Although I have a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design with Commendation from The University of Ulster, Belfast, in 1995, I decided to pursue my other passion, languages, instead. (It`s a long story!) With a degree in French and Spanish and a professional background in TEFL and translation, I didn`t really return to painting or drawing again until around 2005/6 following the birth of my eldest child. I turned "professional" 2 years ago now, and as well as having my own studio/gallery from home, my work is currently also available through a few galleries in N. Ireland. To date, I have also carried out some commercial illustration work, as well as a few other commissions.
While I love to paint from life, mainly in oils, I have also been developing a more personal style in what I would describe as a mixture of figurative, naive and abstract genres, working in a range of media depending on subject matter, mood, etc. Some people have said my work reminds them of folk art or renaissance pieces, or somewhere inbetween!
Nature has always been my greatest inspiration, although the figure is also a great source of interest, especially in my current work. Colour, pattern and my love of vintage objects and fabrics are equally important to me. Currently, both nature and the female figure have been my main focus; the multiplicity of roles and emotions which can simultaneously empower and isolate us as women, and finding a place to call our own and be ourselves. This struggle for setting down roots probably comes from my own experiences in life: having lived in Spain for 1 year, and especially Chile for over 9, and since coming back to Ireland 4 years ago, the old adage of Home is where the heart is is particularly resonant with me.
I discovered the delights of coloured pencil as a fine art medium only a few years ago, and I was amazed at the work being produced by so many talented artists around the globe. While I do not consider myself a "Coloured pencil artist", since it is only one of several media that I use, I have to admit that I find it such a pleasure and a surprise to work with, and definitely want to pursue it more. It is capable of tremendous depth and richness, as well of course, as being an excellent sketching tool. After dithering about whether or not to become a member of the UKCPS, I finally decided to just do it.