Q&A: Painter and collaborator David Fawcett

Inspired by the recent short-lived heatwave, Ted has teamed up with self-taught artist David Fawcett to bring you a couple of artfully decorated accessories. The pair of limited edition, individually numbered pieces have been printed with the two of artist’s finest works, each a wry love letter to the great British seaside.

The beach-ready neoprene collection comprises a holdall and a washbag, framed with David’s By the Sea Wall and Ron paintings, respectively. Ted sat down for a chat with David to muse about favourite coastal excursions, Gavin and Stacey, Van Gogh and his tie obsession.

You’ve got a soft spot for British seaside scenes. Where do you normally head for hot chips, cold surf and hard rock (candy)?

My favourite seaside town would be Barry in South Wales – the home of Gavin and Stacey. I was brought up in Barry and loved living by the sea. I work in London and live in Tunbridge Wells but miss the sea every day. The best job I ever had was being a deck chair attendant on Barry Island beach when I was in the sixth form. Not exactly Baywatch but it came close.

Who, what and where inspires your work?

I never paint from life but I draw all my inspiration from what I have experienced - either growing up or from my life now, whether it be at home or work. I've got a strong visual memory so I just think about a situation or a memory and try and put it down on canvas.

Your paintings often put a lot of emphasis on words or names – tell us, what’s in a name?

The title can be very important in my paintings. Quite a few of my paintings try and convey a humorous situation and the title is crucial in that. If I can get the words right in addition to the painting, they will complement each other and it'll be a far stronger piece of work. I love trying to find the right words. Often I'll watch people look at one of my paintings and their reaction will totally change when they read the title. The title can completely alter the way an image is regarded.


What advice would you give to aspiring artists?

I am self-taught and have built up my style over years. Every week, unless I am away on holiday, I will try and do something. My main advice would be to just keep working at your art. Make a commitment to it. I think good art comes from intensity of work.

Which artist did you grow up admiring?

Growing up I loved Van Gogh's work - there was a real intensity about it that I liked and I loved his use of colour. Now I think I'd say Picasso was my number one favourite. Such a versatile painter but everything he did had edge and energy.

If you hadn’t already guessed, we’re quite big on menswear here. What item of clothing is most important to you?

I've got some great ties. Totally diverse and evocative of different periods of my life. From when I was a trainee just starting out in London, when I was single and going out with my mates, after I got married, when the kids came along, and now the kids are leaving home and I can see the end in sight of my working life. Some of them are horrendous and I can't believe I ever wore them.

Shop the Ted Baker x David Fawcett Collaboration here.

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