Alan Cotton chosen as Everest expedition artist

PUBLISHED: 11:30 28 April 2011

Artist Alan Cotton prepares for his expedition to Everest

Artist Alan Cotton prepares for his expedition to Everest

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Colaton Raleigh artist joins explorer David Hempleman-Adams to paint Everest from Base Camp Two

LONG walks, rowing, cycling and gym sessions, have been popular artist Alan Cotton’s regime for months – in preparation for a climb to Everest’s Base Camp Two.

Alan, from Colaton Raleigh, is good friends with explorer David Hempleman-Adams, who is leading a team of 12 experienced climbers up the North Face of the challenging mountain.

When David invited him to be expedition artist for the three-week trip the landscape artist jumped at the chance, and said: “It is a big thing for me, an ambition realised.”

Alan, who will be accompanied by son Robin, who has joined him for training sessions on Dartmoor, said he was taking it very seriously and hoped to overcome any altitude problems and reach the higher base camp which is almost 22,000 feet high.

Although he won’t need crampons and ropes, Alan has kitted himself out with proper climbing boots, anorak and thermals as well as a dozen Mars Bars, first aid kit and other supplies.

“It will be great meeting up with David out there and he is confident I can do all this stuff, I have good legs and respiratory system,” said Alan before he left yesterday, Wednesday.

He is looking forward to making sketches of Everest and Rongbuk Monastery, the highest ecclesiastical building in the world.

While sherpas will carry the heavy kit, Alan will keep hold of his painting gear, which will include coloured pencils and sketchbooks.

He said: “Oil paint would congeal so I will be doing a lot of drawings and water colours and will keep a visual diary of the journey.

“This is as exciting as going with Prince Charles [to Fiji, New Zealand and Australia] as his tour artist several years ago. It is more of a challenge and quite an adventure.”

Alan will produce some 50 oil paintings of Everest from his sketches and notes for an exhibition at London art dealers Messums for September 2012.


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