Acclaimed artist turns to Toon

editorial image

Internationally renowned artist Keith Drury has just completed a new artwork based on the iconic landmarks of Newcastle.

Entitled Newcastle Way, the work is described as a detailed, dreamlike piece.

And it is available to buy at the Blagdon Gallery in the Milkhope Centre.

Features included in the piece include the Angel of The North, Black Gate, Castle Emerson Chambers Building, Grey’s Monument, the River Tyne, Rimal Theatre, The Sage, St Nicholas Cathedral, the Swing Bridge, Newcastle Station, the Tyne Suspension Bridge and Millennium Bridge.

After the success of Keith’s Northern Ireland-themed pictures, he decided to focus on English cities and has since published pieces featuring Lincoln, Manchester, London, Bristol and Liverpool, as well as major Scottish cities.

Keith, who is from Belfast, said: “Newcastle is a vibrant, exciting and diverse city, which has influenced culture, change and industry through the UK and deserves to be celebrated.”

In 2007 the artist was commissioned to paint world-renowned Brazilian footballer Pele, and he presented the artwork to him in Dublin.

In 2016, he was honoured to have his London Way artwork presented to HRH The Princess Royal at Buckingham Palace.

“Well, her mum’s house is in it”, he said.

Keith uses 3D software and a touch-sensitive drawing board to mould pieces of virtual plasticine into buildings, vehicles and other objects. Every single element in the pictures is a virtually moulded 3D model, even the tiny clouds.

Keith said: “Each individual model is incredibly detailed — you can even virtually go inside the little houses to look through the windows and see the view outside.

“The first process is sculpting, then colouring, then picture composition.”

Learning to use the sophisticated software took Keith “about 2,000 hours”, and each picture started from scratch can take up to three months of long-working weeks to finish.

The most unique aspect of Keith’s artworks is how easily they can be customised.

He said: “Once I’ve made a picture for the first time it’s very easy to personalise it for a specific customer. People come to me and say, ‘I really like this artwork, but can you place that building here instead, change the colour of that house and put my sister’s name on that little van?’.

“Once I’ve made the objects and buildings for the first time it’s then very easy to make changes and people don’t have to pay thousands of pounds extra for it, just £70 or £80 in addition.”

To see the Newcastle Way artwork, or to purchase it, visit or see the website www.blagdongallery.co.uk

To find out more about the artist visit www.keithdruryart.com/newcastle