Oliver Ellwood has specialized in animal portraiture for the past 30 years, combining his art with a long career in the Army. Brought up in England’s West Country, he has always been closely involved with agriculture and the countryside, from which he has taken the subjects for his paintings – hounds, working dogs, hunters and racehorses. Hunting holds a particular fascination for him and his pastels and oils of hounds have sold widely. His bold style with pastels, combined with a deep knowledge of hounds gained from his days as a Master (Purbeck and Bovington Beagles), captures their unique combination of grit and dignity. As an amateur jockey for more than 25 years, his understanding and empathy for the racehorse is reflected in his paintings. He has travelled widely, painting wherever he has found himself posted – in recent years he has worked frequently in Africa painting subjects varying from wildlife to local landscapes and the people who live there.
Now living in County Wexford, Ireland, he continues to indulge his passion for horses, racing and hunting and is currently engaged in painting a series of hunting scenes inspired by days with the Killinick Harriers.