Painting the Town - Jonathan Stewardson
Someone described Jonathan Stewardson’s art as "Romantic Realism" and we think the term fits like a glove.
Jonathan was born in 1963, in London, England and, currently, lives on the Southeast coast of the country.
Jonathan is a full-time artist and his work is many times inspired by a moment in his life. Each painting has a story behind it, very commonly, something from his past, a memory.
Busy streets, locations normally alive with people, are depicted by the artist, empty and quiet, concentrating on atmosphere and emotion.
This lonely desolation right now touches our recent memories of the lockdown days, when bustling streets came to a halt.We all are aware that the world is a very different place ever since and these paintings might strike a chord in many, reminding us of when restaurants, bars, etc., had to close their doors and cities fell silent around the world.
Even though many of his paintings are empty of people, you can still sense the energy left behind. .
Jonathan feels a key element to create a good composition is having a story, something the viewer can relate to.
These still images show a more personal perspective to the viewer, elevating the moment and holding it with extraordinary talent on the canvas. Art for Jonathan is a way to escape reality
When Jonathan’s paintings have people, he sometimes likes to be one of them, painting himself into the scene.
Jonathan has, as hobbies, reading and keeping fit by jogging and cycling. His favourite book is The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler
His studio is inside his home, where he works with oils and acrylics (he prefers oils to work his magic on the canvas. The light he has in his studio is indispensable and he prefers to work with music, listening to jazz and classical pieces).
Following are some questions we have asked Jonathan to get to know him a bit more personally:
Art5: What is the best part about creating art?
I think when a painting starts to come together as I want, it can be rewarding
Art5: Who has inspired you in your life and why?
My Dad mostly.
Art5: What are you presently inspired by— are there particular things you are
reading, listening to or looking at to fuel your work?
Recently I have been looking through old family photos. They seem to help.
Art5: How would your best friends describe you?
They would probably say I was a bit different.
Art5: Professionally, what is your goal?
I think just to have a steady income
Art5: Three things in your bucket list.
That’s got me thinking! I haven’t got one.
Art5: What makes you laugh?
Most things. Depending on my mood. But if it is bad day, then nearly nothing will.
Art5: Where is your favourite place in the world?
I visit Coniston, Cumbria whenever I get the chance. One day I’d like to live there.
Actually, that could be the start of my bucket list!
Art5: Who are your favourite artists?
I like Hopper, Picasso, Constable. All the main ones really.
Art5: What is the most challenging part about being an artist?
I’d have to say the money side of it. Trying to balance painting what I like with what someone might buy.
Art5: What is your favourite website?
I like YouTube. Always find good music.
Art5: What do you worry about and why?
It is usually money. And/or the health of my dogs.
Art5: What does family mean to you?
Art5: What is your favourite food?
Art5: What is the most interesting thing about you?
I do not believe there’s even one thing interesting about me.
Art5: What are you the most grateful for?
Art5: What words of wisdom would you pass unto your childhood self?
Do not ever smoke. Visit the dentist more, and relationships are not as important as you are going to think.
Art5: How do you want to be remembered?
As someone who cared about animals.
Art5: Do you have pets? What are they?
Three dogs and a cat.
Art5: What is your fondest childhood memory?
Playing frisbee with my Dad.
Art5: What makes you cry?
All kinds of things.
Art5: What is “home” to you?
Where the dogs are.
Art5: What motivates you to succeed?
Just wanting to be confident in my income.
Art5: In what ways are you the same as your childhood self?
Apart from being taller and older, I seem to be just the same.
Jonathan has painted for The Crowned Prince of Dubai and The King of Saudi Arabia, among many clients here in England and internationally.
We have a fabulous selection of artworks by Jonathan in our Brighton gallery and Online store, art5gallery.com. Come find the one for you.