The first post in a new series where we'll get to know more about the fantastic artists that have worked to help deliver all of the creative activity during the Greater Creative project. Kicking us off is Stephanie Coley.
What artistic medium(s) do you work in?
I’m a visual artist who mainly specialises in portraiture, collage & mixed media work, plus urban sketching.
Tell us a bit about yourself…How long have you been working as an artist? What was your journey to get to this point?
Art has been a big part of most of my life. As a child drawing was often my go to happy activity. I’ve always drawn or painted, but initially only as a hobby. In my twenties I got into set design for a few local theatre companies and I also started to work on a few arts projects.
I finally studied Fine Art in my late twenties and have worked as a professional artist for the last twenty years. During that time I’ve exhibited and sold my artwork throughout the UK. I’ve also worked on many exciting commissions and art projects. I’ve worked in schools, colleges and delivered art demonstrations & workshops for a wide variety of people.
What was your motivation to work in the arts and what do you get out of the process of making art?
Art is my passion. It keeps me sane and makes me feel properly alive. Not having art in my life really doesn’t bear thinking about! It’s not always an easy career to have, but I remember making a conscious decision years ago, to follow my dreams and my passion. So I quit my job, studied Fine Art and started to properly pursue my artistic career.
I also get an enormous amount of satisfaction in sharing my skills and my passion with others, when I teach or run demonstrations/workshops.
What are your thoughts about the Greater Creative project now that you’ve been involved with some of the project work?
The arts is such a powerful medium, both for people’s wellbeing and enjoyment. Sadly the arts is often overlooked or forgotten about, which is what makes Greater Creative such a valuable and rewarding project.
Greater Creative projects are always fun to be involved with. As an artist it makes a refreshing change to be given the freedom to be as creative as possible, without the normal constraints that are often in place when I’ve worked on other commissions.
I’ve also really enjoyed working with fellow artists on Greater Creative projects. The life of an artist can often be quite a solitary one, so working collaboratively makes a nice change!
Where can people go to find out more about you and view your work?