Sponsor Supports Artist’s Charitable Work
Herald sponsor, European Consumer Claims have joined up with local artist Clive Hemsley to support his charitable work.
Clive didn’t have an easy start in life. A dyslexia sufferer, he left school at 15 and headed for art college in Taunton, Somerset. Seven years later he left with no qualifications. Abandoning academia, Clive began work in the creative world. He founded his own PR agency (Billings Publicity Limited) in Henley-on-Thames in 1984 and never looked back. An impressive roster of high profile clients including lucrative campaigns for leading British politicians and blue chip companies, meant that Clive could sell his agency and retire from corporate life in 2013 at the age of 61.
Clive now focuses on his true passion of painting. Specifically, enchanting portraits of beloved pets. Clive said, “I love the challenge of painting a cherished pet in a way that the owner recognises them straight away. Not just their likeness, but their true essence. We are conditioned to see the character in human faces, and even that is not always easy to translate into a work of art. Capturing the spirit of a much loved animal is an even more specialist skillset. To me, dogs have a wide range of expressible motions but to capture their individuality is incredibly important. It’s no good just painting an accurate image of an example of the breed. The owner has to see the picture and say: ‘yes! that’s my Rex!'”
Clive has painted over 2500 pet portraits, the majority of which are dogs. “Half of what I charge goes to cover my materials,” he reveals. “The remainder goes to worthy charities, such as Dogs Trust, The Sue Ryder Foundation and Helen & Douglas House.”
Clive’s work attracted the attention of Henley based European Consumer Claims Director and Philanthropist Andrew Cooper. Andrew said, “Initially I commissioned Clive to paint my own dogs but when I saw the results, they were breath-taking and I realised we had to support him further. ECC is a company built on helping victims, so our staff are naturally altruistic and generous natured human beings who are passionate about fighting for the underdog. Every day they give 100% of themselves in the fight for justice against ruthless timeshare companies who mis-sold memberships. Whenever people, or especially animals need help ECC personnel always take it upon themselves to organise help and charity donations. After the Estepona wildfire they raised money for displaced animal rescue centre ADANA. More recently for AAA dog rescue, but countless other occasions too. Clive’s work struck a chord straight away with the 170 strong international staff of ECC. We have supported Clive’s work financially and with commissions, but what Clive really wants is to paint. He loves what he does and wants a full schedule so he can earn for his charities while creating beautiful, meaningful art. So what ECC are mainly doing is using our corporate national and international presence to spread the word about Clive’s mission
“If Clive is busy painting, he is happy, the pet owners are happy, and deserving charities are getting much needed support.”