Studied Fine Art with Printmaking at West Surrey College of Art (Farnham) from 1971 to 1974, then trained as a teacher. Taught art and art history in schools in England throughout the 1980s and 1990s. After retraining as an Art Psychotherapist at Goldsmiths College has been working in the field of adult mental health in a variety of roles, most recently as a mental health advocacy worker. Relocated to Scotland in 2005 and discovered the Edinburgh Printmakers.
Exhibited prints at Trinity Art Gallery, Tunbridge Wells (1995), at Brighton Art
Gallery and Museum (1996), Star Gallery, Lewes, (1996 and 2004), at Yorkminster (2009), and at Three Harbours Festival 2013 and 2014.
I started making linocuts when I was a secondary school teacher and came across some dusty equipment in a storeroom. I realized that it would provide my pupils and myself with a direct and spontaneous means to translate drawings into print, and I immediately loved its inherent opportunities for line and patternmaking.
I develop images from the sketchbooks in which I make observations of my surroundings, of people at work and at leisure. My work is direct and uncomplicated: I love to draw, to employ an unusual viewpoint in distilling an image from an impression of visual complexity. Oil transfer drawing, the most basic of mono-printing techniques, enables me to experiment with soft, smudgy mark-making and the production of related but unique images.
Although much of the work I have made over the last thirty years has been in black and white, I have always wanted to have a better grasp on colour. Recently I explored Japanese woodcut techniques and re-learned the lithography process by taking courses at Edinburgh Printmakers. This has taken me in the direction of combining different techniques and expanding my understanding of different print media, separately and together. A new direction for 2016 has been tapestry weaving, and I am currently translating landscape drawings into experimental woven textiles.
Diana Gunnell Simcock