Meet the artist, Louise Kirby

“I’m absolutely thrilled to be involved in Clan’s Big Hop Trail. Clan are magnificent in what they do in offering support, advice and care to those living with cancer here in the north east. Cancer is indiscriminate and has affected all of us, directly or indirectly, so it’s a privilege to sponsor a hare and raise awareness and funds for the charity.” – Laura Mearns, Managing Director

Clan Cancer Support is once again partnering with Wild in Art to bring a new & exciting sculpture trail in 2023 – and the team at Northwood Aberdeen are incredibly proud to be part of it. Find out more here.

Our hare will be designed by the talented Louise Kirby. Now, there’s only so much we can say whilst the design and location is under wraps, but we were lucky enough to steal some of her time.

Grab a cuppa as we get to know Louise, our Big Hop artist.

Hi Louise, what creative activities/things inspired you as a child?

As a child I enjoyed copying my mum’s album covers (The Pretenders, Sinéad O’Connor); stringing beads in different colour combination and making patterns with my Spriograph set. Can you tell I was a child in the 80s!

You went onto graduate from DJCAD in Dundee in 1999 with an honours degree in Printed Textiles. In a different lifetime, what else may you have studied?

Possibly Accountancy, I quite like the patterns in numbers and repetitive nature of it.

What made you apply to be involved with The Big Hop?

I loved the shape of the hare and I am looking forward to painting it! I enjoy taking part in Wild in Art trails as they are so good at getting people out and about in the area as well as raising money for good causes. I have previously painted a design for ‘Light of the North’ called “Shimmering Shoal’ and it raised £9k for Clan Cancer Support.

…any snippets you can share about the design?

I can’t give too much away about the design but it’s inspired by journeys through the landscape much like those affected by cancer who must navigate difficult terrain.

What inspires you to create art & design?

I’m a believer in gratitude and noticing the positives. By applying playful patterns in bright and often contrasting colours, using meaningful references I hope to influence positive wellbeing by capturing a sense of place and belonging.

Art aside, how do you unwind?

I love to be out walking amongst nature where interesting things catch my attention from spotty pebbles on the beach to hearing a woodpecker in the trees.

What would you say to anyone who fancies taking up art for the first time?

Just do it! Try different types of creative activities to see which you enjoy and want to explore further. You don’t need any fancy materials it’s just about playing to see where it takes you.

You have previously painted a design for Light The North (Shimmering Shoal), The Big Bucket Trail (Oor Big Hearted Lad) and even Loo of The Year! What’s next?

I am one of the artists creating work for The Baird Family Hospital in Aberdeen. I’m really looking forward to creating artwork that enhances the hospital experience. I’m also launching some decorative public art gates in Dundee and have a few commissions up my sleeve that I’m looking forward to working on.

Watch this space as we reveal our finished hare ahead of the trail beginning in July. Keep an eye on our Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn for a sneak peak!

If you want to learn more about Louise, or purchase her work, check out her website or social media.
Instagram: @louisekirbydesign | Facebook: LouiseKirbyDesign |Twitter: @LouiseKirby_

Clan Cancer Support provides emotional and practical support to anyone affected by a cancer diagnosis, including the individual, their family, carers and friends.  Find out more about The Big Hop Trail here.

Selfie picture of Louise Kirby
Louise Kirby getting to know our hare!