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Frankie Thorp

Frankie Thorp is a contemporary abstract painter, living and working in Essex. She studied illustration at London College of Communication.

What inspires your work as an artist? There are so many different sources of inspiration for me. Film, photography, popular culture and fashion to name a few. Anything that gives me a dose of colour inspo! I am very drawn to anything that is very bold and graphic, especially illustration and anything ‘cartoony.’ I think I always fancied myself as a cartoonist or illustrator. I used to dream of working for Disney as a kid and was always making up my own cartoons. That really hasn’t gone away.
Who are your biggest influences? At the moment I’m pretty obsessed with a British artist called Stephen Smith. He does these beaut stitched collage canvases. I think that’s the next thing I want to experiment with on a large scale. A load of German graffiti-style artists (too many to name) A couple of French artists called Bertrand Fournier and Luc Pierre both of which make very fun colourful and graphic style artworks. Oh and also I have to get an illustrator in there as I keep banging on on about it – an American artist, Tara Booth! Her work is funny, raw and so honest. I implore you to check her out, especially if you’re female. Just so I sound informed and ‘learned’ I really admire the work of Josef Albers. His book ‘The Interaction of Colour’ is my bible of colour combos!
What does your work mean to you? My work is very much an extension of me. I’m not a particularly serious person and I think my art shows my playful, fun nature. I’m definitely a big kid and I think my work screams this!
What techniques do you use? Typically I always work with acrylic on unprimed canvas. My favourite part of the process is always at the end when I’m adding crazy marks with charcoal or oil pastels. I’ve always been a pretty good drawer and this is the only opportunity I kind of get to do that. More and more so though – collage! I never really used to be a fan of collage. It kind of came about quite organically in the sense that I just hate waste! I found myself painting the leftover strips of canvas from canvas building which also meant I used up any leftover mixed paint. I’m finding it more and more hard now to finish a painting without some sort of collage element to it.
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