I’ve always enjoyed painting and drawing even when I was a toddler I would happily play with a colouring book and some pens and pencils. As I grew older and discovered the magic of television I was exposed to creative programmes like ‘Art Attack’ and thoroughly enjoyed paper macheing my way through all the newspaper I could get my hands on to create something new.
Even in my teenage years my love for creating didn’t waver, and I studied Art GCSE at my secondary school, as well as Graphics. Taking advantage of the wonderful art and design teachers at my school, and under their guidance and exposure to such artists as Mondrian, Picasso, I developed my passion for Art. I remember one trip in particular visiting sunny Cornwall and visiting the gallery of Barbara Hepworth as well as admiring the stunning sculptures of Anthony Gormley.
I decided to continue my art journey, choosing to leave my secondary school and move to a college which could offer not only art, but photography, media and architecture too. I truly enjoyed my time at college and won’t forget the talented teachers there. I toyed with studying Fine art at university, as well as architecture and interior design but the fickle young person I was couldn’t decide and dove straight into the world of employment.
Years later I completed my BA in Sociology with the Open University whilst working for Local Government for the majority of my twenties. Still unsatisfied with my working life and wanting more I started to explore counselling and Psychotherapy, volunteering with the Samaritans and Mind, I completed my first year at Greenwich University, studying Counselling as a Post Grad. Underestimating the mammoth task of training as a counsellor I completed 1 of 3 years and walked away with a Post Graduate Certificate in Counselling. I’ve always had a fascination with people, the mind, and how individuals relate and experience the world, and may well return to this field later on in life.
Now having entered into my thirties, and experiencing a turbulent time in my late twenties made me reevaluate what motivates me and brings me joy and happiness, which has seen my return to painting. A spark reignited when one of my best friends asked me to produce an abstract triptych for her living room in the new house her and her boyfriend had just bought. I enjoyed painting again so much, and it was such a privileged to see it hanging in her home, I wanted to get that feeling back. After muddling through and using space in my flat, and then my parents house once I moved I sought out some space of my own, and fortuitously stumbled across Thames-Side Studios, my current artistic home.
During my years of college I worked a lot around identity, the human condition, the body and society in general. I suppose my love for all things people continued as I ended up studying sociology and then later on Counselling. People, I suppose have always fascinated me, and this has continued in my work today. My current series ‘Body of Work’ uses my own life drawings as a jumping off point, adding enjoyment of different colour paints, and brush strokes. I often work to music and am very in the moment. It’s about both the subject matter of people, bodies, human form as well as how my own physical body interacts with the work.
I admit I shy away from realistic figurative work as its not a strong point and something I don’t enjoy as much. My style is very abstract, colourful and experiential. The abstract process of layering on colour and paint , combined with decisive fluid movements of line and shape on top.
I’ve been influenced by lots of different artists in my life time, some have stayed with me from when I was a teenager, like the works of Anthony Gormley, Bridget Riley, as well as other artists like Francis Bacon and Mark Rothko. I have an eclectic mix of work I enjoy. As well as travel and discovering other international artists I would never have stumbled across if it wasn’t for putting myself in a completely different country. Recent wonderful discoveries of mine have been the works of Atsuko Tanaka, Hsu Yunghsu, Hou I-Ting, George Ho and Made Somadita.
I have for more than 2 years adopted a vegan lifestyle. First changing my diet so that I no longer consumed animal products of any kind, and then filtering this out into other aspects if my life such as fashion, cosmetics, and homeware. I have recently now turned my attention to my art practice, and moving forward will solely be purchasing tools and materials which are deemed vegan and cruelty free. I still have some materials and tools which are not vegan or cruelty free or those which I’m not sure of, which so as not to cause unnecessary waste in our already pressured environment, will utilise until they are no longer useable.