Debbie Macklin

Debbie Macklin — Painter

I am delighted to join Worcestershire Open Studios, having moved to the Malvern area in the autumn of 2020 from Cambridge. I have enjoyed painting, sketching, life drawing and water colours for many years, but started to paint in oils in 2014. Since then, it has become my preferred medium. I love the freedom, possibilities and challenge of oils and just wish that I had started to explore them earlier!

After several years of weekly classes through Cambridge Art Workshops, I wanted to spend more time developing deeper understanding and technical awareness, I was lucky to study under the inspiring Martin Kinnear, completing the one year diploma his Norfolk Painting School in 2019. It was eye-opening for someone without a formal education in fine art: I had never heard the words ‘ebauche’ or ‘rheology’ before, and started to appreciate the magic mix of technical proficiency and creativity that goes into the kind of paintings I most admire. I now have a better appreciation of how to develop as an artist, and feel excited to have more time than ever before to spend “time on the brush”.

I’m naturally drawn to direct painting, and like to work quite loosely, starting from a colour beginning. My aim is to create a painting which has visual impact and close interest, working up layers of paint with varying degrees of transparency. I’m inspired by my new surroundings; the ever-changing light and mood on the Malvern hills is fabulous. I’m also drawn by more domestic scenes, still lives and local walks, looking to evoke the light, colour and shapes that observation, memory and imagination bring together on the canvas or board.

My working life was a collage of journalism, corporate communications, voluntary work for environmental organisations, teaching and tourist guiding. I have lived in Brazil, Japan and France, as well as in the UK and feel lucky to have lived in places where there is a wealth of wonderful art to see and to return to, in national and private collections, local galleries and exhibitions.

Being part of Worcestershire Open Studios, I’m looking forward to meeting local artists, to seeing their work and developing my own, and to engaging in projects to promote creativity and the pleasure and benefits it brings to so many.