Growing up in a Polish household in Leicestershire, my parents encouraged creativity and my mother taught my sister and I to make intricate traditional Christmas tree decorations from an early age. I'm sure my passion for art stems from her.
Following a rather dismal grade in A-level Art I applied for a foundation course at Loughborough. The course was very experimental with the opportunity to explore a variety of mediums. I remember a visiting lecturer talking to us about degree courses on offer at London Colleges. She mentioned Central St Martins as 'prestigious' and I went to take a look. I fell in love with its sense of energy and knew I wanted to study there. During my time at St Martins I was introduced to a Polish Poster designer; she recognised something in my work and encouraged me to apply for a travel bursary to study at the Fine Art Academy in Warsaw for 3 months. I knew that the country has a strong history of excellent visual artists. It was a wonderful experience and an absolute eye opener to living under communist rule.
Designer | Illustrator | Tutor
I returned to London and began work as a freelance designer for M&S and The Observer Magazine, but it was my father's death in 1988 that was the turning point, and on returning to London I decided to put a portfolio together of my illustration work. After a lot of leg work, the commissions started to come in, including producing illustration for Harvey Nichols, The Sunday Times, Usborne Publishing and the BBC. Six years later, I was signed up by Eastwing Illustration Agency and also a textile design agency, after the owners, Helena Gavshon and Susanna Samson saw a piece I had produced for the cover of The Big Issue Magazine. I produced designs for Liberty and Macy's. I also spent 10 years teaching on various degree courses and met some incredibly talented and inspiring students.
Creation of Art House
In 2004 I returned with my husband and children Louis and Eden to live in Leicester. One day my neighbour popped over to purchase an illustration as a wedding gift. After viewing my collection of work she encouraged me to exhibit my artwork in my own home, and offered to open her house to exhibit some of her sculptural pieces as well. We put together a handmade flyer, invited a few other artists to exhibit with us and Art House was born. It's now an annual event and gives everyone the opportunity to view 'extraordinary art in ordinary houses', meet the artists, purchase artwork or commission unique pieces.
After 25 years answering commercial briefs I am now painting for myself and it's a wonderful feeling. I currently exhibit work at Byard Art in the heart of Cambridge, Lantic Gallery in Tiverton Dorset, Maná Art in Aylsham Norfolk, and Hybrid Gallery in Honiton Devon.
I also work to commission.