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Amy splits her time between working as a traditional signwriter and academic. Her signwriting practice is heavily influenced by her upbringing travelling steam fairs in the West Country and she now works to commission predominantly in the fairground, circus and heritage industries.

This practice is balanced with her academic work, teaching roles as writing papers for conferences and journals. As well as MA Illustration at Falmouth, Amy currently teaches on the MA course at Camberwell, as well as BA Illustration at Arts University Bournemouth and the University of Plymouth. In her teaching, she focuses on the relationship between text and image – how illustrative typography can be used – and illustrated narrative theory. She is particularly interested in an illustrator’s relationship between research and practice, specifically how illustration research can be shown as a form of practice, and is currently pursuing this through her academic writing / publishing.

Four of Amy's career highlights

  • Completion of a Practice-Led PhD in 2020, which re-established the identities of fairground females through the construction of an illustrated archive. This was undertaken with extensive research at the National Fairground and Circus Archive, Sheffield, and was part-funded by The Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust.

  • Bringing the craft of signwriting to a range of notable clients, including: Netflix’s The Crown, Quadrille Press Publishers, Fortnum & Mason’s, Taylor’s of Harrogate and Smythsons.

  • Being part of the collaboration ‘Cassiopeia’: a group of five illustrative practitioners who explore the relationship between research and practice. Iterations so far include exhibitions (APT Gallery), residencies (Primary Studios, Nottingham and Guest Projects, London), talks (Speaking Signs, Southbank, amongst others) and a publication (Atlantic Press Publishers).

  • Becoming the first female trustee (in its history) of the Fairground Heritage Trust in Spring 2020. She now works in a curatorial capacity for the trust and the fairground museum.

A little advice?

Find a niche within your illustration practice: an element which is authorial, which stems from you – one you’re passionate about.