Amanda is taking part in our coming Home is a Feeling show in Faversham on 13th and 14th November.
Describe what you do as a creative.
From my studio in Folkestone, I like to make work in many different mediums – painting on canvas, illustration, wood carving, ceramic sculpture, and more recently collage. This is probably a result of my varied journey as an artist since my Fine Art Degree in the 80s.
Tell us about yourself.
I grew up in Kent with my 2 sisters. I have a degree in Fine Art & Sculpture from Ravensbourne College of Art and Design, graduating in 1981. I’ve loved drawing and art since I was very young. I was also horse-mad as a teenager – horses were often the focus for my art.
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I was either going to be an artist, or a racing jockey – I wasn’t brave enough for the latter…
What turns on your creativity?
My work these days often begins as a collaboration with another artist with the view to exhibiting 6 months later. Having a theme and finding a title for the work to come is the trigger for imaging new work – I’m never quite sure where it’s going to lead and it’s the most exciting part of the journey!
What do you like best about your work?
When someone loves it and buys it!
When were you most satisfied in your work?
Through the Golden Thicket, a painting I completed 2 years ago is my biggest work to date. I experimented more boldly with colour using Burnt Sienna and Raw Umber for the abstractstyle background, evoking Rothko’s luminous and meditative colour fields. The hare itself is much more illustrative, as it leaps clear of the Arts and Crafts-style bracken – a gold cage. The painting is available as a limited edition Fine Art Giclée print (showing at Home is a feeling in Faversham) and cotton twill cushion covers. I still have the original work, measuring 1.6 x 1m hanging in my gallery space at The Woodshed.
What is the most exciting part of your work at the moment?
I’m looking forward to spending 2 weeks in Normandy this October, to begin a series of new landscape paintings.
Which artists / creative people are your heroes and inspiring figures?
I’m inspired by many – Paula Rego, Eileen Cooper, John Minton, Nicola Slattery being just a few. I often refer to some favourite old books as a starting point for a new piece, my most treasured is Drawing Design and Craftwork by F.J Glass.
Your idea of happiness.
Drawing in my studio in Normandy with a glass of wine.
Tell us a lesson life has taught you.
Compare and despair
Anything else you would like to add?
I would call myself a narrative artist, – I like to evoke a fleeting moment that is part of a bigger story. In a similar way to the Pre-Raphaelites, I am drawn to the symbolism and iconography of certain flora and fauna. Animals are a constant presence – I love the shape and the mythology of a hare, for instance. Flowers and foliage, too, frequently creep in, whether as glossy tendrils of ivy or a gold flurry of autumn leaves.