Helloooo, my name’s Michelle Gaskell and I live in Nottinghamshire in the UK. My passions are drawing, writing, and making things. And cats, obviously. I guess you could call me an artist and designer/maker. With a strong leaning towards things with four paws and whiskers that go meow.
I’ve always loved drawing – unfortunately my earliest works are lost as they were on the wall by my bed. When I got bigger I worked as a typesetter, then a graphic designer – career choices which stemmed from my fascination with rub-down Letraset type as a child. My parents were both draughtsmen, so it’s not hard to see where my affinity with graphics and drawing came from, and I still use some of their drawing equipment today. In the late 1990s whilst helping out in a handmade gift shop in Iceland, someone suggested I try selling my drawings there, so I began working more commercially, mainly in ink. In 2001 I discovered wax oil pastels, and stupidcats were born.
Writing has always been a big part of my life too, and I write under the pen name of Rose Appleby (Rose is my middle name, and Appleby my mum’s maiden name). And, of course, reading goes hand-in-hand with writing, and I’m a huge reader. I also love strange and unusual bookworks, and have always wanted to try my hand at bookbinding.
I’ve been making things ever since I was little – mum kept everything from empty loo-roll tubes to silver paper from Easter eggs all carefully sorted and labelled in boxes in a huge cupboard at the end of a passage in our bungalow (we called it The End Cupboard!) so there was always an endless source of crafty materials to fuel my imagination. More recently I’ve fallen a little bit in love with needle-felting.
My main problem is that there are so many things in my head that I want to draw, write about, or make… but there’s simply never enough time!