Studio Sanctuary

My studio is located five steps across the courtyard from the barn where we live, with views across open countryside, the North Downs and Leith Hill.  It's a long, thin space (12x3m) with 3 worktables and a wet area at one end.  This shot shows 'In the Fullness of Time 4' in the process of being hand stitched.  Being in the studio is a joy; I'm surrounded by images and items that give me pleasure. It's quiet (unless I'm playing music) and I can lose myself in the work.  The cat often joins me, curling up in his felt nest to sleep - which is better than having him walk over the piece I'm stitching, or flopping down on it to be stroked!

Through the slit windows, the view across the field changes constantly according to the time of year, the time of day and the light; a never-ending source of contemplation and inspiration.  In the summer the wildflower meadow is in full bloom and as the flowers die back, birds come to feast; noisy groups of Goldfinches love the Common Knapweed.  In winter, flocks of Redwings arrive for a well-earned rest from their migration, and forage the field for seeds.  Sometimes the North Downs disappear behind low clouds, as if a veil has been pulled over them. The 'long view' is something I love, but can be a distraction as it's easy to become lost in contemplation; nothing is static, just like my hands.