What is my idea of perfect happiness? Perfect happiness makes no sense to me, because it implies that there is nothing left to strive for. As an artist, I am never perfectly happy, never content to rest on my laurels, but always seeking to surpass and excel: onward and upward!
What is the best thing that I love about my work? To be an artist is a license to endlessly reinvent oneself, as an alchemist, a wanderer between worlds, a prophet on the margins of society, a child playing with a loaded revolver, a teacher, a fool, a philosopher, a rebel, and even, perhaps, a heroine. My creative journey corresponds to the archetypal mythic journey, and I live and dance and breathe every aspect of it.
What is my greatest fear? My greatest fear is that of becoming a burden on someone I love. I would rather fall behind and let them fly free.
What is the trait that I most deplore in myself? Being a perfectionist is a mixed blessing: I waste a lot of time and energy worrying about every tiniest detail, only to realise in retrospect that a single decisive move would carry me through.
What is my greatest extravagance? I’ve never spent much on clothes, shoes or make-up, but I often spend a fortune on beautiful postage stamps, stickers, washi tape and decorative accessories to adorn snail-mails. It gives me immense pleasure to know I’ll brighten someone’s day. 🙂
On what occasion would I lie? I am the most hopelessly unconvincing liar. Hence, when I’m tempted to lie (generally because I’m worried about hurting someone’s feelings by telling the full truth), I tend instead to be economical with the truth, or remain silent.
What is the influence of role models, in my work and in my life? I rarely adopt a role model, but rather I plant it like a seed in the fertile ground of my imagination and it soon grows and becomes part of my being. Most of my role models are cats, goddesses, and old wise trees.
What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work? What upsets me most is when people do not see a freelance artist’s artwork as work, and assume it is simply a hobby. In truth, a career as an artist is not a path for the casual thinker of beautiful thoughts; rather, it requires endless patience, hard work and an all-consuming passion.
When and where was I the happiest, in my work? On the one hand, I am at my happiest working, painting, sculpting and creating in public, surrounded by people and other artists, able to bounce creative ideas and energies off them. Alternatively, I’m equally happy when I’m working alone in my studio, often late into the night, immersed in the euphoria of creativity, inspired by my favourite music, and undisturbed by the endless clamours of modern life.
If I could, what would I change about myself? If only I could become a bit less of an insomniac…!
What is my greatest achievement in work? The greatest achievement in my work is the fact that I’m still working at it, despite endless discouragement, ‘failures’ and ‘mistakes’. I am thankful for these, because they have made me stronger.
What is my most inspirational location, in my city? My studio, which is filled with surreal and random juxtapositions, cluttered, chaotic, yet meticulously well organised. As Nietzsche said: You must have chaos within you to give birth to a dancing star.
What is my favourite place to eat and drink, in my city? La Tour Cycle Cafe in the heart of Ipswich town centre, run by another heroine of mine, Anna Matthews and her team, is the most friendly, welcoming cafe you could wish to find, serving a delicious range of freshly prepared food and drink. I often perform live art demonstrations there, thriving off the exciting buzz of conversations with visitors of all ages, nationalities, and walks of life.
Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime? My greatest fan and partner in crime is my fiance, Jason, who steals my heart as often as I see him (and claims I steal his, too). He is my greatest inspiration, my best friend, and often also a model for my artwork.
Whom would I like to work with in the future? One day, I would love to collaborate with another heroine of mine, Sophia, with whom I studied Arabic together at the University of Edinburgh and visited the Middle East, whose endless energy never fails to amaze me, and who never seems to realise her own depths of creative genius. I would love to combine her words with my artwork, creating something to uplift and inspire others on their own journeys.
What project, in the nearby future, am I looking forward to work on? Top secret! Watch this space… 😉
How can you contact me? You are welcome to browse my website and blog, drop by at my live art demonstrations and other public events, attend my art workshops, follow me on social media, and get in touch to commission artwork – I look forward to hearing from you! 🙂