My name is Neil Lamont. I was born in Maidenhead in 1955, grew up in Saffron Walden in Essex and then moved to Bristol where I graduated in History /History of Art in 1977. I moved to London (1978) and have lived in Hackney (London E5) since 1984.
Past art and photographic practice
I took art A level in my final year at school, having always been good at drawing from nature - mainly meticulous still life or landscape in pencil or watercolour.
In the 1970s my father initiated me into the mystery - and love of - photography. I especially like darkroom work and still wonder at the magic of the image emerging from a blank white sheet in the developer tray. Then in the early to mid 1990's I started working job-share to give myself time to better practice photography. I worked with images, producing fine-printed black and white images of - mainly - urban landscape. There were four exhibitions in this period, in particular:
Out and about in Paris and London (Chats Palace, 1992/3)
Dummies: an imitation of life (Southwark Playhouse, 1995, and at Stockmans - a manufacturer of mannequins - in 1996)
Current art practice
With work in arts management from 1995 to 1999 there was a break from my own practice. But the urge to create never went away. Spurred on by attending a short creativity workshop in 2002 ('Drawing from the heart' by Tom Cook, then a director of 'Alternatives' which is based at St James's Piccadilly) I started to do a little work in pastels. Then at the start of 2005 - a commitment to myself to spend time regularly each week doing artwork and following where the creative flow led me.
This new work started from within, expressing and giving outer from to what was inside - intuition, emotion, the unconscious, inner voice and guidance. I wanted to work with colour in a free flowing, near abstract style - so very different from earlier drawing from nature and photography. Not letting the mind get in the way of - or censoring - expression. I've also worked with the medium - loving the tactile nature of chalk pastel, working particularly with fingers, rubbing the colour into the paper.
As the work has developed subject matter has followed its own line of progression - and, to my surprise, become less abstract. I've found myself drawn to recurring dream/memory images from childhood and later.
The first small exhibition of this work was held at
Southwark Playhouse, London SE1, November 2006 - January 2006
There is now a good body of work, with approx 150 finished images in chalk pastel, and about 200 drawings and works in oil pastel.
The bulk of the chalk pastel work - which all the images on this site are drawn from - are A3 size, mounted and framed.
Most of the originals are for sale, and I would also be pleased to sell high quality copies - ie same size framed prints. These were all taken on a Nikon digital SLR, processed as RAW images in Photoshop, and then printed on top quality photographic paper.