My work is painterly and textural, often combining media and techniques, for example, incorporating collage, photograph and drawing into the painting. I work in series, sometimes purely abstract with a focus on colour, shape and facture. In other series I will combine fragments of other images into the painting. I do not work with preconceived ideas or images in mind but allow pieces to develop over time in an improvisatory way.
As a teacher and educator , I have worked in a variety of educational contexts. Whether teaching pre-school children or undergraduate students I perceive a need for the physical engagement with materials that painting offers. One reason for the vibrant continuing life of painting is that it permits the individual to 'play' as well as being a mode of practice which affirms a sense of 'physicality', whether in the interaction of viewer and image, or between image and maker.
I consider myself as self-taught. I was a primary teacher for fifteen years and developed my practice alongside my teaching practice. I now work part-time at Northumbria University, predominantly with students on teacher training courses. Though I've had some commissions, I have to teach in order to support my painting. In 2009 I completed a PhD at Lancaster University which focused upon painting. The title of my thesis was 'The Successive 'deaths' of Painting,' and in this work I investigate some key moments when painting was declared a redundant practice, yet was able to resurrect itself on each occasion. In fact, although painting is now just one practice among many it still retains a vibrant presence in contemporary fine art.
Qualifications and training
- 2009 The Successive Deaths of Painting (PhD thesis), Lancaster University, Lancaster UK
- 2010 The Art Tour, The Hearth studios, Horsley, Northumberland
- 2010 international Journal of Art and Design Education Volume 30 No2 (pp307-317) What Teachers can Learn from the Practice of Artists
- 2009 Journal of Visual Arts practice Volume 8 No 3 (pp181-193) Francis Bacon and the Practice of Painting
- 2007 Journal of Visual Arts Practice Volume 6 No 3 (pp201-213) Articulating the Tacit Dimension in Artmaking
- 2004 international Journal of Art and Design Education Volume 23 No3 (pp316-325)The Importance of Painting in Pedagogic Practice