The Modern Master Painter – Lawrence Coulson

Lawrence Coulson is an artist who needs no introduction; his work has been compared to one of the great masters, Turner. His work takes you on a journey, overpowering you with emotional attachment to his atmospheric scenes.

Coulson pushes the boundaries with his use of colour, often in vivid juxtaposed combinations, and at times delicately infusing colour and light in a soft dappled effect. Lawrence has just released a new collection of work, which is currently on display at Artworx Gallery.

Last of the Summer Wine by Lawrence Coulson

Last of the Summer Wine by Lawrence Coulson

Coulson talks about his work, “As a child I grew up surrounded by fine art, my father being the hugely successful painter Gerald Coulson. I always loved to draw, cars being a passion of mine and I dreamt of becoming a car designer. I came out of school at 16 with a grade D, O level in art, this being the sum total of my formal art training to this day and fell into a succession of jobs in retail that I didn’t really enjoy, or excel at. At the age of 21 my father encouraged me to have a go at painting and set me the exercise of copying a Victorian landscape. He gave me a few tips and pointers but pretty much left me to get on with it. I enjoyed the processes of trying to match my stumbling technique to what this old master had created and the end result was proficient enough to encourage me to do more.”

“I am hugely influenced by my local landscape. Living on the edge of the Cambridgeshire fens everything is dominated by the huge skies and endless horizons. There are large empty vistas punctuated by just the trains of telegraph poles or the odd church spire. Dramatic sunsets amplified by the flat skyline are reflected in the wetlands, doubling the effect. Heavy stormy skies become even more threatening due to their sheer size. All of this has provided me with a wealth of reference material to draw upon.”

“I am fascinated by the atmospheres of places rather than their mere geography. I’ve never been a picture postcard painter, I am more interested in how certain places make you feel, what kind of feelings they evoke. It’s the same with my other source of reference, the huge empty beaches of Norfolk, especially in the winter when it feels as though one is the only person on mile after mile of sand. You feel almost overcome by the power and drama of the storm blowing in from the sea. These are the ingredients I try to portray in my work, a feeling of the power of nature, be it the romantic drama and intense colours of sunset, or the charged anticipation of an impending storm. That is why the paintings of Turner have been such an influence, especially his later works that depict such power. His portrayal of light is something I can only ever try to emulate.”

Duet by Lawrence Coulson

Duet by Lawrence Coulson

“I have always worked in oils; it’s the first medium I tried and have no desire to change that. I fluctuate between painting on panels and more recently linen canvases. I like a smooth surface to work upon, one uncorrupted by heavy grains. I spend a lot of time priming and sanding the panels to achieve the desired surface. It’s time consuming but it’s amazing the difference this can make to the finished painting. Preparation is everything.”

I use paints of the very best quality, mainly Michael Harding oil paints. They aren’t cheap but their intensity of colour means they go a lot further.”

“By combining these with various mediums and glazes I am able to build up the painting in very fine layers. After initially applying the paint with a large brush I use my fingers to move the paint around, blending different colours and tones. I love the ‘hands on’ approach, feeling totally connected to the painting; It feels as though a little piece of me goes into each one. I then blott the paint and move it around further with soft cloths while removing any finger marks. This leaves a very refined surface. This process is repeated many times in the production of all of my paintings, it is the only way I can achieve the sense of depth and luminosity that I am looking for. The viewer should be able to look into the painting and see the work that has gone into it.”

Until Forever by Lawrence Coulson

Until Forever by Lawrence Coulson

For more information about Lawrence Coulson and his work visit:

Lawrence Coulson at Artworx Gallery

Alternatively please ring 01952 820397 or email
Artworx Gallery, 67 High Street, Newport, Shropshire TF10 7AU

Or get in touch below with our contact form….

One Response to “The Modern Master Painter – Lawrence Coulson”
  1. segmation says:

    Perhaps now more will be educated about Lawrence. Thank you for sharing.

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