Private View of Layered Drawing Exhibition at NLCS

It was great to share artwork completed during my Artist Residency at NLCS with a new audience. I enjoyed meeting old NLCS girls who recognised the locations of where I took rubbings that were incorporated in my work from around the school.  I had many lively conversations about the titles of the artwork, the history of Canons Estate and the role art plays in education.  Huge thanks to all at NLCS. Layered Drawings  Photography by Graham Ryder  

To the point

The first thing I do each morning in the studio is to sharpen my pencils.  I have many and I am very particular about how I like them to be.  I suppose it is a ritual of sorts.  At art school I was told to throw away my sharpener and use a knife, which was considered far superior. This habit remains and I slowly rotate the pencil while cutting to create a sharp even point.  I like the different sounds.  Slicing through the wood has a lower tone in comparison to the higher pitched noise of carving through graphite.  For …

Drawing in the rain

The Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig is like stepping into a Constable painting.   There is a house of elegant proportions, rolling emerald green grasses that leads the eye to a lake where six swans live.  The light is pure and whiter than I am used to in London.  When the sun is not hidden behind candy-floss clouds dramatic shadows appear on the landscape.  Standing in front of the steps leading to the house there is a sense that in some strange way time has paused. After the solitude of my day in the studio and exploring the grounds I look …

Romance In A Box

A few days before Valentines I visited New Covant Garden Flower Market in Nine Elms, London.  I have been meaning to go for years and was not disappointed.  I loved seeing flowers in a completely different context.  The flowers are in transit, ready to be bought by florists etc.  Individual  buds are wrapped carefully in celeophane and there are boxes of flowers as far as the eye can see.  I think this is the start of a new project.  The market is open from 4am – 9am weekdays.

Plein Air Marathon

I saw a notice in the window of Chelsea Framers a few months ago detailing The Plein Air Marathon.  I was not familiar with this French expression, which means “in the open air”.  Artists have long painted outdoors but in the mid 19th century working in natural light became particularly important to Impressionism.  The popularity of plein air increased in the 1870s with the introduction of paints in tubes.  I do not consider myself a painter and I like to work in my studio.  I therefore decided this marathon was not ideal for me. I broke away from the comfort …

The Big Draw, Collaborative Artwork

   The Big Draw Event at Clifton Nurseries on 1st November was a wonderful day full of fun.  Over 100 people of all ages said hello to their creative side and drew plants, spiders, butterflies, an owl, a reindeer and much more!  The idea was to pick a plant pot on the large piece of paper and draw a real or imagined plant.  We were located in the Fern House, surrounded by beautiful plants in magical Clifton Nurseries.  I chose a selection of plants to help spark ideas.  The Venus Fly Trap and the Lipstick plant proved popular.  For me, …

Ballinglen Arts Foundation

I have returned from windswept County Mayo in Ireland where I was awarded a Fellowship from Ballinglen Arts Foundation.  I was given a wonderful studio with north facing windows and a characterful cottage.  I have always dreamt of time and space away from all distractions to focus entirely on my work.  At first I found this confronting.  However once I began drawing, exploring the area, meeting other artists and locals, I loved it! The harsh Atlantic winds sculpt the landscape.  Trees arch at unusual angles hanging on for dear life and the cliffs are monumental.  I began collecting plants and …