Upon leaving Gray's School of Art in the mid-seventies, Maxie Bain was already known, in Scotland, as an aspiring portrait painter. Over the next ten years he exhibited regularly in various shows at the Royal Scottish Academy and completed a number of commissioned portraits. One of the most interesting was the Scottish author, Neil Gunn, painted for the Scottish Arts Council.
In 1975 Bain moved to England to work on a graphic design course at Salisbury College of Art, but continued to involve himself in portrait painting. He exhibited with the Royal Portrait Society in the Mall Galleries and at the National Portrait Gallery, London, as well as the Royal West of England Academy in Bristol. [Inevitably this led to further interesting portrait commissions.]
As the graphic design course grew and developed, Bain found himself in charge of its illustration content, but also worked on packaging design, typography and promotional design. This love of drawing and illustration found its way into his own work, resulting in the kind of detailed imagery for which he is best known in Shetland.
Maxie Bain returned to live in Shetland in 2015 after spending 40 years in the south of England. This exhibition is something of a minor retrospective.