Patrick Livingstone was born in Lurgan, Ireland, in 1956. He spent all his childhood summers in Donegal, in the thatched cottage of his maternal grandparents, literally a stones throw from the sea. His grandfather was a lobster fisherman, and this early connection with the sea left a lasting impression. Livingstone began his painting career at the tender age of four, and was enormously encouraged by the reaction of his mother, to his somewhat immature efforts. This led to Livingstone practicing his watercolor technique to a degree not usually seen in one so young, with the aim of astonishing his parents further. He sold his first painting at the age of twelve, and immediately spent the money on a set of oil paints.
His art teacher instilled a solid sense of composition and design, but it was the renowned landscape artist Cecil Maguire, who guided Livingstone through his early years as an oil painter, inspiring a love of classical technique. To this day Livingstone uses only the finest ground pigments and best quality linen canvas, using layers of glazing and scumbling to develop the luminous depth and richness in his work. Moving to London at the age of nineteen, Livingstone realized that the art schools of the day seemed only to encourage work of an abstract nature, and knew he would have to continue his training alone. He did this by spending hours in both the National Gallery of London and in the Tate, studying the techniques of the old masters. It was in this way that he developed his understanding of the methods employed by the old masters over hundreds of years of oil painting.
After five years of this study, supporting himself by various occupations ranging from publishing to house painting, Livingstone’s talent was recognized by Christies Contemporary Art and London Contemporary Art, who went on to publish over sixty of his watercolours over the next ten years, in a series of limited edition prints which have long sold out. His first major commission was to paint all seven of the marine paintings which hang in the boardroom of Visa’s European headquarters in Chester, England.
In recent years he has moved to the southwest of France, where he lives with his wife Regine and their three year old daughter Sophie, in an old stone house surrounded by vines, close to the port of Bordeaux. It is here he has built his most recent studio where he paints the beautifully realistic paintings for which he is becoming increasingly well known.