Visiting an artist’s studio is a special treat. I love to see the materials and tools artists use, where they sit to create their art, and the views from their studio windows. But, best of all are the treasures, keepsakes, and inspirations that decorate their work spaces. This past summer, I got to go to the studios of painter Billie Spillie, children’s book illustrator, Clare Beaton, and folk artist, Julie Arkell.
Clare Beaton lives in Islington in London. She publishes children’s books mostly for Barefoot Books, using felt and a range of vintage buttons, braid and fabrics. The pictures are all hand-stitched. Clare says, “I am always looking for more items to recycle and give a new lease of life in my work.”
Julie Arkell is a contemporary folk artist working in papier-mache and mixed media. She lives and works out of her home in Islington, London, not far from Clare Beaton. I’ve followed her work for several years and had a fabulous time at her workshop this past summer at Les Soeurs Anglaises in France.
The knitting store, Loop, down the road has a wonderful collection of her work.