There were a few local places to buy Rayford’s work and he would also take a stall at the annual ‘Made in Yorkshire’ event held in York city centre.
The prints were very popular, especially given their size and affordable pricing.
As time passed we were able to introduce James to Buckingham Fine Art Publishing. They loved his quirky style and quickly took him on, broadening his horizons and getting his work into galleries all over the UK.
Very soon Rayford was painting major landmarks from London, Paris and other major cities and the popularity of his prints rose whilst at the same time establishing a market for his original work. His reputation grew and James was called upon to do appearances in galleries across the country.
Unfortunately there was a downside... by far the biggest demand for his work came from the south east with collectors wanting London scenes, the London Eye, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and so on. So Rayford painted them... time after time, on their own or as part of a scene, he painted them in the daytime and also as night scenes with clouds or with starry skies... he painted them from the ground or overhead, he painted them from all angles... but there are only so many times you can paint the same thing...
And eventually James felt stifled... He felt compromised having to re-paint the same scene, he wanted to try new things, paint new places and even to try out alternative, more serious styles of painting.
And so he decided to leave the publisher and go back to being an independent artist, working to his own agenda and having the freedom to work directly with galleries which also allowed him to earn more for his work. The timing coincided with the birth of his son, and truly became the start of a new era.
Building on his foundation of galleries and collectors, James now makes regular road-trips around the UK connecting with venues and delivering his work.
As one of his longest serving galleries we are delighted to continue this journey with him and are excited to see the development of the man and of the artist.
We invite you to join Rayford in the gallery this Saturday 10th March for an exhibition of his latest work and including some of his most popular limited editions. Prints of his quirky Yorkshire landmarks will also be available and you will have the opportunity to chat with James about his journey.
To be held at The Acorn Gallery, Pocklington YO42 2AS on Saturday 10th March 2018 from 9.30am, James will join us from 12-4pm.
Refreshments will be available.