Hallglen artist looking for Elton’s signature

Artist Jacob Smith with the painting Elton John signed
Artist Jacob Smith with the painting Elton John signed
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As Elton John fever takes hold over Falkirk a talented young artist hopes to get the superstar’s signature on his portrait of the piano playing legend to raise cash for charity.

Jake Smith, from Hallglen, has painted the Rocketman on canvas as one of many creations he does of music and film legends and wants to take advantage of Elton’s visit to the Falkirk Stadium this Sunday.

The 21-year-old is one of only a handful of people in the world who suffer from a rare condition that causes multiple aneurysms in all areas of his body and has had 69 at the last count. Just one can be fatal.

He said: “Elton John is a legend in the music world, the sort of icon I like to capture in my paintings. They’re all timeless and attract huge interest no matter what era they are from.

“To meet him and get him to sign my work would be a personal thrill, but more importantly it could help a lot of people if I could auction it for a really good cause.

“I don’t know how I’m going to get him to do it, but I’m going to try.”

Smith recently teamed up with veteran community street artist Scott Gilbert (40), also from Hallglen, to exhibit a collaboration of their work at the area’s Ettrick Dochart Centre.

Gilbert does stencil art focussing on issues such as government corruption and police brutality.

Venues for displays of his work previously banned a portrait he did of Waco cult leader David Koresh on pages from the Bible for fear it may offend people.

However, Gilbert’s less controversial work can be seen all over Falkirk’s streets as he paints murals in underpasses and on school walls to add a touch of colour and imagination to the district.

He said: “This type of work brings communities together as I get them involved in actually doing the work and shows that spraypainting is not just graffiti.

“The school work is brilliant. I did a garden in Bainsford primary with funding from the PTA and everyone loved doing it. I think art can bring communities closer by people coming together for a project, which can heighten their appreciation of the areas they live in.”