A Rathfarnham artist who paints with fire is set to showcase his unique work at Ireland’s biggest art event.

Peter Homan, who stumbled upon his unorthodox method of fire painting by accident, says his passion for art helps him cope with a chronic pain condition he has battled for a number of years.

It was a candle too close to a drying canvas that led the local artist to discover the process over 14 years ago.

“I paint with oil paint and fire. After setting the canvas on fire to achieve the texture and ground colour I need, I then let it cool before adding even more paint and fire to create my paintings,” he said.

“You can’t really control fire but it’s all about timing and understanding and learning to work with it.

“You can never perfect it, only tame it.

“It is fire, one of the elements and you must have respect for it.

“You can only manipulate it to a certain extent.

“I have lost many a canvas to a ‘bad day’s work’ in the early days of perfecting the right mix of mediums and heat.

“I have a degenerate spine disorder and I find that painting takes me away from the pain and helps me to focus.”

Now Peter’s art will be showcased at Ireland’s premier art fair Art Source at the RDS from November 9-11.

Through his career he has explored many topics using a wide variety of painting techniques and mixed media on canvas to explore the lives of tribal Africans – leading him to spend time with the Masai of Kenya in 2006.

He also took visages of some gay Irish men and women, including Senator David Norris and Graham Norton and placed them in religious poses, based on paintings by Caravaggio, in a series of paintings called ‘Saints and Sinners.’

Aside from his art, Peter also has a blog in which his interviewees include Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Senator David Norris and celebrities Brent Pope and Laura Whitmore.

Among the featured artists will be Grace Jones, Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jay Z, LCD Soundsystem, Garbage, Prodigy and St Vincent.