Why did you choose to be an artist/designer?
My Mum and Dad are artists so it was just the norm in our house! I grew up sketching and making things from an early age.
What medium do you work in?
My jewellery is made from Sterling Silver, no silver plating here as I am allergic non precious metals.
What's your background, have you always been an artist/designer?
I've been 'arty' since I was a kid but started making jewellery basically because my Mum told me to! After I left school she saw an ad in the paper for a course in Jewellery and Silversmithing at Glasgow Clyde College and told me to apply. She chose well - I loved it!
How has your practice changed over time?
I have been making jewellery for over 20 years now and while my techniques have
grown, my style is similar - simple, elegant and not too dear!
What Does Your Art Mean to You? What Does Your Artwork Represent?
Jewellery making and designing is a form of therapy for me, I become so engrossed in the process that the world and it's worries fade away. Hitting bits of metal with a large hammer also helps. I love to make people happy and seeing people find 'just the right piece' for themselves or as a gift is a wonderful feeling.
How and when did you started creating….?
I started sketching jewellery as a teenager as I enjoyed the patterns and lines I could create, but started actually making pieces when I started a National Certificate in Jewellery and Silversmithing in 1995, followed by an HNC and HND, then straight into 2nd year at Edinburgh College of Art.
How would you describe your creations?
I try to create pieces that are balanced and elegant, easy to wear and often good to fidget with. I like to use changing thicknesses and curving lines to create shapes and interesting negative spaces.
What inspires you?
I am inspired by nature, the curve of a leaf or the bright colours of flowers. I also find inspiration just by playing around with metal and wire to see what feels right. I also sketch in pen which stops me from becoming to uptight in my designs by rubbing out pencil and repeating a line until it is right.
Where do you show / sell your art?
I currently sell in The Scottish Design Exchange in Edinburgh and Glasgow and though commissions via my Facebook page and fairs. I occasionally exhibit in Galleries around Scotland too.
Do you think art can have an impact in the local community?
Art can have a wonderful impact on a community, from local art classes to public murals which bring colour and joy to a neglected area. Something like jewellery is a wonderful conversation starter between two strangers and a great way to find a connection with a fellow jewellery lover!
Who are your biggest influences?
I love the work of Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh (and her husband!) and William Morris. Many of the textile artists of that era where incredible!
Which current art do you think is having an impact in the world right now?
I suppose Banksy would be an obvious choice. It is impressive to be heard as a street artist and political activist. His dark wit, artistic talent and air of mystery are a perfect fit for new art lovers who don't want to be stuck wandering round a stuffy museum!
What difference has working with SDX made to your business?
It has given me a huge confidence boost - selling your art is scary; pouring your heart and soul into your work and the putting it out there for all to see and criticise. The staff at SDX have been so encouraging and helpful plus all the support to build my business has been invaluable. It has turned what was 'just me pottering in the workshop' into a viable business. Thank you!