From the window of my studio I can see our garden and the edge of the beech plantation that skirts one side of our plot, here in the Forest of Dean. My immediate environment often provides the detail for my work: garden plants, weeds, the bird table, interior spaces, the common, grazing sheep and the oaks beyond. This area is full of contrast, with its industrial legacy and wild places, its timber harvesting and nature reserves, its plain dwellings and sculpture trail. It has a history of hardship and conflict, but its people have a reputation for self-reliance and, occasionally, for wild imagination.
I have enjoyed teaching myself about the processes and apparatus of relief printing over the past ten years, and printmaking takes up most of my time now in the studio. Early in 2016 I bought a Rolloco printing press made by John Pears, who used to be a mining engineer, and who lives and works in Durham. This is an excellent piece of machinery and now I can make larger prints with much greater ease and accuracy. It enables me to make more complex reduction prints, building up many layers of ink to create painterly effects. Even after the last colour has been printed, unexpected changes can take place as the inks slowly dry on the paper.
The designs for my relief prints emerge from my paintings and drawings of landscape, interiors and still life. My academic background is in English Literature, so perhaps it's not surprising that I lean towards story telling in my work. It is the ongoing narrative of ordinary life that interests me, with its poignancy and intensity.
My subject matter is often the overlapping of domestic and natural environments: the attempt to catch the incongruity of hens sheltering under a clothes horse in the kitchen, or the drama of a solitary woman who battles with the wind to hang washing, while a rapacious skua flies off with the baby’s coat.
My education as an artist and printmaker has been threaded around parenthood and careers in teaching and wellbeing. I have been painting, drawing and working with textiles since early childhood - I learnt to knit when I was just three years old. As an adult I took evening classes and short courses in life drawing and painting in London, Bristol, and, most significantly, in the Forest of Dean, where I have lived for over twenty years. I have also studied drawing and watercolour with the Open College of the Arts. My teachers have been tremendously important to me.
2018 A Celebration of Spring. The Secret Gallery, Newent.
2017' Passion' and 'Found' exhibitions at The Old Passage Inn, Arlingham.
2017 FarOpen. Participation in exhibitions at Newland Village Room, and New Leaf pop-up gallery, Monouth as well as opening my own studio in Bream.
2017 'Small Things' The Secret Gallery, Newent.
2015, 2016 and 2017 Penallt Art Festival. Monmouthshire Main exhibition.
2017 Royal West of England Academy, Bristol. ‘Drawn’ exhibition. Selected, not hung.
2017 Newent Community Exhibition, Gloucestershire.
2017 Chepstow Arts Trail.
2016 National Eisteddfod, Abergavenny. Exhibiting with the Penallt Art Festival.
2014 Taurus Crafts, Lydney, Gloucestershire. Solo exhibition.
2008 Brockweir Village Shop, Gloucestershire. Solo exhibition.
2008 until the present. St Briavels Christmas Art and Craft Fairs, Gloucestershire.