Returning to a world filled with art and creativity has been hugely rewarding … I wish I’d done it sooner. Exploring my artistic voice continues to be an ever-evolving journey but is always led by colour and mark-making. I enjoy the process of building colour and layers and texture before I finally decide to focus on creating something that I might be able to use in my digital work.
Originally, when I started out in the summer of 2021, I played around with paints, trying to find my eye as I began to brush up on my rusty painting skills. I joined a free online workshop run by the fabulous Louise Fletcher, an abstract artist up in Yorkshire. Her work is just fabulous and I can only dream of ever being able to create the way she does.
Anyway, I followed her guidance and began to explore – what did I like, what didn’t I like, did I favour one colour palette over another? All valid questions as I continued to play with paints! I often revisit this guidance and the techniques and approaches that Louise suggested, particularly when I’m feeling the creative block.
But I digress. Back in that summer, I had the intention of painting, creating and selling originals and prints, but also knew that I wanted to break into home textiles. I started with some samples and eventually placed an order for some tea towels, and following that, by Christmas, had amassed a range of tea towels and neck/head scarves, with plans to develop a cushion range in the spring of 2022.
I've been interested in interiors for as long as I can remember, and so developing a gifts and homewares range was always something I hoped I might one day achieve. I’ve created a colour theme throughout my work, meaning that the different products will sit nicely together, forming a bright, rather eclectic mix.
As the potential of my paintings in digital form developed, I soon discovered just how versatile each piece of art was proving to be; small aspects from just one painting could be used to create many different digital designs. The possibilities being pretty much endless! Having used InDesign pretty much every day for several years in my previous marketing job made the switch to digital really easy.
Fast forward through 2022. The whole year seems to have passed by in a bit of a blur now. It saw me juggling a freelance content writing job, managing to keep a small retail unit stocked with glassware (more on that into another article!), promoting my work, keeping on top of the books and then letting my website fall behind in terms of SEO.
I also had a wedding and a blessing to plan, and the highlight was finally marrying the love of my life, Steve. Apart from having THE BEST DAY of my life in 2022, I’m glad to close that chapter of juggling too much and now want to focus on 2023 and the year ahead.
As always, I digress again (but there’s so much to say!). At the start of 2023, it took a while for me to stop ‘wintering’ – a term I discovered through the work of Donna Ashworth. It really resonated with me and so I took my time to emerge from hibernation and to consider what I wanted to achieve next.
New Artwork Collection
This ‘next’ was to become the start of something I have launched this year: ‘The Beloved and the Iconic’. Made up of landscapes and landmarks, the collection of digital artwork depicts the obscure and the recognisable across the UK, as I present the buildings, landscapes and landmarks like they’ve never been presented.
Using InDesign in a way it was not intended, I basically create the designs using regular and freeform shapes that I draw, in a kind of collage. These shapes ‘house and pull through’ my own original paintings. As the image progresses, you start to see colours and marks and texture from my paintings in the ‘building blocks’ that I manipulate to create the scene. Further enhancements of the whole image then take place in Photoshop.
I absolutely love this process and it takes time to look at the building or landmark and to work out how to recreate it; what shapes to focus on, how to create them, and which colours will work best etc. As soon as I start, some buildings make sense straight away, whereas others are tricky and some, I probably might start and then make the decision to pause or ditch. I have a list of about 20 yet to be realised.
The collection is steadily growing and currently incorporates buildings and landmarks from Cornwall and Somerset, to London, Yorkshire and the Humber region, and all the way up the country to Gateshead and further north into Scotland!
Art Prints for Sale
All my art prints are for sale on A4 textured 280g paper. The slight texture gives the print a lovely hand produced, robust quality.
Bespoke Art Prints
If you would like to commission a piece of digital artwork, please do get in touch, be this a landmark, letter art or something altogether different: email@example.com
My digital artwork is produced using extracts of my original acrylic and mixed-media paintings. Each digital shape that I create 'pulls through' a textured and colourful element of the whole, producing something completely unique.