Jo Jarratt


Jo Jarratt


Hi Jo. Thank you so much for all your wonderful submissions to the Artspace Gallery, and for taking the time to talk about you and your work.

Q – What is your background?

A – My background is in 3D art and Modelmaking.  Special effects for film being my main focus at college.

‘A Nice Bit of Bosch’ by Jo Jarratt (Oil Paint)

Q – How did you get into art?

A- I always loved art.  I would spend every free moment drawing and painting.  I took all the arty subjects at school and still I can’t get enough!

‘A Nice Bit of Bosch’ by Jo Jarratt (Pen and Coloured Pencil)

Q – Where do you live and does living there influence your creative process or provide inspiration in another way?

A – I live in The Forest of Dean.  I am inspired by the woods every day.  I love nature, I love colour, I love finding hidden creatures in tree roots.  I love finding interesting bugs and taking photographs of my discoveries. I am inspired by many places.  I enjoy beautiful architecture. I love desolate coastlines. There are very few places that I am not inspired by in one way or another.

‘Chink’ by Jo Jarratt (Coloured Pencil)

Q – What is your chosen subject and why?

A – This is always a difficult question for me.  I work in such a mix of media that I cannot specify my subject.  It is whatever I am working on at the time!

Gesture Drawing by Jo Jarratt

Q – What medium and materials do you work with? How did you decide on this medium?

A – Mixed media.  I will work in coloured pencils and do detailed illustration work, or I will work on a huge scale with paints, plaster, clay, whatever it is I need to create the piece of the moment.

‘Resignation‘ by Jo Jarratt (Coloured Pencil & Acrylic)

Q – Where do you get your inspiration from?

A – Often the Forest where I live, sometimes from other Artists.  I am inspired by people, by their stories.  I love film and the artwork associated with it.

‘Virus’ by Jo Jarratt (Acrylic, charcoal, chalk pastel and crepe paper with a digital filter)

Q – How would you describe your style? How has your style evolved over time, and what has influenced its development?

A – My style varies.  My illustration work is tidy and detailed, my 3D work is often alienesque.  My paintings can be bold brush strokes of finely honed images.

Q – What is your creative process?

A – If I am illustrating, I will map out the plan of what I intend to create, but usually it’s a very messy process.  A rough sketch, or rough model shape that I continue to build on until it becomes the thing I see in my mind’s eye.

I will add things or take things away.  I will step back and blur my eyes to see what needs to happen next. I look at my work in a mirror so I can see it from a whole new view point.

‘Gypsy’ by Jo Jarratt (Coloured pencil)

Q – What’s your studio like?

A – A room with a huge paint stained table, artwork on the walls and models on the shelves!

Q Are there fellow artists who inspire you, who either work with the same media as you, or in other fields?

A – There certainly are!  I work with an amazing group of people at Artspace.  They have taught me so many new things.  The fact I work with such a range of different Artists has enabled me to expand my knowledge of different media, from printmaking and photo transfer to animation and digital media!

Q – How do you know when a piece is finished and when it’s the right time to stop?

A – That’s a tricky one.  With illustration I have a carefully planned out piece, so it is finished when I have completed every detail.

With my more creative work it will be finished when I can see that adding anymore would be too much.

Q – Is there an artwork you are most proud of? Why?

A – I once built a life size throne for The Pied Piper of Hamlyn that looked as if it was carved from stone.  It had rats cast in plaster and made to look like gold.  I was very proud of that.

I think the shear size of it was what I was so proud of.  It really did look like solid stone despite being made from MDF and paper mache.  It was also a challenge to build the initial framework.

‘Artist’ by Jo Jarratt (Digitally enhanced photo)

Q – Are there any other art forms that you would like to try?

A – I would like to try resin casting.  I would also love to be able to cast sculptures in bronze.

‘Reaching Out’ by Jo Jarratt (Collage )

Q – What are you working on at the moment?

A – For myself, I am currently working on an A1 mixed media piece based on the current pandemic.  It is very ‘angry’ to look at, but it has been very therapeutic.

For others, I am working on The Arts Awards and Drama sessions.