Peter Smith can never remember a time when he did not enjoy some form of creativity, and painting, drawing and doodling played a big part throughout his childhood.
History and Background
It was at the tender age of nine that Peter bought his first watercolour paint set and brushes, which he took with him everywhere. But, when he began secondary school and found himself being teased for his hobby, the social pressures of his peers drove him to put down his paintbrushes, and he didn’t return for many years.
Peter took on a number of jobs after graduation, including a stint as a surveyor, a time as a computer programmer and one role as a graphic designer but in the year 2000, encouraged by his wife Jayne, he made a return to painting.
His first limited edition print was print was released in 2003 and, in 2005, he was signed to Washington Green Fine Art.
Ideas and Inspirations
Peter gets his ideas from everyday life; in the street, the people he meets, the feelings he experience. He has even taken inspiration from history, in his Lost Impossimals Collection. At the end of every day he has hundreds of images, fighting for his attention and the chance to be painted; quite often he gets carried away with excitement and fills his sketchbook from cover to cover within hours giving him a rich source of reference material. Peter takes inspiration from other artists too; the quirkiness of Will Bullas with his strong characters and whimsical titles, but also the surreal Salvador Dali which has offered Peter an unusual slant on the world. But inspiration ultimately comes from deep inside, drawing on all his experiences. It's only when painting he places his real emotions down, each canvas receiving a different layer of emotion with each session.
“I have captured over fifty individuals in Impossimal form, some family, others friends and even pets. I give each Impossimal its own characteristic to match the individual we have based it on. It takes an immense amount of record keeping, the stories themselves run to over five hundred pages with twenty six sketchbooks to accompany them.”
Peter’s Impossimals have proved to be a hit around the world and he and Jayne have taken part in a number of exciting projects, including the creation of a life sized baby elephant Impossiphant for the Elephant Family charity and they are currently working with a Los Angeles based entertainment company to create an Impossimals animation series.