Michael Souter – "Morning Phantom"

by Cindy Paul

Michael Souter is a consummate technician with a long professional career as a graphic artist and designer. Working almost exclusively with acrylic on canvas, he produces painting after painting that is fresh, delightful and attractive. "Giant Kingfisher" shows his skill and style very well, a portrayal of a beautifully feathered kingfisher with a fish captive between its beaks. "Helmeted Guinea Fowl 4" is another homage to the indigenous birdlife, also impeccably carried out.

Souter has a number of sports-themed paintings in a series within this online gallery. "South African Soccer Supporter" and "Orlando Pirates Supporter" are two excellent examples. "Black Rhino of Etosha" Is a bold portrayal of the indisputably ugly, yet compelling, face of a rhinocerous, and "Burnt Protea 1" is an irresistibly unique vision of the beautiful flower, singed artistically around the edges. "Loerie" is an unusual, illustrative picture of a bird, carried out in bold, graphic lines of white, dark green, sand, and red.

"Morning Phantom" is a Souter painting that is quite different from all the rest. An acrylic on canvas, that is where the similarities end. This fantasy painting shows a crude etching of a birdlike figure in white on a dark russet background. Reminiscent of both a Picasso drawing and a picture carved into a stone wall by one of the early cave dwellers, it has an immediate positive impact. The viewer feels its friendly intent right away, and the decorative bird-figure would be a wonderful addition to any art-lover’s collection.