Heatherleys’ Portrait Diploma Graduate Sara Melly joins City & Guilds
Congratulations to Heatherleys’ Graduate Sara Melly who’s been accepted on to the two year MA in Fine Art at City & Guilds of London Art School beginning in September 2023.
Sara is a visual artist based in Winchester, Hampshire. She studied at Heatherleys from 2018 to 2022 obtaining, first, the Diploma in Portraiture, then the Post Diploma in Figurative Painting. She now makes figurative paintings which are surreal and psychological heavily influenced by her former career as a clinical psychologist in the NHS and the Ministry of Defence.
“Studying at Heatherleys on the Post Diploma in Figurative Painting allowed me to explore making images, utilising all the direct observational painting skills I had learned on the Portrait Diploma, but expanding the scope and range of my work to include working from the imagination.”
Sarah Melly on her experience on the Post Diploma in Figurative Painting
Sarah Melly’s work is influenced by her former career as a clinical psychologist in the NHS and Ministry of Defence. She is interested in the way that feelings and emotions can be expressed through art. She often creates images where reality and unreality come together, and where the subject’s internal state is all-important, but remains unknown.
Sarah believes that art can be a powerful tool for exploring the human condition. She hopes that her work will help people to understand themselves and each other better.
Sarah’s paintings often incorporate images of adults and children in environments that evoke disquiet or menace. She uses paint, print, drawing, and digital collage to convey the complex emotions that can be experienced in these situations. Her intention is to show the possibility of being exposed even when supposedly safe, feeling lonely even in a crowd, and plagued by memories even when an abuser is long gone.
In addition to being informed by her experiences as a psychological therapist, Sarah’s work is also influenced by the training in observational drawing and painting which she had during the Portraiture Diploma here at Heatherleys. This influence can be seen in the way the figure and figuration remain central to her work. It also appears through her use of traditional drawing and painting in charcoal and oil paint, juxtaposed with screen printing, photography, and digital collage.