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Digital Subscriptions > The Artist > May 19 > Animal passions

Animal passions

Alan M Hunt, winner of The Artist Award in the 2018 David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation Artist of the Year Competition, talks to Susie Hodge

Alan Hunt studied at Middlesbrough Art College before studying zoology at Bristol University. Since then his paintings have been shown nationally and internationally, and attract a wide following. Further details about his work can be found at

Often described as one of the greatest wildlife artists in the world, Alan M Hunt has been painting for over 50 years. During that time he has travelled extensively, capturing incredible images and studying the natural habitats and behaviours of indigenous wildlife in places such as Africa, Madagascar, Alaska, Peru and Antarctica.

‘I grew up in north Yorkshire and was expected to follow the family tradition into the steelworks. As it happened, I began developing as a bird artist, and on leaving school I was encouraged by my family to enter art college – as long as I could fund it myself. I briefly attended Middles brough Art College to study fine art, but with their emphasis on abstract and more conceptual art, I chose to leave and develop a realistic painting style. Then, in my late teens, I began working with animals in zoos and studying zoology, at the same time as developing a market for my wildlife art. I was fortunate to begin travelling, taking the opportunity to study wildlife in its natural habitat, and I soon went on to lead wildlife field trips. During this time, I developed a passion for conservation, particularly of endangered species.

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About The Artist

Welcome to the May issue of The Artist, packed with inspirational, practical features designed to help all artists develop their drawing and painting techniques in all media. From learning how to control your watercolour brushwork with Hazel Soan, choose the right medium for your style of oil painting, create the illusion of depth in a coastal scene in acrylics, to making simple but dramatic landscapes without a printing press, there's something for everyone, whatever your skill level or preferred medium. Discover how drawing cartoons can help you to loosen up in your painting with Shirley Trevena and enjoy the benefits of painting en plein air with tips and advice from Geoff Hunt, Peter Graham and Paul Gadenne. Try spray-paint techniques to spice up your mixed-media compositions, add figures to give life to your watercolour paintings with Amanda Hyatt and paint a seasonal bluebell wood in three easy steps with Paul Talbot-Greaves. There's also a wealth of information about competitions to enter, exhibitions to see, special offers, art world news, courses and holidays and much more to enjoy in this month's issue. Plus, don't forget to enter your best work to our TALPOpen competition for the chance to see your work exhibited, published in the magazine, and win one of the fantastic prizes worth over £17,000!