I have always had a love for, and strong connection to the ocean. Growing up on the Isle of Wight meant I was never far from the sea. Rock pooling and paddling (even in icy water during winter) were a normal part of my childhood.
My work as an artist is all about trying to capture the energy and spirit of the British coastline, and in particular moving water. Windswept, dramatic coasts are especially inspiring for me. Even on overcast days water can have a beautiful, luminous quality, and there are infinite forms of waves, and dramatic lighting effects to draw inspiration from.
Jo’s work involves much observation and preparatory sketching. A lot of time is spent on wind-blown cliffs, watching the energy of water as the tide turns.
Charcoal and pastel are used to record tones and colours, and capture life and movement; often of water, but sometimes a different subject, such as wild Carneddau ponies in the mountains of Snowdonia, or flocks of Hebridian sheep grazing near her home.
I find the sea a fascinating subject to paint, and it’s always a challenge to express the spirit and energy of the ocean in different ways. J.B.
Jo Bemis is a painter based on the Isle of Wight.
As a child, the beautiful coastal scenery formed her earliest influences. She loved to draw, and was never without a sketchbook.
Her love for wild, rugged landscapes and the ocean was strengthened after a visit to North Cornwall, where she became captivated by the exposed, rocky coastline and luminous, rolling surf of the Atlantic.
Painting Skies and Seascapes’ by Peter Rush (Crowood Press 2014)
‘Atlantic Waves’ Paintings and Sketches by Jo Bemis (Tricorn Books 2013)
‘Landscape Painting of the Isle of Wight’ by Robin McInnes 2010
‘Spirit of the Sea’ Art of England June 2010
‘From Sea to Sky’ Country Homes and Interiors February 2006