Bobby Clark is a tornado – she sweeps you off your feet and takes you with her at a million miles an hour. She loves life, she is candid and blunt and to top it all off she has an irresistible Scottish accent that keeps you hooked on every word she says. I first met Bobby a couple of years ago in the Pop & Scott workshop. Her talents were clear, not only as a painter and photographer but her energy and gregarious nature made her friends with many.
Bobby has had an interesting creative path in life. From her background in fashion and textile design she has experimented with many different techniques and undergone vastly different jobs. Always encouraged to draw by her Gran, it’s clear that Bobby is grateful of her creative upbringing and now sights books, travels and the great masters is some of her biggest influencers. Bobby’s laughs at the irony of her minimalist painting style, given that she never quite understood minimalist art when she was younger. This candor is what I love most about Bobby. She is intrinsically creative which she embraces with humour and authenticity.
Can you describe the feeling that you get when you’re painting?
The feeling I get when I’m painting is… well I don’t really get any. That’s the reason why I love it. I just completely switch off. I come in here, close the door, put the music on and I think about nothing. It’s the one thing in life that I don’t plan. I don’t stress. I just do it, and then in the end, I’m like, “Uh, I like it, nah, I hate it,” whatever. It’s my favourite thing because it just switches me off.
When did you realise you were creative?
I think it’s always been there. I’ve always been creative. Ever since I was a wee girl, I would draw on phone books, everything. I actually used to draw portraits of myself and put a little line in for my cleavage when I was four. My family’s all creative as well. We were encouraged to just draw and paint. We loved being outdoors. My gran would set up still life’s for us in the house just to keep us quiet. “Here’s an apple and an orange. Go and paint.”
I’ve always known that school was never for me. I loved art. That was my favorite class. I liked English, but the other subjects would just bore me to tears, and I’d count down till I got to art, so I always knew that I was never going to be in some office nine to five job, or doing anything with numbers. It was always going to be something with my hands
Where do you draw inspiration from?
Mainly books. I love books. It’s easy. They’re everywhere. I really love art books. When I was in art school, we were encouraged to start a project either through photography or research, and the libraries that we had there were incredible. I love old books and finding vintage books.
I really try and stay away from social media. Although it’s the best tool in the world, I feel that it starts to manipulate what you do. You have a picture of something that you’re going to do before you’ve even started doing it. So I’ve tried when I’m painting, not to look at social media and compare what I’m doing with what other people are doing.
I love Picasso. Reading about him, reading about his life actually more than his art. I love looking at his art, but his life, he had this amazing life and all these women. He was a bit of a floozy. When I’m reading about him, it makes me want to go and do something.
I wish I could travel more. Hopefully in the next two years, I’ll have been in Morocco and Cuba, and all these amazing places. Because I think when you travel you come back so inspired from your holidays. Just seeing the colours, the buildings, the streets. Things like that really inspire me.
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