Sophie grew up in Hackney, proudly steeped in her mother’s East-end roots, with her father’s West Country boyhood in her blood.
She studied Fine Art (Camberwell) and then graduated with a BA (Hons) in Costume & Makeup for Performing Arts (London College of Fashion) before starting work in the film industry creating creature effects.
Sophie came to live in Cornwall after her mother’s early death following four years of illness. she was traumatised and grieving, unsure of her future. She bought a ticket to Penzance and boarded the train. She has lived in West Penwith for the last 15 years and her 5 children were all born here. Her connection to this place is an intrinsic part of her work.
Her paintings are about the tension between her life in rural Cornwall and the maelstrom and threat in the world we live in. As a parent she is familiar with the sense of pain and fragility that surrounds childhood. Her work explores the territory of beauty, familiarity and anxiety.
Sophie says, “There are Echoes of the past in the present. I believe the place we occupy, however briefly, has everything to do with what and who we are. Places contain more then our physical bodies and actions, places contain emotions, thoughts, places contain cultures.”
Her work is reminiscent of the late paintings by Jack B Yeats. They both share an attraction to a specific place and history and use thick, smeared paint and visible palette knife marks to create expressively coloured landscapes. There is also a strong connection with the work of Joan Eardley in the sensitive, intimate and honest depiction of children and place.
Sophie's paintings work against the idealistic view of Cornwall as a sunny tourist destination and delve in to a different aspect of our community, through these beautifully and exuberantly worked canvases, which evoke a turbulent ocean of experience, memory, emotion and love.
When I start a painting it’s always emotional for me. There is a narrative that develops with each stroke of the brush or knife, a story that reveals itself before my eyes. I usually have something I want to say to the world. Something I’ve experienced or felt that I can’t say with words. An emotion that I want to transfer to canvas that I hope to convey to anybody who is willing to look.