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About the Artist Alan Hunt

Leading UK and globally-celebrated wildlife artist, Alan Hunt isn’t just all about painting the mightily impressive creatures who roam around the plains of Africa you know, as a quick look on his website tells us that of late he’s transferred his breath-taking illustrative skills to an altogether different (yet equally as challenging) genre; which might not sit quite as comfortably with The Daily Mail readership. Hunt’s lesser spotted original nude portraits are the direct result of the acclaimed artist wishing to constantly set challenges for himself as a working artist, and where better than life portraits to experiment and hone your already immense compositional attributes still further. Skin tones in themselves offer all manner of tests to the professional artist of any given illustrative persuasion, attested to by many of the past masters themselves. But returning to the more mainstream wildlife art – and Hunt’s more familiar comfort zone –and just how Hunt came to be acknowledged as one of the best wildlife artists out there.

Works By Alan Hunt

  • Indian Prince by Alan Hunt
    Indian Prince
  • High And Mighty - Giraffe by Alan Hunt
    High And Mighty - Giraffe
  • Okavango Apparition by Alan Hunt
    Okavango Apparition
  • The Catch by Alan Hunt
    The Catch
  • Love Bites by Alan Hunt
    Love Bites
  • Roar Of The Jungle - Tiger by Alan Hunt
    Roar Of The Jungle - Tiger
  • Who Are You Shoving? - Elephants by Alan Hunt
    Who Are You Shoving? - Elephants
  • Always Alert - Tiger by Alan Hunt
    Always Alert - Tiger
  • Eat My Dust - Elephant & Birds by Alan Hunt
    Eat My Dust - Elephant & Birds
  • Trouble Brewing - Tigers by Alan Hunt
    Trouble Brewing - Tigers
  • But This Is Our Home - Orangutans by Alan Hunt
    But This Is Our Home - Orangutans
  • Hypnotic - Leopard by Alan Hunt
    Hypnotic - Leopard
  • Power Play - Elephants by Alan Hunt
    Power Play - Elephants
  • African Gold - Lion, Lioness by Alan Hunt
    African Gold - Lion, Lioness

Having begun painting at the tender age of eight on receipt of a box of paints courtesy of his mother, with the express intention of keeping his mind occupied as he convalesced after enduring a childhood illness, Hunt wasted no time at all by getting to grips with his new materials. Those first, primitive illustrations focussed on birds as the primary subject matter, creatures which had held a degree of fascination to Hunt from an early age (and incidentally a muse which returned and remained with him during his formative art years, especially in the field of birds of prey). However, as with any child’s restless mind, he soon moved on and upwards, as his ambition and talent grew in tandem; eventually capturing the precise likeness of anything and everything that the natural world around him could offer.

The self-styled, ‘zoologist who paints wildlife’ started his path towards a career as a professional fine artist as the clue hints, perversely as a zoologist, after studying the subject initially, at both Leeds College and Bristol University; before going on to study art in his more native Northumberland, at Middlesbrough Art College sometime after. Sometime after Hunt had decided art was more of his calling than perhaps he’d first thought after opting for the ‘working with animals’ route. Indeed, it was whilst employed in parks, zoos and animal reserves – where he’d often paint the creatures (out of hours, we assume) he was responsible for looking after – that Hunt experienced this change of heart; spurred on by the public’s reaction to his compositions over this intervening period of time.

Ironically, Hunt’s first exhibition was staged pretty close to where he finally studied years later in Middlesbrough. Just down the road in fact in his hometown, Redcar, which is found on the North East coast of England, and where as an 18 year old Hunt showcased his early works for the first time anywhere. Since then, Hunt’s original paintings have been exhibited far and wide, and have habitually formed part (if not the entire part) of displays in museums, galleries and public and private collections worldwide. Hunt has also had his individual and collective works recognized and honoured pretty much from the moment he decided to pursue wildlife art as his renewed career, a decision from which he’s never looked back from. Industry accolades have included winning The Society of Animal Artists’ ‘USA Award of Excellence’ on not one but four separate occasions and The Wildlife Art Society’s ‘UK Best Artist on Show’ for three consecutive years. What’s more, Hunt’s work has featured in the capacity of lead artist at five exhibitions in America during the course of 1998 alone and he was the first non-American citizen to be elected onto the American Wildlife Art Hall Of Fame, while in addition to this a year later he was selected as ‘Artist of the Year’ for the Florida Wildlife Art Expo. Meanwhile, Hunt’s work has also attracted huge amount of interest at major auctions including Sotheby’s, Bonham’s and Christie’s and continues to captivate collectors from a global audience.

When he’s not travelling the world for his own personal compositional ends and means, Hunt can be more often than not discovered leading field painting and study group trips, whereby he teaches his art and techniques in the thick of the action so to speak. Recent educational excursions have taken in the stunning surrounds of the Masai Mara in Kenya to study the wildebeest migration as well as a trek to Quatar to study the Arabian horse; the former of which Hunt considers his most memorable trip (of many) to the African continent.

When questioned about his wildlife art and his increasing concerns for the immediate environment in which his typical subject matter reside , Hunt comments; “As a wildlife artist and conservationist, I have grave concerns for the environment and believe it needs as much support as I can possibly give, whether financially or as a spokesman”. The artist goes on to say; “If my son doesn't get to see half the wildlife in his lifetime that I've seen, I will feel very guilty. Rather than become a famous painter/artist I would like to be remembered as someone who tried to make people aware of the need to protect the environment, wildlife and the planet”.

With this at the forefront of his mind these days, Hunt endeavours to do all that he can to highlight the on-going plight which faces many of the world’s most visually commanding vistas and more pertinently, those who’s immediate and centuries-old home it is. On this note, Hunt is regularly published by NWF editions and he ensures that the net proceeds of his paintings go towards assisting the charities which deal with both endangered species and environmental problems in these regions of the world.

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