Sit Down With Our May '20 Featured Artist

Phoebe Cripps

Featured Artist /  May 2020 ScrawlrBox

Phoebe has loved art from a very young age. She received a classical training in fine art at The Florence Academy of Art, graduating from their three year painting program in 2012.

 Phoebe took part in Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year 2017, painting Sue Perkins and Imelda Staunton. She currently lives and paints between Kent and London, always with her terrier, Lupin, in tow, working on commissioned portraits of people and animals, predominantly working in charcoal and chalk, as well as oils.

What do you love most about what you do?

Never thinking of it as a job. Being able to work to my own rhythm. Also drawing and painting from home means I can be with my dog all day.

How do you stay motivated and inspired?

By searching for other creative outlets, not just drawing and painting, it helps keep everything fresh. I also find it important to draw and paint where there is no pressure on the result. I am always inspired by other artists work, by people and by nature! I also teach art classes, which is very inspiring to see other artists enthusiasm. 

Tell us about your artistic journey upuntil now.

I have always loved drawing and painting. After leaving school, where I spent as much time as possible in the art room, I went to Italy to study fine art at The Florence Academy of Art. I feel it took a little time to find my confidence away from the comfort of the close artist community, and without continual guidance from other artists. Since then, I am learning to trust my own critiques and enjoy working in my own company. 

What are your dreams/aspirations for the future?

Having focused much more of my time lately on charcoal, I want to push my oil portraits further, and get into larger, full figure works as well as more still-lifes and landscapes. 

Do you have a favourite, go to art supply/medium to work with?

I love working in charcoal, and I love it’s variety and how you can be very controlled or very expressive with it. But I also love painting in oils. 

Do you plan before starting a new project or do you just dive in and see where creativity takes you?

I don’t always physically plan a project with sketches, but I do think about it a lot before starting. I find I can lose a lot of time sitting and going over an idea, without even putting pencil to paper.

What is your favourite subject matter to focus your artwork on? 

It has, and I think it always will be, portraits. I have recently started some still-lifes and landscapes, which I am really enjoying. But nothing compares to trying to capture a likeness.

Do you have a favourite artist?

If I had to say one, it would be John Singer Sargent. He makes both his drawings and paintings look effortless.

What advice would you give to aspiring artists?

Have patience. Growing familiar with a material can be the key to mastering it. Taking your time and appreciating what you learn from your mistakes. Have faith in your ability, not comparing yourself to others, that no one works at the same pace, that no day drawing is the same to the one before, and to keep doing the thing you love.

Is your work available for purchase? If so, where from?

It is, but most of my work is commission based. My website is, and my Instagram is @phoebe_cripps_artist, where there are details to get in touch, as well as many examples of my work. 

As featured in the May 2020 ScrawlrBox

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