Me and my work
I have lived in the Meon Valley in the South Downs National Park for most of my life and I am never short of inspiration from this beautiful place. I work at home surrounded by a chaotic menagerie of children, cats, chickens, guinea pigs and horses.
Animals have always played a big part in my life and it gives me constant pleasure to be able to draw and paint them. When doing commissions I work from photographs and I am very happy to come and take photographs of your animals myself.
I am spoilt for choice in finding scenes to depict in the Meon Valley landscape. From old Winchester Hill and the rolling downland to the river Meon that meanders its way through the local villages. I am particularly drawn to the Old Railway line that runs from West Meon down to Wickham. I think it’s something about the extreme contrasts you get with the dark trees and the acid light colours when you look through spaces between the trees. When I’m out riding my horse Moon, I try and soak in the feelings, sounds and colours of the railway line. I did try sketching from the saddle but this nearly ended in grief when Moon got spooked by a bicycle and I almost fell off.
I use a range of media but I feel most connected with my work when I can draw and use my hands. Pastel lends itself beautifully to this approach and I enjoy being able to layer it up and blend colours with ink. I also enjoy layering up paint and being able to scrape it back so you see traces of what has been painted before.
I enjoy using local and found materials and in my West Wittering work used sand, sea foam and found beach charcoal.