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Philip Raskin

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From Jazz musician and restaurateur to artist isn’t the naturally aspired route, or indeed A1 directional path to a career as a professional seascape artist, but it is the one that Philip Raskin chose to walk, and where he looks out from upon today. But then, sadly, Raskin’s pre-plotted career course was thrown into disarray by his father’s sudden and untimely passing. Born in 1947 and now based in Glasgow, Raskin studied at the Scottish city’s School of Art during the 1960s, yet the aforementioned family tragedy spelt the premature ending of his course of study and instead he eventually chose to enter the world of business and therein put his creative career on hold for what turned out to be several decades.

Raskin is perhaps best known as being the proprietor of the much celebrated and widely-acknowledged Inn on the Green jazz restaurant which both himself and his wife have successfully owned and ran over a 20 year period, yet before this he was employed in the clothing industry as well as being widely regarded as an accomplished jazz musician. Fortunately Raskin did not lose that conduit with art per se, despite not pursuing it directly for a good part of his career, as the popular Glasgow restaurant become known as something of a venue for art exhibitions and doubled up as a quality art gallery in its own right, proffering a comprehensive programme of showcasing artist’s individual works and collections.

After dedicating so much of his time to his business, it’s only fairly recently that Raskin has been in a position suitable to furthering his passion and undiminished love of art in its various shapes and forms, resulting in him launching himself as a professional artist. Raskin’s full-time return to his easel and brushes has seen him as an artist quickly establish a singular design language as they say these days, in which he teams the weight and presence afforded by acrylic paints with the subtlety and visual consideration that’s indicative of watercolours.

With coastal landscapes being Raskin’s specialist subject, the artist managed to effortlessly harness as if by magic, both the texture and ethereal quality projected by his native Scotland and the country’s rugged, pictorially descriptive seascapes; with moods, light, shadows and colouration clearly uppermost in Raskin’s mind as he creates his telling and evocative compositions. His almost intuitive application of every hue and saturation becoming from what’s essentially observed as a narrow palette still has the presence of mindful colour so as to ultimately radiate an overwhelming sense of peace and tranquillity in his signature works. And as testament to his skillset, Raskin has built up an enviable and loyal following of collectors both in the UK and abroad in a relatively short space of time and also travels the British Isles putting on seminars and gallery/exhibition demonstrations and workshops to pass on his self-taught knowledge and approach to art and subject matter.

With the passing of time Raskin has developed a painterly impasto style, whereby he adapts the paint’s constructed texture and the shape of his brushwork to allow maximum luminosity to be identifiable in his powerfully visually emitted landscapes. Trademark soft palettes contrasting dramatic, typically brooding skies give Raskin’s studies a magnitude of depth and visceral volume, yet very rarely does he break up a natural scenes with more urban interferences or human interfacing. Raskin himself adds; “I tend to paint very private places for the viewer to own and enjoy; no people, no houses, no telegraph poles -just the driftwood of an ebb tide, mist tumbling on a distant hilltop and silence broken only by lapping water and gulls ascending."