I was extremely fortunate to be brought up in a small village at the foot of the Pentland Hills in the Scottish Borders. Nature's wonder infused my childhood and formative years, and summer holidays were spent caravaning in the magnificence of the Highland’s ‘Road to the Isles’. During these years, I developed a deep connection to the sea and the dramatic changes of light and colour across Scotland's stunning landscape. This connection continues to inspire me, and, through the medium of acrylic on canvas I aim to capture the rich sensory experience a place can invoke; layering the emotions, memories and feelings which come from witnessing the brilliance of nature.
Creativity was part of everyday life in the Murphy household, and my mother had both my brother and I experimenting with my father’s watercolours before we had even begun nursery. When we weren’t exploring the great outdoors, we would spend evenings and weekends absorbed in anything creative. Consequently, Art College was a natural progression for me upon leaving school, and I achieved my BA (Hons) in Painting at Edinburgh College of Art. The years that I spent there afforded me the opportunity to explore my interest in working with landscapes and structural forms against the backdrop of Edinburgh’s iconic architecture.
The changing moods of Scotland’s landscape and the natural environment is a great source of inspiration for me. Being present in such beauty is a special thing, and at times a magical experience. These experiences touch the soul, providing a tranquil oasis from the frenzy of modern living and I am passionate about sharing this with others through my art.
WHY THE OVERLAY OF GEOMETRIC SHAPES?
From a very early age I was immersed in a world of technical drawings, photomontages, illustrations and architectural model making. Being the daughter of an architectural illustrator, I was always fascinated and inspired by my father’s ability to draw and paint completely alien structures from architectural plans onto paper or photographs of the natural environment. He used perspective with incredible precision, and never failed to make these structures look tangibly real and as though they had always been there.
The energy and colours of the natural world are in a constant state of flux and I love their richness and diversity. Adding the squares allows me to focus on micro moments and sensations in time, and also the intensity of light and colours present within any given landscape. I like to draw attention to this because I am interested in capturing more than just the aesthetic beauty of our landscapes; the natural environment adds so much positivity to the the human experience, as well as providing fleeting experiences and windows of time that help ground us and recharge.
In my paintings I enjoy wrestling with the dualism of geometric shapes and the natural environment. For me, this duality symbolises man’s impact on nature and the precarious balance between progress and a respect for natural life. I believe it is a delicate balance that we need to be collectively conscious of, especially if we as a species want to look forward to a future of health and abundance.