My work is inspired by the natural landscape. I enjoy exploring the form and colours in the land that I see when walking with family and friends. We particularly enjoy the more rugged places, and my family and several friends are keen climbers. Through them, I have developed a fascination for depicting rocks and crags to show the shapes and colours in the stone and replicate the features of the rock face accurately so that climbing routes can be picked out by those who know them.
I am currently working with linocut, collagraph, and drypoint printmaking techniques. Based in Sheffield, much of my printmaking is inspired by the nearby Peak District and the popular crags and edges found within easy reach.
Linocut with its lines and carved edges lends itself to depicting the rocky outcrops, paths and edges in the landscape. Collagraph offers a chance to explore form through a variety of surface textures. The intaglio lines and marks on a drypoint plate give structure and backbone to the landscape and rocky edges, with additional inking on top to give unique colour variations and character. Many of my linocuts are made using a reduction method and are small editions of up to 15, using up to 7 or 8 colour layers. I have also started experimenting with multiple plates to produce different colour layers in a print, even sometimes mixing different print techniques in one piece. I also enjoy the freedom to experiment with colour and ink application with collagraph and drypoint.
I have been painting for many years and this is expressed in the way that I mix colours and think about light and tone in my prints. At times, it can feel to me as though I am painting the plate before I run it through the press. I continue to paint and draw as part of my art practice, and I feel that both my painting and printmaking influence and benefit each other.
My interest in printmaking began when I attended a printmaking course at Chesterfield College, September 2011 – March 2012. Since then I have attended other day or weekend workshops to build on that initial learning and in 2015, I acquired my own press. This enabled me to experiment in my home studio, practice more printmaking, and develop what I had learnt so far. I was awarded a County Council Award at the ‘Derbyshire Open Exhibition’ at Buxton Museum and Gallery in 2017 for my linocut print ‘Walking the Edge’.