My name is Antonio Bernal, I'm a Spanish self-taught artist based in Cork, Ireland.
The Man in the Hat is a fictional character who incidentally appeared in my paintings when I started experimenting with watercolors, in Autumn 2011. At first, he was just an easy figure for my compositions, but as he kept appearing in my artwork, he became the protagonist of the series.
I like portraying quiet, light-hearted and beautiful scenes that the Man in the Hat finds in his amazing, imaginary journeys.
Watercolour and ink is my favourite medium. I love the unpredictability and the transparency of watercolour. I find painting with a water medium is both great fun and very stimulating, as the water creates shapes on its own and this adds an spontaneity that reflects into my artwork.
The series has a strong narrative element, but there is no story as such. Through the different illustrations the viewer is able to make up their own story, following the many different locations and situations presented in the illustrations. This apparent but non-existent plot provides a solid narrative background which enhances the story-telling feeling of the series, where travelling scenes and landscapes are a recurrent theme.
I hope you enjoy the pictures as much as I do enjoy painting them.