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Classically Influenced: Art by Greg MacNair

A painting of a garlic clove and a seashellUntitled, oil on canvas

Artist Greg MacNair specializes in portraiture and still-life painting. Working in a very classically influenced style, the artist creates oil paintings and charcoal sketches that capture the energy and vitality of every subject.

A still-life painting of a glass vase and an onionUntitled, oil on canvas


While our previous feature of Greg’s modern subjects with classical style focused mostly on his portraits, I’m also really impressed by his still life paintings. The arrangements and assemblages of objects are rendered in beautiful detail, with just enough soft blending and evident brush marks to remind the viewer of the painting process, and the artist’s presence in turn. I also appreciate the somewhat novel subjects that Greg chooses for these works – a head of garlic placed adjacent to a seashell, and a paint roller propping up a cut rose, suggest more contemporary painting styles, lending Greg’s blended oils an almost anachronistic touch.

A screen capture of Greg MacNair's art


These interesting combinations of objects also give the artist the opportunity (likely a very deliberate opportunity) to explore vastly different textures on the same canvas. To see Greg’s renderings of smooth, transparent glass contrasted with the rough, earthy skin of an onion is a fascinating study.

A painting of a rose next to a paint rollerUntitled, oil on canvas

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. They hold a degree in Critical and Cultural Practices from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as well as a certificate in Technical Writing from BCIT. Dallas has a passion for speaking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In their studio practice they are an illustrator and budding tattoo artist, but they consider themselves a writer foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises or their art on Instagram.

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