I gained a B.A. Hons Psychology at Swansea University, and was a tutor in Psychology there for three years before spending two years volunteer teaching in a Muslim school in Sierra Leone. On my return to the UK I trained as an Infant & Junior school teacher and eventually moved into Secondary school teaching in 2004.
During the 1980s and 1990s I worked as an illustrator, producing cards, gift wrap and calendars for companies such as BHS, Tesco, Mind’s Eye and Lilac Leaf.
In the 1990s, winning a prize in the international competition, “A Picture Paints a Thousand Words”, was a turning point. This exhibition kindled my interest in textiles and as a result, I helped to found the Horsham Embroiderers’ Guild and Suss’d Textiles, also in Horsham. She has since exhibited work with both groups, and taught art textiles for ten years, also running an Arts Award program for teenagers.
She is frequently found at her easel sharing an Art Residency at Wakehurst Place Gallery or at Nymans Gardens with her husband, the artist John Thompson, and is delighted to chat to visitors there.
Morag and John have two children and live in Horsham, Sussex.
I have always enjoyed drawing and painting, and have been painting full-time since making the decision to go freelance in 2013.
I have developed various styles and themes over the years, exploring printmaking, collage, appliqué, creative embroidery, sculpture, drawing and painting in a wide variety of media.
My subject matter is generally drawn from the landscape, and I often walk with a sketchbook and camera, making on-the-spot drawings and colour notes which might be developed into paintings back at home in my studio.
I delight in the sky, sea and hills; my happy childhood in Derbyshire and Scotland and equally happy adulthood in Wales, Ireland and Sussex gives me many ideas for paintings where I begin with the paint, then let imagination and memories take over to evoke a feel for a place; to capture the light, mood, sounds and emotion of being there, rather than making a realistic copy of an exact spot. I love exploring effects of colour combinations, compositions and mark-making to create an effect of serenity or of being uplifted.
My intention is to focus on the restorative natural beauty of our small island and the world beyond it; to enjoy re-experiencing its gentleness and wildness as I paint, then to share it so other people can also enjoy being reminded of glorious simple days.
2016 January - December - Wakehurst Place, Ardingly - New Paintings
2016 March - December - Nymans N.T. Gardens Potting Shed, Handcross - New Paintings
2016 August - October - Yoga Ananda Centre, Reigate - Time to be Happy
2016 January - Green Tree Gallery, Borde Hill, Sussex - Annual Art Sale
2016 January - MayRoffey Park Institute Horsham - LandSquares and SeaSquares
2015 January - February - Roffey Park Institute, Horsham -The West Coasts (Solo Exhibition)
2015 March 3-30 - Sussex Farm Foods, Pulborough - Downs Views (Solo Exhibition)
2015 August - Green Tree Gallery, Borde Hill, Sussex - At the Water's Edge
2015 January - December (Joint exhibition of new paintings) Wakehurst Place Mansion Gallery, Ardingly
2014 June - August Roffey Park Institute, Horsham - Little Landscapes (Solo Exhibiion)
2014 May - November (Joint exhibition of new paintings) Nymans N.T. Gardens Potting Shed, Handcross
2014 April- November (Joint exhibition of new paintings) Wakehurst Place Mansion Gallery, Ardingly
2013 April- November (Joint exhibition of new paintings) Wakehurst Place Mansion Gallery, Ardingly
If a Picture Paints a Thousand Words 1997 Horsham Arts Centre
Morag was a prizewinner in this competition with her collage entitled, "I have Measured out my Life with Coffee Spoons"
Morag has recently launched "The Art Apprentice" competition, aimed at inspiring students who are interested in a career in art. Please have a look at Morag's blog (December 2015) for more information.