I am a self taught artist living in Devon, working from home in a small studio.
Working with children and animals…
Having always been happiest when ‘colouring in’ as my 5 year old neighbour once described it – I suppose I can’t remember ever not wanting to draw. The fact that I am now using those skills to make a living makes me even more determined to become the best that I can be. Being able to present a client with a picture of a much loved pet that may bring back lovely memories (and sometimes a few tears) is a special gift that I am very happy to be able to share. As the old saying goes, ‘never work with children or animals’… and as I pay special attention to detail and work in a realistic style I find that a good clear photograph of the subject is usually the best way to avoid any problems with sittings. I take a long time to complete a drawing and I think expecting a child to sit for hours would be unrealistic to say the least! Or a springer spaniel for that matter. Even minutes would be optimistic.
When I’m not working on a drawing I spend time keeping fit or walking my dog – long periods of being sedentary at the drawing board have to be balanced with exercises and stretches – or I could be in danger of becoming a still life.
What I work with……
Although most people think that pencil is not particularly a fine art tool and mostly confined to the school classroom, it is in actual fact, a medium that is exciting and versatile, requiring a certain amount of skill and practice to achieve good results. There are burnishing, smoothing, polishing and layering techniques to master and also equally importantly – erasing off which is just as crucial as what you put on the paper.
My preferred paper is Canford Card which holds the pigment really well and doesn’t buckle under layers of waxy pencil or fluff up when rubbing out.
3rd Place UKCPS People and Pets competition