Working predominantly in ink and watercolour, the Barnsley based artist creates detailed drawings inspired by nature. Louise is intrigued by the smaller details which often go unnoticed in daily life; the structure of moss or the pattern of lichens for example. Her sketchbooks have travelled as far as New York for the “Sketchbook Project” but are usually used on a daily basis as a starting point for her work before venturing into larger scale drawings and various forms of printmaking.
Having lived alongside the River Dearne for several years the surrounding countryside has been a strong focal point within her work. Daily walks along the River Dearne collecting material and studies to use back in her studio have developed a deep rooted fascination with the relationships between animals, plants and the changing seasons. The Art of the Dearne project has given her the opportunity to explore the area in a different way, taking a closer look at the biodiversity of the river and collecting research with a local school.
Louise completed a mixed media textile mural (approximately 4ft by 8ft) which focused on the biodiversity of the River Dearne. As a starting point of the project Louise explored the questions: Why is this an important part of our Heritage? What importance does this hold in our community today?
The in-depth research collected at the initial stage informed her response and gave structure to the community engagement plan. She worked closely with a local school on the project developing their own response to the initial questions. The individual responses from the community engagement directly contributed to the theme and content of the final piece; creating a body of drawings that were used in the final design.
The final piece was a collective response from over 100 individuals combined with Louise’s own designs. It has been made up of many segments similar to a mosaic. Using the creative response from the community, drawings were scanned and manipulated using Photoshop to create interesting sections of design, shape and texture.
Below are a selection of images of Louise’s final piece which was unveiled at the ‘Of the River’ event in October 2018. Louise is hoping to gift the piece to the school she worked with.