Bryan Ceney can reflect on a lifetime’s interest in art and nature. From his early years he was aware of nature’s frailties which quite often mirrored his own trials.
Born close to Coventry in 1938, he experienced the devastation of the city and the loss of the family home. After the bombing in November 1940 he was evacuated to Shoreham on the South Coast but was moved again at the start of the Battle of Britain. This took him back to the Midlands and a Romany caravan camped in open fields. There, his young drawings were of a favourite blackbird, a family of hedgehogs and particularly, grazing horses.
At junior school, his love of art became confirmed after seeing prints of the ‘Blue Rider’ artist Franz Marc, and at the same school, drawing the emergence of a hawk-moth from its pupa. A legacy from that period is a pond dug in the school grounds in the spring of 1948 and still containing wildlife to this day.
In his early teens he gained a scholarship to Coventry College of Art, where he won a major award in the Daily Mirror Young Artist Competition. He later graduated to St Martins Art College in London under the tutelage of Antony Caro, Elizabeth Frink, Phillip King and Derrick Greaves.
On graduating he was contracted to New York studying photography, then Toronto and Ottawa, Canada illustrating for the Canadian Air Force. Later still to Paris, Amsterdam, Dusseldorf and London as a graphic designer. While in London he took a role in a David Puttnam movie called ‘Stardust’, a film based on The Beatles legend. The film producer also introduced him to modelling where he worked for photographers David Bailey, Herb Ritts and Sid Robeson. Between assignments, he fitted in a 10 year career as a professional footballer.
Later he worked alongside the artists at Thames Television designing and executing artwork for the ‘station identity’ as well as most of the programmes that made the company famous. He is also known as the artist who originated the cover for the Bee Gees album ‘Saturday Night Fever’.
His passion though remained art and nature and his artwork reflects the need to illustrate the romance and beauty that embrace all aspects of his profession. In his quest for first-hand knowledge of nature, he worked on many conservation projects and made journeys to most of Europe, the Middle East and the Americas. This is amply illustrated in these pages and all his exhibitions. His work is memorable and certainly worth seeking.
© Copyright on all images in this site belongs to Bryan Ceney. The use of any image from this site without prior written permission from the artist is prohibited.