How would you describe your art in a sentence?
My art is gestural with broad brush strokes from a rich, deep palette.
Like Tracey, you get your inspiration from your surroundings. How does this translate into your paintings?
I can be inspired by the way light falls on the ground or by how I feel when immersed in the sounds and scents of a place. I don’t paint en plein air but I translate what I’ve seen and felt in the studio. I don’t often know what is going to happen when I start a painting; I prefer to allow things to unfold organically in a process of layers.
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You have quite a distinctive colour palette and seem to work in sequence as if one painting naturally leads on to the next. Tell us more about that…
That’s so true. Once I have a palette I’m happy with I will often do a series utilising it. Then, to my surprise, paintings will almost fit together like puzzle pieces; this happens subconsciously and always surprises me. There can literally be marks leading from one painting to another.
What was the biggest challenge of hand-painting the MAGRITTE? What did you want to evoke?
I was a little nervous because when I opened the box, the boots took my breath away; they are so beautifully made and I was worried about putting paint onto something so perfect. I had had a couple of practice sessions with shoes from a charity shop but their surface was much smoother. I was concerned the paint would be soaked straight into the leather but I was delighted to find the surface utterly delicious to paint on. I wanted to try to recreate one of my paintings, well the marks and palette anyway, on to a shoe and I’m so pleased and excited about the result.
What’s your first memory of a shoe?
The first thing I thought when I read this question wasn’t about a specific shoe but the sensation of the joy of throwing off my school shoes and socks to spend the summer in flip flops and sandals. However, at the end of a long hot summer, I absolutely loved putting on my new, hard school shoes with their heavenly leather aroma; there was something about the formality of them that felt so good after a feral summer!