In 2020 Francis was approached by the Royal Society of Arts to be made Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), an award granted to individuals that the RSA judges to have made outstanding achievements related to the Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce.
I have loved painting since childhood when I was thrilled to win the Art Cup at school. I used to leave the latch of the art room windows open and nip back during my free time to spend hours continuing the paintings I was working on! While we had ‘art lessons’ no one ever taught me how to draw or paint, so I am a self-taught artist and I do hope this inspires others who have no formal training to paint!
Through much of my life, I considered art ‘a wonderful hobby’, but not a serious profession and certainly not something that justifies all the time and experience of schooling, university and a Masters degree! I have always enjoyed both arts and sciences and done well at both. I have also enjoyed playing many sports, including Rugby, Hockey, Cricket, Fives, Tennis and even ‘Real Tennis’ and Polo! Many of the activities I have now painted, from Tug O’War to Conkers, watching Ballet to Scottish Reeling are inspired by personal experience.
I play the piano by ear and have composed a few tunes, write poetry (as you will see!) and have written a humorous book about my life at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst.
After the Army I spent many years as a stockbroker, while also setting up a variety of small businesses, ranging from a Forestry and Windfarm business to an innovative mobile phone I designed to be a ‘blackberry killer’ in the days before Mobile Apps! On the creative side I co-Founded one of the UKs most successful Theatre production companies. Throughout this period of my life, I painted and developed a style and range of subject matter, all of which I continue to do.
All these activities have given me a vast array of wonderful experiences, and hundreds of people – many of which I have painted. Indeed, my Dining Room was for many years decorated with portraits of my best friends, whom I have since given the pictures to.
I have travelled the world and worked across Africa and South-East Asia, throughout Eastern Europe and Australasia and know that I love British life and British people most of all. I particularly enjoy our greenery and scenery, but also all the different activities that are a part of the British way of life.
The Great British Exhibition exhibited 57 of paintings of all the main landmarks around the United Kingdom, to critical acclaim. You are still able to buy prints of these! In all my paintings you see my love of aesthetics. In the Landscapes, there are beautiful, natural surroundings that reflected my love of life and a deep appreciation for the beautiful world we live in. They demonstrate too that art can create happiness.
Accompanying each painting there is a matching poem, describing what has inspired me to paint this scene, what I think of as I paint and inspiring us too to a greater level of understanding than merely ‘a beautiful scene’. There are questions that arise, history that a scene encapsulates and the expression of many feelings.
Much of the painting is achieved when the canvas lies horizontally on the table, like any fine draughtsman: more occasionally with an easel and stand. Using photographs, I am able to continue working this way through the night and through the winter. This also makes the paintings unique – it is a way of painting that other artists are not known for.
My home is full of my own vibrant landscapes, wildlife paintings, portraits and seascapes. Many other homes have started their own collections and it is truly wonderful to see my paintings on these walls. It is a lovely thing to give other people pleasure.
Ufton Nervet artist believes in the healing power of the world around us
Ufton Nervet artist Francis Salvesen only last year launched his career as an artist. Like many artists and makers, when coronavirus lockdown hit all his upcoming exhibitions were cancelled or postponed and the gallery exhibiting his paintings in Bristol (Gallery du 808) had to close for the foreseeable future. Francis has work in the Newburytoday online gallery.
Floreas Britannia by Francis Salvesen
My Tribute to the wonderful work of the National Health Service is the portrait of a doctor, wearing Personal Protection Equipment. She holds a single red rose, blood red to symbolize life and beauty. She stands out alone against a dark background, which symbolizes ‘the black death’ and despair so many families have suffered. Everything about her reminds us of the last few months where so many people in Britain have lost their hopes, their beloved family members and friends, their income and livelihoods…. and their freedom. The rose is an emblem rising of hope out of despair, that we will once again find love, bloom and flourish. It demonstrates that, even in these dark times, beauty shines through.
PERTHSHIRE ARTIST CELEBRATES BRITAIN’S LANDMARKS
A self-taught artist originally from Perthshire will be unveiling a major exhibition of his oil paintings of the British landscape.
Britain’s most stunning natural and historic landmarks have been captured by artist Francis Salvesen.
As a Patron of the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland and a pioneer of green energy in the Scottish boarders, Francis is passionate about the Scottish landscape and hopes his paintings will inspire others to share his awe of these stunning sites in the country.
SCOTS ARTIST IN THE RUNNING FOR ROYAL ARTS PRIZE 2020
Upcoming Scottish artist Francis Salvesen has been shortlisted for The Royal Arts Prize 2020.
The aim of the Royal Arts Prize, running since 2014, is to showcase a selection of the world’s best artistic talent and allow emerging artists to reach diverse audiences and to gain invaluable exposure.
Gallery: landscape artist Francis Salvesen
An interview with landscape painter Francis Salvesen, plus a gallery of the artist’s most recent works.
Atmospheric castles, dramatic waterfalls and beautiful woodlands are just some of the natural landscapes being showcased in a new exhibition by artist Francis Salvesen in London’s La Galleria Pall Mall.
BBC Countryfile Magazine caught up with Francis to find out what inspires him, his love of British nature and how he manages to capture the beauty of the British countryside on canvas so effectively.
The beauty of Scotland: from John O’Groats to the Callanish Stones
Francis Salvesen, a self-taught artist originally from Perthshire, is unveiling a major exhibition of his oil paintings of the British landscape – and is sharing a selection of his images with History Scotland.
The beauty of Scotland: from John O’Groats to the Callanish Stones Images
The Great British Landscapes
An extraordinary O of Britain’s most stunning natural and historic landmarks by artist Francis Salvesen. Sneaking through the school art room window aged eight, Francis Salvesen drew and painted all the time. His passion for art continued during his career in the army, where he spent his free time painting wild scenery.
An entirely self-taught artist, Francis has developed his work alongside diverse careers across many different continents. Encouraged and inspired by his artist godfather, Francis developed his artistic talent painting portraits of family members for fun and as gifts.