Purple 13 - Artist Biography
||"I thank my grandmother for teaching me to knit and crochet when I
was five and realised the possibilities of making things from scraps. Then mum taught me to sew and even now I
have unfinished projects from childhood years. Unfortunately arty things were always hobbies and being considered
academic I was encouraged to study and to go to business college.
In my twenties I had a part-time business making wedding and ball gowns. I did this for a few years and then moved
into jewellery making with beads. This proved very successful so we sold our house in Northampton and set up home
and shop in Buxton. I made and sold hand-made jewellery for three years. The birth of three children followed and
my arty activities became very much a hobby. After my third daughter was born I became a single parent but determined
to be a home mum but a working mum I sought hard to find ways of making a living from home which meant to me being
able to concentrate on my art work. I sold some silk paintings locally and some jewellery but it was not enough
and so the next chapter began.
In my working days in Northampton I worked on the very early PCs and Apple Macs, proofreading computer manuals.
Later I trained to teach computing to adults. So being extremely adept with a computer I explored the possibilities
of creating digital art. My early attempts were frustrating until suddenly digital cameras were in the financial
realms of ordinary people. The creative possibilities were amazing!!
I have had my Nikon digital camera for only a year and a half but coupled with Adobe Photoshop and other art applications
my imagination runs wild. All the images on my website have been created in the last eighteen months.
It has taken me a long time to spend all day (and most of the night) doing the thing I love the most. To create
pieces of art work that people will enjoy again and again. To work with colour, vibrant and alive, to see nature
at its most abstract and to have a good excuse to take hundreds of photos.
I am now 41, my girls are aged 5, 7 and 10. My new partner has two children and we have a chaotic house of 5 children
every evening but our house is filled with artwork and crafty things to do. All the children love artwork and we
have drawings, paintings and models all over the house. Very untidy but very creative and hopefully they will be
inspired too and may go on to achieve earlier what I am achieving now should they wish to. In my spare time (!!!)
I still do silk painting and use my images as inspiration, occasionally my acrylics come out.
I love my work and although the art world is unpredictable my images so far have been well received. Now I cannot
imagine doing anything else."
Mandy Collins - 2003