Congratulations
Derbyshire Life|May 2017

Mike Smith meets the winner of Derbyshire Life’s Landscape Painter of the Year 2016 Award.

Mike Smith

WHEN Peter Watson was told that he had won the first Derbyshire Life Landscape Painter of the Year Competition, his wife Linda responded immediately to the news by hanging a ‘congratulations’ banner on the wall of their kitchen. Linda said, ‘I had actually purchased the banner several days before we received news of the result, not just because I thought that Peter might have a chance of doing well in the competition, but because I felt that he could actually win it.’

It was Linda’s faith in Peter’s talent and her persistent encouragement that had persuaded him to take up painting for pleasure again almost four decades after he had left Derby College of Art. Knowing that his retirement would be coming up shortly, Linda felt that this was the time for her husband to have a hobby that would give him tremendous pleasure and help him to make the most of the artistic ability that had been evident since his childhood.

Recalling his early interest in art, Peter said: ‘When I was just thirteen years old, I made a copy of Picasso’s famous painting of “Demoiselles d’Avignon” on the back of a piece of wallpaper, because I was intrigued by the shapes in the composition and the style of the picture, which I didn’t recognise as Cubist at that time. Although I loved art lessons at school, I didn’t apply myself nearly as much as I should have done to other school subjects. To be honest, I was a bit of a tear away at the time.’

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