About The Illustrations
As a child I had seen films of Australian Aborigines chewing twigs to make brushes and making pigment for painting from coloured clays. I copied this and used our coloured garden clay to try and make pots.
My father did not allow me to do art at school (not that unusual at that time). Fortunately in one school History of Art was compulsory in the sixth form which for me opened a window onto peoples’ attitudes and perception of animals, plant and their surroundings across cultures and time.
As students in the days of traditional optical microscopes like Darwin’s and no mobile phones we had to draw what we saw as we peered down the eyepiece. No shading was allowed in our drawings of bones and anatomical details – just simple lines to explain the structural detail: shading was seen as camouflage for a shabby approximation having not observed with accuracy.
Years later I went to art and pottery evening classes and in my 40s I got a distinction in GCSE Three Dimensional Design. My ceramics were spotted and started being sold in a local gallery; later I set up a home studio creating porcelain containers and jewellery inspired by nature – leaves, flowers, fungi, but chiefly marine themes – lustred dolphins, tropical fish and ripple reflections. After ten years this all stopped abruptly when I had cancer and having survived I sold all my stock in aid of children’s cancer charities. In spare time I now paint, draw and enjoy art workshops and courses.