John Tordoff

John Tordoff: Artist’s Statement
It was always my regret that I never went to Art School. Instead, after a brief spell as an apprentice mechanical engineer, my need to perform led me to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. My future life as professional actor spanned thirty-five years and embraced Theatre, Films and TV. For more information on this, see my page on Wikipedia.
In my fifties however, the work became less frequent and I was forced to seek other creative outlets. Gardening was one, with an emphasis on garden design. Over a period of thirty years, two of my three gardens have won major awards. In1996 my Hackney garden was the outright winner of the BBC Gardeners World competition for the ‘Best small garden in Britain. More recently, our Cambridge garden came third in a similar competition run by Gardeners World Magazine. (see youtube video – Garden of the year 2018, John Tordoff).
As painter I would say I’m mostly self taught, apart from various courses at London’s City Lit and Morley College. In 2005 I had a solo exhibition at the Barbican Library, in the City. Called ICONS, it consisted of 18 larger than life- size portraits of historical personalities based on contemporary images.
Moving to Cambridge in 2009, I participate annually in Cambridge Open Studios and am an elected member of the Cambridge Drawing Society. I have had work accepted by the Pastel Society, the Society of Wildlife Artists and the Royal Society of Marine Artists for showing at the Mall Galleries.
As a member of several painting groups on Facebook, I am often asked to say more about how I use collage. In response I have recently published a fully illustrated book entitled ‘Working with Collage’, which is about to have its second printing.

Antonia Robertson

I love the power of painting – as an image takes shape on the canvas it feels like a kind of magic; not just reproducing something beautiful but moulding and perfecting it. Thus bringing into being another beautiful object that will endure and bring pleasure to its viewers for years to come. The unique quality of oil paints is that they allow for both grand gestures and tiny tinkerings, which seem to suit the way I see things, and makes the creation of these images an addictively mindful process. I hope they will add a quiet note of beauty to any interior, modern or traditional. They are particularly good in kitchens!

I took up oil painting again about 12 years ago, having given up after A level art. I was fortunate to find a very encouraging teacher second time round and now have an almost inexhaustible list of things I need to capture on canvas.