What do you use for inspiration?
I guess I draw inspiration from everything around me. Nature, stories, even an old rusty tin can.
My family always encouraged my love and passion for all things creative, be it woodwork, sewing, dancing, drawing, ceramics or painting, and if it weren’t for them nurturing my creativity I never would have gone to art college, and never would have explored how far I could push myself. I’m still pushing myself and learning something new every day.
I grew up in South Africa, and as a family we visited many nature reserves, went on game drives, hikes, horse rides and would go camping in the mountains, by rivers or by the sea to go fishing. So I have a deep love for nature, which never fails to get my imagination going. I love it when my children and husband bring me odd stones, twigs and feathers they find.
I’ve also always loved fairy tales, and find the mountains and woods to be magical places to be. I have always been inspired by the works of Brian, Wendy and Toby Froud (Labyrinth, The Dark Crystal, Lady Cottington’s pressed Fairy book), Grimms fairy tales, and more recently the Spiderwick Chronicles, and the world of Harry Potter.
I love fairyland, but not pretty fairies. I prefer the cheeky, grubby-toed, matted hair and berry juice covered hands and faces of hedgerow fae folk. And Dragons, I love dragons (who doesn’t?)
Anything can inspire my work. An old story, a found pebble or shell, or a lost and found button or earring. My mind never switches off, and my family all agree that I’m completely nuts and still a little girl inside, who refuses to grow up!
What would you like to say / share with members of the British Polymer Clay Guild?
Never grow up, never give up and keep having fun!
Find out what inspires you and create the things that YOU want to make.
Don’t give up when you don’t get something right the first time (or the 2nd. 3rd, 4th) I have a box full of pieces that didn’t quite work out or weren’t up to scratch.
And keep having fun. Polymer clay is so versatile, and there is so much that you can do with it, so just keep playing and rediscovering its magic.
Any other information you think our readers would like to know?
I have recently started teaching and selling my work on a professional basis, and I’m also a certified teacher for Pal Tiya (an outdoor clay that doesn’t’ require firing).I never thought I would reach this point in my life, and it’s taking a lot of hard work. It’s the most challenging and rewarding thing that I have ever done, and I love getting to work every single morning.
Keep an eye on my website and Facebook pages for more information, as I’ll be posting regular updates and upcoming workshop and event dates.
I have also teamed up with Debbie Bulford and Lisa Walker for the upcoming Middle Earth Festival in Birmingham in September, where we will be running some workshops and selling some of our work. Keep an eye on our websites and Facebook pages for further updates.
Thank you so much Heather, for telling us your Polymer Story.