With just 12 days to go until the start of the Emsworth Arts Trail we met local artist Therese Cooper, who is taking part in the trail for the first time this year, to chat about her work and inspiration.

Who are you?

Therese Cooper working as Min Cooper. I am 72 years old and have just moved to Washington Road, Emsworth.

What type of artist are you?  

Primarily I draw. 

Do you have a background in art/design – when did you first start your creative journey?  

After Art School I married, had two lovely daughters, got divorced, went to university read English and American Literature and needed to earn a living so put words and pictures together to become a cartoonist/illustrator working for national and international newspapers and magazines.

From strip cartoons I moved to animation which was shown at film festivals around the world, and from there to digital prints which sold through galleries including the RA Summer Exhibition. Concurrent with this I ran a studio gallery which closed in 2018 when I bought a house in Emsworth which needed attention and is still a work in progress.

Can you describe your creative process?

I think I am trying to make some sense the world. I start a new piece by making notes and drawings on a layout pad until something starts to work. I use whatever medium I think will work to say, ”look at this it’s lovely/dreadful/fun.”

What or who inspires you?

The need to understand, try to explain and enjoy drives me.

What do you enjoy most about the process?  It is what I do.

Can you describe your studio/workspace? I work on a large drawing board in the living room and in a small dark room upstairs I have a Mac computer attached to a Wacom tablet and stylus. Magic.

What keeps you going whilst you work – soundtrack? Snacks? A fluffy assistant? 

I often have Radio 3 or a record on once a piece of work is underway but it always begins with silence and a lot of walking about.

What can we expect to see from you on this years’ art trail? – How does this vary from previous years

As this is my first art trail I will be showing a sort of retrospective to introduce myself to Emsworth. There will be originals of published cartoons, drawings, limited and open edition prints, printed jewellery, Tee shirts, tea towels and cards as well as lots of freshly painted walls

Where are you exhibiting? – What can people expect from the location?   

I am exhibiting at my home, 11 Washington Road. People can expect to be welcome and I hope they will enjoy what they see.

Why did you want to take part in the trail?

I like Art to be part of life and not confined to galleries or museums. The Art Trail does this.

What are your artistic ambitions?

To carry on

Therese Cooper is artist 19 on the Emsworth Arts Trail and can be found at 11 Washington Road, Emsworth PO10 7NN

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