Painter Neale Joseph in interview

Neale JosephNeale Joseph artist, in his studio.

AMPED: We’ve come to visit and interview artist Neale Joseph at his beautiful home in Bateau Bay on the Central Coast.

Neale is an established Central Coast artist who specialises in plein aire, oil based coastal scenes.
He painted as a teenager but decided to follow in his father’s footsteps as a carpenter after his art teacher discouraged his work.

A big man with a lot to smile about, Neale Joseph, artist.

“Don’t watch Neale, he’ll never amount to anything” said the art teacher.

It was only many years later that he picked up his canvas and his paints, threw them in the back of his truck and started quick outdoor paintings on his way home from a day on a building site.

“The light changes so quickly when you’re outdoors, that’s how you become quick, you’ve got wind, flies and people. It’s hard to capture it so quick, but being quick allows you to capture the essence. It’s not so much about observation but interpretation”

Jospeh explains it was god who opened the doors for him, in terms of becoming a professional painter. He saw a sign out the front of a little church saying “don’t bury your gift, but use your gift wisely” Seeing this message, Jospeh took it as a sign and asked, “god if this is real, please open the doors, or quickly shut them”.

The doors opened with supernatural force, one day he was a builder, the next day he was a professional painter.
Neale was asked to have a one man exhibition, resulting in a 43 painting sell-out, from there more exhibitions in Sydney occurred, which lead to winning the verve art prize, a trip to Florence and Paris.

Later on Neale was approached by an art dealer in America, who asked for 10 paintings to put towards a charity.

It was through this that George W Bush Senior came across his work and took two paintings for the Whitehouse. Which are still hanging there, according to Joseph. A wild chain of events, from Neale following his paintbrush.

Neale painted seven days a week, as he started seeing everything as an object and a subject, everywhere he turned there was an opportunity or scene to be brought to life.

Neale reflected, his drive was a love; It wasn’t a strict discipline, even though he was out there rain, hail or shine.

Neale’s advice for up and coming artists is two words, “brush mileage, the first paintings that I did, I’d use as Frisbees now. It’s about the journey not the destination. Enjoy the process; the more you do, the more will come.

Neale loves landscapes and oceans, because every day they change, the light and the waves will always create an endless array of subjects.

We leave Joseph as we found him with a paint brush in his hand and a big smile on his face. He’s a fortunate man and it shows.

To check out Neale’s Work visit:

Ellen Rubbo

This interview and article was part of the AMPED culture section from CCN. The goal of which is to boost the profile and reach of artists of all kinds on the Central Coast. See our full section here.