I’m an impatient artist – when I get an idea in my head, I just want to see it come to life as quickly as possible.
The phrase that I think best describes my work is ‘impressionist pop art’: I love to paint my impression of things, to try to distill them down to the essence of what makes them special and beautiful, and place that in the context of everyday modern life. I strive to create work that highlights the extraordinary in the quotidian, art that is at once relatable and moving, warm, and often filled with humour.
My ideas come from many different places. Some start life as the refrain of a song that keeps playing in my head; others spring from something I have seen, or half-remembered from long ago; some are just irreverent jokes that I cannot help but share. They come almost like dreams, and as I draw and paint they seem to develop lives of their own, each with a unique story to tell.
Their stories may be told through the tilt of a head, through a steely gaze, through the brilliant colours of the autumn leaves or perhaps the crashing waves of a stormy sea. Sometimes only one side of the story is told; sometimes much is left unsaid; sometimes you can read the story in many different ways: I often enjoy leaving an open invitation to your imagination.
I am a scientist as well as an artist – I earned a PhD in Astrophysics from Imperial College London for work on experiments searching for the mysterious dark matter that may make up a large fraction of our Universe, and was awarded a Zeldovich Medal for my work on space missions aimed at detecting gravitational waves, the ripples in space-
At heart, they are both about observation and maths. Drawing and painting are about breaking down what you see into light and shade, and setting that down on paper, informed by an acute awareness of what you may leave out: those things that your visual system, a creature of calculation and approximation and gestalt, will fill in on its own. When you get it right, the laws of physics and biology work for you in perfect synchrony, and you end up creating something greater than the sum of its parts.
This page would not be complete without a tip of the hat to my sister, Samantha. My pictures might tell stories, but she often lends them her words, distilling the mix of my inspirations, thoughts and emotions that go into a painting to capture its essence in just a few lines that you'll find alongside the main picture of each artwork on display here.
And just as she's my writer, I'm her illustrator. We have created a special line of artworks that are driven by the words rather than the pictures, on display in the microfiction gallery. Samantha's challenge is to create characters and a story that will move you in a single page. Mine is to capture the essence of her words in a single illustration.
That's not all: together we've created the website
Diana Shaul Fine Art is dedicated to my fine art – my paintings and drawings. I hope that they will transport you, even if just for a moment, whether by taking you to a beautiful place, making you laugh, or just inviting you into their stories.
If you enjoy what you find here, please do come back. I am aiming to upload new work regularly, and I am always working on at least three paintings at any given time, so there should be something fresh to see fairly soon. (I did say that I'm an impatient artist, didn't I?)
Thanks for visiting, Diana
Copyright © 2009-2020 Diana Naomi April Shaul and Jacquie Samantha Shaul. All rights reserved.