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Meet our Home Support Artists: Leighton McIntosh

How did you become involved in the Home Support campaign?  

I was approached by Purplebricks to produce a piece of artwork that embodies home support for the Olympics and Team GB. It was interesting because I usually keep my art life and sport life quite separate. So, to be approached to do something that touches on both was brilliant. 

Describe your Home Support painting ‘Shine Through’. 

My work is quite vibrant, bold and colourful so I wanted to create something that is exactly that. I chose quite an abstract design but with a focal point of the Olympic TorchI wanted the image, which is going to be on Purplebricks For Sale and To Let boards, to be a brightpositive and visual reminder of the support for the athletes.  

Why is home support so important at this year’s Olympic Games? 

With no fans allowed at the Games, the support from home will be massiveThe Home Support campaign is good because these athletes have been dedicating hundreds of hours training, dreaming of going to the Olympics, and having their family and friends there to support them. To then not have that physical support makes it important that we get behind them at home.  

Describe your journey into art. 

I’ve always been into animation and cartoons, and I used to do a lot of art at school where I learnt the principles and techniques. But football was always a passion of mine too, and when I turned professional that just took over naturally.  

I’ve always been artistic and creative. It was just something I wanted to do as a hobby, but now that I’m playing part-time with Cove Rangers, it’s given me more time to concentrate on progressing my art career.  

I never really created art with the mindset of then selling it, it was very much a hobby which I enjoyed. But then I started thinking about what I would do after football, so I’ve been knuckling down and focusing on my art career. 


How do find the right balance between art and football? 

At the moment, I’m managing to focus on my football career as well as my art. Having football there as the foundation and my main job is massively important. Art can be quite sporadic in terms of income but you’re never just going to hit the ground running. I’ve been fortunate that I’ve had some good opportunities – the work with Purplebricks being one of them – and I think the more time I put into it and treat it as a full-time job, I’m sure the returns will come.  

I think I’d struggle with an office job or something like that. I like being creative and spontaneous, so while I have the foundation of football, I’m really trying to drive the art so I can make it a focal job and income.  

What are the similarities between sport and art? 

When things are going well with one side of your life it’s always good to use that positivity in the art, and vice versa. But it works both ways – maybe sometimes when you’ve lost a game or not played the best, it’s always good to fall back on art and take your mind off things, and de-stress. When both things are going well it’s a positive.  

Would you bring your football experience into your art? 

I don’t think I’ll bring my sporting experiences directly into my art, but maybe some of the life experiences that I’ve learnt through football I could interpret into my art. I think my art is quite aesthetic, visual and fun, but I have started to make works that have a bit more meaning, which incorporates some of the things I’ve experienced. I like to keep my football separate from the art 

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