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I was born and raised in Kent. I had a brilliant art teacher at secondary school who taught me to draw and nurtured my interest in art history, and because of her support I applied to go to The Slade School of Fine Art and gained a place on the Diploma in Fine Art.

The four year course covered everything - making your own pastels, etching, life drawing, art visits all over London but principally gave us a studio space each where we could make our own work.

At the end of four years I decided that the best way to make a living was to train as an art teacher. Teaching art was usually fun and creative but it also cut into time for doing one's own work.

Hawthorn
Years later, having taught in some lovely places such as Truro, Dawlish and Newquay, I came to live in North Devon and gave up teaching to raise our son. Later, supply teaching lead on to another creative job, teaching young people with autism.

Six years ago a period of ill health made me reassess what I hoped to achieve in my life, my art work became very important to me, and I worked in watercolours and then pen and ink to retrain my eyes. Now I produce large scale drawings of our local trees and woods that combine my love of tone and line with an interest in human activity in the landscape and the feelings created in people by woods and trees.

Two early influences on me were Rudyard Kipling's drawings for the Just So Stories and the illustrations for Alice in Wonderland that I saw as a child. My drawings take ages but they gain their own momentum as they progress. I have found my subject matter on Torrington Common, at RHS Garden Rosemoor and in the immediate area of our valley at Weare Giffard, all in North Devon.

I was asked to be the Lead Artist for "The Artists' Garden Exhibition" at RHS Rosemoor in September 2010 which gave me the chance to show eight originals and giclee prints. I am excited about joining the South West Academy and showing my work with them. I have a website where each new drawing is added as they are completed and my prints are available for sale. I consider myself very lucky to be involved in the art world. I am a Committee member of North Devon Arts, a large, non-selective arts group and am in charge of exhibitions, a position I love because it gives me the chance to help and encourage others in their work.

www.sarahwoolfenden.co.uk

Work For Sale from the Academy
The Meeting
Hawthorn
The Last Of Summer
December Snow
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