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In the spotlight with My Dog Sighs

My Dog Sighs is a phenomenal artist and one we have admired for many years. His stunning eye paintings,murals, cans and characters can be seen all over the world, and if you’re lucky enough you might discover one of his free artworks through his ‘Free Art Friday’ project.

My Dog Sighs adding detail to one of his paintings

My Dog Sighs very kindly took time out to talk to us about how his work, his idols and inspiration…

CF: Firstly, thanks so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to chat with us today.

MDS: No problem.

I guess the first question we’ve always been curious of is, where did the name My Dog Sighs come from?
I’m happy to answer this one. Over a pint in the pub. It’s always nice to keep some mystery. Right?

It certainly is, and that’s definitely a mysterious answer. Ok, so for those that don’t know, you were once a teacher. Was there a turning point that took you from teacher to full time artist?
It was generally a sort of statistical curve of interest and opportunity over time but I think the BBC picking up on my ‘Free Art Friday’ project and including a feature on their flagship art program The Culture Show that really pushed my audience beyond the small street art following. From there, interest from galleries began to happen and it went crazy from there.

You must be incredibly proud of how your ‘Free Art Friday’ project has developed. Where did the idea come from?
It came from me being not brave enough to vandalise people’s property. I desperately wanted to get in on the street art game but couldn’t afford (job and wife) to get arrested. My way round it was to paint on rubbish and put it out on the streets. It was always a personal project. I had no idea or expectations that it would become what it is.

You just never know where you might find one of My Dog Sighs beautiful cans. This one was left at Glastonbury for a lucky person to find.

After everything you’ve done, what has been your greatest achievement to date?
I’m stoked to have ticked off pretty much all of my bucket list items professionally already. In fact I’ve done way more creatively than I new existed. Right now I just want to take each day as it comes, be the best artist I can be and never ever do a ted talk again.

CF: For the record we loved the TEDtalk! You can watch his inspirational story here…

You recently had a very successful solo exhibition in Melbourne and met one of your heroes – Anthony Lister, which must have been amazing. Who else is on the list of people you’d like to meet?
Ooh. Good question. I met Hera from Herakut once but was so fan girl that I just stood there and said very little. I’d love to properly meet them both, over a few beers , apologise for last time and pick their brains.

You’ve mentioned before that song lyrics inspire you and become the titles of some of your work. What else inspires you?
The desire to get better. That’s the biggest inspiration for every piece. Every painting I’ve done there are bits I like and bits I don’t. Each new painting is an opportunity to step it up and get better.

The reflections in the eyes often tell the story of the painting.

Is there a particular piece of art you’re most proud of and why?
My next piece. (See above)

Which artists do you admire the most?
Herakut. -the balance of looseness and perfection, wrapped in a blanket of melancholy is sublime.
The London Police. – they’re in it for the right reasons (except the tequila)
Toasters – brandalism in its most perfect form.
Axel Void. – I stood in front of one of his paintings last December and actually involuntary cried.

Art, as we know, is a tough career choice. What advice would you give to aspiring artists?
It’s easy. Just follow these three rules…
1 work hard
2 be nice
3 no excuses.
I did and it only took me 40 years to start earning a living from my work.

And finally, what’s next for My Dog Sighs?
Lunch. Oh. You mean professionally? I’ve got a solo show in November with Nelly Duff gallery in London. Hmm. Actually am I supposed to be making this public? Not sure. Oh well. You heard it here first.

CF: Well thanks for the scoop 🙂 and thank you so much for chatting to us, it really is appreciated. Congratulations on all that you’ve achieved and we look forward to seeing more of your stunning work.

MDS: It’s a pleasure and thanks.

If you want to check out more of My Dog Sighs incredible work here’s some links:


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