About the artist
My name is Alan Downey. I was a disabled artist for 12 years.
In 1994, at the age of 21, I was paralyzed from the shoulders down, when I dived into a river, struck a sand bank & broke my neck.
After this I began drawing & painting, as I had always enjoyed art when I was younger & I realized that this was something I could do despite my disability.
As I have limited use of my hands due to my injury, I use a brace that fits onto my hand. This holds the pencil or paintbrush in the correct position so that I can draw or paint.
During my 12 years of painting, I worked with a number of different mediums. I started doing sketching, then went to painting with Poster paint & Acrylic & finally progressed to using oils.
Later I also tried my hand at clay sculpture, which I then painted using Acrylics. I mainly painted African wildlife, but also portraits, Landscapes & Seascapes.
During my 12 years of painting I exhibited in Johannesburg, Cape Town & Durban & have sold a couple of paintings privately.
From my paintings I make & sell greeting cards, key rings, bookmarks & calendars, as well as full size prints.
In recent years I hung up my paint brushes & concentrated on my business of Graphic & web site design, but continued to express my self creatively in my cartoons, caricatures & illustrations, all using the computer.
Some of these are published in the Rolling Inspiration Magazine, on web-sites & banners & for the use on bookmarks.