Tuesday, 7 October 2008

My studio

My studio is based in the little village of Horsley just 10 minutes from Newcastle & Gateshead and 15 minutes drive from the market town of Hexham. The village is runs very close to Hadrian's Wall - one mile south of it.

The studio is one of 7 artists studios at a place called The Hearth. The Hearth consists of 17th and 19th century church buildings which have been converted into an arts complex and coffee shop. My studio is in the 19th century bit in what was the head mistress's office of the local village church school. It may have had many otehr reincarnations but before we moved in it was a snooker room for the local youth club with a full size snooker table in it.

I share it with another printmaker, Rebecca Vincent. Together we make up Horsley Printmakers. We started this little independent studio in 2004 to enable to make our own work which we exhibit and sell in the North East. To help pay the rent we run workshops in printmaking and we have a thriving loyal following of students from the region who return term after term, year after year and increasingly more of our students are coming from further a field - London, Edinburgh, Derry, Dublin, Nigeria and Kuwait!

The studio is my sanctuary. When I'm working there all cares and worries are left at the door and I immerse myself in colours and textures, pushing the boundaries of the media in which I work and seeing what I can get. One of my favourites is using a blow torch to burn holes in plates and make some of my materials bubble up, curl and scorch to create really interesting surfaces to take the ink.

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