Ian McManus IEA


Ian was born just outside Cambridge, and the neighbouring village had an excellent college where he spent four years of his secondary education waiting impatiently for the weekly art lesson, taught by a very inspirational teacher. On leaving college with only an ‘O’ level (in art), Ian worked for the next twenty-five years doing jobs that did not fulfil his creative hankering. In his early forties, he finally decided to have a go at painting and began with oils, and eventually progressed to watercolours. As well as attending workshops with a variety of professional artists, Ian read books and watched DVDs to learn more about the technicalities of painting, i.e. I believe a good painting starts with a good drawing, perspective, colour mixing, tone and composition etc. With a lot of practice, came a degree of confidence in the work he was producing. His wife suggested that he approach the Picturecraft Gallery in Holt with a view to putting four paintings on their website. When she submitted them online to the gallery, Adrian Hill called and asked Ian if he could bring some samples of his work to the gallery for him to have a closer look. Ian had his first solo exhibition at Picturecraft in 2011, and his fourth in May 2014.  He recently had one of his paintings pre-selected for the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour (RI) and is an Associate Member of the IEA. Ian was delighted when one of his paintings won the Ruth Hill Memorial Award for the finest painting at the first IEA open exhibition in March 2013. Ian runs four regular workshops and is often invited to various other art groups to take a workshop or give a demonstration.  He works continuously to develop and improve his own style through applying paint directly to the paper without overlays of washes normally associated with watercolour painting, he believes this gives each finished painting transparency and freedom of expression. His subjects are taken from everyday life, street scenes, people at work and leisure, and anything that captures the moment in watercolour.