A BRICKLAYER from Rishton will see his artwork go on public display for the first time.

Steven Beattie’s drawings will be exhibited at the Canal View Cafe Gallery, in Hermitage Street, for a week.

It marks a renewed love of art for the single 45-year-old, who lives in Victoria Street.

“I never even passed art at school, I just left it,” he said. “I had trouble with the teachers. Looking back I’m a little bit annoyed by them. They just wanted me to concentrate on maths and english.”

And so Steven’s flame was extinguished and life got in the way, including a career in bricklaying.

But in 2011, his passion was re-discovered after spending some time travelling abroad.

When he arrived home, he began to upload his art to social networking site Facebook.

His pencil drawings included icons of the music, movie and sport world, including boxing star Floyd Mayweather Jnr, Amy Winehouse, Heath Ledger’s Joker, and Kurt Cobain.

Steven was quickly hired for commissions, including portraits of Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, and Tupac Shakur.

“Some people are good at football, where as I can’t play to save my life. I just seem to good at art,” he said, although he admits he finds some mainstream art ‘pretentious’.

“I do a mixture of all arts. I can’t stand the art world and the bull that goes with it.

“I have been to so many galleries and I feel like shaking people and saying, ‘stop talking rubbish’.

“People are scared to question art, like Van Gogh’s Chair or Sunflowers.

“They don’t want to say, ‘actually, is that rubbish?’ “For some reason, I’ll just say it. I have seen some really good pencil artists and they don’t get the critical acclaim because it’s almost too good.”

The exhibition will be open from 9am to 5pm from Saturday, July 5, until Saturday, July 12.

Steven will be on hand working on his project and to show visitors a variety of his work.

For more information, log onto Facebook and search for ‘Art with Steven Beattie’.