In the Studio with Northern Lights

"Every Idea Starts With a Doodle!"

How do you feel when you see your art translated into product that people can wear, hold or hang in their home?

It’s always really exciting! It’s an amazing feeling that someone has connected with something in my art that makes them want to own it, when I’m creating a design I always put my heart and soul into it so it means the world to me that people recognise that. It always blows me away that a piece of art or a pattern can transform someone’s mood, I think about that every time I start a new piece as my ultimate aim is to make the viewer feel calm and happy.

What is your biggest challenge as an artist?

I’m not sure of this is a challenge or a positive thing but I’m constantly thinking of new ideas, that can be tricky if I can’t get to the studio straight away, that and running out of paint!

What do you like best about your studio / workspace? 

It feels like my happy place where I can completely be myself and play around with ideas, I like to surround myself with inspiring things so that it feels like a creative cocoon.

How has your practice changed over time?  What would you share with other artists about your technique?

I’m always trying to improve and try new techniques, I would say my style has become a lot freer and I’m really interested in expressive mark making, that’s taken some time for me to build on and I’m much more open to trying new mediums and using many different ways of getting the paint down. What I would share with other artists is that you don’t always have to limit yourself to using just a paint brush! Play around with whatever you can get hold of to create unique and exciting marks, my current favourite is a palette knife but I’ve also used wooden blocks and even a stick I found in the park!

Do you have any favorite artists, whose work inspires you? 

I love David Hockney, he’s always evolving and trying new things and his use of colour is amazing, he’s close to my heart as he’s also from Yorkshire and his work is permanently exhibited in the gallery which I can see from my window! I also like a lot of Japanese artists, in particular Hiroshige.

If you had friends over, what would they see hanging on the walls?

I’ve got a few of my original paintings up plus some of my favourite prints, at the minute they look a bit out of place as they’re mostly Christmas-themed but I can’t bring myself to take them down! There’s also works by artists that I love, I like collecting postcards of work that inspires me so they are literally all over my home!

You’ve said that you often find inspiration in Salts Mill (along with cake!), what was your most recent inspiration – and do you have a favorite kind of cake?

Salts Mill is the gallery that houses David Hockney’s work so I’m always inspired when I go in there (which is a lot!), I love the iPad works that are on display there in a series called ‘The Arrival of Spring’, I love how the use of colour creates an atmosphere and feeling, also the detail and mark making is really beautiful. I would say my biggest inspiration though is the countryside that I’m lucky enough to have right on my doorstep, every time I go on a walk I come back with new ideas (and photos!), I love how nature just does it’s own thing and I try and capture that energy in my work.

The question about cake is a much harder one to answer as it changes daily! If I had to choose I’d say Apple Streusel!


If you could travel anywhere, where would it be?

There are so many places I’d like to go as I love traveling and find it hugely inspiring to see new things, I would absolutely love to go to Japan, I’m fascinated by the culture and my dream would be to go there for a year with an endless supply of paints!

See more from Northern Lights Creative:

Publishing / Licensing