letters, butterfly and magnifying glass  acrylic on board 31x40cm 2017

letters, butterfly and magnifying glass acrylic on board 31x40cm 2017

I am drawn to the ordinary possessions of other people from past generations. Letters, notebooks, ribbons, keys – these all represent unknown lives and stories of their own. They speak to us and make a connection through time. My subjects have become worn through use and handling, whether a pair of shoes, a scratched spoon or a yellowed letter. Some might have been valued while others were barely noticed. All have made it to me. My work is both an appreciation of the objects as they are - their form, colour and patina - and also what they might represent to artist and viewer.

Natural elements appear in my compositions as a reminder of time. A butterfly is a beautiful but ephemeral creature. Life is short.

Draughtsmanship is central to my work and I always work from life. The realism I strive for is important. I come to understand my subject through recreating the oxidised scratch in the bowl of a spoon, or the crease in a child’s dress folded and put away long ago.

If my work belongs to any tradition it is that of the still life. I compose carefully, isolating my subjects in a space or placing them together with consideration. In this way, memories and emotions can be projected onto seemingly mundane objects giving the paintings a heightened weight and meaning.

I graduated from Central St Martins in the 1980s and worked as an illustrator for 20 years. I began to paint for myself in 2007 and I have pursued this full time since 2010. My work is held in collections internationally and I exhibit regularly throughout the UK and Europe. I have taken part in many major open exhibitions. In 2010 I was awarded the Art Exposure Gallery Award at the RGI and in 2012 won runner's up prize in the Lynn Painter-Stainers Competition. I was shortlisted for the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition in 2017 and in 2018 exhibited in the RSW 138th Open Annual Exhibition.