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Thea Smartt Henry / Blog Standard Whole Post

Hello there, and welcome to Thea’s eclectic world..

Hello you! Thanks for dropping by my blog, where I’ll be exploring a diverse range of creative topics. I’m Thea, and I’m excited to share this creative journey with you.

About me

Having graduated from the London College of Fashion, I ventured into non-creative fields for a while. However, my love for fashion, especially costume jewellery, never waned. This love led me to explore online tutorials and ignited a passion for crafting unique jewellery pieces.

Photo of Thea by Azu Morales

A Relic Bar Neckpiece in progress. Every piece at Thea Smartt Henry is handmade and individually remarkable.

A journey of creativity

Photo by Tobias Carlsson on Unsplash

In early 2015, I decided to take my curiosity a step further and enrolled in short taster courses at the London Jewellery School and City Lit. These experiences opened up a fascinating world of possibilities, introducing me to the captivating art of working with polymer clay, glass beads, metal wires, and more.

Photo by Tobias Carlsson on Unsplash

The Magic of Polymer Clay

One particular three-hour course on polymer clay left me in awe. The versatility and effects I could achieve with this medium were simply incredible. Even more inspiring was witnessing a class of 12 people create entirely unique pieces based on the same demonstrations. It was then that I knew I had found my creative calling.

Photo by Thea; her work produced in a ‘polymer clay effects class’ by Debbie Carlton, 2015

Embracing the journey

In the same year, I launched my website to share my passion with fellow jewellery enthusiasts. My goal was to offer distinctive and exceptional pieces that bring joy to those who appreciate the allure of handmade art.

Screenshot from theasmartthenry.co.uk homepage, featured photographer: George Eyo, model: Sanya Lerin.

More than ‘just’ jewellery

But there’s so much more to explore! This blog will be a source of inspiration and relaxation. We’ll delve into the wonders of creativity as a tool for enhancing wellbeing. From discussing how creativity can be a mindful and soul-nourishing practice to exploring various art forms that inspire and soothe, we’ll uncover the positive impact of embracing creativity in our lives.

Join the journey

Take a moment to browse my website, explore the captivating pieces, and feel free to reach out for a custom design or just to say hello. I’m always thrilled to connect with like-minded souls who appreciate the beauty of handcrafted creations.

Contact me here or on Instagram.

Let’s get creative

This blog is all about sharing the love of art and creativity. Together, let’s celebrate the wonders of the creative process in a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Thanks for stopping by! I hope you’ll find a spark of inspiration that will stay with you long after you leave this little corner of the internet.

Thea x

Embracing Imperfection: Lessons from a Pottery Class

Today, I want to share a popular parable [click here to read about its origin], that offers a valuable lesson in creativity, learning, and the beauty of imperfection. It’s a story about a pottery teacher who decided to experiment with their class.

The teacher split the class into two groups. The first group was tasked with making one pot per day for 30 days, focusing on quantity over quality. The second group, however, was instructed to perfect a single pot over the same 30-day period.

At the end of the month, the results were surprising. While the first group, which focused on quantity, produced an array of beautiful, unique pots, not a single masterpiece came from the group that had spent the entire month perfecting a single pot.

Image by Diana Light on Unsplash

The Power of Learning from Mistakes

So, what can we learn from this tale? It’s simple: learning from your mistakes always leads to a better quality result.

The students in the first group were not afraid to make mistakes. They embraced imperfection, knowing that each mistake was an opportunity to learn and grow. As a result, they were able to experiment with different techniques, styles, and designs, ultimately producing a diverse range of beautiful pots.

On the other hand, the students in the second group were rendered ineffective by perfectionism. They were so focused on creating the perfect pot that they were afraid to take risks, make mistakes, and learn from their experiences. As a result, they ended up with little to show for their efforts.

Image by Taylor Heery on Unsplash

Image by Tom Crew on Unsplash

Stop letting perfection inertia halt you in your tracks

This story is a powerful reminder to all of us: perfectionism can lead to inertia. When we are so focused on achieving perfection, we miss the opportunity to learn, grow, and create something unique and beautiful.

But embracing imperfection isn’t just about learning from our mistakes. It’s also about embracing the beauty of the imperfect. In creative fields, as in other areas of life, it’s often the imperfections that make something truly beautiful and unique. A perfectly symmetrical necklace may be technically impressive, but it’s the slight asymmetry, the small imperfections, that can give the same piece its character and charm.

So, the next time you find yourself striving for perfection, remember the lesson of the pottery class. Embrace imperfection, learn from your mistakes, and don’t be afraid to take risks. It’s through trial and error that we discover our true potential and create something truly extraordinary.

Thea’s handmade Peach Cane reversible earrings are perfectly imperfect.

Embrace Imperfection, Embrace Creativity

In the end, the most important lesson we can learn from the pottery class parable is this: creativity thrives in an environment of experimentation, risk-taking, and imperfection. So, whether you’re a jewellery maker, a writer, or a musician, don’t be afraid to embrace imperfection. It’s often the imperfect, the flawed, and the unexpected that lead to the most beautiful and creative results.

With love and creativity.

Thea x

Further reading

Thea’s Artistic Odyssey: A 100 Day Project Reflection

One lazy afternoon, lost in the social media abyss, a hashtag snagged my attention: #the100dayproject. Curiosity piqued, I dove in, discovering a vibrant community of artists on quests unlike any other.

The project concept is refreshingly simple: choose something creative, do it every day for 100 days, and share your journey on social media using the #The100DayProject hashtag. Who knew this virtual rabbit hole would lead me on a meandering adventure of self-expression?

A screenshot from #the100dayproject hashtag on Instagram

Chapter 1: Batik Beginnings (2020)

The world was a swirling pre-pandemic mess in 2020. It was then I embarked on my first 100-day adventure. I found myself drawn to the rhythmic patterns and vibrant colours of batik fabrics.

Day after day, I poured my heart into creating designs inspired by the rich heritage of Dutch wax and Indonesian batiks. Each stroke of my pen and roll of polymer clay felt like a tiny act of defiance against the chaos, a way to bring beauty into a world that desperately needed it.

Thea’s 2020, 100DayProject summary

What is Dutch Wax?

Dutch wax, also known as African wax print fabric or simply wax print, is a type of colourful and intricately patterned cotton cloth with a distinctive waxy texture. Originating in the Netherlands, Dutch wax fabric gained popularity in West and Central Africa during the colonial era and has since become an integral part of African fashion and culture. Despite its name, Dutch wax fabric is not exclusively Dutch; it is produced by various companies worldwide, including those in the Netherlands, England, and Africa.

The unique appeal of Dutch wax fabric lies in its vibrant colours, bold patterns, and cultural significance. Each design often carries symbolic meaning, reflecting aspects of African culture, traditions, and beliefs. These fabrics are commonly used in clothing, such as dresses, skirts, and head wraps, as well as in home décor and accessories.

Dutch wax fabric is celebrated for its versatility, making it suitable for both formal occasions and everyday wear. Its enduring popularity highlights its status as not just a fabric, but a symbol of identity, heritage, and creativity within African communities worldwide.

A polymer clay veneer (sheet), inspired by the Nkrumah Pencil batik fabric motif.


Chapter 2: Cutting a New Path (2021)

As the calendar flipped to a new year, the world remained stubbornly stuck in “weird” mode. Lockdowns stretched on, each day a test of resilience. But even amidst the exhaustion, a creative spark again, flickered to life.

Despite the weariness and exhaustion that permeated the air, I yearned to carve a new path, so I grabbed some linoleum blocks and carving tools, ready to explore the world of lino cutting. Each day, I coaxed a fresh design from the block’s surface. These creations, from bold prints to textured jewellery pieces, became my little haven of creative solace in a world filled with uncertainty.

Thea’s 2021 100DayProject summary

What is Lino Print Carving?

Lino print carving, also known as linoleum block printing, is a versatile printmaking technique that involves carving designs into a sheet of linoleum to create a relief surface. Linoleum, a natural material made from linseed oil, wood flour, and other binders, provides a soft and smooth surface that is easy to carve. This medium gained popularity in the early 20th century as a more accessible alternative to woodblock printing.

The process of lino print carving begins with transferring a design onto the linoleum surface, either by drawing directly onto the material or by transferring a traced design. Carving tools, such as gouges and knives, are then used to carefully remove areas of the linoleum around the design, leaving the raised areas that will receive ink. Once the carving is complete, ink is applied to the surface of the linoleum block using a roller, and then paper is pressed onto the block to transfer the inked design.

Lino print carving allows for a wide range of artistic expression, from bold and graphic designs to more intricate and detailed imagery. Artists can experiment with different carving techniques to achieve varying textures and effects in their prints. This accessible and rewarding process has found applications in various artistic fields, including fine art, illustration, and graphic design, offering artists the opportunity to create unique and handmade prints with rich textures and expressive qualities.

A selection of linocuts and a postcard print made from a ‘Fleur’ cut with acrylic paint.


Chapter 3: The Pause and the Polymer Clay Cane (2022-2023)

After a brutal year and a half of juggling creative and corporate responsibilities, I reached a turning point. It was time to hit the creative pause button, recharge, and find my centre again.

As the days in 2022 stretched into weeks and months, a familiar itch returned. The artist in me craved an outlet. Enter polymer clay canes in 2023 – a kaleidoscope of colours and shapes begging to be explored. With each cane I crafted, I rediscovered the simple joy of experimentation and the beauty of embracing imperfection.


What is a Polymer Clay Cane?

Polymer clay is a type of synthetic modelling material that remains pliable until baked in an oven, making it ideal for sculpting and crafting. Polymer clay cane making is a process used to produce patterns and designs. Canes made from polymer clay are typically used in various crafting applications, including jewellery making, pottery, and decorative arts.

The process of creating polymer clay canes begins with selecting and conditioning the clay, which involves kneading and warming it to make it soft and malleable. Once conditioned, the clay is shaped into long, thin rods or logs, often in different colours. These rods are then arranged and stacked together to form a pattern or design, similar to the technique used in millefiori glassmaking.

After the desired design is assembled, the stacked clay is compressed and rolled to reduce air pockets and ensure a smooth surface. The resulting cylinder is then stretched and elongated to create a long, thin cane with a pattern running throughout its length. Depending on the complexity of the design, multiple canes may be created and combined to achieve more intricate patterns.

Polymer clay canes offer endless possibilities for creativity and experimentation, allowing artists to explore various techniques such as skinner blends, cane reduction, and cane slicing to achieve different effects. Once the canes are complete, they can be sliced into thin cross-sections to reveal the intricate patterns within, which can then be incorporated into a wide range of projects, from jewellery components to embellishments for polymer clay vessels and sculptures. The versatility and vibrant colours of polymer clay make it a popular choice among artists and crafters seeking to add unique and personalised touches to their creations.

A cane veneer (sheet), ready to cut into shapes for earrings.


Chapter 4: A Return to Simplicity (2024)

As a new year dawned, I felt a shift within myself. This time, I desired a return to creative simplicity. Armed with a motley crew of pencils, markers, watercolours, and acrylics, I embraced the freedom of doodling, letting go of rules and expectations.

It was like going back to the very essence of creation, a celebration of the pure joy found in the act itself.

Snippets from Thea’s 2024 100DayProject

What is Doodling?

Doodling is a spontaneous and often unconscious form of drawing characterised by its free-flowing nature and lack of predetermined structure. It involves creating random, abstract, or sometimes representational sketches, usually while the mind is engaged in other activities such as listening to a lecture, talking on the phone, or attending a meeting. Despite its seemingly haphazard appearance, doodling serves various purposes, including relaxation, concentration enhancement, and creative expression.

The act of doodling provides a means of channeling creativity and relieving stress by allowing the mind to wander and explore without constraints. Doodles can range from simple shapes, patterns, and squiggles to more elaborate and detailed designs, depending on the individual’s mood, interests, and level of artistic skill. Some people use doodling as a form of meditation, finding solace in the rhythmic and repetitive motion of drawing.

Beyond its therapeutic benefits, doodling can also stimulate cognitive processes and aid in information retention. Studies have shown that doodling can improve concentration and focus by keeping the brain engaged during monotonous or repetitive tasks. It serves as a form of active listening and helps individuals stay alert and attentive, particularly in situations where sustained attention is required.

Additionally, doodling serves as a form of creative exploration and self-expression. It allows individuals to experiment with different shapes, lines, and textures, often leading to unexpected and innovative results. Doodling can be a source of inspiration for artists and designers, providing a platform for generating ideas and exploring new artistic styles and techniques.

Overall, doodling is a versatile and accessible form of artistic expression that transcends age, skill level, and cultural barriers. Whether scribbled absentmindedly on the margins of a notebook or meticulously crafted during moments of introspection, doodles offer a glimpse into the inner workings of the mind and serve as a testament to the boundless creativity inherent in every individual.

Monochrome doodles from the 2024 project


The Ever-Evolving Journey

Looking back on this artistic odyssey, I realise the 100-Day Project is more than just a challenge. It’s a powerful reminder of the transformative power of daily practice.

With each stroke, carve, and doodle, I peeled back layers, discovering new facets of myself and my artistic voice. As I stand at the threshold of the next chapter, excitement and anticipation bubble within me. This adventure has only just begun, and I can’t wait to see where the messy magic takes me next.

Screenshots of Thea’s work from the #Thee100Days hashtag on Instagram

Further reading

Unlocking Serenity: Creating Calm Moments Through Doodling

Finding some semblance of solace in this busy and often horrific world has become a cherished necessity. In addition to my love of all things polymer clay, I stumbled upon another practice that has brightened some dark days recently, doodling with colouring pens.

In this post, I will share why this artistic escape has become my haven in this current season, and how it might just become yours too.

Untitled Doodles by Thea

A canvas for my thoughts

As someone who often finds it hard to put my deeper thoughts into words, vibrant pens and a blank canvas give me the space to convey emotions and ideas in a way that feels uniquely mine. It’s like a visual diary where every stroke frees my mind from the weight of unspoken thoughts.

Lost in the moment

There’s something magical about losing myself in the unstructured patterns and colours of doodling. The mindful focus required to create these designs is a gentle anchor, pulling me away from the chaos outside and within. It’s in these moments of concentration that I find a respite, a temporary escape into a world of my creation.

Untitled Doodle by Thea

A colourful balm

Stress is an unwelcome companion we all know too well. The rhythmic movement of my hand and the vivid colours or patterns blending while I’m doodling create a soothing symphony that helps lower the stress-induced tension in my body providing much-needed relief when life feels like a storm.

Igniting imagination

The beauty of doodling lies in its simplicity. There are no rules, no critiques – just a blank piece of paper waiting to be filled.

It’s a reminder that creativity is not reserved for the skilled few but is a gift we can all unwrap and enjoy.

Accessible art, anytime

Doodling is effortlessly accessible. There’s no need for fancy art supplies or a dedicated studio. The very act of doodling is a reminder that self-care doesn’t have to be elaborate.

Untitled Doodle by Thea

An emotional outlet

Each doodle is a visual representation of my emotions, a form of personal therapy without the need for words. The colours I choose, the patterns I create – they can speak volumes about what’s going on inside my mind. It’s a gentle way to confront and process feelings, turning a blank page into a mirror reflecting my inner landscape.

Untitled Doodle by Thea

As I wrap up this reflection on my doodling journey (when will I next write that phrase?) I’m reminded that sometimes the simplest acts hold the deepest meaning. In a world clamouring for our attention, finding solace in the quiet strokes of a pen is a reminder of the power of mindfulness and creativity to nourish the soul.

As you navigate the ups and downs of life, may you find your canvas for tranquillity and may the vibrant colours of self-expression guide you through even the darkest of days.

Thea x


Further reading

The Transformative Power of the 100DayProject: Art, Wellbeing, and Personal Growth

As I gear up for another round of the 100DayProject, I’m keen to share my artistic endeavours, the connection between art and wellbeing and the the warmth that art can bring to our lives.

Art and Wellbeing: A Symbiotic Relationship

Before delving into the upcoming 100-day journey, let’s explore the connection between art and mental health.

Art, in its various forms, has proven benefits that extend beyond mere creative expression:

Thea’s mindmap on Art & Wellbeing

Engaging in artistic activities can serve as a gateway to stress relief and mental calmness. Whether wielding a paintbrush, pen or piece of polymer clay, the focus on the creative process rather than the result becomes my sanctuary.

The challenges posed when practising art, such as considering colour, lines, shapes, and textures, transform the act of creation into an enjoyable problem-solving adventure. This journey, where the process itself is the reward, fosters not only a quiet mind but also creative growth without the burden of perfection.

I’m particularly drawn to abstract drawing as I find it a comforting outlet for creativity, free from prescribed expectations and restrictions.

The Benefits of the 100-Day Project: A Catalyst for Growth

​The 100DayProject is an art challenge with a very simple premise: Choose a creative project, do it every single day for 100 days, and share your process on social media using the hashtag #The100DayProject.

Participating in the 100-Day Project comes with a multitude of benefits that extend beyond the realm of art:

Examples of Thea’s work from previous 100DayProjects: Head of Family batik motif developed into jewellery design

Overcoming Perfectionism: Daily posting forces participants to move past perfectionist tendencies, focusing on consistent creation rather than flawless outcomes.

Building Community: Sharing the creative process daily fosters a community emotionally connected to the artist, creating a powerful bond.

Skill Development: Daily practice builds muscle memory and skillsets, making it easier to manifest creative visions.

Examples of Thea’s work from previous 100DayProjects: Fleur lino-cut postcards

Creative Eye Development: The project sharpens the participant’s ability to notice details like lines, shapes, light, and colour.

Continuous Improvement: The project pushes creators to overcome plateaus, challenging themselves to improve and explore new territories.

Examples of Thea’s work from previous 100DayProjects: Nkrumah’s Pencil batik motif developed into jewellery

Visual Record of Progress: Daily posts create a visual record of improvement, boosting confidence and showcasing the evolution of skills.

Style Development: Over time, participants develop and refine a unique artistic style.

Building a Body of Work: The completed project yields a substantial collection of work, serving as a foundation for future projects, inspiration, or potential products for sale.

Navigating Successes and Failures: A Personal Reflection

While my initial journey into the 100-Day Project during the tumultuous year of 2020 was rewarding, subsequent attempts presented challenges. Balancing commitments along with daily creation, photography and social media posting proved overwhelming at times, leading to unfinished projects. My 2024 plan, however, holds promise for a more manageable and fulfilling experience.

Aims for 2024: Balancing Passion and Practicality

Quote by James Clear. Image is a lino cut created by Thea as part of the 2021 100DayProject, along with a Fleur neckpiece in process.

For this year’s 100-Day Project, I’ve considered James Clear’s advice on habits — choosing something sustainable even on the toughest days. Here are my aims and aspirations for the upcoming project:

Areas to Focus On:

  • More time on freeform art practice.
  • Introducing breaks within the project, including weekends off.
  • Less time on social media planning and posting.

Photo by Paul Fiedler on Unsplash

Exciting Pursuits:

  • Building my confidence to ‘disturb’ a clean page.
  • Privately exploring colours, shapes, forms, lines, composition, and texture and how I characterise them or read meaning into their combined composition.
  • Learning to create unrestricted shapes, experimenting with random themes and doodles.

Photo by hao wang on Unsplash

Approach to Social Media:

  • Regular progress sharing 2-3 times a week.
  • Simple posts with no detailed captions, solely emphasising the day’s count, (‘Day 1/100’ etc).
  • Weekends off for a balanced creative experience.

Photo by hao wang on Unsplash

As I embark on this year’s 100-Day Project, the anticipation is coupled with valuable insights from past experiences. The project not only serves as a creative outlet but also as a tool for personal growth, community building, and a celebration of the profound impact that art can have on our overall wellbeing.

Stay tuned on Instagram for updates on my journey, and let’s explore the transformative power of creativity together!


The100DayProject launches this year on 18 Feb 2024


Thea x

Further Reading

Photo by Simona Marinkova on Unsplash

Embracing the Equinox: Creative reassurance during the winter’s chill

In the UK where I live, the New Year unfolds amid the cool embrace of winter. As a creative, I find myself grappling at this point of the year, with the challenges that the cold and dark days bring. The promise of a Spring Equinox in March, however, offers a welcome contrast.

Spring Equinox symbolises a transition in seasons and a palpable shift in the atmosphere, bringing with it the promise of growth, increased light, and a flourishing creative spirit.

Winter’s chill and creative hibernation

The arrival of the calendar New Year in the heart of winter can be a double-edged sword for artists. The biting cold and extended nights can create an environment that feels inhospitable to creativity. Inspiration may be harder to come by, and the natural inclination to hibernate indoors can sometimes lead to a creative hibernation, leaving us yearning for a spark.

Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash

The Equinox as a catalyst for change

The Spring Equinox, in contrast, is a symbol of hope in winter’s chill. Unlike the abrupt shift accompanying the calendar New Year, the Equinox can signal a gradual awakening.

As we inch towards spring, there’s a noticeable change in the air. The days lengthen, and the promise of increased sunlight becomes a powerful catalyst for change. This shift becomes a metaphorical thawing, both in nature and in our creative pursuits.

Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash

Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash

A season of growth

Photo by Hugo Sousa on Unsplash

The Equinox marks not just a change in weather but a season of growth. The once-dormant earth begins to stir with renewed energy, and similarly, our creative landscapes can experience a revitalisation. The increased daylight serves as a natural stimulant, coaxing our ideas out of hibernation and into the warm glow of possibility.

Photo by Hugo Sousa on Unsplash

Emerging from the creative winter

Winter might have felt like a creative slumber, but the Equinox signals the emergence from this wintry cocoon. The thawing of the creative landscape allows for a more fertile ground where ideas can take root and flourish. Just as nature begins to bloom, our artistic pursuits are poised for a burst of colour and vitality.

Photo by Jacob Hilton on Unsplash

Photo by Jacob Hilton on Unsplash

Basking in the Equinox light

Photo by Hugo Sousa on Unsplash

The Equinox not only brings physical light but metaphorical illumination to our creative paths. As the days grow longer, there’s a sense of optimism and anticipation. The additional light becomes a companion on our creative journey, providing clarity, inspiration, and the encouragement to explore new avenues.

Photo by Hugo Sousa on Unsplash

So, why did I choose to delve into the significance of the Spring Equinox on New Year’s Day? It’s all about encouragement and reassurance. You might be someone brimming with enthusiasm today, all set with meticulous plans and invigorated by your resolutions, ready to conquer the world. Alternatively, you may already find yourself facing the aftermath of the New Year’s hurdle, feeling the weight of promises made to yourself and others just a day ago. If you’re in the latter group, here’s the reassurance: you have time.

"..When all the shock of white
and taffy, the world’s baubles and trinkets, leave
the pavement strewn with the confetti of aftermath,
the leaves come. 

Patient, plodding, a green skin
growing over whatever winter did to us, a return
to the strange idea of continuous living despite
the mess of us, the hurt, the empty. 

Fine then,
I’ll take it, the tree seems to say, a new slick leaf
unfurling like a fist to an open palm, I’ll take it all."

Instructions on Not Giving Up - Ada Limón

The Equinox offers a gentle reminder that the journey towards growth and creative resurgence doesn’t adhere to a rigid timeline. Take a deep breath, ease up on yourself, and recognise that the Equinox provides a generous runway for reflection and recalibration. There’s ample time to think, prepare, and approach your creative aspirations with renewed vigour when the season of growth and increased light arrives.

Photo by Waqar on Unsplash

Photo by Waqar on Unsplash

May this be a time when our ideas thaw, take root, and bloom into the vibrant expressions we’ve been nurturing throughout the winter chill. Here’s to the Equinox! A herald of inspiration and the renewal of our creative spirit.


2024’s Spring Equinox will take place on March the 20th.


Further reading

Beyond Labels: Celebrating the Diverse Expressions of UK Artists and Crafters

In last month’s post, I chatted with ChatGPT on the age-old question of art vs craft and that while both approaches require skill, arts and crafts often involve different skills and priorities.

Art vs crafts recap

Crafts generally emphasise technical proficiency and mastery of specific techniques. and often involves honing skills through practice and experience. *Crafters develop expertise in working with particular materials or tools to create well-crafted, functional objects with a focus on precision, attention to detail, and the ability to produce consistent and high-quality results.

*The grammatically correct wording around craft practice are ‘craftsman’ and ‘craftsmanship’ as gender-neutral terms, but they’re not really gender-neutral, are they? I chose a couple of alternatives [from this article] when writing this post.

Photo by Taylor Heery on Unsplash

Art, on the other hand, encompasses a broader range of creative expressions that may or may not prioritise technical skill in the same way as crafts. While skill and *craftitute can certainly be important in art, artistic expression often places more emphasis on originality, innovation, conceptual depth, and emotional impact. Artists may explore unconventional techniques, challenge traditional norms, or prioritise the creative process and experimentation over technical perfection.

Photo by Frankie Cordoba on Unsplash

Artists and Crafter examples

Here are a few notable UK artists and crafters, click the names below to read more and view examples of their beautiful work.

[Chris Ofili]

Artist Chris Ofili is a renowned British artist of Nigerian descent. He is known for his vibrant and intricate paintings that often incorporate diverse materials, such as glitter, resin, and elephant dung. Ofili’s work explores themes of identity, race, and cultural hybridity.

[Yinka Shonibare]

Artist Yinka Shonibare is a British-Nigerian artist who works in various mediums, including sculpture, installation, and painting. His works often examine issues of colonialism, globalisation, and cultural identity. Shonibare is particularly known for his use of African-inspired textiles and his exploration of historical narratives.

[Lubaina Himid]

Artist Lubaina Himid is a British artist, curator, and professor of contemporary art. She became the first Black woman to win the Turner Prize in 2017. Himid’s work often addresses themes of race, history, and colonialism, and she frequently incorporates found objects, textiles, and paintings in her installations.

[Nifemi Marcus-Bello]

Crafter Nifemi Marcus-Bello is a British-Nigerian ceramic artist who creates sculptural vessels and functional ceramics. Her work often draws inspiration from her Nigerian heritage, incorporating traditional patterns and motifs into her contemporary designs.

[Serge Attukwei Clottey]

Crafter Serge Attukwei Clottey is a Ghanaian artist and sculptor known for his innovative use of discarded plastic materials to create contemporary art. He often combines traditional weaving and craft techniques with recycled plastic to address environmental and social issues.

[Bisa Butler]

Crafter Bisa Butler is a contemporary textile artist known for her stunning quilted portraits that celebrate the African diaspora. Her work often combines elements of quilting and storytelling, using vibrant fabrics to create intricate and detailed portraits.

[A Crafting-Artist: Simone Brewster]

And finally, an example of how fluid and subjective the line between art and craft can be! Simone Brewster can be considered as both an artist and a jeweller, working across the different mediums. Simone Brewster’s work encompasses both artistic and craft elements, as she combines innovative designs with traditional craft techniques in her jewellery creations. It’s a great example of how individuals can bridge the gap between art and craft, blurring the boundaries and creating unique and diverse forms of expression.

These are just a few examples of the many talented artists and crafters who have made significant contributions to the arts and crafts scene in the UK. There are many more individuals whose work deserves recognition and exploration.