Lee Fearnley

A Bit of a Racquet by Lee Fearnley
Out of the Ruck by Lee Fearnley
Mine by Lee Fearnley
Bunkered by Lee Fearnley
Six by Lee Fearnley
The Regatta by Lee Fearnley
In Attendance by Lee Fearnley
Hot Pursuit by Lee Fearnley
The Race by Lee Fearnley
Football, golf, tennis, cricket, rugby, rowing. There’s no mainstream sporting activity that figurative artist Lee Fearnley won’t tackle if you pardon the pun, although we’re yet to clock a rip-roaring curling match amongst his back catalogue. Fearnley was born and raised in Mirfield in West Yorkshire in 1969, and is the son of respected motorsport artist, Alan Fearnley. Fearnley Jnr therefore grew up surrounded by the sight, sound and smell of art, so it was hardly headline-grabbing news that on leaving school he attended Batley College of Art. Nor was it particularly traffic-stopping that Fearnley’s obvious talent for his brand of caricatured art led him to the doors of a greetings card company; which welcomed him with open arms.

During his tenure Fearnley bagged an understanding of a veritable smorgasbord of artistic styles and techniques, not to mention a thorough technical grasp of the commercial publishing industry. Both of which flavours would help him out in future and should he decide to go it alone. Which of course he did. Fast forward a few years, and in 1995 Fearnley left the greeting card company’s design studio for the last time and launched himself as a freelance artist and illustrator, and soon found himself attracting a host of clients near and far. Or the UK and across Europe to me more specific. The disciplines in which Fearnley chose to major (and excel) were in humourous calendar origination and design and jigsaws, which stood him in good stead.

And there’s definitely something of a comedic, humourous slant to his figuratively artistic characters that has seen Fearnley equally billed as a cartoonist in certain quarters. This is helped in no small part by Fearnley’s affection for and affinity with people. Folk from all walks of life. He’s a people watcher you see; only he can then manifest what he witnesses in visual form at a later date; albeit with additional dimensions and comical pictorial amendments. A self-acclaimed great observer of people, situations and their reactions to and interaction with, Fearnley finds inspiration in the mundane. That which many of us overlook or fail to notice in the first place. Very much a creative’s default setting.

With Fearnley those ‘situs’ tend to revolve around amateur sports, and the colourful, often larger-than-life characters that populate this grass roots scene across Britain. It’s the forthcoming absurdities and idiosyncratics of these individuals – occasionally bumbling, sometimes pompous, always egotistical – that afford Fearnley his most accomplished influences and ensure that the compositions write themselves, leaving him the chore of adding the colour. The person best qualified to give us further insight into what makes him tick, artistically-speaking is Fearnley himself, who adds; “I have a deep love of painting figures and to be able to combine that with another passion of mine in sport, is extremely enjoyable, particularly in vintage scenes as they aren’t tainted with the modern day commercialism that most sports have today. The unprofessional naivety of vintage sport is not only visually more appealing to me, but it lends itself to a more stylised, humourous type of figure”.

An increasing volume of Fearnley’s fun-loving, slightly ridiculing, overly celebratory and life-affirming works of individual art are now available on the fine art market, whilst a growing number of his original paintings have been published and reproduced in the context of limited edition prints. Suffice to say Fearnley’s paintings and art prints are located in private collections home and away.

View All Art Works By Lee Fearnley