Artist Feature - Meg Hill
With just a few days left to go until the end of the month, our 2020 Summer Arts Club is also drawing to a close. We couldn't end the competition without one more artist Q&A though; this week we have been talking to Meg Hill about her intricate pet portraits!
Based in Cornwall, Meg has a wealth of experience drawing commissions, with requests ranging from famous movie stallions to peoples' beloved pets who are no longer with us.
What inspired you to create artwork featuring animals?
I have always been an animal lover, but was born pony mad! Since I could hold a pencil I have been drawing all sorts of animals, in fact I rarely drew anything else growing up. It wasn't until I ended up being home schooled due to severe anxiety as a young teen however that I decided to take art a bit more seriously and creating pieces of my own pets seemed the perfect way to start, as well as being quite therapeutic!
Do you have a favourite animal subject matter?
My whole life horses have been my favourite subject to draw and I can't see that changing! However I do have a real soft spot for drawing dogs too. I definitely find them more tricky but I love capturing the huge variety in their faces and expressions in comparison with other animals!
Do you have a four-legged friend of your own?
My family have always had lots of pets since before I was born, from dogs and horses to guinea pigs, cats and fish. However I currently have one dog, Maggie the border collie, and two VERY cheeky ponies of my own!
What medium do you work in?
Over the years I have experimented with many different mediums, but soft Pastel has to be my favourite. I just love how beautifully you can blend them together on the page. I also love to work in colour pencil and water colour & ink for some of my smaller pieces of art.
What is your favourite time of day to create?
I love to work in the mornings but I'd be lying if I said it happened very often! I tend to work best after getting all of my day to day jobs out of the way first before settling down to create. Often late at night is when my surroundings are most quiet and peaceful so I would say that is when I work the best!
Do you have a favourite animal-themed artwork by another artist?
I have so many favourite artists and pieces they have created! Generally I love anything with beautiful colours and slightly less realistic than what I create myself. Though I don't have one stand out piece of art that comes to mind, an artist who's work I adore is Sasha Vologzhiná. I find their style and use of colour so beautiful.
What advice would you give to amateur artists wanting to work with animal subjects?
Practise practise practise! I am entirely self taught and have never had an art lesson, so if you are given that opportunity I would definitely jump at the chance! But I don't believe anything is better than just practising and working on art that you love. Also try to be original, find your own style and come up with your own ideas - using other artists as inspiration is fantastic but always try to create work that is entirely your own.
You can find more information about Meg's commissions on her website, and follow her creations on Instagram.