Ophelia Redpath

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I have had a career spanning nearly 40 years. During that time I have exhibited work in over 100 shows in Britain and overseas, painted several murals and produced two books.


I was born in 1965 in Cambridge. From 1983 to 1984 I attended the Art Foundation Course at CCAT, studying under the tutelage of the acclaimed illustrator, Warwick Hutton and the highly respected painter, Julia Ball. After further studies of Music and Education at Homerton College, I took up painting full-time.


2014 Nominated for the Kate Greenaway Prize for Children's Literature.

2021 Winner of Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the Year.

2023 Winner of the Environmental Artivism Category for the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year

2023 Winner of Editor's Choice Award for the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year


I currently live in Northamptonshire with my daughter, Sally.

Ophelia Redpath



I paint figurative paintings in oil on canvas, versed in traditional techniques, yet with a symbolic language of my own, finding inspiration in jazz, literature and the natural world. I am currently immersed in work which explores the relationship between Civilisation and the Wilderness, highlighting both the conflicts and the possibilities of change.


I also draw in pen and ink, producing detailed designs for posters and illustrations for authors and musicians. 


I have written and illustrated a children's picture book, The Lemur's Tale, nominated for the 2014 Kate Greenaway Medal and reviewed in The Times as Book of the Week. I have also written, illustrated and published a coffee table book, An ABC of Cambridge Professors.


In 2021 I was the delighted winner of Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the Year, and commissioned to paint Dinas Oleu, the first piece of land ever to donated to the National Trust. The painting currently hangs in the Butler's Pantry of Penrhyn Castle in Snowdonia.


In 2023 I was equally delighted as winner of the Environmental Artivism Catagory and the Editor's Choice Category for the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year.


You can buy my original paintings and signed museum quality prints on this website. My prints are reproduced from the highest standard photography by Peter Mennim www.petermennim.com and the equally the high quality giclee printers, Redcliffe Imaging. www.redcliffeprint.co.uk 







The initial focus for any of my pieces is its composition as a backdrop to offset the ideas.  


In the first stages I draw out a piece to scale, positioning and repositioning lines, viewpoints, expressions and shapes, often using a rubber more than I use a pencil. Once the scene is set, the colours and application of paint decide themselves.  


When developing the drawing into an oil on canvas, I work in layers until there is a richness and fullness I'm happy with. I paint many of my figures and objects onto tracing paper which I print onto the backdrop and work in detail into the canvas.


When I work graphically with pen and ink, I make a detailed plan first, after which I wash on the ink, highlighting the important details. 



Ophelia Redpath
Ophelia Redpath



Ideas approach artists in mysterious ways. They never seem to arrive on time or in the place we look for them. But we need to look, and we need to arrive on time just in case one turns up.  


When I hear something on the grapevine which gets a narrative going, I find a scene within it and let it grow. As a result, much of my work is based on hearsay, via reading, films, concerts, conversations, travels, or simply an inner vibration which needs to turn into something living. Perhaps my work is a form of painted gossip.  


There are special influences, such as jazz, which I have always loved. When I listen to the great pianist, Herbie Hancock, for example, the chords changes set certain colours off in me, the melody affects my use of line, the mood or message helps structure the composition and subject. 


My deepest passions, though, stem from the possibilities offered up by the Natural World. At a time when life for many species of plants and animals hangs in the balance, I feel impelled to celebrate their existence and to question the relationship we have with them. 


When I work, there is always an initial struggle to work out exactly how to say what I want to say. But once in a blue moon, a complete painting quietly appears in my head, fully detailed, with no apparent logic or meaning. This hardly ever happens, but when it does, I copy it down immediately!