“Others have seen what is and asked why. I have  seen what could be and asked why not”

~  Pablo Picasso

I have always drawn, painted and generally made things for as long as I can remember; from colouring books and mud pies to dressmaking, murals and general painting and drawing using a variety of tools and materials. I was particularly interested in the subject of birds, animals and the human form.

I earned my living as a teacher working with children and adults with a wide variety of special needs and Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia, Dyspraxia etc.) teaching a wide range of subjects. My teaching always incorporated some sort of ‘Art’ in all its wider forms, English, Music, Dance, Drama, PE etc. This helped me to find the key that may unlock potential in the individual … whatever the subject I happened to be teaching. Throughout my career I felt that I gained as much, if not more, from my students than they may have gained from me as their teacher!

I finally realised my dream to go to Art College in 2001. This was my time! I not only learned techniques and processes but how to look and see. As mature students we hoovered up every experience and opportunity with enthusiasm! I was inspired! However, one day I revealed to my tutor that I was struggling to keep up with College work whilst working. She suggested that I should “Make your life your art”. This simple comment really resonated with me and helped me to change my perspective, my attitude and my art.


Since finishing work I continue to aspire to be “a human being – not a human doing” (Kurt Vonnegut, American writer, lecturer and painter). Not always easy!  

I now have time to reflect on my journey and think through my ideas … whilst still getting excited about discovering new artists to inspire me and to learn new ways to express myself.

Why not?

Strawbale Artist Studio - Sandie Hargreaves, Mixed Media Artist

Strawbale Studio

My work space is a strawbale building in my garden. It was built by a great group of friends and interested people in their spare time, under the expert tutelage of Phil Neve, who designed it and managed the project over several years. 

Please click here for an account of its construction and a press release in 2013 by Phil Neve.