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I am a Botanical and Natural History painter based in Oswestry on the Welsh borders. Some of my earliest memories are of sitting painting flowers in the garden and planting seeds, watching them grow and then painting them. The natural world is a constant source of inspiration and wonder to me and I feel my work links in with the long tradition of linking art and ecology through Natural History Illustration, bringing it into a contemporary context. I am to draw people’s attention to the often overlooked yet fascinating and wondrous aspects of the natural world whilst raising awareness of environmental and conservation issues. Developing my interest in exploring unusual subject matter and ways of seeing the world I am increasingly using microscopic images as inspiration and as a way of enabling people to see the natural world in a new way.
I work predominantly in watercolour, a medium which I continually find exciting and inspiring, more recently I am also exploring Gouache painting techniques and the use of paper pulp sculpture techniques including natural dyes and paints. As I develop and learn new techniques for the varied art courses I teach across Wales and the borders, this also feeds into my own art practice. Art is a continual journey of exploration and discovery and opens our eyes to a new way of seeing the world.
The medium I use, be it watercolour, oil, printing or sculpture, depends on the subject matter. I am always keen to learn and experiment with new techniques which results in the continuing evolution of my art practise.
I find watercolour the most effective and exciting medium to use for capturing botanical and natural history subjects. I work mainly with wet on wet wash techniques, gently layering translucent colours which may then blend, granulate or shine on the paper, creating natural effects – the subtle colour variations, texture or rich vibrancy seen in flowers and insects. I try and let watercolour do what it does best and utilise it wonderful translucent, vibrant and granulating properties. Fine details are applied with Rigger and Liner brushes, sometimes followed by additional glazes of colour.
I often like to work on a magnified scale, enabling the fine details and fascinating aspects of subjects to be captured and be more clearly seen and appreciated by the viewer. I try and bring the subjects to life on the paper, crating patterns between forms and hopefully creating dynamic images that are full of life and colour.
Recently I have been experimenting making and using the raw materials of paper pulp and pigment to create sculptures inspired by the intriguing structures and sculptural forms of seeds seen under the electron microscope. I am continuing to develop a variety of paper pulp recipes using different natural fibres, materials and recycled paper, the nature of the paper pulp and the way it handles determines the texture and structure of the final sculptures created.
Society of All Artists
Ethical Trader of the Year, Green Gathering Festival (2015). Please read my Ethical & Environmental Policy for further information.
I encourage everyone to pick up a paint brush and get creative in my inspiring and informative art courses, covering a range of media and subject matter. Demonstrations, handouts, individual advice and assistance are given throughout each session encouraging students to fulfil their potential in a relaxed and inspiring environment. I teach courses across Wales and the Borderlands through Aberystwyth University Lifelong Learning.
Pollinators Solo Exhibition - Ynys hir RSPB Reserve - Machynlleth (2017)
Pumed Gainc / The Fifth Branch - Spring Open Exhibition - The Willow Gallery - Oswestry (2017)
Bumblebee Exhibition - The Willow Gallery - Oswestry (2015)
Masters Exhibition – Time Capsules of Life -
Aberystwyth University Art School – Aberystwyth (2014)
Royal Society of Painters in Watercolour Annual Exhibition – The Mall Galleries London (2014)
Masters Exhibition – Aberystwyth University Art School – Aberystwyth (2013)
Italian Connection Exhibition – The Willow Gallery – Oswestry (2012)
Spring Art Exhibition – Oriel y Mor – Pwllheli (2012)
Summer Exhibition – ISA Gallery – Montecastello, Italy (2011)
Chasing Rainbows, Solo Exhibition – Llangollen Museum (2011)
Solo Exhibition – Visitor and Exhibition Centre – Oswestry (2011)
Artwork selected for The Pru Barron Memorial Art Competition Exhibition – Wrexham (2010)
Degree Show – Aberystwyth University School of Art, Aberystwyth (2009)
Summer Rose Painting Selected for Wrexham Open Art Competition Exhibition (2009)
Aberystwyth University Art Society Exhibition – The Morlan Centre – Aberystwyth (2008)
Aberystwyth University Art Society Exhibition – Oriel Cambria – Tregaron (2007)
Born 1897 in Shrewsbury
BA Fine Art, First Class Honours, Aberystwyth University (2009)
Postgraduate Certificate In Education, Art & Design, Qualified Teacher Status, UWIC (2010)
Set up Blossoms Gallery to promote artwork, greetings cards and prints (2010 to present)
Accepted onto The International School of Painting, Drawing & Sculpture Summer School in Umbria, Italy (2011)
Curator, The Willow Gallery, Oswestry (2011 to 2015)
Tutor in Art and Botanical Illustration with Aberystwyth Lifelong Learning (2012 to present)
MA Fine Art, Distinction, Aberystwyth University (2014)