Nial Adams: Expressive Oil Cloudscapes

By Cassie Rief in Featured Artists > Oil Paintings

Nial Adams knew the smell of turpentine and oil paints before he could even speak. By the age of 10, his father was teaching him classical painting techniques that, to this day, are his preferred style as he gravitates toward the subtle tones and hues of the “old master” palette.

Now, living in Norfolk, UK, Nial paints his home country’s skies and landscapes and is greatly inspired by the artist J.M.W. Turner. While some people wear their heart on their sleeve, Nial unleashes his soul in his artwork—sentiments lie thick within his scenes, which tell a vivid story about that particular place in time.

Take a look at just a few of his stunning cloudscapes below:

Sheer, darkened clouds let the wind whisk them quickly by in Thunderhead Over the Saltmarsh, but even as they pass, a rain-soaked haze remains hanging in the sky.


In the distance, a crackle of lightening pierces the ground; I can almost hear the gritty roll of thunder that will follow just seconds later. The marsh is waterlogged from the rain that fell hard and fast just moments earlier, and a second wave of storms threatens to again barrage the bog.

Meanwhile, the soaked fields (which are typically bright as sun-warmed straw) takes on a gloomy appearance beneath those ever-moving shadows.

The Slave Ship, An Interpretation, seen next, is Nial’s take on JMW Turner’s original piece from 1840. Using the same stylings as Turner, Nial sets his painting apart with sultry orange and bright periwinkle skies which sprawl out in every direction, much like the tumultuous waves careening the ship haphazardly across the sea.


Horizon meets great wave in the middle of the painting, setting the scene in motion while the ship, at the peak of a large curl of water, begins its descent into the ominous belly of the sea before bobbing up and out to the relief of its passengers.

Only sunlight beaming through fading clouds offers a ray of hope for a calmer voyage.

Finally, breathe in the smell of sweet rain and wide open spaces of the prairie in After the Summer Rains. A fine mist adds a chill to the air as raindrops soak into the prairie grass, illuminating the bright green blades that hang under their weight.


Adams’ pastel sky (which is the focus of this marvelous painting) is like a romantic dream. Layers of puffy clouds softly draped in the most wonderful peach and blue hues brighten the scene as storm clouds move out and clear skies move in.

Reading about Nial’s background in art, inspired deeply by his father, is just as fascinating as viewing his collection of cloudscapes. Take a minute to visit his website today—you will discover insight into his gentle soul, as well as his remarkable talent.


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