I stumbled across Bridget Wilkinson’s art online several years ago and quickly fell in love with her use of shapes, patterns, and color. It’s hard not to love her work because it’s so happy! Last year a purchased a set of coasters from my new English friend and they fit perfectly in my home.
I was fortunate enough to score an interview with Bridget for this week’s artist feature.
Read below and check out her artwork at http://www.bridgetwilkinson.co.uk.
You can also connect with her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/bridgetwilkinson.artist
1. Tell us about your journey as an artist.
I’ve always been creative. From being very little, I remember getting a ‘learn to sew’ book and making little stitched mice, we were over run. I still have one of the original ones that my grandma kept in the sweet tin. I loved art at school and won a painting competition at primary school for painting a kingfisher. I didn’t follow a career in anything arty until later in life after working in the NHS but I was always making, painting or creating something. I became disillusioned with my job and so I began to focus on my painting and develop my style. I then left my full time job and took part time work in a kiln room at a paint your own pottery studio. From then I pushed my artwork forward going to shows, fairs, approaching galleries, anything that would get my work seen. I feel very blessed that people enjoy my work enough to purchase it and it still shocks me when they do. I’ve never had any formal training as an artist but i think this has given me a certain amount of freedom. If there are rules out there i don’t know about them.
2. As a long-time fan of your work, I love your creative approach and style. Tell us a little about your process and how you discovered your signature style.
I loved to paint abstract but quite pattern based. I went on holiday to Cornwall and took a pad, a small box of watercolours and some gel pens. I was working on layered patterns whilst sitting in the sun and I put a little shoal of fish in one of the layers. I thought it looked good so did more. On the next one I worked on underwater and thats how it took off. Seems silly now but it has just evolved.
3. What inspires you to create your interesting landscapes and seascapes?
As I live by the coast I am now inspired by my surroundings and the way the sea interacts with the land. Little houses fearlessly balanced on the top of cliffs. One of my favourite pass times is beach combing. The pebbles are like little jewels and they feature in my work too.
4. Which artists have influenced you most and why?
I love Friedrich Hunderwasser his patterns and detail and of course his rich colours.
5. What five things can you not live without when you are painting?
Tea. My old worn out brushes; I keep buying new ones but end up going back to the old. Acrylic inks; I love the vibrancy. My old painting top; then I don’t have to worry about where the paint goes. I tend to wipe my brushes on my sleeve and will use the sleeve to wipe at the paint on my canvas. Little metal scraper; I use it to scratch out the paint sometimes.
6. What advice do you have for artists who are just starting out?
Keep on producing as much as possible you will develop and get better with each piece. Marketing is nearly as important as the creative side if you want to make a living from it. Work hard and you will succeed.