JAY fortune

Artist & Author

(In true biography fashion, we’re going into third-person tense… hold on, it’s gonna get weird…)

Jay Fortune was destined to become an artist and author.

His first artistic and writing efforts were unappreciated and seen as an act of graffiti at the young age of three when he began doodling on the staircase wall with a biro. Not content with his first efforts, he shifted down to the next stair and continued. At stair five he was rumbled by his mother. This early wall art eclipsed Banksy by some 30 years. Jay says he may have been the inspiration for Banksy, but this is widely refuted.

It’s also not true.

Early years

At school, Jay was awarded his first solo exhibition featuring portraits of historical figures. He also won a national school’s competition to illustrate a poster to save the rainforests. Selected as the national winner, Jay’s poster was reproduced and printed in several acres of forest which had been selected for protection for the campaign. Jay is still chasing legal rights to own the acreage. His writing was also recognised, winning a hand-writing competition at the age of 7. 

College and university beckoned and Jay graduated with a BA Hons in Art. For the purists who may wish to write his biography, it’s actually an HND equivalent to BA Hons.

A period of retirement from art followed as Jay pursued his other love of magic. This led to his successful career as a magician. But that’s another story for another time. 

 

Back to the drawing board!

Retiring (again!) from magic in 2019, Jay picked his paintbrushes back up (they had been on the floor the whole time). The paint on them hand long since dried to a nasty crust with new lifeforms swarming on them. Disposing of those, he purchased a new set and has quickly established himself as one of the UK’s most ‘exciting young artists’. The trade refers to him as ‘young’ despite being 40 when he started his art career. Given Van Gogh is now 167 years old (at the time of writing), Jay can certainly be considered ‘young’.

Photo: Jay celebrating one year as a pro artist and thanking his collectors. It was a quiet event.

Collected worldwide

Jay has sold work across the globe, including to collectors in New York, Las Vegas, L.A., Milan, Paris, Cape Town and London. He is in demand as a commissionable portrait artist and continues to create original works in his unique graphic style. Jay collaborates with celebrities to create original official portraits, many of which are counter-signed by the celebrity. Recent portraits include Uri Gellar (‘Jay, you’re a very talented artist!’), Derren Brown (‘Wow, Jay, I love it!’), Samantha Fox and Penn & Teller.

He has been commissioned by CEOs and publishers to produce limited-edition prints of his portraiture. He has released limited-edition prints in collaboration with global brands, estates of icons and industry stars.

Collectors around the globe are snapping up Jay’s work now before he, in the words of one collector, ‘blows up’ (assuming this refers to his market value increasing and not spontaneously combusting). More and more people are discovering Jay’s talents and commissioning him for private portraits as well as beginning their collection of his original artwork.

 

Author

Debut Novel

Summer 2022, saw the release of his debut novel All Fall Down. This dystopian psychological thriller was written over a 5-year period, with the majority being done during the infamous Lockdown. Represented by Chronos Publishing & The FCM Group, Jay’s book is widely available in all good bookshops in the UK and globally on Amazon. You can also get your own signed, dedicated copy here (with a specially commissioned All Fall Down Bookmark!). Currently, Jay is working on the sequel to All Fall Down (release date TBC). 

Snowlands - Book I

Hot on the heels of his debut adult thriller comes Snowlands, Jay’s debut Young Adult novel. 

The first in the series, book I ‘Zak and the Wanderer’, was released in paperback Christmas 2022. 

Unique in itself, as the magical fantasy story unfolds the reader is prompted to turn to pages elsewhere in the book and learn magic tricks that resonate with the main character’s journey in the story. 

Snowlands Book I is scheduled for release as an audiobook Christmas 2023. 

‘Snowlands II – Zak and the King of Darkness’ is currently being written and will be published sometime 2025. 

The Dream-Maker's Manifesto

Jay’s long-form blog. Why subscribe? Simple… together we’ll look at how to turn your dreams into reality. This isn’t ‘how to get rich quick’ or other such mass-market faff. This is hard-won practical advice that balances achieving your dreams with your wellbeing. It’s not about burning out or risking it all – quite the opposite! 

With 2-3 new long posts a month and an archive of Jay’s experience as a serial dream-maker, this could just be the information you’re looking for to making your dreams a reality. 

Before the art...

In a previous career, Jay worked as a successful magician performing countless shows worldwide including Las Vegas and London. He consulted on magic programmes for BBC, ITV, C4 and Sky, hosted his own radio breakfast and drive-time shows across London and once was blessed by ‘Del-Boy’ on the set of Only Fools & Horses!

Jay created the Riviera Fine Art Exhibition to showcase work from himself and other artists, and has received national press and TV coverage. Jay also created Magic Moments, his charitable initiative which ran annually over a decade, raising over £100,000 for causes close to his heart.

Jay lives in the funky sea-side town of Blackpool with his long-term partner Jen (herself an accomplished artist www.artbyjen.co.uk). He spends his time as a professional artist and writer and on rare occasions is slightly comical. But only on rare occasions. This isn’t one of them.

Artist Statement

Internationally acclaimed portrait artist Jay Fortune has a degree in Art and, in a short space of time, has generated a worldwide following. His authentic, original artwork is strikingly powerful, combining brightness and contrast, bringing a subtle yet energised quality to each composition. His sense of fun shines through the graphic dynamic of his work in a smorgasbord of serious play.