Who we were as children, before we became utilitarian, is very much a part of all of us. It’s always there in our imaginations, and those moments when we feel carefree and playful.
When we expose those moments, it’s a powerful reminder of the child within each of us and the connection to our true selves, removing the layers we build around us in our adult lives. Being true to who we are makes us happier people.
Taking these ideas, my work explores the free thinking nature of childhood, and all the loose and beautiful ways of seeing and imagining the world. I paint to express those moments of freedom that spur childhood feelings and capture playful moments and memories. My work stems from the many different ways my children see the world. I find their imaginations are vivid sparks that bring back many of my own happy childhood feelings and images. They offer a rich source of inspiration for me, and allow me to explore their ideas, and allow my imagination to go further still.
My art also draws inspiration from other aspects of my own childhood, during which I enjoyed a rich family life, and spent a lot of time in the great outdoors of England, Scotland, Africa and the Far East.
My studio is now back in the Oxfordshire countryside where I grew up, and where I live with with my husband and family, surrounded by animals and nature.
Below are a selection of works alongside the pictures that inspired them.
'Seaside View' inspired by my daughter's drawing, Suzanna aged 7. She set her soft toy reindeer on her desk, decorated it and then drew. She said "It's enjoying a seaside view on the edge of a cliff". I love how she added her vase into her drawing, this parallels how she plays in real life, taking her favourite things from her bedroom, and playing with them out in the garden enhancing her fun.
In this 'Daddy Daughter Day' painting, my daughter is on an outing under the protective wing of her Daddy, first going shopping to buy some new clothes, then to go for lunch together in her favourite restaurant.
In 'Birds Tea Party', the ideas behind the painting come from another drawing by Suzanna, where the birds went off to find nice things to bring back for their tea party, cakes and cupcakes and tea.
I have always loved and still love Life Drawing, being a fundamental practice, to train the eye to see. Below are a selection of my studies that look at life in different ways.