A portrait of life under lockdown

The Covid pandemic has inspired a special drawing by world-renowned Walsall portrait artist Andrew Tift.

World renowned Walsall portrait artist Andrew Tift has produced a new artwork during lockdown called '2020 vision' based on his experience
World renowned Walsall portrait artist Andrew Tift has produced a new artwork during lockdown called '2020 vision' based on his experience

The 52-year-old Walsall artist was commissioned by a client to create the piece which features Mr Tift of himself standing in a supermarket surrounded by empty shelves while the Covid virus hovers around him.

Mr Tift, who has been working as a realist artist, specialising in portraiture, for nearly 30 years, said: “I don’t normally do topical stuff although I did do a portrait for Support the NHS of a surgeon at St Thomas’s Hospital in London. My client contacted me during the first few months of the pandemic with the commission.

“It is my experience of being in a supermarket – a personal expression.”

Mr Tift, who has exhibited many times in the BP Portrait Awards at the National Portrait Gallery, London, winning first prize in 2006, said that the drawing took about two weeks to complete.

“I did enjoy it,” he said.

“It is not something I chose to do so it felt fresh – I rose to the challenge.”

Mr Tift became interested in art early in his teens, attended art college and became a professional in 1992.

Some of his commissions have included famous people including Tony Benn, Eric Sykes, Cormac McCarthy and Noddy Holder.

Working through the pandemic has presented no great challenge for Mr Tift as he has worked from home for 20 years.

“I have been self-isolating since 1992 so it hasn’t been that tough,” he said. “I’m used to it.”

For more information visit www.andrewtift.co.uk

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