I am an artist who is interested in portraying the world around me. Each day, I find new ideas, whether it’s people or places, landscapes or seascapes. The world is such an amazing studio. Over the years, my work has changed, although each time, I gain a new insight, the older ones still crop up now and again! Currently, nature and drawing and painting from life in a semi realistic style is my mainstay but ideas about developing new bigger and more complex painting and collage is a constant in my thoughts.
I live in the countryside in the north of Scotland on a peninsula called The Black Isle. It has a soft and gentle beauty and a wonderful calm atmosphere. Some of my work has grown up from the landscapes seen from walks in our local area or from travels throughout Scotland and Europe.
There is a distinct difference in light and atmosphere between north and south and each change brings new ideas and excitement.
Plants and flowers are such immediate radiators of colour and beauty, I find I am impelled to paint them as soon as I see them. Particular favourites are tulips, lilies, peonies and of course nature’s beautiful wild flowers.
I draw regularly from life models, always with thin willow charcoal and often using thin layers of acrylic paint in washes. Once I am happy that I’ve caught a likeness or established the proportion correctly, I re-define the tones, gradually creating stronger colour and therefore more drama. My aim at the moment is to combine several figures to create a narrative and also using collage and found objects to increase contrast and provide interesting textures and surprises.
I studied Illustration and printmaking at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Dundee and have also developed my drawing and painting skills through courses and workshops with a variety of Scottish artists.
For a large part of my life I have taught art in schools, colleges and workshops but now I am very happy to spend my time painting.