WORK HISTORY (personal stuff can be found lower down the page)
Over the last nearly two decades my career has given me experience in many areas:
Through many solo and mixed exhibitions, and now increasingly online I have sold many paintings, prints and pieces of art. A large proportion of my art is sold to buyers in America.
I have taught thousands of students at hundreds of venues in East Anglia and in France, and I still regularly teach weekly and one day courses. I was planning a new art holiday in Malta when the pandemic stopped travel, I hope to revive these plans in 2022. I now also teach on YouTube, Patreon and Thinkific by video and downloadable resources. In addition to teaching fine art I have a keen interest in teaching business and social media to artists.
DEMONSTRATIONS AND PUBLIC SPEAKING
For many years I have given talks, critiques and demonstrations both on art business and in watercolour and mixed media painting at local studios, art shops and art societies.
I am a published commercial illustrator (companies include Globee, Glanville House, Cattitude Boxes) and also self publish graphic posters and artists' learning materials.
MEDIA AND VIDEO
I have appeared on Sky TV Painting and Drawing Channel’s popular show ‘A Touch of Paint’, as well as speaking on BBC Suffolk and Essex radio shows, I have written for national crafts magazines on the subjects of selling, social media and art business. I now have a successful YouTube channel, Facebook group and Patreon Membership site where I help many artists of all levels achieve their goals.
DESIGNING ART MATERIALS
I have designed paint sets for SAA UK, and am currently working with Jackman’s Art Materials, designing paint colours and mixing guides.
For several years I organized the annual Sudbury Summer Art Fair (40+ artists) and in 2019 I curated the ‘Beyond Plastic’ (30+ artists) exhibition for the Minories Galleries in Colchester.
Ink Pen and Wash
Traditional Lino and Monoprinting
Soft and Oil Pastels
HOW I CAME TO BE AN ARTIST
As a child I loved to draw, and had an ability to hold colours in my memory, combine and understand them. Being an artist was the only job I ever wanted, although I did many others after leaving school, including copy typing and hairdressing.
This is because I was told I couldn’t be an artist, people from my background didn’t become artists. As an adult I was told I there was no money in art, a creative career was irresponsible, unrealistic. I was told I couldn’t teach other people. At the age of 34, as a single parent with a small child to support, I decided to stop listening to what other people said I couldn’t do. I realized they were projecting their own limiting beliefs onto me, and I was free to follow my own path. Without any formal art education, I built my own career, found my own work, ignored the critics.
Since 2003 I have been working as a professional mixed media artist, illustrator and tutor on the UK Suffolk/Essex border. Although I work in and teach almost all media except oils, it was watercolour that stole my heart. As soon as I touched it I felt I understood it.
For over 30 years I have been vegetarian, then vegan and am a huge lover of all animals and cats in particular. When I can find the time I am a reasonable cook. I have one lovely adult daughter. I drive a very small, obscenely bright green car and enjoy many types of music and books.
I rarely watch TV but love the cinema (especially horror movies!) and YouTube videos. I am interested in minimalism, sustainability, psychology, business, organisation and personal growth.
After finding the book Primary Colours in a second hand shop, I have an ongoing obsession, and 20 year interest in American politics, despite never having visited the US. I rarely talk about this online as politics can be divisive, and many of my lovely buyers and students are American.
At the age of 47 I underwent treatment for breast cancer including surgery and drug therapy which lasted many years but is now complete. I was lucky enough to avoid a mastectomy.
I am a fitness enthusiast and can often be found running badly (dodgy knees, dodgy feet), doing yoga, walking, or my main love, Chinese martial arts...
After accidentally taking up Kung Fu at age 45 whilst attending classes with my teenage daughter, I found something that was not only fascinating but fiendishly difficult and pushed my fitness levels to the max. When not working I can often be found training in Kung Fu and Tai Chi, or helping out teaching the kids fu classes, I am currently a blue sash (fifth grade) and am training to be a junior instructor. After my brush with serious illness I was forced to stop training for 3 months, it was at this time that I decided to start learning Tai Chi from my Kung Fu instructors. Although I am over 50 now I have pretty much decided to keep training (and teaching art) until I drop dead. I have no interest, now or ever, in retiring, from my work or my hobbies.