Artists in Lockdown - Helaina Sharpley
Helaina Sharpley is a well known wirework artist who has been represented by the Two Kats and a Cow gallery for the last 6 years. Her intricate wireworks have the power to surprise and delight her audience and have been an exceptionally popular focus at our beautiful beachfront gallery. We caught up with Helaina to find how she is coping and spending her time throughout lockdown...
Are you still able to make work?
My studio at the West Yorkshire Print Workshop is closed for the foreseeable, and when all of this first happened I felt rather lost and unable to do much, but I spent a few days tidying and sorting and have now made space to be able to work from home. I normally do this to a certain extent, but I really do need a place of work (not just the sofa or dining table!) As it keeps me focused and more on task
How has being in lockdown affected your creative process?
Initially I had no desire to do any work, and did lots of tiding the house and garden (thank goodness for the good weather!) This week I have been working at least a couple of hours a day, which is a complete change from the usual 40 + hours a week! But maybe I needed to slow down...
What inspired you to work with wire?
I studied BA (hons) Design Crafts at Hereford College of Arts and began looking into my obsession with tea drinking, I realised it was the elegance of days gone by and the idealistic view of afternoon tea - ladies walking along the prom, elegant architecture, sepia photographs, twiddly details etc... and began doing tiny pen and ink drawings of grand seaside piers. I drew so much that the head of the course handed me some wire, and told me that if I didn't make something he'd move me on to the illustration course!
Do you see your work changing after lockdown?
Possibly so... I'd like to think I could take more time for thinking and developing ideas, as usually I'm so busy I lurch from one deadline to the next.
You can view Helaina's new collection here