Artist — Mark Stopforth is ‘World Famous on ArterNet Art’

(oil, chalk and pencil on paper 42x31cm).

Today we talk to Artist Mark Stopforth on

‘World Famous on ArterNet Art’

Over the past twenty years, Mark’s work has been devoted to those landscapes that are associated with the untamed and wild landscapes that can be found in the Moors, Fens, Fells and Estuaries of Britain.

He has carried those impressions of the sublime in the landscape, that were left on him as a child growing up in the Fens of East Anglia, impressions that are still relevant to his work today.

Recently, it has been the vast immersive spaces of moorland and river estuary that have consumed Mark’s imagination and which he wishes to evoke through charcoal, pencil and oil

ArterNet Art: Hi Mark, thanks for taking the time to chat with us today.

As artists, we love these rare insights into other artists lives. Reading their stories helps us with our own daily challenges — to know others have had their trials and have succeeded, is very uplifting.

The culture of our company — ArterNet Art — is to put a human face to all our members and guest artists.

Our blog series ‘World Famous on ArterNet Art’ is devoted to exclusive, in-depth interviews with brilliant, professional artists of the day. It is tailored with the new, emerging and working artists in mind.
Motivation for this series is to provide rare and valuable insights for all working artists:
• to discover innovative sales ideas and tips — which can easily be incorporated into an artists daily work practice.
• to show simple and proven methods of navigating your way through the intricacies of social media and online art sales.
• From past experience, we understand how new and working artists crave to gain knowledge and learn new insights that will help them in their marketing and online art sales. This is why we love these chats, so without further ado:

Mark, can you give our readers an idea of your route to becoming an artist?

Mark: Where does being an artist and being open to Art begin?For me, I can certainly remember the first ever picture my mother put on a wall, which was when I was about three years of age. I’ve always drawn, doodled or painted and it’s a way, for me of losing myself in something that I want to get right, but know ultimately, I’ll always fail at, just hopefully fail a bit better each time. Whilst at college I studied installation art and carried on with that for a few years after graduating, but then painting took over and has now become my mainstay.

ArterNet Art: Mark, have you had any difficulties or major hurdles that you’ve had to overcome on your journey to becoming the successful, established artist we see today?
Mark: There were times when the Art wasn’t working and I hadn’t quite found my voice. It took the best part of twenty years, honing skills and getting to a point where intuition could take over and that is when I feel a painting has worked. Where the moment and the act seemed almost to come from somewhere else.

ArterNet Art: What or who were your early influences?

Mark: My early influence has always been the Fens of East Anglia, a very flat landscape with vast never ending skies. The first painters to get under my skin were Turner, Constable and Rothko.

ArterNet Art: How has your imagination been captured over the years?
Mark:

  • I think Art captured me,
  • moments of sublime beauty captured me,
  • being in the moment captured me.

Landscape, seascapes, sky, gardens both ornamental and wild, nature, roadside verges, rust, dilapidated buildings, waterfalls, rivers, streams, the seasons…and so on.
Artist wise…Turner, Rothko, Cottman, Reinhardt, Constable, Delacroix, Monet, Van Gogh, Pollock, Auerbach, Hockney…and so on.

ArterNet Art: So Mark, what was it about the medium you’ve chosen that attracted you?

Mark: Oil paints are a traditional material, but I want to thin them down so they are almost like watercolours and so bleed straight into the paper on contact. I like to let the paint itself take over and then I can push it in certain directions or look for nuance and effect.

ArterNet Art: Can you explain to us a bit about your chosen techniques and how you use them.

Mark: Apart from the above, I will add that I don’t use brushes, everything is applied with rags and tissue, my fingers are much more in contact with the surface that way.

Mark at work in his studio.
ArterNet Art: How has your work developed since you began and how do you see it evolving in the future?

Mark: This is a difficult question, my early efforts of landscape painting were much more minimalist and I used paint sparingly…how the work will develop — I’ve no idea, so long as I keep surprising myself.

“…the return to light…19:08”\

(oil, chalk and pencil on paper 31x42cm)

ArterNet Art: Mark, can you give us an overview about a piece of your work that holds particularly fond memories and why?
Mark: I have a piece on my wall which is large 100x70cm (large for me) and there are moments in that painting that just work so very well and are intuitive and it all went together very nicely.

ArterNet Art: Is there anything in particular that inspires you to create art?

Mark: Inspiration is a many and varied thing.
I have to paint, it’s a need or desire that I’ve not really got any control over.
I feel useless when I don’t paint.

ArterNet Art: What has been your favourite or most memorable art sale?

Mark: The last one. It always gives me a buzz and is quite humbling that people want to buy the work…..every sale is important and I treat each one the same when it comes to packing and shipping.

ArterNet Art: Marketing your artwork: do you have any tips? Do you struggle with marketing and what areas could you use some guidance in?

Mark: I used to think I was bad at marketing but then slowly realised the work will do that for me. I’ve no desire to over reach myself…I’m happy doing what I’m doing.

“…the Odyssey II…05:08”
(oil chalk and pencil on watercolour paper 58x41cm)
ArterNet Art: How has your art business/career changed over the past 6 months or year?
Mark:
It’s become much more intense, in terms of putting the work out there and selling it. I’ve become much more savvy shall we say.

ArterNet Art: Do you have any hobbies, sports or interests other than art?

Mark: Gardening, nature, football, poetry and listening to a podcast called “Weird studies”

ArterNet Art: What plans and goals do you have for the future, both creatively and personal?

Mark: To go bigger and hopefully have a couple of one man shows that I thought, ‘yeah, that was ok’

ArterNet Art: What advice would you give to an aspiring new artist?

Mark: Don’t take no for an answer 😊

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Thank you once again, Mark, for taking the time to talk with us today. At ArterNet Art we are all about inspiring our artist members. We find it’s a great way to learn about another artist’s journey in a more personal and indepth manner.
Learn more about Mark and his art here:

http://markstopforth.co.uk/
and follow Mark on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/markstopforth/

Mark: outside Dylan Thomas’ shed where he wrote in ‘Laugharne’.

You’ve also got my dog in the pic.

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You can be a featured artist on ‘World Famous on ArterNet Art’ :

Apply by sending in a submission,

or you can be recommended, or you are invited by ANA.

Send your submission or if you know of a worthy artist email: info@arternetart.com

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Did you know that for around a dollar per day -

you can have your OWN online art gallery -

where you won’t pay any commission on your art sales!

Become a member of ANA today!

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