Brian is a passionate and dedicated teacher. He puts his students first and strives to support their learning and personal creative journey. He began ‘Creative Art Courses’ in 2010 after teaching adults for over 18 years on community-based workshops across the North West; adult classes for Oldham Lifelong Learning, Salford, Bury Adult Education; and HND courses at Blackburn College since 1997.
Unlike many artists who teach to support their arts practice – Brian is a teacher first and brings all his teaching knowledge and pedagogy to planning and delivering his courses. This understanding, knowledge and experience of how adults learn, progress and achieve lies at the heart of his structured learning courses.
His personal style is friendly, relaxed, supportive and generous.
Brian believes learning should be a wholesome experience, developing our practical skills, understanding, appreciation and love of art. He teaches in a very informal way with lots of 1:1 tuition that includes demonstrations, practical help and guidance. His step by step approach ensures no-one feels left behind. The studio atmosphere is relaxed and students progress at their own pace and are encouraged to develop in a personal direction.
Brian studied art at the Cape Technikon School of Art in Cape Town, South Africa where he grew up. In 1986 he qualified with a HND in Textile design and a second HND in Fine Art specialising in Drawing and Painting. He spent 10 years designing commercial textile and wallcoverings in the UK (Design gallery), before teaching and working with communities across Greater Manchester on community and public art projects.
In 2007 Brian took a career break and studied for an MA in Public Art for which he was awarded a distinction. Most recently he acquired his QTLS, enabling him to teach art within Secondary Schools. He works part-time in schools alongside his teaching for Creative Art Courses.
MA in Art (distinction)
Certificate in Education (Adult, further, higher)
QTLS (teaching qualification for secondary schools)
HND Fine Art (majoring in Drawing and painting)
HND Textile design (surface pattern)
Brigid’s background is in fine art and theatre design. In her early career she worked as a costume prop-maker in London and as a milliner at the Royal Opera House. Moving north with her family, she became a mural and paint effects artist in the 1990s, specialising in trompe l’oeil. Subsequently she taught part time at Stockport College for 19 years delivering life drawing as well as general art and design, textiles and contextual studies.
Alongside her teaching, Brigid continued to create her own artwork over the years, and since leaving college in 2015, has been busy working on mural and fine art commissions as well as millinery projects.
She has a particular interest in natural form scrutinised and described through colour, shape and texture. Her subject matter generally involves the human form, but more recently she has been working on detailed studies of animals.
BA Hons Fine Art (University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne)
Certificate in Theatre Design (Croydon College of Art)
Certificate in Education (UCLAN)
Special Guest Tutor
Residing in Denmark, Heather Spears makes annual reading and lecture tours to Canada. As a practising draughtsman and teacher she has thought deeply about drawing and visual perception, and has written a book on creativity, The Creative Eye, (Arcturus 2007). She is preparing a series of manuals of modelling and drawing the human head and on drawing the figure in motion.
Heather has 3 books of drawings:Drawn from the Fire (89) Massacre (90); and Line by Line (02). Drawings from the Newborn (86), The Panum Poems (96) andRequired Reading (00) contain both poems and full-page drawings. Her latest collection of poetry is I can still draw (08).
Specialising in drawing children, in particular premature and other threatened infants, she travels widely and has drawn in hospitals in the Middle East, Europe and America.
“mastery of line and movement,”… “the sureness of her hand and the sympathy of her eye. She writes poems in the same way.”
“very fluid lines that come out in words rather than in charcoal … an almost Zen quality to her attention and emotional rectitude.”
Heather Spears is a member of PEN, The League of Canadian Poets, The Writers’ Union of Canada, SF Canada, The Society of Authors, and Tegnernes Forbund (Danish Graphic Artist’s Federation).
The Heather Spears archive is housed at the University of British Columbia in Vanouver and is available for use by researchers and others interested. Many of Heather Spears’s drawings have been purchased by the Welcome Trust. Many other images can be found in the Wellcome Library of images, and are available for reproduction /publication.