So. I was born amongst the hills and forests of deepest Bavaria. The idyllic rivers, hills, trees and folk inhabiting them were home. I was free and I ran wild and once I reached my troubled teens, all I wanted was to break out and see the world.
Both my grandfather and my mother were artists. I was four when my grandfather died and left me his easel and his oil paints. I was a recalcitrant, wilful child and also rather privileged when my parents arranged art lessons for me. I grew eyes in my head, I learnt to handle the tools that at some point would provide me with the means to escape, learnt to mix the colours that will inspire me forever.
I wasn’t wilful enough though to make it to art school. Skiing, boys, motorbikes and other distractions that I can no longer remember, were too commanding and after all "you can’t make a living through art" my parents said. "Fine" I said, "I’ll study English then and French."
It wasn’t a good idea. Or maybe it was after all? It brought me here, it brought me to this point on the huge map of my life, with the shiny red arrow pointing to ‘YOU ARE HERE’. And that’s not a bad place. Life is a glossy, unctuous thing and you never know what’s around the corner. It twists and turns, you find yourself lost, you struggle uphill and fall into ditches. It rains until the sun comes out and you find yourself married, then divorced, you have children, you stumble from job to job, through times when I was an artist to times when I wasn’t, you forget who you are, till you stop and scream from the top of your lungs. Still you carry on. I raised my children, or maybe dragged them up, crossed continents, accumulated wealth and possessions, lost it all, loved, cried, lost my parents and dear friends, lost touch with others, lost myself in the jungle of life and finally found my forever love.
I picked up my brushes again. I found my raison d’être. I enrolled with the London Art College and passed my Drawing and Painting Diploma course with a merit. Carried on to the Watercolour Diploma course, but found it too conventional. I started to exhibit and was humbled by the reaction of friends, family, and the strangers who loved my paintings so much they bought them.
I was never interested in painting in a conventional and traditional way, painting conventional and traditional subjects. I wanted to tell stories. The stories of the trees that seemed to greet me on my morning runs and whisper their secrets, telling me what they’ve seen the night before, about their loneliness when they are the only tree in the field. I began life as an artist in earnest.
Makeslugsbeautiful was born as a result, a metaphor for not only turning the ugly into the beautiful, but as a reminder that there is more to things, to look beneath, to find the beauty, the story, the essence. I embarked on an MA in Fine Arts hoping it would help me to extract the poetic and magic texture of life, to share my journey, to trust my creativity, to find my voice.
Explore my current portfolio here: