Born in Watford, which was once a pretty market town. Then Watford Grammar School/Chelsea School of Art/Central School, then 16years as an Advertising Art Director/ then Advertising Copywriter, mostly in London, occasionally in Italy.
Started to screen print in my spare time and eventually jumped ship. Advertising, which I had thoroughly enjoyed, had become repetitive. I had very little money in the bank but lived in a cheap Studio in Kensington (it really was almost a village then).
I was very lucky in that when I started to sell my prints it was exactly the right moment, and for many years I was quite well-known to Print Galleries throughout London and to many abroad. I fairly quickly became VAT registered and rejoiced in feeling reasonably secure. Famous people bought my prints and my prints appeared in the backgrounds of many films and TV series (for which I never received a penny!). They still occasionally do!
At that time friends in Italy suggested I might like to rent a room in a courtyard where they had a flat. Well, you would wouldn’t you! And my new-found freedom made it possible to work there. The ground-floor room was in a courtyard, and opposite across a narrow lane, I rented a big studio at the top of an ex butchers shop where I proofed a lot of the prints that I subsequently came back to London to edition. I usually stayed a couple of months, occasionally more and latterly less.
It was in a little town in the mountains, equidistant between Como and Lecco. Take the brake off and it was about twenty minutes to the Lake. It was the opposite of posh and it was a lot of fun working and living in this eccentric courtyard community. I was the only foreigner in Canzo at the beginning. I wrote quite a long piece about my experiences there: ‘Not Tuscany’ if you are interested. Many of my screen prints were inspired by views around Lake Como. I had my delightful rented room (the green door in the middle of the lower photo) there for 16 years. If I had known I would have been there that long, I would have bought a decent mattress! A recent visit shows it unchanged apart from SKY dishes and … the vivid cast of characters, including the swallows, all gone now, which seems very odd and somewhat melancholy.
Towards the end of that time I traded in my big top floor Studio in Kensington (which I had managed to buy), for a little house in Battersea where I had a studio built onto the top floor and where I rejoice in having a small garden…and a cat …and no mortgage!
The big pause in my life of profitable production was partially due to the competition from Poster Galleries, plus the introduction of very superior printing techniques resulting in the public not really understanding what an original print was and opting for much cheaper, signed Giclee copies of, e.g., watercolours ( see About Reproductions), …and I guess my prints were no longer so fashionable. A lot of galleries went bankrupt at that time (owing me money!).
And then my parents died and all that entails, and then I was ill.
So NOW I am not represented anywhere! I am hoping that this website might be of interest to publishers of prints, cards…whatever. I think a lot of my work is commercially viable …everyone tells me so…but I haven’t the energy to go hawking it around and in any case the Art World is more complicated now.