Francis continued to paint throughout a successful teaching career, which saw him teach in Dundee and Perth before being appointed Head of Art at Aberdeen Grammar School in 1989. It was this move to the North East which signalled a major change of direction in his work and in 1995 his expressionist interpretations of the local landscape first began appearing in galleries in the North East.
The demand for his vibrant, colourful paintings grew rapidly and his work was soon in demand from art galleries throughout the UK and Ireland.
In 1999 a major commission from John Lewis plc for three large paintings for permanent display in their new flagship store in the Buchanan Galleries in Glasgow prompted Francis to take a year long sabbatical from teaching. During this period he studied for an MA at Grays School of Art, a research-based course which required, among other things, that he reflect deeply on his own work to see it in the wider context of current contemporary art practice.
Fortunately for the artist, the developments in his work triggered by this challenging period met with great enthusiasm in the commercial gallery market and demand for his work increased. This enabled him to leave education and become a full-time, professional artist in 2001.
Since then, Francis has worked steadily to establish himself as one of the leading figures in a new generation of “Scottish Colourists”.
In the 2007 Christmas edition of the Sunday Herald’s Arts supplement, Francis was featured in a list of Scotland’s 50 most collectable artists. The list included such international names as Jack Vettrianno, John Bellany, Alison Watt and Peter Howson, as well as Royal Academicians Elizabeth Blackadder and Barbara Rae. This list of “artists to invest in” followed a similar compilation in the Irish press over last summer where Francis found himself selected in a completely different list of artists, almost all of whom were Irish.
Francis now exhibits widely at home and increasingly abroad.
His original work has been shown in venues in New York, Dublin, Belfast, Paris, Cannes, Munich, Seattle, Michigan, Russia, and Australia.
His feature in the ‘International Artist’ magazine has helped to raise his profile in the USA, and his work was shown and discussed at a talk given in November 2002, by the American editor of the magazine to the Allied Artists of America. He also contributed a chapter on outdoor sketching for their book, ‘Work small, learn big’ which has sold well all over the world.
He is one of only a very few Artists to have work held in the national collections
of both Scotland and Eire.
His paintings have also found their way into a host of public collections including Dundee and Stirling Universities and Aberdeen Art Galleries and Museums, and and his work is increasingly sought after by large corporate collectors.
The Royal Bank of Scotland who own several of his largest paintings purchased a major work in 2008 for their new headquarters in Beijing and as late as march 2009 they purchased another four large paintings.
His images feature regularly in the catalogues of the international children’s charity, UNICEF and he is the only Scottish artist to be included in their Fine Art collection.
His 2015 Christmas card design was UNICEF's top seller, raising more than £35000 for the Charity.
His best selling, limited edition prints and cards have made his images familiar across the globe and his website ‘blog’ confirms that his joyous paintings speak to a great diversity of different nationalities and cultures.
His website www.francisboag.com offers a more extensive insight to the works and thoughts of this remarkable Scottish Artist