Exhibition inspired by love of the Cornish coast
For artist Dick Twinney, "Inspired by Cornwall" means much more than just the title of his latest exhibition, which celebrates his 40-year career.
Growing up in the seaside town of Teignmouth, South Devon, Dick cherished the beauty of the Westcountry landscape and was soon combining his two loves of art and nature. At the age of 15, he left school to follow in his father's footsteps and join the RAF as an aircraft fitter.
For the next 14 years, Dick progressed through the service, reaching the rank of sergeant. He always remained interested in wildlife, studying it whenever he could on his different postings in Britain and around the world.
However, it was one post in particular that would change his career path. Returning to RAF St Mawgan in 1969 was undoubtedly the turning point in Dick's life. After being reunited with the South West coast, Dick decided to leave the RAF in 1973 to embark on a career as a full-time artist.
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Since leaving the RAF, Dick has not looked back. On moving to St Columb Major, Cornwall, Dick and his wife Ann turned the front of their family home into an art gallery, where visitors can view the artwork at their own leisure.
As Dick says: "This way I can have all my latest work on display, people can see my work in progress, ask about my paintings and the Westcountry's wildlife in a totally informal, homely setting."
Over the course of his vibrant career, Dick has provided illustrations for over 25 books and found time to publish two books of his own. His artwork has also been reproduced on collectable plates and ceramics by international porcelain companies.
Since 2008, Dick has been a weekly feature in the Western Morning News, something he is very proud of. As he says: "This is one of the best things that has happened to my career over recent years.
"All my artwork nowadays is local and confined to the South West so it is such a pleasure to share my passion for this part of the world and its wildlife with local people through my paintings," Dick continues.
The exhibition features selected artwork from the length of his career as well as his latest original paintings. Dick will be present throughout the exhibition, with a painting "on the go" to showcase his realistic approach to art.
"Inspired by Cornwall" opened yesterday and runs until Monday, December 16, at The Poly, Falmouth, 10am to 5pm.
The exhibition then opens at the Cornish Wildlife Art Gallery, St Columb, from Tuesday, December 17 until Christmas Eve, 11am to 6pm.