Ann Brennan is a self-taught artist working from her home-based studio in Ballingarry, Co Tipperary.
Believing that art and knowledge should be shared, Ann facilitates adult art classes in various venues in Co Tipperary.
Support for the arts?
I think they are supported but only to the group of people who have been formally trained. Self-taught artists are not regarded with the same level of acknowledgement and therefore cannot avail of the supports out there.
Favourite subject to paint?
Landscapes and seascapes. To me, landscapes and seascapes are alive. To be able to portray the wind and the mist heading across a mountain or to make the viewer feel the mist off the waves, crashing against the rocks. It’s the desire to show the wildness and rawness of Ireland that really motivates me. Since lockdown I probably haven’t painted too many seascapes and I have been concentrating on what’s right in front of me: Sliabh na Mban.
Describe your work
Atmospheric and evocative and representative of the misty, moody landscapes of Ireland. I only paint in oils, nothing else allows me to achieve the results I want.
What is your inspiration?
My inspiration comes from the west coast of Ireland, especially Sheepshead in west Cork where my mother hails from and my own beautiful county of Tipperary.
I was commissioned by international singer Forest Blakk to paint a picture to use as the cover image for his song Where I First Found You and also to use in the video for the song. I had to be on set in Wicklow where the video was shot, to advise on painting techniques. It was a great experience.
Unique selling point?
Due to the fact that I paint mostly from my imagination, my paintings are the result of creating an atmosphere and mood rather than an exact replica of the subject or scene. It’s all about light and mood for me.
Has COVID-19 changed things for you? I run adult art classes in various venues in Co Tipperary and due to COVID-19 these had to be cancelled. I miss the interaction with all my groups and encouraging and nurturing their creative abilities. Most of the groups are made up of retired ladies, mostly retired professionals. During the classes I cover all aspects of painting, for example; abstract, portraits, landscapes, pop art, collage, and everything creative. We share our opinions on everything from books, films, gardening, recipes and life in general. I always say the ladies teach me much more than I teach them. Having to cancel these classes has been the hardest issue for me during COVID-19.
Always with you? My Kindle or a book. I love to read modern literature. A book has to be beautifully written and have strong characters who speak to me and are alive on the pages. Wuthering Heights is my favourite book.
Social issues you are passionate about? The environment and littering our country roads. I walk most days and the litter is unbelievable and nobody is being held accountable. It’s just accepted.
Ann can be contacted on Facebook (annbrennanartist) and Instagram (@annbrennanart), through her website annbrennanart.com or – once they open – through The Tudor Artisan Hub, Carrick on Suir; Leitrim Design House, Carrick on Shannon; The Old Creamery, Kilcrohane; and The Ardmore Tea Rooms, Ardmore. Prices range from €150 to €2,000.