MY STORY & MY PHILOSOPHY
Since forever, I've been passionate about paper. I like paper. Correction, I love paper! All sorts of paper. Honestly, you should see my collection of swatch books. And my collection of handmade paper. And, umm, my crepe paper storage.... Yes. Before I started to work with the stuff in a more creative way, it was starting to become a bit of an issue. Where to put it? And, er, can I include books? So, rather than becoming a full blown hoarder, I decided to change my career path...
Here's a little of my story. My creative journey began in 1972 as the only child at Bath Academy of Art. My parents were second year students and I was, presumably, under everyone's feet! My Danish mother spoke to me in her own language, and I grew up as much Danish as English.
Despite such an audaciously creative start I somehow never made it back to art college. In my early years I was always busy with two things - looking at flowers, and creating. At age three, Father Christmas brought me my very own packet of toilet paper (pink, I remember) so I could make all the snowflakes I liked without putting the rest of the household out. Over the years I learned many crafts including paper making - and when I wasn't curating an exhibition of my handmade papers in my own bedroom, I was outdoors in the Yorkshire countryside, looking at flowers. My identification book became my bible, and I still have it.
Over the years I tried on various roles which never seemed to fit properly. I graduated with a degree in English and Philosophy, went on to the usual telesales, shop work, training, consultancy, management - I'm not foolish enough to dismiss it all - I learned a lot. But it took a decade post graduation to get myself onto the right path. I sought out people who could teach me and absorbed as much learning as I could before finally, in 2005, I founded Dragonfly.
For many years I specialised exclusively in event stationery and have worked on over a thousand weddings and events, all of them unique. Since 2015 I have also worked with a number of local businesses to provide a range of services including branding, logo design and business development support and coaching.
Paper by Dragonfly represents the point at which it all came together for me - my need to create, my passion for paper, my love of flowers. Lockdown in March 2020 gave me the time and space I needed to practice my newest craft. All my paper botanicals are unique pieces, created by hand in my studio in Hoylake, Wirral. Starting with a simple sheet of crepe, I colour the paper by hand, cut the petals and shape each one individually, working out each step by studying the flower. Flowers are assembled using wire, wax tape and glue. I always endeavour to avoid plastic in my creative pursuits. In 2021 I plan to embark on an extensive project looking to minimise the impact still further - focussing on colourants and adhesives. But alongside this I will continue create!
My favourite flowers will always be the wild ones - the insignificant little ones, whose beauty can only be truly appreciated when examined through a magnifier - or when magnified in a piece of botanical art. I aim to expand my process to increase the size of my botanical pieces to reveal as much detail as possible. watch this space - I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.