British Watercolorists
The British School extended to the Commonwealth

Ian Ramsay paints what he feels, boats but also landscapes, from Oregon where he settled or from his native England. His work is exclusively watercolor and is, for the most part, in a figurative style.



First an architect, Ian Ramsay discovered watercolor in London in the 1970s. A practice that quickly became an obsession for him. The profession of artist fell on him by chance, thanks to an encounter with an art gallery located near his office. It was 1979, and his life was taking a new turn...
Holder of a master's degree in architecture from the University of Utah, he exhibited, between 2001 and 2005, in 16 Japanese cities. He has won, among others, the Edward Maule Memorial Award from the Western Federation of Watercolor Societies, the Purchase Prize Award at the Sear Invitational Art Show at Dixie State University in St. George (Utah) and the Best of Show award at the Utah State Fair. He gives workshops and demonstrations in the United States as well as in Japan.

I try to decide in advance what mood I want my painting to have so that I have a direction to go. This is something I sense during the early stages of painting development. If I don't let the painting take off on its own at some point, then I'm going to end up with a lifeless painting. When this happens, I try to correct my mistakes with more wash in the sky and in the foreground, while adding more contrast.

I think it's important to choose topics that interest you, something that you really want to represent. The subject itself certainly influences the style, approach and mood of the painting, which itself is tied to my own personal mood. Bright, happy, carefree days yield more satisfying paintings.

AoW-23Ian Ramsay