Introduce yourself please…
My name is Anne Johnston Gill and I’m from Berwick upon Tweed.
Tell us how you first started out as an artist?
I have been painting for as long as I can remember. After selling my first painting at the age of 13 I continued to paint commissions of my local area
What’s your background? What did you do before you were an artist?
I went to Art college but the other career on my mind had always been the RAF. The RAF took over and I stayed in for 12 years before I had my family. When my youngest started school I decided to do what I enjoyed and became a full time artist.
Why do you do what you do?
I’m an artist because there’s nothing I enjoy more and life’s too short.
What inspires you?
Wildlife inspires me. I started out painting local scenes but soon became bored so I turned to animals. Pet portraits are what I was asked for most but I enjoy doing animals in the wild.
How would you describe your work?
My style of painting is detailed and I try to get them as realistic and 3D as possible.
Can you tell us what you aim to achieve through your art?
I hope people get pleasure from my art as much as I get pleasure from painting it
How do you work?
I work from amalgamated photos and I like to work big. The bigger the better
How have you developed you work?
I try to keep evolving by using different mediums and surfaces. I’ve gone back to oil at the moment
Who or what are your biggest influences?
British wildlife has inspired my work but I also love to paint tigers and wolves.
What influences from The North East have inspired your work?
My favourite wildlife artist has to be David Shepherd
What work are you most proud of?
I’m probably most proud of my oil on wood paintings as they seem to have caught people’s imaginations. I tried for 2 years to get prints on to wood but was never happy with the results. I decided to paint directly on to the wood instead before someone else got the same idea
What has been your most challenging creation?
My most challenging paintings are probably the big stags on wood. There’s no painted background and you can’t really make any mistakes.
What’s your favourite piece of artwork?
My favourite artwork is probably the one I’m working on at the time but I do love painting stags
What are your ambitions for the future?
My ambitions are to keep on growing and become better known and have my own exhibition in London
What is your story with North East Art Collective?
I became friends with John on Facebook and asked him if he would be interested in seeing my work. That’s how I got into the gallery. It’s amazing how many people I’ve met at various shows who have said they’ve seen my work in NEAC