Introduce yourself

My name is Vanessa and I’m a woman of faith, wife to Peter, mum to five, Nanna to two and Milo our Staffie. Trying to get a full family photograph is nigh on impossible to coordinate, but I will one of these days!

Have you always been creative?

No not at all.  I’m more surprised than anyone that this is what I do now!

Before art and crafts I was a Virtual Assistant for about 15-years.  I still do admin work for our small family business, but my first love is painting, and I’m very passionate about teaching these skills to others.

You call yourself a ‘decorative artist’, what is that?

The other terms used are Folk artist (which basically means ‘untrained’ or passed down through the generations) and Tole artist which traditionally was painting on tin or wooden objects.  These styles of painting uses particular brush strokes to create the designs, more often than not floral or scroll-type line work. 

Why haven’t you separated your names on your website and social media handles?

I used to trade as The ARC Shed but wanted to use my own name, as I am the business. It was a good friend of mine who noticed that ‘arc’ was right in the centre of my name if I used just my middle initial (‘R’ stands for Rose by the way). I liked the idea of keeping ‘arc’ in there somewhere, not least because it meant I didn’t need to change my email or bank accounts, but also because of how I feel art (or any creative activity) can be really beneficial to your overall wellbeing – so it stands for Art Restores Calm.

Do you enjoy teaching?

Yes!  I love teaching people how to paint and get creative.  Especially when they don’t believe they can or lack the confidence to try. I definitely felt that way a few years ago, but honestly, if I can do it – anyone can, and I can teach them!

I find painting calming, you forget your stresses for a while and it helps rebalance you. Actually, research backs this up now so I can say with confidence that a creative activity is good for you.

Where do you run your classes?

I have a home studio here in Leamington Spa and I will be offering workshops via Zoom very soon which is exciting because it means we can create together wherever you live.