Always trying to push the boundaries… I’m continually experimenting with new techniques and materials, trying to bridge the gap between painting and sculpture. Working with the most prestigious bronze foundry in the world in recent years has opened possibilities far greater than I could possibly have imagined.
With an engineering mindset traceable as far back as pre-school endeavours with lego, to an Aerospace Engineering degree at 18 – I’ve always thought in 3D. Which is why my paintings are structural and so deep in paint too, I guess.
For the last decade I’ve celebrated the icons of F1 mostly in paint, becoming increasingly well known for that, giving the added benefits of enhanced inspiration, networking and funding to really push the limits of what I’m doing, and truly embrace my long-held belief that there is no such thing as a crazy idea!
This next phase of my career focus is to immortalise the heroes of the sport that I grew up with, in the most permanent of mediums, bronze. Life-sized statues with accompanying limited editions, some a more manageable size too. All cast by world-leading Pangolin Editions.
Most of my bronze projects are developed over 10-12 months in ‘secret’, for the big impact of an unveiling. Sometimes even under an NDA… which is why that, at time of writing (April ’20) in the midst of global lockdowns and months of cancelled events, that no-one has seen my two most recent statues!
So… I thought I should show one in reverse…. from concept to realisation, target date October ’20.
With my ethos of modelling on real life for the ultimate in detail and dynamic, and my long-held belief that there is no such thing as a crazy idea… getting an actual rearing horse in the studio was the obvious thing to do.
And true to my other long-held belief that no man can achieve anything alone…. massive thanks to Stampede Stunt Animals who spent a month training the amazing Lumi to rear on the spot, in ever tighter confinements. And to Steve Russell studios for a similar period working to triple the size of the 3D capture rig to accommodate him.
Senna Eau Rouge
This life-size bronze statue was created through 2018 to launch at Autosport January 2019, to mark 25 years since the Brazilian’s last race. Since then it has been on permanent display at McLaren MTC Woking. And the start of the next chapter of my career – to celebrate and immortalise the icons and history of F1 in bronze.
The statue was modelled on real life with myself as the stunt body – being coincidentally the same height and build as Ayrton. My aim was to portray the dynamic of Eau Rouge into Raidillon, about which Ayrton famously said “If you take away Eau Rouge, you take away the reason why I do this”. The beauty of modelling on real life is that it inherently includes the natural ripples of the race suit distorted by the thickness of the logos, the strain of holding this position translating nicely into the forces of driving. Evident by the ‘oversteer dance’ I have seen many times in front of the statue since! Perfect.