Renso Tamse, born and bred in Rotterdam, started drawing and painting at a very young age. He wanted to be ‘an artist’ for as long as he can remember. He was mostly interested in playing soccer in the streets and in nature. He combined his interests in nature and painting and, with a bit of luck and a lot of patience, he managed to turn it into his career.
Renso didn’t profit much from an education at the Academy of Visual Arts: the teacher’s attention was mainly focused on abstraction and modern art, while Renso’s preference on the contrary was aimed at realistic painting. Renso and his teachers just had different views. This city artist wanted to paint mystic sceneries and the animals that belong to them more than anything else. To learn more about these wildlife areas, he frequently travels to North-America, Switzerland, the Pyrenees, Germany and Scandinavia. The fairy-tale like woods of the Czech Republic are also one of his favourite destinations, where he experiences on site how flora and fauna can be an inexhaustible source of inspiration. He can be touched by a tuft of moss, a piece of bark, a capricious tree or other trifles. "There often lies an unprecedented and fascinating beauty in plain things." Renso considers it a challenge to "make something interesting out of something that appears to be uninteresting at first sight". This "wildlife artist" always pays a lot of attention to the reproduction of animals at the composition of his paintings, "the anatomy just has to be right. After that it’s at least as important that a painting lives, I try to put a soul into my work." It’s for that reason that Renso always starts with the head of an animal, after he makes a composition sketch. "Life lies in the eyes!"
Renso paints with plain watercolours on board. First he puts on water or a light-coloured layer with a sponge. This layer is the foundation, which makes it easier to edit the painting. Both the result and the technique are amazing. Experts immediately recognize his work. Renso’s paintings offer spectators an experience, often not until the second or third sight, because the artist doesn’t reveal all his secrets immediately. If closely studied, you can discover surprising elements in his works. Renso himself has never been completely satisfied with one of his paintings. "I still have to make my best piece". This self-criticism challenges him to create a new scene in every work. Renso doesn’t put a specific message in his works, although he does hope that his artistic occupation makes people think, and makes them realize that we have to protect our natural surroundings.