This week’s “Behind-the-Easel” features artist, Lucy Beale. Working with oils, to create semi abstract landscapes, Lucy’s work is evocative; playing with colour and inspired by the changing light and transient nature of her surroundings. Taking inspiration from the Sussex countryside and coast, her work entices you in; makes you pause. I find Lucy’s work really beautiful; a confidence of depth and colour creates wonderfully atmospheric pieces.

In our conversation, Lucy talks to me about her work, her inspiration and her journey to becoming an artist. She talks about returning to art and creativity and the juggle of an artistic practice alongside family life. Have a read and let me know what you think…

Please could you describe your work for us?

I would describe my current work as semi abstract landscape paintings. I work in oil paint which I really love, the richness of colour and the softness that can be created with them always inspires me. I love having the creative freedom to explore lots of different subjects – I find inspiration all around me and so my work is always evolving as I explore new things.

Tell us a little more about your journey to becoming an artist.

From a young age I always loved creativity, I played a lot of musical instruments as a child as well as always loving art. I completed my Fine Art degree in 1998, however in the years that followed, my art was left behind whilst I worked hard to get a good job, got married and had a family. My passion for art never left me though, and I always knew at some point, when the time was right, I would come back to it. It’s probably in the last five to six years that I have really dedicated myself to developing my artwork again. I’m so happy that I am able to follow what is truly my passion, and I really love being able to explore all the inspiration and ideas that I have for work.

Where do you find your inspiration?

My inspiration comes very much from my surroundings. I’m very lucky to live in West Sussex, surrounded by beautiful countryside and also not too far from the coast. I work intuitively, I have no defined end goal for a piece of work, I like to allow my inspiration, along with the paint and the canvas, take a piece in its own direction. Working in oils I find inspiring in itself, as the softness and richness of colour never fails to energise my creativity.

Are there any artists you particularly I really love creativity in all different forms, not just painting and I take so much inspiration from enjoying the amazing work that others create. During my degree artists who I studied and who inspired me a lot were Georgia O’Keefe, Mark Rothko – also Andy Goldsworthy who was creating work all around the Cumbrian landscape at the time, the way in which his work was a part of the landscapes, and also at times it’s semi permanence within that landscape was an idea that really inspired me.

Are you able to describe a typical day for us?

I don’t think there is a typical day for me, I very much fit my art practice in and around the demands of busy family life and my job. I do however always manage to fit in some time to do my work, whether that is late in the evenings or a few hours during the day when everyone is out at school or college. I have recently gained a very small space at home which I am able to use as a studio for my work. This is already making such a huge difference to the way in which I am able to work.

Do you ever suffer from “creative block” and, if so, how do you deal with it?

I’m lucky to say that I’ve never suffered from creative block. I’ve always got so many ideas and thoughts for new work – I’m very lucky that I’m always feeling inspired. I have definitely suffered from times when the work just doesn’t come together as I had hoped it might, however I have really learnt to embrace this and use it as a learning curve, to learn from it and to use it to help me with work going forward.

Is there a piece of art that you’ve created, that you’re particularly fond of, or proud of?

I would find it hard to choose any specific piece to say I’m most proud of. Each painting is the very best that I could do at that time, I like to look back over older pieces but I also like to keep moving forwards, challenging myself and trying to push my work forwards.

Do you have any tips for people buying artwork for their own homes?

I would advise anyone choosing work for their own home to go with their heart, if a piece of work speaks to you, moves you or makes you happy that is all that matters.

And finally, where can we see more of (and buy) your art?

The best place to see my most recent work is my Instagram page. I also have a website and I’m always very happy to be contacted directly to discuss work.

My website is
Instagram @lucyb.fineart