I’ve spent my entire life surrounded by animals, especially of the canine variety. Many of my younger years were spent at dog shows sitting around the edge of a show ring with my rather chewed and soggy colouring books watching my mother parade up and down with her Pointers. I loved looking out for all the breeds of dogs and even then would always come home with a stick drawing of one of them!
I do feel now though that if I had not had these times, my passion and respect for animals would not be as great. Being constantly surrounded by them for so long has made me so much more aware of how they think and based upon this, feel my work really captures their true character and expression.
Realising I had a burning passion for drawing, I studied Art and Design for three years where I had a chance to concentrate on developing a unique and creative style of my own. After leaving, I got jobs in caring for animals at rescue centres and kennels and spent many a day drawing sketches of cats and dogs. I then ventured into caring for ponies as well and in one particular equestrian rescue centre, would sit and do drawings and illustrations of a beautiful black pony called Harry in my lunch breaks.
It was then that I decided to have exhibitions of my animal pictures and based upon them, was commissioned many pieces of work. I still have a following of people from that time that are wanting new pieces of my artwork now.
My career in fine art then turned professional after the avid response to my exhibitions. All pieces of work were sold and I was getting more commissions than the pieces I had sold in the galleries.
My passion for creating these drawings was so great, the buzz from a blank piece of paper to a detailed portrait was very exciting and I was determined to make this work as a career.
The portrait of a beloved friend is very special and hope I can keep the spirit of many more animals alive forever.
To everyone that has commissioned me or taken an interest in my work –