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Artists Bio : Kelly Hood

“My vision and aspirations as an artist are derived from the simplicity and beauty that surrounds us. Through these things we can learn to appreciate all elements of life and nature. As an artist it is vital for me that my visual expressions are easily interpreted as a positive emotion to uplift the mind and soul in a celebration of life.”

Painter Kelly Hood, of English-Irish descent, returned to her mother's native townland near Dingle in 1984. A fluent Gaeilgeoir, Kelly graduated from Limerick School of Art and Design and now works as a freelance graphic artist as well as painting in oils. Kelly Hood is heavily influenced by modern Irish painters such as J.B Vallely, John Lavery and Paul Henry. Her palette of sparkling textures and strong monochrome colours define the characters of her subjects while also capturing true like images. Kelly's skill lies in creating photorealistic paintings which she painstakingly builds up using layer upon layer of monochromatic colour, the result looks photographic but is in fact not.

"My work is not intended to be ambitious art in the sense of modernism or post modernism,” observes the artist. "The work is more of an intuitive response to my surroundings”


Photorealism: Kelly Hood


"I am a Realist Artist, I believe in painting what I see, catching a beautiful scene for my clients to cherish for life. I spend long hours in my studio and I am building a reputation as an artist who pushes super-realism to the extreme, with great attention to detail while catching the light and beauty in each piece of work I do.  Photorealism is an extremely realistic style of painting and drawing, in which the artwork is based entirely on my own photograph work. After I have chosen a subject, I  proceed to meticulously recreate in pigment the details of the photograph. This is done though careful observation, as well as in-depth knowledge of the characteristics of the paint. the combinations and amounts of colors and mediums to mix, which brushes will best achieve the desired effect, and how saturated the brush will need to be. All of these elements must be in perfect balance throughout the creation of the painting - a process which takes time and practice.

Photorealist paintings, as with most paintings, are built in many layers. It is an additive process, beginning with the underpainting and continuing through the development of the forms. Most of the layers in photorealist paintings consist of thin glazes, i.e. paint that is thinned with water or a medium…By the way I use a water based oil paint and a Zinc flake medium… This allows for the subtle blending effects that are necessary in order to make the flat surface of the canvas appear to contain 3-dimensional objects and scenes.

Photorealistic paintings are renowned for their tight, technical precision, which is achieved through an intensive familiarity with the materials and process. The resulting painting usually has a clean, smooth finish, in which the brushstrokes are not visible. The final layer of varnish seals the painting and adds another layer of smoothness.

Photorealist art is most appreciated for its huge WOW! factor. People often mistake photorealist paintings for actual photographs. It sometimes takes a second look to realize that the artwork is actually a painting! That's part of the fun - realizing that the image before you is not a photo, but the painstaking work of  my fingers… Photorealist paintings take many hours to complete, requiring intense concentration and in-depth knowledge of the materials. The end result can be breathtaking and wondrously fun."


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Pier road, Kinsale, West Cork, Ireland. Convent Road, Clonakilty, West Cork, Ireland.

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