Firstly I would like to say a massive hello and thank you to new followers to this blog. Your presence gives me a great big smile and makes all the work so worth it!
This week’s interview in my ‘Nature and Art’ series is with the amazingly talented Louise Condon aka, the Ceramic Botanist. Based in Chester, Louise is inspired by the natural world and promote our wildflowers that are in decline across the country. Graduating from NEWI-North Wales Institute of Art and Design in Design Crafts, Louise now spends her time teaching and encouraging young people to participate in the creative arts to reach their fullest potential.
“Promoting the arts and creative subjects should be celebrated, embraced and valued.”Louise Condon.
What, in particular, sparked your interest to use nature and wildlife as your subject in your artwork?
I have always been curious about nature, collecting acorns, taking apart flowers, snails and beach combing is one of my favourite past times. When I was at Art college I was introduced to Art Nouveau and I instantly realised that my love of nature was filtering into my art work. I love ornate decorative and traditional crafts which has lead most of my works to have an element of nature inspired.
With modern life often very stressful, do you find Ecotherapy helpful in any form, especially in recent times?
Being amongst nature for me is like going to the gym for me. I feel totally energised when wandering the cliffs of the shore line or on a day to day basis wandering up and down the very overgrown cycle path or local woods- I usually have a carrier bag and a pair of scissors which my husband or kids don’t bat an eyelid at! I have collections of all sorts of natural found objects, which I have collected over the years. I get totally lost and absorbed in whatever natural surroundings I am in. Even meandering around my garden looking at flowers that are emerging and planting seeds give you the feeling of nurturing or creating The pieces also inspire my art through sketching and making.
What would you say to someone, who really wanted to express themselves through art, but was afraid to start through lack of confidence?
Having been an art and design in a college for 20 years. I would say explore and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, make friends with some like minded creative they are always kind and supportive, look at people who inspire you, your work is not going to be to everybody’s taste so try not to let it knock you down. Find what you like and inspires you and ask people for advice. If its arranging some objects or drawing with a biro have a go, it’s really about expressing yourself through the medium and everyone will do this differently.
What is your favourite time of year? Do you find that the different seasons inspire your work differently?
I work seasonally and this is evident in the composition of my pieces. I love the stark bare skeletal effects of plants in the winter, then the much welcomed snowdrops at the start of spring. To the finale of the summer months where it is absolutely brimming with choice and blooms fighting for attention. Having the seasons makes me very excited for what’s to come and I see my work changing and developing differently each year.
Contact information and Social Media.
Louise’s work is amazing. It is so lovely to preserve the beautiful structures of beloved plants and flowers. As well as tiles and vessels, she also offers preservation of wedding bouquets too, a fabulous memento of something so special.
Here is the information for the Ceramic Botanist:
Instagram – @ceramic_botanist
Website – Click here.
A massive thank you to Louise for agreeing to this interview, I hope you enjoyed it. I would highly recommend you check out her website and social media, I would be very, very surprised if there was not something you liked.
See you next week.