Tell us a bit about your work and how it all started
I studied Textile Design…. however it was always the design side of it that I really loved. The initial process of sourcing inspiration and research, and the drawings and paintings that came out of this. I started out just painting murals for friends and family after I finished my degree, largely because it was something I really enjoyed and a great escapism from my day job, but I never really considered it as a business until a couple of years ago when I decided I just really wanted to be doing this all the time!
Now working as a Decorative Artist, based in London, designing bespoke pieces for domestic spaces. My work is largely inspired by historic patterns and traditions, as well as often working from nature…drawing inspiration from the Cornish coast. I also work from references. Each piece is painted by hand and unique, designed specifically for the space required. I also design hand-painted tiles made to order, and at the moment I am just working on a collaboration; designing a collection of hand painted lampshades.
Tell us about your dog Rye and how she came into your life
I had been thinking about getting another dog for a few years now, I have always grown up with lots of animals and it just didn’t feel right not having a dog around anymore. My family had border collies, so I have always been a bit obsessed with them. They are so intelligent, and I just think they are beautiful! Just before lockdown happened, I had gone down to Cornwall to visit my family, under the impression I was just going for a week. I ended up, by happy accident, being stuck there! It just seemed like the perfect opportunity to get a puppy, and I could really dedicate my time to training. Rye was from a litter of working sheepdogs at a nearby farm. She ended up being such an amazing comfort during this uncertain time and has bought us so much happiness. She has such a huge personality and is such a kind dog.
How does Rye fit into your general working day?
During lockdown it felt like the perfect opportunity to really focus on painting as much as I could and start planning some new projects! It was great to have a routine, and Rye fitted in so well, either sleeping as I work or playing with our family dog. It was really brilliant that she was able to grow up with an older dog otherwise I think she would have struggled to socialise since lockdown made this a bit trickier. Now back in London I am mainly working from home. I take Rye out for a walk in Brockwell park first thing in the morning. Having a puppy in London has been such a great way of meeting people, and Rye has made so many lockdown puppy friends! She loves having a run around with them in the morning before I start working. Then after work I will take her for an evening walk…she loves Dulwich woods!
When you’re not working where do you like to head out to with the dog?
When I take time out from work, I try to take a few days so I can go to Cornwall. Rye loves swimming and running around on the beaches. I just love walking through and not always planning, just seeing where I end up. I feel like there are so many hidden green spaces on the outskirts of London. Having a dog is great for discovering new places
What essentials do you always have on you when heading out for a dog walk, and what do you carry them in?
I always have a tennis ball, that is essential. Rye is obsessed and its great was of getting her attention when there are so many exciting new things as a puppy. Dog treats; Rye is very food orientated. My mum makes her homemade Linseed dog biscuits that she sends me! The linseeds are great for keeping Rye’s coat looking shiny. I usually just carry everything in a turtle bag went out on a dog walk.
What adventures do you have planned with the Rye for later this year?
I am planning on going on a walking holiday in the highlands of Scotland with some friends. I have never been to Scotland so really excited, its looks absolutely beautiful and a great source of inspiration for my work. I think Rye will love it as she has so much energy, and as a working dog she would happily spend all her time in the outdoors.