Sophie Nickeas - Meet the Tutor - Art & Design
Our brilliant tutors have built their careers in the subject areas they now teach, enriching their classes with real-life experienes and projects - invaluable in helping students prepare for work or further study.
It's great to find out more about their background and their inspiration! Today we hear from Art & Design tutor Sophie...
Please can you share a little about your personal art pieces/company outside of your life as a tutor?
I complete commissions for people, mainly portraits and paint murals in homes and unusual spaces. I work to quite a large scale, painting up to 12 feet high in one instance!
Can you share a little about your career path, and any Art/Graphics courses you may have taken?
I studied Fine Art at university, gaining both a bachelor's and master's degree before qualifying as a lecturer. I taught art in prisons before working at the college, and gained a PhD in Arts Education inspired by my time spent working specifically with female prisoners. As well as teaching at the college I work as a sessional lecturer at UCA and Oxford Brookes University.
What inspires you? Do you work in different media?
I am inspired by pop culture, music, fashion, retro, artists such as Jeff Koons, Ed Kienholz, Andy Warhol, the Chapman Brothers, Pure Evil, Faile and Damien Hirst. I work in both 2D and 3D media, painting, sculpture and installation. I have made large interactive pieces using neon as well as constructing a life size London phone box. I also paint using both oil and acrylic.
How do you develop your works in progress?
I often work on several projects at a time in order to build up a body of work, especially when painting. I create painting both digitally and on canvas and often the work compliments each other, leading to a series of work. I live on Pinterest and am constantly building boards which generates a lot of my ideas and more importantly developing followers.
Where have you exhibited?
My work has been projected onto the walls of various large venues in London, night clubs, live music venues, gallery spaces and bars. I have also exhibited locally in Medway at the Nucleas Arts gallery, displaying a series of figurative portraits, all of which were sold.
How does your being a practising artist help you to inspire your students at the College?
I am able to discuss my own career path with my students - show them work and what can be achieved. Demonstrating that you are an artist and have other interests and projects going on outside of being a lecturer is really important. Students see you as a creative practitioner, not just their tutor.
Some examples of Sophie's amazing work below!