Karren Whalen

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My name is Karren Whalen and I was persuaded by my husband to attend a local art group in 2009 after redundancy from a job I had been in for almost 20 years.

I had always had an interest in crafts and the arts and for many years when the family were younger, I made a living as a knitwear designer and producer. I enjoyed having that time to experiment and due to Doug’s encouragement and help from the leader and members of the art group I learned lots of new skills to enable me to find my own style.

I still enjoy experimenting but have realised that my favoured medium is water, colour and pen and wash and recently, mixed media which is a mixture of all of those and whatever else is at hand.

I have no formal qualifications in art and am largely self-taught, mainly by attending workshops. My preferred style is loose and probably borders on contemporary but when I am working there are no rules, except for maybe composition. I follow my instincts and lately if I do not like the results, I am likely to take my trusty old school guillotine to it and rearrange the pieces.

I enjoy both working at home and outside but always use only my own photographs as I have to also draw on the experience of being in the place. En plein air is a lovely way to relax and create extra memories of perhaps a walk or a holiday and my sketch books are many and varied.

Like all artisans, I am delighted when someone else likes what I produce and do a little jig if they even like something enough to purchase.