Born and raised in Somerset as part of a large family, Debbie often amused herself as a child by painting and drawing, although in those days it was Felt Tip pens and poster paints! Living in a small village she was surrounded by horses, ponies and dogs, which, not surprisingly became her first artistic subjects. Initially she dreamed of having her own pony and her drawings of horses and ponies were her way of fulfilling this dream. Eventually her parents gave in and Debbie got her own pony!
She completed a two-year course in design and clothing manufacture at the Somerset College of Art and Technology. However by 1990 she had decided to pursue a career in equestrian art and moved to Newmarket, ‘this being the core of the country’s flat racing industry, it seemed like the obvious choice!’ By day she worked as a stable hand, riding and grooming the horses, then by night she would paint them. Working particularly hard to gain as much reference and knowledge as possible, Debbie began to take on commissions. Inevitably, after several years she moved to Dubai to take advantage of the rapidly expanding horse racing industry, concentrating on becoming a full time artist. It was in Dubai that her career first began to flourish gaining many commissions and popularity in the galleries. It was also in Dubai that she found her long time friend, Toby her Springer Spaniel.
In 1997 she decided to move back to the UK. After a long holiday over here Debbie decided to fulfil her ambition of becoming a successful artist in her own country. “In effect my career started all over again, only painting dogs rather than horses and ultimately added a Black Labrador, ‘Friday’ to my family”.
In 2000, Debbie joined a publishing company called Washington Green who promoted her work and published a number of highly successful limited edition prints after it, many of which are now sold out. However by the end of 2003 Washington Green were moving away from the traditional art market to concentrate on the contemporary work. As such we were delighted when Debbie joined us in January 2004, so delighted in fact that we bought the remaining prints from W.G. so that we are now the sole distributor and publisher of Debbie’s work. We are sure you’ll agree she is a very worthwhile addition to the Sally Mitchell Fine Arts team.