A PROMINENT Isle of Wight artist has an exhibition of his work featured in a Ryde gallery this month.

Richard May — whose work is will be displayed in the Acons Gallery at Monkton Arts until March 28 — has spent much of his life teaching, with a focus on encouraging children to persevere in challenging times.

A spokesperson for the gallery said: "Richard was forever saying practice makes perfect, and quoting Yoda from Star Wars with a mantra of 'failure the greatest teacher is' to anyone who would listen.

"Last summer, he decided to step away from teaching and take his own advice to persevere and practice, focusing more time on developing his paintings."

The work at Monkton Arts has all been created since September and represents the Richard's evolution since stepping away from school life.

It is all painted in acrylic, something the artist was previously unfamiliar with, he said: "I’ve always used oil paint, but I needed to learn something new this year.

"Working with acrylic paint is not the same at all and I’ve really needed to practice and think differently."

The abstract genre provides a challenging form of art — it has a frenetic cadence of its own and can appear detached from reality.

Richard sidesteps this issue, ensuring his work is rooted in experience and memories, and the paintings he makes are all linked to real events and places, some more obviously than others.