Q + A: Nathan Wilkinson


How would you describe what you do to someone who hasn’t seen your art?

It’s a love/hate relationship. The love and excitement of painting is when things are flowing and the painting takes me on a journey. The frustrating aspects of it are the mistakes I make, which ironically are as important as the good decisions I make. I see in my work a need for people to try and connect with each other and the outdoors. It’s an effort to try and find one’s place in a very strange, often beautiful world. I want to convey the excitement and terror of living during our extremely brief existence.

What materials do you use?

Oil on canvas mostly. I love the stuff, even the smell of it. It can be a frustrating process and you need a tonne of patience. I have been painting for nearly 30 years and I am still learning new ways to use the stuff!

What is your studio life like?

A typical day in the studio for me begins at the end of my Postie job. A strong coffee is followed by a period of staring at the works I have under construction. This can last for up to an hour. Decisions are made, tunes are cranked and it’s time to, as I like to say, “waste some paint”. By scraping, scratching and sanding, an image will reveal itself to me. Then it’s a process of trial and error.

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