I painted this still life in acrylics in 2005. It was the first time I'd picked up a paintbrush since around 1997, which was when I finished school. I've always been rather fond of the atmosphere, the colour and the surprisingly successful rending of the oily iridescent skin of the fish.
I'm quite sure I would remember the smell had I painted the mackerel from life - so I can only assume I copied this from a picture in a book somewhere, although I have no idea which one!
I've always enjoyed the red coloured ground which shows through in various places, adding warmth and interest in what would otherwise have been rather a cool colour scheme. I don't think I'd ever contemplate painting on such a bright ground these days, but maybe I'll give it another go some time.
Ben Laughton Smith
Aspiring artist, training in the classical tradition.