Trudi Murray’s shelfie

Photo by Juliet McKee
Photo by Juliet McKee

Artist and illustrator Trudi Murray shows us the shelf above the desk in her art studio

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  1. Keys feature regularly in my paintings – I very much enjoy the mysterious idea of a key unlocking… who knows what? A hidden door? A locked cupboard? A treasure chest? I haven’t found what this key opens yet, but I keep it hanging here to remind myself to be curious. This key was in one of the very first paintings I sold, so it’s pretty symbolic.
  2. I try to have flowers cut from the garden at all times on my windowsill. I’m pretty hopeless at gardening, but the flowers seem to come up happily without my assistance and, even more fortunately, I love the ragged wildflower look. It’s a real joy to have them around.
  3. A friend gave me this battery-powered radio when I used to paint in a shed in the garden. It had no power or heat. I loved working in there, just me, next door’s cat and the radio. I have a proper inside studio now – it’s warm and dry! But I keep this radio on the shelf to remind me of friendship.
  4. My lovely artistic granny made this pressed flower picture and I’m so lucky to have it now. My earliest memories are of making art with her – collages and models, and pictures like this one from leaves and dried flowers.
  5. I make paintings and illustrations from all sorts of materials – acrylic paint, inks, oil paint, printing ink, watercolour. When I’m painting, I’ll use brushes, sticks, bits of wood – anything that makes a good mark. It’s great to have it all to hand in such an inspiring space.
  6. Sketchbooks are where most of my work starts. I keep a constant visual diary – an illustrated journal of ideas and things or people I’ve seen (or imagined!). I would be lost without my sketchbooks, and carry one everywhere.

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