I was painfully shy in primary school. I used drawing as a way to express myself. I was always uncomfortable to speak out in class but never to create a picture. Without being aware, I was using my art to speak for me. The copybooks that have lines at the bottom and blank pages at the top, meant my two favourite things could be combined; written words and imagery.
I guess I’m still telling stories with my art. When my paintings were once described as ‘like stills from the movies’ I thought, wow, what a beautiful description. I’ve never been drawn to creating abstract art. I always wanted to describe a place or a person literally, but with an ‘otherworldly’ quality to it. Over time I have realised that what I want to achieve as an artist is to make the ‘ordinary’ look extraordinary; that way we might see the beauty in our ‘everyday’.
Whether it is nightlight, sunlight, dusk, streetlights, I’ve realised light and it’s affect on the feeling and ambience of the finished piece, is the common link in all my paintings.
Without even being aware, I’ve always been experimenting with how to capture light in my work. My college shows always centered around this. I studied textile design in college. The tutors told us our designs could be created for 'fashion, fine art or interiors'. Art college involved hours of experimenting in our little studios, trying to find out did we have the talent to survive, the ability to create something unique. Most days included tears, (just ask any art student!) and other times triumphs.
I experimented with bleaching paper and eventually t-shirts. I began painting on black t-shirts with bleach, over time adding colour. I realised I was more interested in creating art than fashion so I framed the t shirts, then eventually bought t-shirt fabric on an industrial size roll.
I’m lucky enough to have had many successful solo shows and group shows in Sligo, Dublin, Belfast, London. My paintings are in homes around the world; London, New York, Abu Dhabi, Bern, Melbourne, Sydney. My work was selected from over 500 artists for a pop up gallery show in London, dedicated to the British soul singer, Laura Mvula. My painting ‘Allure’ was shown on a 50ft billboard in London, in collaboration with Talenthouse and Primesight. All of these amazing achievements are down to something that comes from my soul, a compulsion inside me to create.
When I imagine a painting, I won’t rest until it is in front of me. I am an introvert at heart. I often over analyse things and get anxious easily. But the one part of me that I don’t second guess is my art. I do it because I have no choice. I’m compelled. As it comes from the most authentic part of me, the fact that other people enjoy my work and feel a connection to it is the most gratifying, inspiring feeling.
Thank you for stopping by,
"I’'m obsessed by light and try to capture it in all my work, ironically always starting out from a black canvas".