I live in the West Coast of Scotland and am inspired by the beauty which surrounds me daily. My current work is in Gesso on canvas, board, wood and ceramic tile for the endless possibilities this medium can extend. I have been privileged to travel worldwide which has enabled me to focus on how I interpret everyday observations and feelings and represent them in my work. I am interested in the creative process from the inception of an idea through to the paradigm leap of representation on paper, board or canvas. I have a constant stream of ideas which I record in notebooks and sketchbooks.
For artistic inspiration I have visited artworks in Florence, Rome, Barcelona, Vienna, Vietnam, New York, Paris and St.Petersburg. In Aix en Provence I visited Cezanne’s studio and found it to be a very moving and emotional experience. I was inspired to see the little plaster cherub bust and items from his paintings and I realised it is best to paint what is around me and be true to my own experiences. Being a tactile person I touched Cezanne’s coat hanging on a peg, and felt a wonderful connection with greatness. Another profound artistic awakening I had was while visiting the Picasso museum in Barcelona. Picasso had never been a favourite artist of mine but to see the progression in his work and the scribbled early drawings was truly inspirational, I never throw anything away now. It has also freed me up to experiment and paint with from the heart. I acknowledge his misogyny has been brought to light once again but in those different times many of the male artists I admire were guilty of the same. I am educating myself on the female artists of that time such as Berthe Moristot and the work of Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh is the inspiration for my gesso works as whilst investigating the history of this process it lead to my own practice in this medium. She is the wife of Charles Rennie Mackintosh, also a life long inspiration of mine and most famously the architect of the Glasgow School of Art. I had visited Glasgow School of Art many times over the years and feel privileged to have seen it in original form before the devastating fires and undertook a painting course with the GSA in April, 2018. Gaudi’s architecture in Barcelona has also been a source of inspiration.
I believe in lifelong learning and took a workshop entitled ‘the artist studio’ run by artist Patricia Cain and her husband Sam in 2012. This was at the House for an Art Lover in Glasgow and covered the Gesso techniques of Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh as well as right brain drawing and gold leaf work. With the knowledge I gained I embarked on a series of Gesso paintings as well as still life and landscape. In March 2013 I entered a competition in Wales entitled ‘Hope in troubled times’ and my painting ‘Seed of Hope’ was selected for the shortlist of the final 12 entries. This encouraged me to look for other competitions and exhibitions and I submitted work for the Barcelona Showcase in Gaudi’s Casa Batllo in April 2013 and exhibited there. Since then I have been exhibiting and selling my work in Glasgow, including the House for an Art Lover, The Oak Tree Gallery in Helensburgh and in England (just :-)), at Serendipity in Berwick-Upon-Tweed. I also have work which now have homes worldwide from Canada to Australia as well as ceramic tiles going to a Stone Mason in Scotland. I have recently given talks on Gesso Techniques at the Hill House in Helensburgh, in front of the Sleeping Princess by MMM whilst working there part-time.
My artistic mission is to move people, to evoke emotions and ultimately experience joy.