I grew up in Inverness and have enjoyed drawing for as long as I can remember. As a teenager I was torn between my passions for Art and Animals; after considering attending Art School I ended up working with horses while studying an HND in equine management. Later in life I had a dramatic change in career when I joined the Army’s Royal Artillery as the first female in a gun battery where I worked on the AS90 guns.
After leaving the Army I spent several years studying the human anatomy and physiology as a Personal Trainer and Massage Therapist. Later, I started a family with twin girls and it was then, after almost 20 years that my partner Neil encouraged me to start drawing and painting again. I joined the Art Society of Inverness (ASI), took various evening classes and rediscovered my love of Art.
I was awarded the ASI President’s Prize for my illustration ‘The Mouse and the Hare’ which was a real surprise and that, along with lots of interest in some of my other pieces (I even sold a few!) at the same exhibition really gave me the confidence to totally focus on my art work. I enjoy working in many different types of mediums from oils to pastels and inks and, as you can see from my portfolio, most of my inspiration comes from my love of animals. I spent my childhood summers in Contin, in the Highlands of Scotland; my grandparents lived by the river where there was an abundance of wildlife. I’d see everything from little mice, lizards and hares to fish, buzzards and even adders. I would dream up little characters in my head and imagine these beautiful creatures with their own human thoughts and traits.
Ideas for my art can come from just observing humans and animals, and whether it is watching people in a café or walking my dog in the local woods it all gives me ideas and then my imagination takes over and turns those ideas into stories. I feel like my characters have a story to tell, like the wise owl in a children’s fairy tale and they often carry a symbol. I like to find the humorous side of a situation and find dogs particularly amusing to watch, they have very human traits, especially with anything involving food. I use all these experiences along with my understanding of both animal and human form when I am drawing.