A look at the work of North Wales artist Steve Jones
PUBLISHED: 00:00 12 September 2013
Everyone loves a sunny day on the beach, which is why so many people love the paintings of Steven Jones
His three children are now a little too old to be paddling in the shallows at Criccieth, or building sandcastles at Llanbedrog.
But artist Steven Jones has already immortalised beach days in North Wales with Robin, now 21, Lois, 17, and Elan, 16, in hundreds of his paintings. And a huge stock of family photos will provide raw material for many more paintings to come.
And who wouldn’t love a picture of children enjoying the seaside at the most picturesque spots on the North Wales coastline?
‘I don’t try to idealise it. It is just amazing as it is,’ says Steven of his subject matter. ‘I don’t add a cute dog or make it too sentimental. I don’t do anything twee. I paint what I see.’
Steven has a new exhibition opening at Plas Glyn y Weddw in Llanbedrog, showcasing 50 paintings of the Llyn Peninsula.
‘I spent the last three years going around the Llyn Peninsula,’ he says. ‘I did something similar with Anglesey and the coastal path and I made a book of that which went very well.’
Steven grew up in Colwyn Bay and was just ten when he won his first art prize – a colouring-in competition on the back of an ice lolly wrapper.
‘When I was between 12 and 15 I used to do drawings of footballers like Colin Todd, Denis Law, the whole of the Everton team, and I’d send these drawings off and they’d send them back, signed,’ he says.
When Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer’s engagement was announced, Steven cannily did a portrait of Lady Diana and, just a week after finishing at Wrexham Art College, managed to get it published across two pages of Woman’s Realm magazine.
He then spent four years in London as a commercial illustrator for advertising agencies before returning to North Wales in 1985 to concentrate on painting in oils.
Home is in Bethel, near Caernarfon, and Steven now has a studio and gallery in Beaumaris, the pretty town which seems to have established itself as Anglesey’s creative capital.
Steven’s works have been bought by the likes of opera singer Bryn Terfel and politician Dafydd Wigley, and he is often commissioned by people to paint scenes of their own families on the beach.
‘People find photos of themselves and their kids when they were younger,’ he says. ‘Or I meet them on the beach, take photos with their summer house or their favourite beach in the background.’
An exhibition of Steven Jones’s paintings of the Llyn Peninsula will be at Plas Glyn y Weddw, Llanbedrog, from September 22 to November 10.
Steven’s gallery is at The Bulkeley Hotel, Castle Street, Beaumaris. To see more of his art visit http://stevenjonesartist.com