Artists' Biographies

Shirley Berrow Ceramic Artist.
Painting on fine bone china particularly (or porcelain), has become a passion for me.
I have been fortunate to be able to paint alongside many Worldwide, recognised, artists and add to my skills.
I paint from photographs, pictures and life itself although my preference is to paint “free style” which has no restrictions or boundaries and allows one to create individuality.
My love of gardening has influenced my painting and understanding of nature’s colours and form.
China pieces are very tactile and enjoyable to paint, and there is always the anticipation and excitement when opening the kiln to view the finished piece.

Jan Bulley
Working as a garden designer, it is not surprising to find that plants and plant material are integral to my art. More than the flowers and leaves themselves, I have a love of their skeletons and structures in particular; seed heads, grasses, branches and trunks. I am passionate about texture and pattern, and natural forms that resound in our collective subconscious. I hope to capture the ephemeral effects of light and atmosphere creating landscapes to dream in. Working as a garden designer, it is not surprising to find that plants and plant material are integral to my art. More than the flowers and leaves themselves, I have a love of their skeletons and structures in particular; seed heads, grasses, branches and trunks. I am passionate about texture and pattern, and natural forms that resound in our collective subconscious. I hope to capture the ephemeral effects of light and atmosphere creating landscapes to dream in.

My painting process incorporates many different materials including acrylic paints and inks, tissues and collage papers, mediums, pastels and sometimes plant material. I work in many layers creating texture, which is very important to me, and building up a rich patina.

I also work with collagraph printing; creating a printing plate using a collage of different materials to create texture. This plate is then inked and printed on an etching printing press. Although 10 or so prints can be taken from a plate, each one is individually inked and printed; each one is unique. I often work back into them with paint, and they become an original collagraph painting.

Ceramics is my new baby. I am a hand builder, using ancient techniques; pinch pots, coiling and slabs to construct pieces with a purity of line and a sculptural

Clare Dean
I have always been interested in art and all things creative. In December 2000 I started my own business “Clare’s Creations”. In 2003 I held an exhibition with a fellow artist which was very successful and in 2007 had my first solo exhibition. I am now exploring other types of media such as acrylic, mixed media and pastel. I particularly enjoy mixing in natural material such as wool and seeds to give a very textural piece of work. I particularly enjoy making paper and will incorporate this into my work. I am primarily inspired by strong colour, form and nature. 2006 saw the launch of my website, which displays the range of pictures and products available.
I am a member of Walton Group of Artists and was voted best in show in 2010 and 2012. I am one of three artists who organised the first Artists Around Wetherby – Open Studios which was a huge success and is now in its fourth year. My husband, Tim, frames my work and is able to provide a bespoke framing service for your own artwork.

Sandra Dean
After many years in the Civil Service I took early retirement at the age of 51 and decided that until retirement age, I would run my own small soft furnishing business. I had always been able to translate what I could see or visualise into various soft furnishing mediums. As retirement approached I wanted to learn how to paint as this had always been my aim in life, unfortunately I did not have the opportunity before.
I went to an introduction to painting held at Wetherby High School run by Nikky Corker and was hooked. After three years tuition at Park Lane including one year with Nickie, I joined Walton Group of Artists, I have never looked back and as well as enjoying various painting activities, tutorials, workshops in various mediums at Walton, I have attended many different painting courses with artists including Hazel Soan , Soraya French, Hashim Akib, Lewis Noble, Geoff Kersey, and others too numerous to mention. Each Artist taught me a different technique of producing a painting which encouraged me to develop my own style. Painting has become one of the most absorbing loves of my life I am now Chairperson of Walton Group of Artists
As well as landscapes I also paint Flowers, Animals and Portraits. I mostly paint in mixed media, although I also paint in Acrylic, Oil and Pastel. I am happy to undertake commissions and also happy if wanted, to have a prints made from my pictures.

Ruth Dorrington
I have a fine art degree at Leeds University and have lectured in art and art history at Leeds College of art and Park Lane College
Previous exhibitions include Carr Manor Mills Gallery, Leeds, Leeds Dark Arches and Doncaster Library among others
For some time I put painting on back burner whilst I built up Nursery and Garden Design business and I now have gallery/ classroom at the nursery where I run twice weekly art classes and other workshops.

Maggie Goodwin
I love sketching and watercolours and never leave home without my sketchbook, but my passion is printmaking. My inspiration comes mainly from nature and natural things and I like experimenting with different printmaking techniques to achieve results I am happy with. I love every part of the printmaking process, from finding inspiration in nature to the smell of the ink and the excitement of pulling that first print off the press.

Niki Hampson
I am a papermaking artist and set up my business “Pulpitations” 8 years ago in Dalby Forest. Last year I relocated to Clifford where I work from my newly built garden studio making handmade papers and designing products.

My work is inspired by my love of trees, leaves and nature, especially the rainforests in Australia which I visit each year. I originally trained in textiles which influences many of my techniques and I enjoy experimenting with surface pattern using plant and recycled paper pulps. I am fascinated by the play of different light sources which highlight details and create shadows through decorated handmade papers. I am currently working on pieces for a select group exhibition in a gallery in York over the summer.

My products range from table lamps and backlit stands to tealight holders, greetings cards and decorative stationery. I run workshops for all ages and abilities and give demonstrations; I also work with large groups of children at educational events through the year to promote recycling through papermaking.

Rachel McNaughton
Painting is my way into an inner world, a secret garden of colour and shape.
Painting as a hobby is where it all began and the hobby has now become an essential part of my life. Flowers are the centre of my focus and their myriad colours, combined with their delicacy and fleeting nature, are a constant source of inspiration.
I work from life, or from my own photographs but both are merely a starting point and many paintings are created from a combination of various images. Watercolour presents the artist with many unexpected “ accidents” and often shapes that appear in initial washes become suggested flowers and so a painting often chooses its own path to completion.
Over time my work has moved away from botanical accuracy into a more expressive style and become looser with runs and dribbles becoming part of the process of creating the image.
My work has been published by W H Smith ( in calendars and cards), Woodmansterne, Matalan, Ling and Marks and Spencer, who asked me to design the lid for Christmas shortbread biscuits in 2016. I also provided watercolour illustrations for a book " Hinds Feet in High Places" by Tyndale Press in the USA.
I run one day workshops in watercolour, pastel and Brusho at Bardsey Village Hall.
For more information please visit my website at

Simon Mountford
I am a mixed media artist creating abstract, portraiture and other stylised pieces of work on wooden panels, aluminium and canvas. Intrigued by texture and contrast I believe that a painting should offer the viewer an atmosphere that askes questions. Makes you want to return to check it out, just one more time. I love to walk in the amazing countryside around Wetherby with Alfie my dog. The ever changing light, the river and woodland are a constant inspiration, fuelling a passion to create. My other creative passion is hairdressing and I suppose that looking at and assessing face shapes and colour combinations, I was always going to be attracted to portraiture, capturing a personality, a likeness is hugely satisfying.
“Walk out into the water, go deeper to that place where you just can’t quite touch the bottom. That’s where all the good stuff happens”
David Bowie

Irene Pearson
I am a mixed media artist, using Acrylic ink, Acrylic paint and Watercolour.
The subject dictates which medium I use.
I am interested in urban and industrial environments, both old and new.
Particularly liking the way our history is depicted by structures showing signs
of decay and change.Living here in Yorkshire I cannot fail to be inspired by the beautiful countryside and coast which also reflects change across the four seasons.

Jan Purves
I love walking and take pleasure in my local surroundings and far flung places. Inspired by flora and fauna, a passion for gardening and the desire to try some thing new. So after my two girls flew the nest and discovered the art world, I also found myself picking up a paintbrush and wanting to paint what I saw. So you could say I followed in their artistic footsteps. Twenty years later I am still painting (thanks to the patient teachings of my artist husband) and have discovered a delight in acrylic and watercolours. The sensitive nature of the paint on canvas and freedom that the medium gives you. You will see my work is nature inspired, be it a tumbling landscape or the tiniest wild flower, or a commissioned piece of a beloved pet, nature is what I am drawn to time and again.

Vivienne Rawnsley
I have always wanted to be an ‘artist’ and was lucky enough to go to Art College and work as a Graphic Designer for over 30 years, during which time I started using the computer for much of my illustration work.
Since retiring I use more conventional methods and prefer working in oils and mixed media. I have exhibited both locally and nationally and happy to undertake commissions of your pet or special place.
I am a member of the Walton Group of Artists

Ailsa Read
The sea has always held a deep fascination for me, with its ever changing moods & colour. There is an unexpected excitement in its ceaseless energy which I feel compelled to paint.

Julia Rushworth
Julia is a small independent glass blower, she graduated from The National Glass Centre in Sunderland in 2014. Julia set up her studio at home in 2016 ,taking the plunge to make this her full time job after 28 years working in the NHS.
Julia uses traditional glass blowing techniques to make items ranging from exhibition pieces often inspired by disease and medical science, to decorative items for the home with organic forms and textures.
Julia will be demonstrating glass blowing each day during open studios.

Ian Sayce
I was born in Boston Spa and lived here all my life. I went to Tadcaster grammar school and when I left school I worked in Sefton Bakery. I also worked at Boston High School and St.Edwards RC school until in 2015 took early Retirement.
I married to Janet in 1981and we have travelled to 26 countries in 35 years of marriage.
I took up photography in 1988 and it has been my interest ever since.
I got my Licentiate in the Royal Photographic Society in 2013.

Elaine Shirtliff
After a career in further education, I took up painting as a retirement hobby and attended classes in watercolours with Rachel McNaughton and mixed media with Marilyn Chaplin. I enjoyed this learning process so much that art quickly became my main interest and I experimented with various techniques and subjects, eventually developing my own style of colourful watercolour paintings with ink detailing.

My main inspiration has been the picturesque coastal towns and villages of Yorkshire and I enjoy creating new and sometimes quirky impressions of both well known and lesser known places, based on my own photos. More recently I have become fascinated by patterns in the landscape and have explored different ways of working with detail, pattern and texture to create semi-abstract paintings of both dramatic and everyday locations.

I am a member of Walton Group of Artists, Studio6 and Bardsey Art Group and have exhibited in Boston Spa, Walton, Harrogate, Ripley and Leeds. This is my first year with Artists around Wetherby and I am delighted to join the group.

Nicola Slater since a young girl i have always had an interest in jewellery and things that sparkle and shine! So it is a wonder it took me to my until I was in my {mid(late!) 40’s to take up making my own. Only starting in 2016 i feel am still in the toddler stage of my designs but my passion & desire to create beautiful bespoke pieces has been with me since I started.... and cannot wait til i become a challenging teenager!!!
A collection of necklaces, bracelets and earrings all made with style, elegance and finesse, with a colour palette to match any season, outfit, age or fashion. All of the handmade pieces consist of high quality components’ comprised of sterling silver finishing’s which are either sterling silver, or sterling silver flash-coated with ruthenium.
Other details include fine crafted Czech glass beads, beautiful faceted Swarovski crystals, tumbled and rough semiprecious stones and gorgeous pearls. Pricing from £5.95 they are affordable pieces to either spoil yourself a little or to give as a lovely gift to someone for birthday/special occasion or just because you or they are worth it!!!!!!

Drew Ward
For some years I have worked very precisely in charcoal, and made intricate collages using trimmings and materials saved from other works. More recently I have been using acrylic in a freer more experimental style on sea and landscape themes.

Peter Whiteley
I mainly create sculptures and textured paintings.
My sculptures combine cast or sculpted polished resin, set alone as an individual piece, or as integrated parts of a larger wooden sculpture, the theme centres around contrasting movement and feel of liquid with solid shaped wood.
My canvas paintings again focus around flow and movement of liquid using resins or putty to create 2 dimentional paintings reflecting the texture and flow and of liquid on a horizontal surface.

Pat Willard
A self taught artist, Pat has been silk painting for 30 years. Only recently has she retired from teaching and now devotes her time to painting and holding one day workshops in her country home in Yorkshire. She also holds workshops in Calligraphy.. She is a member of The Guild of Silk Painters and Leeds Fine Artists Group. Pat has been exhibiting at RHS Harlow Carr for over 20 years.
Pat found a visit to Japan a great inspiration for her work- the combination of gold/silver outlines together with the rich colours on silk kimonos. Her compositions are impulsive as the technique dictates; her themes being floral, birds, buildings (London and Venice), fish and jewel like dragonflies. She plans to produce abstract designs plus and also to introduce calligraphy into her work.
She has designed for The World Wildlife Fund, Royal Doulton and has sold her designs to produce surface pattern designs for many high street stores. Her aim is to design for Liberty's!