"I absolutely love the work of Luis Morris, I think he has the deftest of touches with the brush and he insinuates rather than spells things out."

Tim Benson, President of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters on the need for a cup of tea, a deep breath and a few stern words with himself. 


You and the ROI

What does the Royal Institute of Oil Painters mean to you?

For me, the ROI represents the best oil painters working in the UK today and I wanted to show alongside them.

Why should artists want to exhibit with the Royal Institute of Oil Painters?

To bring your work to the attention of some great artists and a very wide audience. There is also a real sense of achievement when you see your work up on the walls (or website) at Mall Galleries.

Why should people want to buy art from the Royal Institute of Oil Painters?

There really is something for everyone on display. We don’t champion one style of painting over another.

Past or present, what artist from the ROI do you most admire?

I absolutely love the work of Luis Morris, I think he has the deftest of touches with the brush and he insinuates rather than spells things out.

Luis Morris ROI Man with an Owl

What is your favourite work in this year’s exhibition?

So many to choose from but if pushed I would say ‘Rooftop View of St Petersburg’ by Thomas Arthurton. It is a beautifully balanced, economical piece of painting that is simultaneously unassuming and jewel-like.

Thomas Arthurton Rooftop View of St Petersburg

Your Materials

What paints make up your palette?

I use ‘Winton’ by Winsor and Newton, Cass Art Oils and ‘Georgian’ by Daler Rowney.

I have the same 7 colours on my palette for any painting:

  • Cadmium Red
  • Lemon Yellow
  • Burnt Umber
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • Ultramarine Blue
  • Cobalt Blue
  • Titanium White

Tim Benson PROI NEAC RP Summer Stream

Do you frame your own work?

I frame my smaller paintings and any that are painted on board. I’ve used the same framer for years because he is a master craftsman and crucially, offers a great service!

What is your favourite art supplies store?

Cass Art in Islington.


You, Your Work and Your Studio

What gallery did you first sell a work at?

Vertigo in Great Eastern Street, Old Street in 2001, £1,000.

Where do you produce your best work?

I wouldn’t say that my best work happens in any given environment; I’ve produced paintings that I’m very happy with en plein air and in my studio. I don’t, however, work outside and then finish off in my studio, all work is done in one hit.

Tim Benson PROI NEAC RP Reflected Sunset

Do you have any rituals or routines when preparing and starting a painting?

A cup of tea, a deep breath and a few stern words with myself.

Where is your studio and what’s it like?

My studio is in Wood Green, North London. It’s about 10 minutes walk from my home so really convenient. It’s a small, modest room in an ex-council office block. It’s not pretty but it does the job!


Advice

What advice would you give an artist wanting to join the ROI?

Submit work that you believe in, not something that you think would ‘fit’.

What do you know now that you wish you’d known at the start of your career?

That we’re all in this together and that good things come to those who wait.



'Reflections from the Artist' is an ongoing series of advice from and insight into the practice of artists who exhibit at Mall Galleries. 

Discover the full series here.

Next Up... Haidee-Jo Summers ROI RSMA


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