Today our Spotlight interview is with Angela Diplock. Angela works in drawing and digital art, and after working as a civil engineer for a large part of her life, has recently returned to her love of creating art. You can see more of her work here: www.angeladiplock.artweb.com
Being an artist
Please give us a few words of introduction about yourself
Recently I decided to start up drawing and painting again after 17 years of abstinence due to work and other commitments and have found that my love for producing art is stronger than ever. My current works showcase movement through technique, texture and colour and are available in limited edition prints and originals.
How and when did you start out as an artist?
At the time when I completed my A-level in Art whilst at Highworth Grammar School in Kent I was undoubtedly interested in pursuing a career in the art world, perhaps in something along the lines of illustration or graphic design I thought. I had a good eye for detail and form and knew that I would do well whatever I did but whilst looking through university prospectus’ I was increasingly drawn to going down the route of ‘something more practical’ – this of course at the time meant a ‘sensible’ career that would pay well so that I wouldn’t have to worry too much about money in the future. I looked at Colour Chemistry but in the end opted for Civil Engineering as my odd mix of Art, Chemistry and Maths at A-level actually seemed to be quite appropriate.
Naturally the role took over my life and brought me down the route of where I am today 17 years later, currently living in Leeds where I was a student and working as a Senior Engineer in an Engineering consultancy in York. I’ve gained a great deal of experience in railway bridge design and assessment along the way as well as the part I most enjoyed and probably excelled at, technical drawing.
I’d wanted to and had tried to motivate myself to start up drawing again on many occasions but nothing seemed to take. I didn’t think any of my sketches were good enough and I had no imagination or inspiration. It was only when a friend of mine decided that she needed to re-immerse herself in her own Art career earlier this year that I decided to attend her first ever life drawing sessions and thankfully, managed to find that spark again.
What training did you have?
I studied A-level Art whilst attending secondary school and then technical drawing whilst studying my degree at Leeds Metropolitan University and then throughout my Civil Engineering career.
What has been your best creative achievement so far?
Realising my potential to become a credible artist and knowing that I want to make being an artist a much bigger part of my life.
What’s your favourite quote?
I don’t really have a favourite quote, I could lie and pretend it’s something deep and meaningful but that’s not really what I’m about.
Who is your favourite artist?
I’m quite a fan of Georgia O’Keefe’s work and am currently working on a new collection of digital print ‘fragments’ that are inspired by her paintings of flowers.
What are you aiming for?
I want to feel more fulfilled in life and expand my creativity.
You and art
What sort of reactions do you get to your work? are you ever surprised?
I’d like people to enjoy the simplicity of my images and drawings. There’s something quite naturally structural about them that doesn’t really warrant fantastical and emotive language and, in essence, they are pretty practical very much like myself.
From start to finish, how long does it take for you to create your work?
It varies and often coming up with the original concept for the artwork can be the most time-consuming part of the process.
What music do you like to listen to when you work?
When I’m working I actually find music quite distracting but outside of that I quite like a bit of Arch Enemy and My Dying Bride.
What is next in the pipeline for you? Any new directions or shows coming up?
I am currently working on another collection to add to my site as well as organising ‘Art Days Out’ for friends to get together in Leeds and just draw or paint outdoors whilst the weather’s nice.
Being inspired by art
Who (living or dead) inspires you? and why?
Nature and people and the world generally, it’s all around us and freely available and couldn’t be more wondrous if it tried.
What feelings, subjects or concepts inspire you as an artist?
Enjoyment, relaxation, skills, creativity and friendships all inspire me in my daily life but my partner is often a font of knowledge, wisdom and humour that keeps me level-headed.
What is your favourite work that you’ve produced so far and why?
I think my favourite has to be my ‘Green Lady Kneeling’ drawing. It’s not a style that I would normally adopt and it was also an interesting pose created by the life model, I also particularly like the colour combination of green and yellow that I used in the picture.