“It’s always been about people,” says artist David Goatley, musing on his 30-year portrait career. “I’ve drawn or painted thousands of them—over 400 on commission—and wherever I’ve been in the world, I’ve loved sharing our common humanity.
“Portraits are a great equalizer, we all matter; paint someone and there is an immediate rapport,” he continues. “I’ve painted everyone from princes to street people, capturing the innocence of children to the experience of the very old, and I’ve given them all the same attention. We are all valuable souls with stories that need to be told.”
Goatley paints landscapes and cityscapes to keep his work fresh and to build inventory for galleries, but people often creep into them too. “I’m essentially a storyteller, trying to say something about who we are and the ways and places we live,” he says, “and that exploration pours back into my portraits.”
Goatley is currently working on a series about New York and Vancouver, fitting those paintings around a busy schedule of commissions. Based in the Pacific Northwest, he travels widely for work. His portraits can be found in royal, government, corporate and private collections in the U.K., Europe, India, Israel, Panama, Canada, the United States and Africa.
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