The BonBernard Gallery held a special event yesterday: the unveiling of a portrait of the previous Headmaster and Warden, Jonathan Lancashire. The portrait has been painted by former pupil, George Thomas, who has met with Jonathan six times over the last eight months to produce the 90cm x 70cm sized oil painting.

To coincide with the event, the School is also hosting a special exhibition of drawings and paintings produced by George since he left the School in 2013. George started as a caricature artist and after completing his Foundation Course moved to London to study at the London Atelier of Representational Art (LARA).

In 2016 George won the Tuscany Plein Air Scholarship where he spent a week painting landscapes in a villa in the Tuscan countryside. He has had many painting adventures including climbing a flat top mountain on the Venezuelan-Brazilian border to paint a watercolour using water collected from a mountain stream, travelling to the Pyrenees to paint in the snow, and asking locals in Tarifa, Spain to sit whilst he drew their portrait.

George said: “My art is routed in the boundaries of observed light and form. Working predominately from life I seek to capture an accurate likeness of the figure, landscape or object I am depicting. I seek to capture the feelings and emotions of my subject. I design my composition to highlight the elements which bring the sentiment of the scene to life and convey these to the viewer.”

Head of Art at Dean Close School, Caroline Evans, said: “George has come a very long way in just four years. He was always one of our star pupils artistically, when he was at School, but what he is achieving now is really impressive and makes us very proud! He would appear to have a wonderful career as a portrait artist laid out ahead of him and we wish him great success with this.”

The exhibition of George’s work is free and open from 9am-6pm daily. It runs until 14 October in the School’s BonBernard Gallery and all members of the public are very welcome to attend. If you would like further details please call 01242 258000.