Digital Art

"The whole world is a miraculous blessing; if a child can see this simple truth, then the man or woman who cannot is truly lost. Even so, the lost can be found and the child in all of us, although maybe silenced, can be found again."

I first began digital art as a Graphic Designer in the early 90's, mostly in my spare time. By 1995 I had begun selling my work in London (limited edition prints) and had a couple of small exhibitions. I carried on in Ireland, experimenting more and delving into political and environmental statements through my work. I have had a number of exhibitions in Co. Wexford and Co. Wicklow, the last being a 2008 retrospective of my work, including drawings, oils and watercolours as welll as photography and digital pieces - stretching over a twenty year period. The pure digital work is a mixture of collaging photos, freehand drawing on the computer and application of digital effects and filters, this is what is shown below.


Click the thumbnails below for a full size image:

Political/Social
 
This piece entitled 'Empire' was created at the supposed 'end' of the Iraq war, at which point over a million Iraqis had died and around a thousand US troops. Many years later the violence continues and the US troops remain. Worse still, the conflict has spread further in the quest for hegemony and secure oil supplies. This is not just about the USA, it's about all empires - despite rivers of blood spilt to prevent it, the collapse will come eventually, coming down on top of the bleached bones of countless millions who suffered in a futile attempt to stop the inevitable decline and fall.
'Survival' - Despite our endless building and destruction of the natural world, nature is still relentless. When humans are one day gone the Earth will most likely spin on and recover from whatever we can throw at it.

'How Much did you get?' - A blatant critque of the modern world of work. I lived it for many years until I just could no longer stand the monotony and misery. It's better to be poor than a slave to the machine.

'Bright Future II?' - I really hope this dystopian vision does not come to pass. This version was inspired by some graffiti I saw on a window.
'Bright Future?' - A somewhat over-the-top collage of what we could end up with if we don't take a u-turn away from global capitalism and endless consumerism. What use is an iPod if your drinking water is poisoned?
'Let Them Drink Soda' - A visual diatribe against consumerism (with some sarcastic commentary too), it's generally not until it's too late that we realise how shallow and useless this mode of existence really is. China and India are rapidly destroying their landscape and undermining their own cultures in their race to catch up with the 'West' - seemingly oblivious to the long-term negative effects on their countries and the planet as a whole.
'Bushmonkey' - Perhaps the most unpopular world leader in modern times, although his crimes seem trivial in comparison to those of Hitler, Stalin, Mao or Pol Pot. Attempts to impeach him failed due to the corruption inherent in the political system; but he will still be remembered as probably the most corrupt and asinine of American presidents.
'Dispossessed' - When I lived in East London in the late 80s and early 90s I saw some really shocking poverty, things don't seem to have changed!
'Tyre Dump' - A really horrible site on waste ground in inner city Dublin, even amongst the wealth and up-market lifestyles you can still find terrible deprivation and ugly sights, often just a few streets away.
'Whitechapel Ruin' - East London once again, a huge abandoned factory and its grounds left to rot, what a waste.
'Cyberjunk' - As time passes more technology becomes redundant and change accelerates ever faster. Is this change for any real purpose or just for it's own sake? Where will it all end?

 

Environment/Nature
 
'A Wasteland' - This was once a beautiful woodland, the area was supposed to be replanted but it never was. This shot was taken just after the logging was completed. The physical version has a frame made of driftwood and rusty barbed wire and there is also some additional etching around the edges.
'High Cross' -I took this shot in Ferns, Co. Wexford by lying on the ground. It was an overcast day so I replaced the sky with another shot and then it gave me the idea to make it surreal altogether.

'Hay Bails' - Shot in Courtown, Co. Wexford. Again I wasn't happy with the overcast sky (as is often the case in Ireland) so I enhanced another sky shot and stitched them together, I've also altered the colour and coarseness of the grass.

'Owl' - Shot at Avondale in Co. Wicklow, the statue is actually wooden, shot in daylight but in this fake night-time treatment it looks more like stone.
'Giants' Causeway' - Shot in county Antrim, the sky is original but heavily manipulated, as are the rocks.
'Castle Rodrey Stone Circle' - This may look real enough but the sky and the sun are fake and the colours are far more vivid than in the original shot, taken in Co. Wicklow near Baltinglas.
'Pink Cactus' - Shot in Mexico, the sky is replaced and posterised to create the distortion.
'Cliffs' - The Cliffs of Moher in mirror image, with a false sun and sky, this is one of my early experiments and turned out better than I expected.
'Snails' - Shot at Courtown beach in Co. Wexford. Most of the work here was recolouring the shot and messing with the grain of the sand.
'Digital Dolmen' - Based on an earlier work of a dolmen close to Newgrange in Co. Meath, that I used on an album cover. I cut it up and re-assembled it with various treatments on the segments.
'Hyde Park' - Shot in London, I inserted the lens flare as an inverted sun, the whole shot is inverted and solarised and then re-coloured.