed rather than the observer. It isnâ€™t an attempt to do a role reversal and objectify the male but to illuminate aspects of male character little seen on public view. Composed of close up parts of the body, the viewer is invited be drawn into the scene and inhabit the landscape of the body. I am also creating water colours of dance couples that are worked from photographs I took of Tango dancers. These are intended as starting points for larger paintings. They picture a dramatic display of intimacy. The focus is to do with the emotional quality of connection between the dancers as shown in facial and bodily expression.