John Wells, Master of Fine Art, Muralist and Teacher
Armed with a Diploma in Fine Art from Brighton College of Art and a Masters degree, I left Reading University to endeavour to realise another ambition and that was to be an actor. I acquired a position as a property master at Nottingham Playhouse then a Acting Stage Manager with a children’s theatre company based in the same city. For the following eighteen years I pursued an acting career appearing in plays and musicals either in provincial theatres all over England or in London’s West End.
During ‘resting’ periods I painted murals and trompe l’oeil for private clients eventually advertising as a special effects and trompe artist in high profile interior design magazines.
As a result I became extremely busy completing projects ranging from canvases to large scale murals. One of the most spectacular was the centrepiece of The Wellington Tavern in Waterloo. With my reputation spreading I began to win mural commissions in themed public houses, restaurants and bars all over England. Also, private clients requiring romantic trompe l’oeil landscapes hired me, the idealised scene bringing beauty and uniqueness into their homes.
In 1997 I left England for Australia and on arrival took my portfolio to several well known Australian interior designers who were pleased to offer me contracts. Consequently, my murals feature in resort swimming pools and entrance lobbies in many apartment complexes throughout Sydney, the Gold Coast and Brisbane. Other murals of various shapes, sizes and subjects can be found in foyers and the exteriors of some of Sydney’s prestigious buildings as well as restaurants, clubs, hotels, private homes and public buildings.
In 2003 I began teaching art to adults at several community colleges on Sydney’s North Shore. I run semester watercolour and drawing courses at Northern Beaches Community College at Narrabeen, in addition to conducting weekly watercolour courses and drawing workshops for the University of Sydney, Centre for Continuing Education. Recently, Optus at Macquarie Park and Price Waterhouse, Sydney have employed me to teach lunchtime classes to their employees as part of an employee enrichment program. Also I am currently Artist in Residence at Sydney Grammar School, St. Ives.