Where it all began....


This is the University of Wolverhampton School of Art & Design Building.

I would say I have always been interested in Art and studied art, photography and music tech in A Level, and have been creative ever since I can remember. However, I don’t think it was until I joined Wolves Uni that my inspiration and motivation REALLY took off. I think it was due to a mixture of the tutors and all the students – but everyone was so passionate and enthusiastic.

We were very lucky to have such inspiring, excited tutors. We had Paul Scull, Maggie Ayliffe, Su Fahy and Alistair Payne. (sorry if I’ve missed anyone!) They were all so enthusiastic. They were practising artists and helping us to reach our potential at the same time. The trips to different cities and countries to view artwork were incredible with these tutors, they are just so passionate and excited about art that it just naturally rubbed off onto everyone around.

We had a good group in our year at Uni and we were very proactive in coming into the building to make art each day and put on exhibitions when we could. It massively influenced me to carry on with studying art and I ended up staying on to study my Masters Degree in Fine Art at Wolves Uni.

I have worked and volunteered in a number of galleries over the years and am active in visiting exhibitions and talks as often as possible. I can’t think of a time I didn’t want to own my own gallery.

My dream has always been to create an environment where people can make work, display work and communicate with like minded people, learning new skills and practising art, and I am getting closer and closer to that dream! I have wanted to create a space that people feel they can use to work in, submit work for exhibitions and create opportunities for people.

With the help of the SPEED Plus course, I have registered my business name, started trading, and put in place a lot of processes and learnt new skills in order to help me out with opening my own gallery. As most of you may know – the name of it is Black Sheep Studio & Art Gallery.

I have been very proactive since starting up my business, in creating an audience and a small community, in order to have a busy space when I do eventually set up.

This is going to be a long process, which I hope I am ready for, but I feel I need to give it a go, as I have come this far.

My plans to help me reach my goal for the next six (ish) months are to keep trading at pop ups, run workshops and save as much money as possible. This will help me as I will then need to borrow less from the bank, hopefully making it less of a risk! I will most likely set up a crowdfunder/kickstarter account, a bit closer to the time to help fuel and fund me in the final stages. I will also be selling my own art work, photographs I have taken and merchandise. This has been the quickest and most proactive six months of my life and I am sure it is just the beginning of the busiest but happiest years of my life.

I am also putting out a massive THANK YOU! to everyone who has supported me so far. It is great to know I have such wonderful people supporting me in this massive adventure.

The rest of this year is going to be incredibly busy for me but wanted to update everyone and let everyone know where I am up to and how I hope to open up shop before the end of the year!

Here’s to a great 2015!

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