ARTIST INTERVIEW- Jan Sherwood
Could you introduce yourself and your practice?
I studied textiles at Winchester School of Art and now live in rural Hampshire. My practice as a designer/printmaker/artist/educator has evolved over many years of practice. As a professional textile designer I have adapted and widened my practice and skills, embracing new technologies to create a wide variety of designs and individual artwork. Hand-painted, printmaking and digital media are intrinsically linked to the creation of my work. I find the different media work in a symbiotic way to help create new avenues of research and investigation.
My inspiration is wide and varied. Whilst out walking or sailing, I record and responds to these environments using my camera/phone and ever-present sketchbooks. I am inspired by the ever-moving coastline of mudflats, marshes and waterways. Transient time, tidal flows governed by the phases of the moon and sun, the seasonal equinoxes and the effects of climate change.
In a wider context I respond to all landscape, rocks, cliffs, moorland, flowers, trees and the wildlife that inhabits these environments. Currently my main avenues of printmaking enquiry are photopolymer etching and monotype. I am not limited to the use of these, but encompass many different printmaking techniques, collagraph, dry point, linocut to produce her wide variety of outcomes together with watercolour, acrylics and exploration of drawing.
Your works are very textural, can you talk a bit about your use of materials and creative process?
Texture is integral in all my work, this started at art school when I specialised in woven textiles. I love the different surface quality of woven fabrics and trying to capture texture and surface are integral in my designs, printmaking and painting. I combine photography hand drawn imagery often layering more plates to achieve the image. For the hand drawn imagery I use everyday objects to make marks, combs, toothbrushes, pens, fabric, sticks etc.
I use these and anything that is handy and makes an interesting mark in my monotypes too. In my watercolour monotypes I use a more fluid approach, but still use other art materials and utensils to achieve some of the textural qualities.
What is your workspace like, what are your studio essentials?
My studio is in my home, its about 4m square and has windows on two sides, it faces North so the light is brilliant.
My studio essentials are my large drawing table, used for sketchbook work, painting, printmaking. An easel for my canvases and larger drawings. A ring light and a camera holder to help with making videos. The other half of the studio has a large desk, my iMac and my Wacom tablet that I use for my design work, this is very much a clean area, where I work on photoshop.
I am really drawn to your sense of colour, how does the natural world inform your palette?
I am a collector of colour, I often take photos and use my sketchbook to remind me of colour mixes. Nature has a way of putting colours together and all we have to do is look and translate them. I make my own colour/inspiration boards from photos, colour chips, magazines etc.
Could you share a bit about your series ‘Margins Land and Sea’?
The tides, estuaries, intertidal mudflats marshes have been a constant strand of enquiry for the last four years. Transient land that is only revealed when the tide goes out and disappears when the tide comes in. By how much is dependent on the moon’s 28 day lunar cycle. If it is a ‘Spring’ tide the water levels are higher and tidal effect more extreme and if it is a ‘Neap’ tide the levels are lower. Ever changing, simply wondrous!
This series of prints combine both layered photopolymer etchings, layering hand drawn with photographic images together with monotype and part of the collection are one off monotypes prints. The small group of prints featured on Fern & Glade are part of a much larger body of work.
Lastly, Who are some of your favourite contemporary artists at the moment?
Printmakers and Artists: Norman Ackroyd, Ian Chamberlain, Emma Stibbon, Jemma Gunning, Jenny McCabe, Jason Hicklin, Andy Lovell, Ross Loveday, Kurt jackson