In late 2016, my husband and I moved to our hidden cottage on the edge of the New Forest. We have always lived near Lymington, where we had run our design company for many years. But times had changed, our lives had become consumed by our business, and we wanted to downsize, take stock and live a quieter, simpler life.
Our new cottage is charming. There is much I'd still love to do, especially in the garden which is wild and rambly with an overgrown paddock next door. And we have the most wonderful neighbours. With only a few houses down our lane, everyone has been so welcoming. We meet for dinners, bbq's and it is just very, very English and very, very lovely.
Deepening my learning
In late 2017, I decided to take a sabbatical from our design business and spend a year painting, learning and refreshing my soul. I still felt burnt out from working so hard. I decided to do what John Lewis gives its partners – an opportunity to explore what I wanted from the next phase of my life and refresh my soul. I spent the time painting, going to yoga, and exploring the beautiful countryside near where we lived. I also took Marie Forleo's B-School and some other niché modern marketing courses and artists workshops – I learnt so much.
I created much of the work you see on this site in that year. I have now relaunched my design consultancy with fresh enthusiasm, a deeper understanding of the modern business landscape, and a renewed commitment to helping my clients.
But I still paint and create, and this feeds a desire to bring excellence to all that I do. I have a lot of exciting projects ahead of me.
A little background
For those who come to my site and say – "she has many styles, it doesn't seem like one artist", I thought I'd add a little background here. I grew up in Cambridgeshire and studied art and painting, but I have also always loved graphic and interior design, textiles and fabrics. I was encouraged to take a fine-art cross-over Embroidery Degree at the Manchester Metropolitan University, that included print-making, philosophy, painting, and had a whole day of life-drawing a week. I was also lucky enough to have a one-to-one PHD calligraphy tutor from Tibbet. She taught me Chinese brush-work and meditation, and I think you see her influence in my summer floral watercolours.
Once I graduated, I was commission by Habitat to make greetings cards. I was asked to create 100 art pieces for London Fashion Week – some of which were bought by Ghost and personally by John Rocca.
I worked briefly at the Guardian and Meridian TV as I gravitated into the design business. After working for an agency headed up by two amazing female creatives, I set up my own business. All my skills meandered together, and I began to learn more about marketing and deal with all kinds of exciting clients and projects.
And so my art is the same. I always feel that no matter whether I am working in oils or on the computer, there is a rich heritage to what I do. But there is an underpinning of calm, clarity and timelessness. This sentiment is what I enjoy, what I want my world to be surrounded by, and what I want to bring to others. I hope you feel the same.
With love. Jennifer