Description of Work
I was 19 years old when I first saw people designing and fashioning bespoke silver work. My time in college was well spent, learning all the aspects of goldsmithing and the nuances of three dimensional design through design history and college trips. On leaving Brighton Polytechnic, I was hampered in my plans to find a role in a workshop by the Nelson Bunker Hunt Crisis and decided to take menial jobs and save to go to the USA, where I was told there was a need for those with my skills.
In January of 1982, I joined Porter Blanchard Silversmiths in Los Angeles and trained for two and a half years under Preben Knudsen, a Georg Jensen master craftsman. From there I went to Harrison's Silversmiths in the Stanford Shopping Centre and was store manager for two years. Another stint as manager at Aurum Gallery in San Francisco and I was ready for my own business.
March 1987 saw me set up a workshop in the waterfront at Sausalito and working steadily on superior antique repairs for local dealers. In September that year came the biggest commission of my life - I was asked to make the 12 Holy Vessels for the Visit of Pope John Paul II to San Francisco.
Several other commissions followed but, in June 1989, I had to close shop due to finances and ill health and returned to the UK. Whilst trying to regroup and network, I was given a diagnosis of Type 1, rapid-cycling, events-related, bipolar affective disorder, which hampered me for 22 years, both in my professional life and all aspects of my social and family life. However, this illness has caused me to turn inwards to focus on my innate strengths and has made me more artistic and compassionate.
In 2006, I completed my Adult Education Teacher Training for my chosen subject and, after teaching evening classes at local colleges, was able to start my own studio - Academy of Precious Metal Arts - in Bickleigh, Devon. This ran until a winter flood of December 2013 caused lack of confidence in the workshop and we closed.
Some hospitalisations followed and I looked to Wales to start a new life.
Proposal drawing for International Sailing Trophy