Lover of nature and people
Growing up close to the Kentish countryside with chickens, ducks, guinea-pigs and even a sheep or two in the garden, I have always felt close to nature. We spent plenty of time outdoors as a family, and holidays nearly always involved camping on a farm somewhere. I was lucky enough to have a mother who loved nature as much as I did and actually paid for me to be taken on nature rambles by a couple of local elderly ladies. I learned lots from these timeless trips, and quickly developed a love of hedgerows, fields full of wild flowers and all sorts of creepy crawlies. I absorbed into my system a love of the changing seasons with all the smells, colours and sounds that tell us where we are in the year’s calendar. I almost never complain about the weather, because I know that all seasons carry their own beauty.
I attended Christchurch University and thoroughly enjoyed studying Ceramic Art and Religious Studies. After graduating I opened a pottery in an old stable at Tong Farm, Headcorn in Kent. The pottery provided a great place for me to develop my creativity and my ideas as well as to teach. Many students came to learn simple ceramic skills and enjoy the peaceful ambiance of the studio. During this time I developed a variety of work and found ways to link my love of nature with my understanding of spirituality and my Christian faith. In the year 2000 I created five pieces depicting the life cycle of nature using the imagery of the emergence of the tadpole from frogspawn into a frog and beyond into death. These were in exhibited in Rochester Cathedral as part of a special exhibition to mark the millennium.
After ten years of running the pottery I felt that a change was due, and started to focus on painting and photography. Hoping to use my camera and love of nature to capture the simple and available beauty around me, I began to develop visual presentations and calendars as a way of helping people recognise the value and wonder of the natural world.
My view is that while modern lives are very busy, it’s good for us to stop for a moment to appreciate the world around us – the world that we are a part of and that sustains us – Mother Nature. Sometimes we can go a little deeper even and feel as so many before us, that presence of a Greater Peace that we may call God.
People feel happier and healthier when they are not too far from nature. I hope that my work helps people to feel some of that sense of wonder that I experience, and to appreciate the simple beauty that each changing season brings.