Brownberrie Art is run by Naomi Southon an artist, designer and maker from Horsforth in Leeds with many strings to her bow. She creates large felted wall hangings which she embroiders and beads, paints, lino prints and mosaics. Her work carries through it a passion for nature, colour and detail often from a microscopic perspective. She works from a converted garage which she calls her studio but her children call “Mummy’s Little House”.
I met Naomi at BCTF in Harrogate in April of this year. She was in the Newcomers section and I got chatting to her on one of those rare moments I got to escape from my stand and go off and explore!!
Having seen Naomi's work I was fascinated with the 'biology' connection and I asked her if she would liked to be featured on my blog. Lucky for me, she agreed. This is what she had to say...
'I read Applied Biology at Leeds University after which I studied to become a teacher and that is what I did for the next 10 years. All the time I kept my hand in with my painting and drawing and three years ago I gave up teaching to pursue my primary passion, creating beautiful art work. I work in many medium from resin in my jewellery to acrylics, felt, paper and wire in my larger pieces.
Whether they are small pieces of jewellery or large felted wall hangings all my pieces are created as individual works of art.
Ever since I was young I have been encouraged to explore and investigate the flora and fauna we have seen on walks, holidays as well as around us in our everyday lives.
At the same time I was growing up in a household where creativity was encouraged and supported especially by my Mum who was artistic herself. Both influences have helped foster a passion within me also mirrored in my formal education where I have been keen to study biology, art and design.
At university the microscopy element of the course fascinated me. The amazing cell structures and colours taken on by the tissues inspired me further in my love for both art and science.
My enthusiasm for Natural History and the microscopic world continues to inspire my art work today.
I also asked Naomi how she found her experience as a Newcomer and how she had found the whole experience of her first trade fair.
As for being a Newcomer at BCTF, I had been planning my stand on and off for a year (I like to be organised!) and knew all my figures but still was really anxious before the show began. Very soon any nerves disapperared and I really enjoyed being amongst some amazing artists and crafts people and having the opportunity to talk to some interesting people about my work. It has been a great experience, I have several new stockists, made some great connections and the whole process has made me evaluate my business and products which has been really helpful. I have booked to do it all again next year and am already planning my next stand!
If you want to find out more about Naomi and her work please check out her website here