Carol James studied at both Brighton and West Sussex Colleges of Art, and graduated with a Fine Arts degree in 1973, specialising in printing, sculpture and printmaking.
Ballydehob and West Cork has been my home since 1974. I occasionally venture away. I have always painted and drawn, using my art to express my feelings thoughts an passions.
My early work was very imaginative, surreal, and symbolic, enabling me to capture thoughts and feelings about human society. Later I explored expressionism through the tactileness of paint and dynamic shapes and structures of the human figure.
When I moved to West Cork from Kent I was completely overwhelmed with its wild beauty, nature, and rural life, which I attempted to capture and create its essence by pure observation. Although so often when I look back at these paintings, there has also been a subconscious choice of subject that has connected with whatever else was going on in my life at the time.
I also make enlarged Irish wild animal sculptures to celebrate these beautiful creatures. I often make these animals whilst working with young people. I involve them in the whole working process which is very rewarding.
In recent years I was privileged to travel across a lot of the wilderness in Southern African countries, where I saw most magnificent wild animals roaming free, some of which I have painted.
The whole experience had a profound effect on me and a realisation that these magnificent creatures are really under threat and need protecting. I hope that in future years I can use my artwork in someway to help protect these creatures in their natural habitat.
Carol James 2015.