I am multi-media artist living by the sea on the west coast of Ireland in Co.Donegal; working in art, illustration, ceramics, animation, workshop facilitation and arts project management.
On first leaving school I completed an honours degree in Decorative Arts which cemented my life long passion for the hand made, specialising at that time in ceramics. First exhibiting porcelain paper clay light pieces decorated with translucent poetry. I went on to train in studio pottery skills; twenty years on – after years of creativity in that field, combined with workshop facilitation, my love of words and story found me back in an educational setting where I combined the hand crafted and hand drawn elements with digital layering during an animation degree.
In the last weeks of that degree I was lucky to be chosen to present my final animation to HRH Prince Charles, the only student from the college to meet him on his visit to Donegal, thereafter receiving the Derek Hill award for creativity.At last! in this consuming combination of words, story, drawing, hand crafted and digital I felt creatively at home.
Since 2010 I have had the pleasure of being a member of Design and Crafts Council of Ireland’s education panel; since 2016 in a regional managing role, as co-ordinator in Donegal and on occasion Sligo too for CRAFTed the education flagship programme. Being part of the education panel has afforded me great training and practical experience of how best creative projects can be applied across the school curriculum and the essential team dynamics of teacher, children and artist, Not to mention the delight at seeing so many wonderful innovative creations by the children and all involved with these projects come to fruition and share the joy of that journey.
I know how essential creativity and creating is to me. I love to encourage this part of our nature and skill set to flourish in others; facilitating creative workshops has always been an integral part of my creative path. My experience has ranged from working one to one, to working with groups of sixty people …and from busy boisterous toddlers to amazingly, wonderful ninety two years olds!
1993-1995Harrogate College of Arts and Technology,Art and Design Foundation Course. 2yr part time.
1995-1999 BA (hons) Decorative Arts 2/1. Nottingham Trent University.
1999-2000 Craftworks, Studio Pottery Skills course, Derry. (NI, paralell to the Thomastown ceramics training course, funded only a few years.)
2012- 2016BA Animation.1st grade (71percent) Letterkenny Institute of Technology.Derek Hill Award for Creativity at graduation.
1999 DJanogly Showcase, Nottingham.
1999 Young Designers Exhibition. Islington Design Centre, London.
1999 Guildhall Craft Fair Derry.
2000 Angel Row Gallery, Nottingham. ‘Written Art’ group exhibition.
2005-2009 National Craft Fair, RDS,Dublin.
2006-2008 Showcase, RDS, Dublin.
2009dew Donegal Elemental Women group exhibition, Sulis, Carrickmacross,Monaghan.
2010-11 dew Donegal Elemental Women group exhibition,’Celebrating Celtic
Coastal Culture.’Manor House Rathlin Island, Benbecula in the outer
Hebrides and Sherkin island Cork. Start of a touring exhibition through
Ireland,Scotland,Wales and their Islands. Featured on RTE Nationwide.
2010 Culture Night Exhibition in Donegal Gealtacht with dew.
2010 Mill Cove Gallery, Cork. Work selected for the Irish Contempory Ceramic Awards.
2012-ongoing Mary from Dungloe Artists group exhibition.
2012 An Gailearaí, Gweedore, Co.Donegal. ‘Balor na Suile Nimhe’ animation produced by Derrybeg School during CRAFTed project. Exhibited June/September.
2012 ‘Balor na Suile Nimhe’ animation shown during the Balor Festival at An Sean Barracks, Falcarragh, Donegal.
2014-16 The Art House Gallery, Dunfanaghy, Co.Donegal.
2015 Student animated christmas card chosen to send out and represent the college christmas greeting that year.
2016 present my final year animation work to HRH Prince Charles on his visit to Donegal.
2017 ‘Landing’. Three woman exhibition at Donegal Airport
2017 ‘Melting Pot’.Three person exhibition at the Ardara festival.
2017‘Lunasa’ & ‘Changing Donegal Landscapes’ Donegal Gaeltacht Plein Eireexhibitions.
2017‘Art in Mini’ two works selected for this group show, Inishowen, Donegal.
2017DDCOI, Donegal and Sligo CRAFTed projects at the Hyde Gallery, Sligo during the Lily and Lolly Craftfest.
2018‘ We are Donegal’group show Culture Night, 2018 curated by Peadar McDaid.
2019 DCCOI Craft Village at Bloom in the park with our Cupán Cré – eco art keep cup
2019 Culture Night
Group Show ‘When I was a child’ Regional cultural Centre, Letterkenny. Curated by Peadar McDaid
Featured in Peadar McDaid’s film about artists in their Studios, shown at RCC, Letterkenny.
Multi media live link exhibition from Gealtacht hubs ‘Alternative Narratives’ telling the story of new Irish, Curated by Andrew Duggan. An Gealarai, Gweedore.
Group Show of beer mat sized work at the Cottage bar, Letterkenny Donegal.
2019 December Gifted, National Craft Fair, RDS,Dublin. Featured on Nation Wide.
1997/98 Royal Armouries Museum -Leeds. Gallery host.
1999-3 Self Employed. Dunlewey Pottery, Co.Donegal. Making, selling &
2000 Experience with Judy Greene, Michael Kennedy, Benbulben and Potsmiths
2000 Teaching Ceramics night class, FÁS, Derrybeg, Co. Donegal.
2003 Worked with three different potters while travelling in New Zealand.
2002-4 Youthreach, Gortahork, Co.Donegal. Teaching Ceramics.
2004 An Tobár Derrybeg, Co.Donegal. Teaching Ceramics with adults with learning
and physical disabilities,
2007-12 Peace of Earth Ceramics . Self employed potter and Ceramic
jewellery designer, also teaching ceramics.
2008 Set up Arts Centre in the Donegal Gaeltacht at An Chuirt hotel.
2008 Errigal Arts Festival – teaching wheel thrown pottery
2010-on DCCOI, CraftED education flagship programme in Sligo/Donegal .
2012-17 CPD through DDCOI, CRAFTed programme with Donegal and Sligo
2013 CPD for Donegal education centre teachers; in animation.
2012/13 Heritage week. Dungloe, Donegal. Teaching needle and nuno felting
2012-15 Summervolunteer in gallery, Erratic Makers. Dungloe, Co.Donegal.
2013-OnKim Sharkey Art. Home based studio creating illustration, animation and
workshop facilitation, including children’s summer camps. Selling online and
2014-On Carrickfinn Artists Courses. I established this facility to bring professional training
to artists in Donegal. In 2014, Adrienne Geoghegan’s children’s book course
and in 2017/18/19 Niall Laverty of 9 lines, gesture drawing course.
2015 ‘Once Upon A Place’ Laureate na Og project. I put in a proposal to bring Eoghan Colfer and his
storytelling troop to the Donegal Islands; I managed the ocean going leg of this tour sourcing
accommodation, lifeboat and schools , ensuring photo permissions and sourcing
2015-OnCo-Ordinating Charity Caisleain Oir Christmas fair,local 30 year old annual fair.
2016-on DCCOI, CRAFTed project CO-Ordinator for Donegal
2017 Artwork for Udaras na Gaeltacht “Garraí an Ghiorria” Irish language theatre programme.
2017 Cover art ‘Metamorphic’, 100 21st century poets respond to Ovid’s
Metamorphoses. Editors Nessa O’Mahony and Paul Munden, featured on RTE radio. Recentworks Press.
2018 Speaker at The Ark Dublin for DCCOI CRAFTed CPD day.
2018 Facilitated National Drawing Day Workshop at the Glebe Gallery, Donegal.
2018 Developed new Cupán Cré – eco art cup ceramic products.
2018 Cover Art ‘The North’ poetry magazine Irish Edition, launched poetry Ireland and Bloomsbury,
London with the Irish Poetry Society.
2019 Illustrated children’s book ‘Mór agus Muilc’ by John Óg Ó Colla. Publisher Éabhlóid.
2019 Managed and developed branding for a new two day ‘Donegal Artisan’ event for the Maryfrom
Dungloe International Arts festival in partnership with Artist Heidi Nguyen, to promote professional
Donegal makers of food and craft products.
2019 Facilitated National Drawing Day Workshop at the Glebe Gallery, Donegal.
2019 Cover Art ‘ The Hollow Woman on the Island’ by Nessa O’Mahony, featured on RTE radio. Publisher Salmon Poetry.
2019 In conjunction with two other artists established Donegal Creative Breakfast.
2019 Developed ‘Mo Thaisce Cré’ – eco art ceramic jewellery
2019 Cover art, Máire Dinny Wren’s latest poetry collection, to be launched November this year.
2019-20 CRAFTed Programme manager (maternity cover) coordination of national programme CRAFTed at the Design and Crafts Council of Ireland.
2020 March Mór agus Muilc shortlisted to the ten listed books for Children’s Books Ireland and KPMG children’s book of the Year Awards in May.
2020 CRAFTed in classroom and online.
2020 KPMG Children’s Art competition judge online.
2020 Letterkenny Regional Cultural Centre, videos for Spring into Stories from my studio
2020 Visual Development for frameworks with Vera Lalyko of Toon Sisters.
2020 Two videos from my studio and one live class on Mór agus Muilc for juniors Juries, part of CBI Awards.
2020 Futher book artwork development. Working on three books.
2000 Women in business training, Donegal Enterprise Board.
2003 Wet Felting workshop, picture making and hat making in New Zealand.
2004 Weekend in the Woods, County Clare. Traditional blacksmithing.
2005 Weekend in the Woods, County Clare. Traditional Wittling.
2007 Book Binding Course, Cló Ceárdlann Cnóc,Co, Donegal.
2008 Traditional Skills Development Course with Immeall Trá.
2008 Exposing Craft Seminar CCOI. (How best to display craft for exhibition or retail.) Kilkenny.
2009 Basket making course with Theresa Downes, Donegal.
2009 Education and crafts seminar CCOI. Kilkenny.
2010 Training for CRAFTed programme with CCOI .
2010 Marketing with social networks. Bord Failte.
2011 Child protection certificate. Athlone education centre.
2013 Character design and development masterclass, IFB. Panellists Troy
Saliba, Jason Tammemagi (Geronimo Productions), Bronagh O’Hanlon (Brown
Bag), Nicky Gogan (Still Films), Paul Bolger (Pillarstone Productions), Lindsay
Jane Sedgwick (writer of Punky), Ciaran Foy (Citadel) and Gareth Lee (Irish
School of Animation).
2014 Two day character development for illustration and animation masterclass at
the Humdinger festival, Dog Ears, Derry.
2014 Adrienne Geoghan. I organised a week long course in the Donegal gealtacht,
by this reknowned author/illustrator and children’s book bootcamp tutor (Carrickfinn Artist Courses)
2015 DAFF Dublin Animation Film Festival. Mackinon & Saunders, Laika, Brown Bag, Tomm Moore and Aardman studios amongst others delivered presentations at this two day event.
2015 Irish VFX and Animation Summit, Google, Dublin.
2016 Bruce Block, amazing masterclass on visual storytelling for film, animation
and visual effects with Screen Training Ireland.
2016 Directing animation for features,shorts and tv with Seamus Reilly, Tomm Moore,
Niamh Sharkey, Seamus Malone and others. Animation skillnet training.
2016 Storytelling Masterclass with John Aoshima (cedits: Kubo and the two strings,
Gravity Falls, American Dad)
2016 Children’s Media Conference, Sheffield.
2017 Gesture Drawing masterclass with Niall Laverty, Guiness enterprise centre. Six
week course. Animation Skillnet.
2017 Gesture Drawing three day masterclass with Niall Laverty, in Donegal. Also organised and sourced funding (Carrickfinn Artists Courses).
2017 Karl Gnass ‘Spirit of the Pose’figure drawing workshop.Animation skillnet.
2017‘Heritage through the Arts’, conference. Gweedore, Donegal. Ealain na Gaeltacht.
2018The Ark Dublin for DCCOI CRAFTed CPD day.
2018Gesture Drawing three day masterclass with Niall Laverty, in Donegal. Also organised and sourced funding (Carrickfinn Artists Courses).
2019Bologna Children’s book fair – various industry talks.
2019Life Drawing class with Alan Clarke, T Block Dublin.
2019 Story development for pitching with John Dawson_Animation Skillnet.
Children’s books Ireland