Stephanie Gay Silk Artist
Born in Somerset but having lived in Berkshire for almost 30 years, in 2019 Stephanie moved to the North Somerset coast with her husband Andrew and miniature poodle Frankie.
Stephanie has worked as a silk artist for over 20 years. She exhibits her work widely through galleries, group and solo exhibitions. She has had work included in the Society of Women Artists annual exhibition at the Mall Galleries in London. She was named Berkshire and Buckinghamshire Life Landscape Painter of the Year 2017.
“For me, painting is about not only capturing the visual appearance of my subject but, more importantly, the feelings it inspired in me”
My paintings are mainly painted on pure Chinese habotai 8 silk with specialist silk paints. I start each work with a drawing on paper and then trace the image onto a piece of white silk stretched onto a wooden frame. I then apply a special paint called gutta, which contains natural latex called gutta-percha, over my traced lines. This creates a resistive barrier through which the coloured ink will not flow. I apply the coloured ink with a brush and use salt dropped into the ink whilst wet to created textured effects.
The finished painting is removed from the wooden frame, ironed to fix the colour in the fabric and stretched onto acid-free mountboard ready for framing.
I have also done a series of paintings on British shot taffeta silk woven at Whitchurch Silk Mill in Hampshire. This grade 1 listed mill is the oldest working silk mill in the UK.
How I feel about my work is summed up very well by William Henry Davies poem “Leisure”