Jo BemisJo has always had a love for, and strong connection to, the ocean. Growing up on the Isle of Wight meant Jo was never far from the sea. Rock pooling and paddling (even in icy water in winter) were a normal part of her childhood. Being surrounded by beautiful scenery formed Jo's earliest influences and from a young age she loved to draw.
Jo's paintings are primarily about trying to capture the energy and spirit of the British coastline, and in particular moving water. The windswept coastline of the north coast of Cornwall has been especially inspiring for her in recent years, and she visits this area frequently. Even on overcast days the Atlantic has a beautiful, luminous quality, and there are infinite forms to the waves, and dramatic lighting effects to draw inspiration from.
Her approach to painting involves much observation, and sketching beforehand. She spends a lot of time on windblown cliff tops, watching the energy of the sea as the tide turns. Jo often uses charcoal, and pastels to make a note of tones and colours she sees, and she really enjoy using this medium to capture movement of water, and other natural landforms in sketchbooks. Photography is also a useful tool, but the sketching is very important for her because she believes it can help put more of a ' feeling' into the work.
Jo finds the sea a fascinating subject to paint, and it is a constant challenge to express the ever changing moods of the ocean.