Shaun Mandy interviews gifted sculptor, Edward Waites…
Edward, your work is absolutely beautiful and it is clear that you have a great talent. Who or what inspired you to go into the artistic world of sculpture?
It’s stemmed from my school years where I practiced sculpture in my later art education. It was always the subject matter more than anything inspiring me! I have always been into form and presence of a subject whether it’s human or animals. I love big majestic subjects hence choosing horses and big wildlife. I was brought up in the countryside so a lot is drawn from my environment.
Not many people can say that they have the Queen on their books! Have you had the opportunity to meet her? What was that like?
I haven’t been lucky enough to meet her unfortunately but having your work appreciated and collected by such a figure gives you great pride.
It is great to follow your passion and talent and make a career out of it. Was there ever a ‘plan B’ profession or did you always know that this is what you wanted to do?
A plan B never came to mind really, I know I was taking a massive risk but I think if you are willing to take that risk you’re willing to give it everything. I was very much into art and sports through my school years so they were both huge interests of mine and inevitably I always felt like I’d end up in career linked with one of them.
Some of your sculptures are huge, like the life size horse. How long does it take you to finish a project like that and do you give yourself rest periods or days off during the project?
A life size horse for instance will take around 4 months to sculpt including its steel armature frame. That would be pretty much solid work but I always have lots of aspects of my work to attend to so not quite full time on it. I like to work on a number of projects at once! The next stage for a piece that big is the bronze casting and for that it can take 8-10 months.
There must be a fair element of stress in your work…especially doing sculptures for majorly important people and to display at big prestigious shows. How do you cope with this and what do you do in your down time to unwind?
I always had quite a pessimistic mind growing up and I think it take a few life events to get you out of it and I have had some of them early on in my career and they only make things better as you have a better way of dealing with it. I have pretty thick skin when it comes to opinions on my work and the pressure, which can be a good thing. I enjoy playing sports, good food and wine and pretty much everything else a 26 year old does to unwind but my work doesn’t give me masses of free time these days!
As you are an artistic person, how does this influence your wardrobe? Do you follow any particular fashions or have style icons?
I may be an artistic person but I have never really followed a fashion of any sorts really. I guess I have choices when it comes to clothes but I’m pretty stubborn and stuck in my ways a little bit. I’m almost that person that has a lot of the same things in their wardrobe.
Edward, thank you so much for talking with us today. I am definitely going to start saving up for one of your beautiful pieces of art…maybe not a life size one!
If anyone would like to follow your work more closely and know more about what you are doing and perhaps which show you will be displaying at next, what is the best way for them to do this?
My websites will show all my current work and up and coming shows, from my miniature and silver work all the way up to life-size commissions.
Article originally published in Style Reins Christmas 2015 magazine.