My desire to paint has been spurred and encouraged over the years by several artists, going back in time to watching Nancy Kominsky (remember her?) on TV, as well as Bob Ross among many others, but it’s only since I took up the paintbrush myself that I found contemporary role models in my medium. One in particular has been a great inspiration to me, and that is Terry Harrison – his easy, relaxed style, his subject matter and excellent tuition, both on TV and through his many books. So it was with a very heavy heart I learned last week of his untimely death after a very short illness. The news came as a shock, both to me and to everyone who knew him and his work.
I had the pleasure of meeting him and participating in one of his workshops last October and I am so pleased that I did, that I had that opportunity to meet and be taught by him, it was a longstanding desire since I first started painting. He even gave me a lovely compliment on my earrings (little silver paint palettes). He had a soft, gentle voice, told lots of jokes and made for a relaxed atmosphere in which to work. Terry worked in both acrylics ( my medium) and watercolours. In fact, it was following one of his demonstrations on the SAA Channel that I first attempted to paint a “proper” picture, listening to his instruction as I painted bluebells from the next room. And what was even more exciting was that first painting sold! What I also loved about Terry was that he wasn’t precious over his paintings, and was only too happy for people to copy the subject matter. His tuition books invariably including tracings of his artwork for people to use.
So, this is my way of saying goodbye to a fabulous artist and person. My thoughts are with his family at this sad time. I know Terry’s work and legacy will long remain.
Goodbye, Terry, and thank you for all you have given me and the world. RIP.