Raised in Plymouth, Devon, my career has been in locally-based in community care work, specialist care management and youth offending work. Having an abiding interest in the stories, self-descriptors and the societally-assigned labels of the people I worked with, I envisaged trying to tell some of those rich histories one day. As well as wanting to tell stories, I loved illuminated works like The Lindisfarne Gospels and The Book of Kells. Four years ago, I decided to study narrative art as the means to tell stories. In 2013, I began to study Illustration on a BA (Hons) at Plymouth College of Art (PCA).
It was midway through the first year of this degree that I reflected both on my need for exposure to fine art as well as a recognition of the need to develop a more rigorous drawing practice. As a result, I applied to join the Painting, Drawing and Printmaking BA (Hons) at PCA. I will graduate in 2017.
My work is strongly narrative and often features themes of difficult beginnings, aspirations of dignity and transcendence, reconciliation and forgiveness. At this time, my primary concern is with developing a rigorous drawing practice and the relationship between drawing and craft. Currently, my work is largely – though not exclusively - realised in relief print. There is something immensely engaging and consistently gratifying when I process a raw drawing into solid matter where further transformation and adaptation is possible.
Considering myself neither illustrator nor fine artist, I am very curious about where my emerging work sits in the field of visual communication. I fully expect to follow experimental threads as these reveal themselves. At the same time, it is highly probable that narrative printing will constitute a thick core of my practice.
Currently, I am forming a series of printed works which I hope will serve to prime my continuing exploration into art in sacred spaces. Largely influenced by the pictorial forms of the illuminated manuscripts of the Western Christian Church, I am curious as to how the illustrated work of these manuscripts works without accompanying text.