Sila Collins-Walden

Sila Collins Walden Red Landscape

I was born in Manchester but as a child spent most of my young years in the north and the south of Ireland where I went to school. I always wanted to be an artist but it wasn’t thought of as a suitable career. I worked in a publishing house for a while before eventually pursuing a career in nursing. It wasn’t until I met an artist/tutor who persuaded me to go to art college as mature student that I began a four year course in the arts at Manchester College of Art. It was the best thing I ever did. I eventually went to work on a hospital arts team in Manchester in the rehabilitation and creative therapy department in a large psychiatric hospital, constructing large murals and working alongside people with mental health problems.

Most of my present work is based on my travels throughout the north, the West Coast of Scotland and Connemara in the West of Ireland. I used to spend school holidays with my aunts and cousins during the summer in Connemara. It’s from these places that I get some of my inspiration for my moody but colourful landscapes.

I always travel to the places I want to paint, staying in Youth Hostels, cottages and sometimes even camping out in all kinds of weather just to capture the atmosphere of these hauntingly beautiful landscapes and its stunning mountains. My next lot of work is going to take a different direction. My frequent travels recently to London and Manchester has given me an idea to paint city-scapes, which I have begun working on just recently.

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