I am originally from Western Australia but migrated to the UK in 2008.  I was an illustrator with over 20 years’ experience in the advertising industry but took the opportunity, on moving to the UK, to turn to fine art, something which I had always wanted to do.

I now paint full time from my studio in Leeds and have developed a reputation and following for my original oil paintings of the beautiful Yorkshire countryside, particularly coastal scenes of the Heritage Coast, such as the fishing villages of Whitby, Staithes & Robin Hood’s Bay.

As well as creating original oil paintings which are exhibited in galleries across Yorkshire, the north of England and also in London, I produce limited edition prints of my paintings.

I am proud to be an exhibiting member of Leeds Fine Artists (founded in 1874) & a member of the  Association of British Naive Artists.

My paintings are very heavily guided by the emotions a particular scene or moment evokes in me. It’s this feeling that I try to convey to the viewer.

It might be something as simple as smoke drifting from a chimney pot or silhouette created by a particular light source. It may be the strength or history, which emanates from an everyday object or piece of architecture.

Over time I’ve discovered that I can best achieve this by exaggerating/characterising colour, manipulating perspective slightly & pushing shape & form to arrive, hopefully, at a nicely balanced place, where the image created has not only captured the physical qualities of the scene, but more importantly, the feeling of the occasion.

I’m a self taught painter & not locked into approaching my work with any particular procedure or direction in mind.

However, I take photographs of my subjects, but like to rely on memory & imagination, the ultimate goal being, to recreate exactly what I’m feeling onto a flat surface.

I don’t do preliminary drawings, instead I prefer to adopt a more organic approach & design the paintings as I go. This helps the end product retain a freshness & feeling of spontaneity.

A Good Hard Look in the Mirror - Mark Sofilas
A Good Hard Look in the Mirror - Mark Sofilas

I always have an image & mood in my mind’s eye that I’m trying to put down and I find that working this way allows me to be flexible & go with any happy accidents that more than likely will occur. It’s these little surprises that I can adopt & learn from & take into my next painting.

I enjoy the journey that this direct & unstructured approach takes me on & find that it enables me to either get close to achieving what I had in mind & heart or on occasion, arrive somewhere unexpected but as rewarding.


Two beautiful books produced & published by Leeds Fine Artists showcasing the works of LFA exhibiting members. Click here to purchase.



This is the second book produced to record LFA members’ work, published in 2012. It aims to record the scope of their work and how they ‘express their ideas in a visual form’. It is hoped that it will serve as an insight not only for the public but anyone concerned with visual arts in our region.



To create a more permanent record of the range, style and quality of the work of LFA artist members’ work in 2010, we decided to create a book that brought together examples of their work together into one volume. We invited all exhibiting members to provide photographs of their work and a short essay describing their personal inspirations – allowing each artist to speak for themselves.

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