Cherrie remembers a creative, colour-filled childhood growing up in Horsham, West Sussex. Objects like her mother’s bright yellow peeler, the little red wheelbarrow she used to help her Dad in the garden and her purple flares all made a strong, lasting impression.
Her family didn’t have a TV so she had to find other ways to entertain herself. Whether it was colouring, painting by numbers, making candles or performing plays with her brother and friends in their front room, she usually had some sort of creative project on the go.
Cherrie’s early creativity encouraged her to take art at school, where she began experimenting with paint, collage and PVA glue mixes.
After receiving little encouragement from her teachers, she gave up making art and went on to spend four years studying geology and environmental biogeochemistry at university in the north-east of England. The influence of this time can be seen in the strong references to geology and the natural environment in her work.
After deciding not to pursue a geological career, Cherrie and her husband Peter settled in Worcester. It was when they began making frequent trips to West Cornwall, home to vibrant artists’ colonies since the late nineteenth century, that Cherrie revived her interest in art.
She took up evening classes at the local college in Worcester. Short courses at the St Ives School of Painting and Newlyn School of Art soon followed. These brought her into direct contact with teachers who knew some of the renowned artists whose work she admires, including Patrick Heron, Terry Frost and Sandra Blow.
Cherrie’s work is regularly exhibited in the West Midlands and has also been shown in London and St Ives. She has been shortlisted in national competitions, including the National Open Art and the prestigious Cork Street Open. In 2017, she was an ArtGemini Prize finalist and one her paintings was selected for the Society of Women Artists Annual Exhibition. Two of her pieces have been published in 101 Abstract Artworks produced by Art Has No Borders.
As Cherrie’s work has gained recognition, she has enjoyed encouraging others to get creative. She is a co-organiser of the popular annual Worcestershire Open Studios and is particularly proud of a collaborative art project she led involving more than 200 people.
In the end, it's always the joy of colour that draws Cherrie back to her studio, where the excitement she experienced as child opening a new tin of crayons or bumper pack of felt tip pens has never quite worn off.
You can download a full, illustrated biography here.