Nicola Cooke is a professional contemporary artist and photographer living and working in Dorset, UK.
Copyright 2014: Nicola Cooke
Nicola Cooke lives in Dorset, where the surrounding countryside and coast are a constant source of inspiration. She exhibits in Galleries throughout the U.K. and national open exhibitions. In 2005 and 2010 she was selected for the prestigious ‘Open Painting’ exhibition at the Royal West of England Academy. Her work is represented in galleries in Bath, Oxford and Cambridge.
This collection of paintings draws upon a love of trees and meadows. For these paintings Nicola was inspired by the woodlands of Dorset, including Thorncombe Wood, near Thomas Hardy’s birthplace just outside Dorchester. The meadows and parkland close to Nicola’s home have also been an inspiration. Majestic mature trees; huge oaks, beeches and specimen trees, along with many of their feathered inhabitants, all feature in Nicola’s paintings this year.
A particular quality of Nicola’s paintings comes from the way they are painted. Textured layers and delicate washes are built up over time in a process that relies on subtle drawing and use of colour.
Nicola explains “I am passionate about colour and the way it is used in painting. I am a great advocate for experimental colour mixing and combinations and love looking at the way artists use colour and how their palette works for them; especially when interesting subtle colour variations are layered over each other. Some of my greatest inspirations are, Thomas Henry Twachtman, and also James McNeil Whistler’s ‘Nocturnes’ – which I absolutely adore. Their use of soft colour, in beautiful hues, for me is both mesmerising and exciting.”
Nicola uses thin veils of translucent colour, interweaved with thicker layers for texture. This skill, combined with the knowledge of the subject that she has, allows the real atmosphere of these places to be revealed.