Born in Hull, England, in 1951, Tim Thompson spent his childhood living on
the tiny Channel Island of Herm. It was while there, living on the water that
Tim developed a deep love and respect for the sea. It also was the beginning of
his love for painting. Tim remembers creating his first image when he was 6
years old - a watercolor of the majestic Queen Mary.
Although Tim pursued a career in horticulture for a brief time, he never
strayed far from his paint brush and pallet. At age 27 he left his job at the
Parks Department in England and began painting full time. This decision proved
to be a positive step for Tim who is recognized as one of the world's leading
marine artists of today.
Tim married in 1973 and moved to Southern England, where he lives with his
wife Sharon, and daughters, Holly and Gemma, in a Victorian house on the banks
of the river Tamar. It is not surprising that Tim's paintings focus on marine
settings, particularly battle scenes and boats that span the centuries from
fighting ships of Drake and Nelson's eras to the epic journeys of clipper ships.
A turning point in Tim's career came in 1982 when he met media mogul and
sailing enthusiast, Ted Turner at a regatta in Cowes, England. Turner
commissioned him to paint a number of his yachts, and since then, a great deal
of Tim's efforts have been directed toward painting these modern racing vessels.
The growing popularity of this genre, coupled with Tim's inimitable style, has
earned him worldwide recognition. He has co-authored two books, The Paintings of
the America Cup and The Story of Yachting . He was the official artist to
America 3 , the winning yacht of the 1992 America's Cup race and he has been
appointed artist for the Dawn Riley crew scheduled to compete in the 1995
Tim creates his portraits from sketches and photographs that he takes on
location. “Photos are best because I can get a better idea of the technical
details,” Tim says. Color and movement are vital components in my work. It is
important that I see exactly how the sails of a yacht are formed when she is
rounding a mark or how the ocean appears during a storm.
Tim has exhibited his work throughout the United States and worldwide
including London, Paris, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Monaco and
***1994 Charleston Maritime Festival / The Boc Challenge