In April and May, I was very honoured to be appointed the Artist in Residence at the brand new luxury Bankside Hotel. The hotel’s ethos is around celebrating art and they have exemplified this by making space in the heart of the hotel for an artist’s studio. Just down the river from Tate Modern, OXO Tower and Southbank, it is the perfect place for a London artist to showcase their work.

The space is beautiful and light, which was ideal to showcase my paintings with gold backgrounds. The figures are painted traditionally in oils, against a vibrant, shining gold backdrop - all of the pieces really shone!

During my time there, I made new figurative works celebrating young, creative entrepreneurial friends of mine living and working in London. In the paintings, I reflected their contemplative characters and enterprising spirit as they balance their creative work, jobs and all the normal stresses of everyday life with tireless resourcefulness and positive attitudes. I also had time to make a new lion painting as well!

Part of the Contemporary Collective residency was to connect with local residence and guests staying at the hotel, so I hosted two workshops where I showed people how to use gold leaf. I drew a small zebra sketch for them and then we went through the step-by-step process of how to embellish them, like I do with my own prints. All of the profits from the ticket price went to the amazing animal charity The David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation.