My name is Karen Markham and I am based in Greater Manchester, in the UK.
Although art has played a big part in my life on and off over the years it didn’t really take over until I went back to college after my youngest went to high school in 2009. I studied for a foundation diploma in art and design at our local college in Bury, Greater Manchester, gaining the level of distinction. This spurred me on to go to university for the first time, choosing The University of Bolton, where I obtained a first class honours degree in Fine Art in 2013. The subject matter studied at University was far removed from what I am doing now, but it gave me that desire to be creative in all aspects of my life.
My absolute passion is wildlife, having a particular love for birds in particular, but recent trips to the zoo have left me wanting to create art depicting some of the incredible wildlife found there, and to highlight those where conservation is key to their survival.
I have tried various mediums over the years but over the last few years I have concentrated almost solely on graphite or coloured pencils, occasionally mixing them up with acrylic inks.
I am inspired by nature itself, although I am also fascinated by old man-made structures, specifically stone buildings, ie cathedrals, churches etc.
I love how light can change the view all around us and I love listening to the sound of the waves. I love to watch a bird in flight, and to see butterflies flitting from flower to flower. The natural world is an incredible place and I hope and pray that we can take care of it for future generations to come.
I work part time at my local junior school and create art part time from home. I take on commissions when I can and would love to turn art into my full time occupation. I was asked the question at college, “What would you like to be doing in the future?” My reply was that I would love to have a pop up gallery in the back of a split screen campervan, travelling around the coast of Britain drawing and selling my art. I still hold onto that dream……….
I have taken part in the following exhibitions;
The University of Bolton 2nd Year Exhibition, The Cube, Manchester
The University of Bolton Final Degree Show 2013, The University Campus
Crook Street Collective, Neo Art Gallery Bolton 2015
Crook Street Collective, Bolton Little Theatre, Bolton 2015
Bury Annual Art Show, in aid of Bury Hospice, annually from 2009 to current day
TWASI September Exhibition, Hanbury Hall, Droitwich, Hanbury 2018
TWASI annual exhibition at Nature In Art, Twigworth, Gloucester 2019
I also regularly exhibit pieces in a local art gallery in Ramsbottom, Bury.