Tuesday, 24 July 2007


Forget painting still life, this is real life

Article by Euan Wemyss
Video report by Euan Wemyss

The life of a toiling artist could be considered by some to be a solitary pursuit.

But a young Oban woman prides herself on getting as close to the action as possible when depicting live music events.

Jenny Soep, based in Oban, travels to cultural events - including dance, poetry readings and live music - in an attempt to express the energy, movement, emotion and colour of the occasion in a way that photography perhaps cannot.

She said: "I'm looking for unique events that I think I can work with; showing the uniqueness of it, showing how creative and beautiful they are and how they are in that moment. I think anyone can take a photo these days and I'm trying to draw attention to the details in those pictures that they're missing out on."

Originally inspired by a trip to the Dundee Jazz Festival; Jenny travelled and painted in and around Taiwan for three years after graduating where she developed her technique.

"I practiced Chinese calligraphy whilst out there and it's really captured by how you're just working the moment. That's why I use watercolours and ink, because it's fast and it can dry quicker than oils basically."

Since then she has captured hundreds of events in a variety of different locations including a performance by the Proclaimers on Arran and was even sponsored to paint at the recent T in the Park festival.

Despite the often riotous atmospheres at many gigs, Jenny has never been afraid to wade into the thick of the action.

"I initially started being in the mosh pits so I've been sort of quite crushed at some points but it all adds to the picture - I'm trying to create visual souvenirs that are all affected by the whole event so it just adds more excitement to the drawing."

Jenny is already developing her work into new areas.

She and a friend are currently animating the paintings to further enhance their live feeling and the results will be on display at the Dunstaffnage Music Festival next weekend.

Jenny’s solo show runs from the 14th to the 29th of October at the Resipole Studios in Acharacle, Argyll.

(c) stv

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