It was painting bathers in the wave machine at Leith Waterworld that was the real breakthrough for me in my time at art college. Up until then most of my paintings died the death on the easel as I worked the life out of them...finishing them off as I attempted to finish them. Then, when I began to investigate the moving water and the figures in action I found that a lighter more gestural approach was needed. Since then I have at regular intervals had the opportunity to work with moving figure subjects: dancers, gymnasts, divers and swimmers, highland games competitors and young children. Each time I return to the theme I find something new and useful in attempting to work in an energetic and decisive way to capture the movement of a figure in action. So this year I have planned a whole series of events centred on the moving figure. Entitled 'Moving Images' this project has already included a couple of workshops working with 2 talented dancers, a third workshop to come based around sports poses and a final session with an Indian Dancer using mixed media to explore that exotic theme. I will be working at DanceBase with a class of students and an Italian dancer next month and in the summer I'll be artist in residence at the Lochcarron Highland Games. Later in the year I hope to bring all these moving images together in an exhibition. For more information on the moving figure workshops to come please visit www.damiancallan.com
Damian Callan is a practising figurative artist and tutor based in Edinburgh.