My studio is in an old 14 th century building in Dorset, just a few miles from the sea and surrounded by some of the best biking roads in the south of England. It was originally a hall of rest, recorded in history as being a place where the Knights Templar stayed whilst on pilgrimage. These days, the horses that would have been stabled on the lower floor have now been replaced by another form of horse-power, several Italian motorcycles, all ridden by me and now on static display surrounded by my paints and canvases. An 848 Evo and KTM 690R are the current bikes for daily use in the garage.
In between film projects, this is my base and I devote as much time as I can to painting. Most of my work is private commissions and these go straight to the buyer without any prints being made, but occasionally I paint for myself and release a small limited edition of Giclée prints.
I am often asked if I ever paint anything other than motorbikes. I do, but these are always commissions and if I am painting for myself, it is always a large canvas of the rider who inspires me to pick up a paintbrush. This year it was the raw talent of rookie rider Marc Marquez. I started his canvas early in the season, at a time when there was no indication he would win the championship, what inspired me was his display of exceptional talent. I loved his aggression and attitude on the bike, his lack of fear, his complete confidence in his own ability and the belief in what he could deliver. Rossi was the man who championed the motocross ‘leg out’ style of entering a corner and Marquez will go down in history as the man who made ‘elbow sliders’ an essential part of the MotoGP kit.
The perfect painting studio should have north light, but my room is buried half underground in a churchyard and I make do with a big skylight that gives me constant natural light. It’s an immersive environment, a very calm place in which to put a few basic colours on the palette, mix them, prime the canvas, make a basic sketch and then with the first few brush strokes of colour, begin to create a moment of motorcycling history in the making.