One of the wonderful things about Etsy is making connections with people around the world, including talented artists like Linda Woolford. Linda lives on the Isle of Wight, England, and creates beautiful one of a kind animal and fantasy art. I am especially drawn to the sensitive way she depicts her horses. She kindly answered some questions about her art and inspiration.
Please tell us more about yourself.
I've been happily scribbling away since I was very young, I've been trading and selling art pieces since I was about 12 years old. I had to be flexible crafting as a youngster, as we didn't have the finances to buy the products that were basics, so one had to be creative with what was available.I believe this actually helped me to see art and possibilities I wouldn't have explored had I been given a more affluent upbringing.
Pegasus Foal Tiger Lily and Buttons the Robin by Linda Woolford
Do you own any animals?
I own a young black Labrador, 'Prince', who is just over a year old now, and a complete joy. 'Wednesday's Choice', 'Woozle' for short, is my sweet natured 16.2hh bay mare, whom I used to Event, and was retired a good while ago, and who has now reached the great age of 35yrs.
Painted Cherub, Pegasus foal by Linda Woolford
Much of your art is fantasy themed, is their any particular story or book that you are influenced or inspired by?
I cant say I was influenced in fantasy art by any particular genre or book, but I love all fantasy, and Sci-Fi genre, and films and reading has always been a great joy for me.
Wonderful illustrations were a fascination for me as a small child, and visually beautiful films such as Legend, are still breathtaking for me watch.
Welsh Mountain Stallion, Home Pastures by Linda Woolford
Some of us never grow out of our love of painting horses. Do you work from live models, photographs or your imagination? Can you explain your process in how you create a piece start to finish?
Horses have always been a pull for me, since I kept escaping from my home garden as a toddler and following the local beach horses.
I can start an art piece in many ways, sometimes its seeing horses on film, a beautiful real life horse that inspires sketches, more often its lots of photographs, laid down all over the table, pinned onto walls. I like to have some real life references, even with fantasy as it adds a reality to the piece.
When starting a pastel mixed media piece, I will sketch full-size onto scrap paper till I'm happy with the look of it, then rub out any non essential sketch lines so there's a clear outline sketch, then I use this as a reference to sketch directly onto the pastel paper. Then start to fill in with hard pastels, and Derwent soft pencils, then I add small hair and details with watercolours and fine brushes.
I enjoy all types of art, sculpture, and varied subjects, I have a few different styles, not just one, I think that's because its a mood thing, a bit like the way I dress, very different from day to day.
Fox Cub at the Briar Rose Gate by Linda Woolford
If you weren't an artist, what do you think you would like to be?
I'm afraid there would be many other lives I would have liked to explored, Sports, equestrian and athletics, therapy rehabilitation for animals, maybe an author, and although not possible, a time traveler would still be a fun occupation.
Where can we find you online?
Artwolf on Etsy
Pyewacketts on Etsy
The Briar Rose Gate
Poppy's Its a Dogs Life