Gloucester artist Christopher Steele's images are a tribute to his university days, as he revisits a practice he discovered during his masters research.

I came to a point in my practice where I realised there are things I can do by hand that I can't do with a computer and there are things I can do with a computer that I can't do by hand, so I decided to extend the boundaries of mark making, which was the focus for my masters.

The Exhibition Essence is a recently created body of work which continues Chris’ exploration of the integration of analogous mark making combined with digital media.


Mark making in this context refers to combining techniques, so I draw and paint and photograph, and then print images then work back into them post printing.

In the current body of work I have worked over the top of photographs with watercolours. It's difficult to work into a glossy/semigloss photo with as the surface is doesn't absorb any medium, so to get something to work over the top of the photo is cool.

Chris’ works are compositions of water, trees and the female figure. Vertical lines are overlaid and used as a metaphor for life, energy and sustainability resulting in a range of diverse colourful images designed to engage the viewer to look in more depth for the subtle representations of the female form.

I have always been a colourist because to me colour is life and energy . . . The female form is an ambiguous symbolism, standing for pure natural beauty as well as the origin of human life, mother earth.

The works are very complex and offer lots of avenues for interpretation, a concept tends to engage the viewer.

The more time you spend looking at the work, the more you see.