Writer Matt Hurst this week begins a regular look at artists who live and work in Wirral. This week he meets Mike Burns
BIRKENHEAD-born painter and decorator, Mike Burns only turned to photography 18 months ago but is already building a strong reputation.
The 48-year-old draws inspiration from the landscapes and natural forms of Wirral, and surrounding vistas, to create finished pieces that have a playful, and sometimes menacing, edge.
Mike told the News: “I’ve always liked taking pictures but about a year or 18 months ago, I started manipulating them, and thought ‘I like that’.
“I got a couple developed and went down to Rennies on Bold Street in Liverpool.
“The guy there said he liked them and told me if I got them blown up and framed, he’d sell them. He took two and they sold in a month, so he asked for more.”
Since then, Mike has found willing outlets at Oxton’s Roma Galleries, the post office and Bamboo Restaurant, as well as at Dee Fine Arts in Heswall and The Stables Gallery in Brimstage.
Mike said: “It’s a hobby really, but it’s starting to generate more money than my firm, Rag and Roll Painting.”
And the former Birkenhead Institute pupil has work to fit most budgets, with A4 size prints going for around £5 and three foot by two foot limited pieces fetching around £175.
Mike said: “With digital cameras, often you can’t see what you have taken until you get home.
“It’s just whether something jumps out at me and then I’ll start messing around with the colours.”
The father-of-three has just shown at his first exhibition, in Birkenhead’s Williamson Art Gallery, and is currently looking for partners interested in helping set up a new Wirral exhibition space. Contact Mike on 07733 260372.
l Are you a Wirral-based artist? Call Matt Hurst 0151 330 5042 or email firstname.lastname@example.org