Michael lives in Ardrossan in the scenic West Coast of Scotland overlooking the Island of Arran. Colour and light are the main inspiration in his projects, as is the Isle of Arran which he looks onto every day from his studio and home gallery from which he also sells.
Though classically trained at Leeds Metropolitan University from 1977-1981, specialising in ceramics, Michael claims to be ‘self taught’. He feels more comfortable now exploring and experimenting with inner thoughts about the world, light, a fleeting moment, a glimpse of a crashing wave or a change of light around a cold winter cabin scene. Furthermore, he feels a sense of thankfulness as viewers are left wondering about a piece of his work or questioning an emotion that is ignited in them whilst looking at it. His subjects vary and are often viewed as simply vehicles for swathes of mature colour combination, bold brush and palette knife strokes.
Michael travels extensively throughout Scotland, Spain and Australia selecting scenes which allow him to describe a moment in time rather than depicting a general notion of a location. Viewers often ask him what has been going on in his head during his painting sessions. He has various answers but mainly settles for "once a scene starts to 'read' on the canvas, I like to distort certain areas to ignite the mind in a painterly way".
Certain artistic mantras have stayed with Michael all through his painting career, namely, 'art is about knowing what mistakes to erase and which to keep', 'it is not an artist's job to represent reality as it is' and his favourite, 'an artist need not know how to explain his art any more than a flower needs to know how to explain horticulture'.
From figure to seascape, Michael’s work features a consistent theme of striking light and well worked out greys to striking pinks. Michael shows his work in galleries in Scotland and now in Spain and Australia and has an extensive list of private collectors worldwide.