Craig McMaster was born in Greenock, Scotland in 1970. From his earliest childhood he had an innate fascination with both nature and art, which has continued to the present. His relationship with nature has changed since childhood but this inescapable connection has remained a cornerstone of his character. Like most creative people, he carries the inexplainable need to convey his vision of nature through his art. Most artists struggle to explain why they feel the need to create stuff. He mostly works in the mediums of photography, painting and drawing.
The late George Wylie (artist, sculptor, philosopher?) wrote this of Craig; “With his eyes lifted towards the cosmos, he is a serious thinker with a genuine appreciation of the earth-bound space he occupies. Like a shaman he randomises amongst the rawness of dear old Scotland and celebrates its magic and wild places. He respects and records its stones, landscapes, mountains, rivers, clouds and beyond. His emphasis on the eternal influences of our being helps us visualise the soul of our planetary place.”
Craig is mostly self-taught in both photography and painting. He is an unashamed copyist. He doesn’t claim to be innovative or to be challenging any artistic boundaries. He has always admired the craftmanship and skill of the great masters in art and worked to learn their techniques. In photography, these would be Ansel Adams or Clyde Butcher. In painting, these would be Velasquez, Caravaggio and Rembrandt. He would never claim to have reached these levels of craftmanship but these old masters provide the basis of his learning and influence.
In photography he works mostly with film (large format equipment) and in painting he works mostly with oils and charcoal. His technique in both mediums retains a strong connection to tactile and hands-on approaches, avoiding modern digital techniques where possible.
He was first published in 2000 with his book ‘Greenock and the Firth of Clyde’ by Argyll Publishing. This was a collection of colour images, launched at the McLean Museum, Greenock. He subsequently specialised in black and white landscape photographs and published ‘Elements’ by Mercat Press (now Birlin). This was launched at the Edinburgh International Book Festival 2004 and was well received and was followed up by several events at various book stores, galleries and festivals.
I hope you will enjoy browsing his new website and if we can answer any questions regarding Craig or his work please contact us.