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Taking Shape: Introducing Joe Kiney Whitmore

Last year we received funding to develop Taking Shape, a new artist development programme. This was a paid opportunity for 6 established creative practitioners living and working locally to receive valuable training and support to develop their work with communities. Over the last few months, they have received training in project planning, facilitation, evaluation, environmental responsibility, first aid and safeguarding all whilst being supported to develop their own community projects.

As Taking Shape progresses, we thought it was about time we introduced you to the practitioners we have had the pleasure of working with over the last few months.


Joe Kiney Whitmore

Portrait Artist

Describe your artistic practice:

I am a self-taught oil painter, working from life as often as possible. I love working directly with people, chatting and listening to their stories and infusing these conversations into the works I create from their reference. I am fascinated by historical oil painting techniques, making paint and learning from great painters past and present. I like to reinterpret old works, taking inspiration from their compositions, subject matter or meanings and making new works from them.

Why did you apply for the Taking Shape Artist Development Programme?

I applied for the Taking Shape programme because I am a technically capable artist who wants to learn more about all the other bits necessary to be a full-time artist, facilitator and organiser that goes on behind the scenes. My strength lies in my work and my communication skills, but sometimes I feel like planning, organisation and preparation are difficult for me so I wanted to learn more about what it means to be a creative practitioner.

What do you think of the programme so far?

The programme so far is great, it has given me the space and time to engage with my practice in new ways - to be able to think deeply about my work and what I want to do as my career progresses is a privilege I am making the most of.

Who are you inspired by?

Nicolai Fechin. He was a Russian-American artist who I think had a true mastery of his technique, he treads the line between realism and abstract brushwork perfectly.

You can follow Joe on Instagram here.

Check back next week to meet the next artist involved in our Taking Shape Artist Development Programme!


This programme is supported with funding from Arts Council England, Down to Earth and Wigan Council.


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