Artist's Profile

Claire Henley
Claire Henley

During my childhood, I spent so much time drawing and painting that enrolling at art college seemed a natural extension. I studied for a graphic design degree in London (although ‘studying’ might not be the most appropriate word) and, whilst there, I met Phoenix artist Alison Vickery and we have remained friends ever since.

After college, I worked for four years in a textile design studio, creating such unusual items as animal-shaped oven gloves and shark-shaped bath mats. I also designed products for several large UK companies and eventually decided that a freelance life was for me. I took a deep breath and jumped ship, soon finding myself working on a bewildering range of things such as toys, homeware, fabrics, giftware, cards, tins, Christmas decorations and illustrations for children’s books. I began writing books too, and now love visiting schools and libraries to talk to the children about being an author/illustrator. I have also recently started painting on a larger scale, with prints and original canvases being sold through several galleries.

So, back to Alison Vickery. “Why don’t you submit some designs?” she said over a glass of wine at a party in 2008. I did, and was delighted to have two accepted straight away. I really enjoy working for Flamingo – their quirky sense of humour and love of different styles is very refreshing for an artist. Quite a few of my designs have been inspired by an experience or a memory.

I live in Stratford upon Avon with the aforementioned husband and two teenage daughters, where I try to be creative while remembering to hang out the washing and avoid the perils of the nearby biscuit tin.

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