In 1969, Blythe Scott was born in Glasgow, Scotland. Being the daughter of two Art teachers, aesthetic matters were given much importance during her upbringing. Therefore, it was very natural for Blythe to attend Art school without much thought as to what direction her career might ultimately take, understanding that the creative journey would be a valuable and even essential experience in itself.
It was during her daily journey to Art School through the city centre that she began to notice the beauty of Glasgow's Victorian architecture. The red and blond sandstone structures exuded a wealth of pattern and form on an imposing scale. Spending each day on the sixth floor of the Art School, she spent many hours looking out upon the cohesive and inspiring architecture of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the moody, ever- changing city skyline. She marvelled at the abundance of decorative forms, details and shapes and the slate covered roof tiles and domes which were often glazed in rain.
During this time, she further fed her appetite for beautiful cities by travelling as often as she could and this deepened her obsession for architecture and cityscape. While Glasgow offered a great deal of source material, foreign cities seemed bathed in dazzling colour by comparison.
Blythe graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 1991 with an honours degree and then in 2007, she achieved a post graduate with distinction in Art and Design Education from Strathclyde University. Since then, she has travelled to and lived in various cities around the world and has worked as a decorative artist, gallery artist, gallery assistant and a passionate teacher of adults and children.
Today, she paints from her studio in Victoria BC Canada. She works with mixed media and collage, underpinned with rigorous drawing on a variety of scales. She also produces signed, open edition prints, based upon the cities she knows well and teaches various classes and workshops to adults throughout Victoria.
There are buildings and then there is architecture. The difference for me is that architecture exudes a presence which takes hold of my senses. It speaks to me.
Growing up in an architecturally rich city, I have become passionate about architecture, new and old. From the patterns, structures and reflections of modern buildings, to the rhythms, irregularities and surface textures of the ancient, I have found constant inspiration in my own city, Glasgow, and various locations in Europe, America and the Far East.
Sometimes, the smallest and most subtle decorative details will be my starting point. Other times, it may be the character of an individual building or it could be the energy or of an entire urban scene. Regardless, I feel that architecture provides me with never-ending possibilities for exploration. I find it quite irresistible.
Rarely content to use only one medium, I have always enjoyed the inventive process of mixing materials. This has led me to produce sometimes surprising or mysterious effects, creating contrasts between the rugged, glossy, chalky or lustrous surfaces.
Often many layers of different heights will be used to add depth and perspective. Fields of blurred colour on wet paper are brought into focus with an overlying linear study. Mark making, distressed papers and collage materials may be employed to emphasise areas of interest and colour will almost certainly be expressive and exaggerated. An exaggerated palette comes very naturally to me and meets my need to emphasise a brighter view of life. Distorted and exaggerated perspective also help me to convey the dynamic and exciting nature of the urban landscape. It is my intention to create a sense of movement and life.
Of equal importance, is the opportunity for discovery that each piece presents and so, I allow the properties of various media, the flow of a line, the strength of a shape, the vibrancy of a colour, to inform the direction and emphasis of the art. My work is therefore initially a process of rigorous observation which then gives way to an intuitive, emotional response. It is a compelling journey of discovery which never fails to completely absorb me. Above all, I love to do what I do.