From my earliest memories I loved to paint. In senior school, I wanted to study art as one of my subjects for my Cambridge school certificate, but my father had other plans for me and was adamant that I should do physics, chemistry, maths and Latin, hence the reason for my late start into the world of art, professionally at least.
My Learning Curve
I worked instinctively, read lots of art books and got ideas from friends who had studied art at university. A friend of mine who had a degree in fine art asked me to join her in an exhibition she was holding at the Standard Bank gallery. We had a sell out show and planned another for the next year, but as things were getting very unsettled in Rhodesia at that time my husband and I decided to leave. We went to Singapore and whilst living there I took the opportunity to learn Chinese brush painting and Chinese calligraphy.
England was our next destination, I enjoyed sketching the English countryside which I did on Chinese rice paper, I found this particularly satisfying and took part in group exhibitions in West Sussex and Hampshire. My next venture was screen printing which I learnt at West Dean College, West Sussex. I also met a well known artist from South Africa who had recently moved to England with her husband. She was having an exhibition in London and I helped her hand colour her lithographs and in turn she taught me lithography. Then due to family commitments we went to South Africa. Whilst in South Africa I started teaching Chinese brush painting and I have been giving lesson ever since (30 years).
Whilst in south Africa one of my students introduced me to a gallery in Durban, they wanted screen prints to sell to the corporate world and in spite of my limited knowledge I said I would give it a try. My work was well received and I went on to work with interior designers producing limited edition prints for hotels and resorts throughout South Africa. I also worked with a friend who was a fabric designer for the furnishing fabric company “Fabric Library”, doing a range of prints to match the fabrics range called “Leaps and Bounds” which were well received around the world.
To view some of my past sold art pieces refer to Sold Art.
Later the gallery I worked with asked me to do some carborundum etchings and I was given a brief summary of how they were made. I made abstract works using this method, which were also well received. They also showed me the work of Pierre-Marie Brisson a French artist whose work was inspired by the digs he had worked on as an archaeologist. I loved the earthiness of his works and some years later was inspired to do my own depictions of the rock paintings of the Drakensberg and the petro glyphs or rock engravings of Namibia, some of which can be found in my long ago series.
When the owner of the gallery I was working with decided to return to England she introduced me to a director of London Contemporary Art living in South Africa. I then worked with them producing abstract carborundum etchings under the name Sheila Ross. These were sold world wide.
Today I live in New Zealand.