MEET THE ARTIST Christine
Christine was born in Cardigan and her favourite subjects were Art and English, but she did not go on to college and after obtaining her O levels went to learn secretarial studies. (She still writes in short-hand when she wants to catch the words of songs). She maintains that learning shorthand and how to type accurately and fast were two of the most valuable lessons gained during her school years, despite her gaining 9 O levels.
At just under 22 she went to work with the World Health Organisation, an agency of the United Nations at their headquarters in the beautiful city of Geneva. She spent two happy years there, travelling by train all around Europe in her free time with friends she made in Geneva,
Christine is a fluent Welsh speaker and a published poet, and has lived in Brecon, Powys since the 1970’s when her husband (‘Geoff The Bank’) was transferred from West Wales to Brecon. She has three children, and all are involved in the media: Her eldest daughter is a professional singer her second is a tv producer and her son works as an assistant director in films.
In Brecon she thoroughly enjoyed studying for two A levels, English and Social Sciences in the FE college in Brecon. Having gained the two, she went on to sit for an Honours degree in The Humanities in the Polytechnic, now the University of South Wales, travelling from home four days a week. She gained a 2.1 honours.
In the early 1980’s Christine was invited to establish and run the Brecon Volunteer Bureau, and only left when her third child arrived. For months she took him to work with her as a tiny infant, but when he began to crawl she had to accept it was time to go!
When her son became a little older she accepted the task of setting up and developing the Drugs and Alcohol Service in Powys, and set up a training counselling skills course in the field of problem substance use to establish a network throughout Powys of trained workers who could work effectively with individuals and their families who had drug and/or alcohol problems.
After some years and tired of the bureaucracy unavoidable in any large organisation, she eventually left there to set up her own training consultancy bespoke courses for organisations, charities and private companies on matters relating to developing good staff relations. She still runs her consultancy when the requests for courses arrive.
In the early days of running her fledgling business she took up painting again and discovered painting with beeswax. She had painted in oils and watercolour previously, but has not done so since, some twenty five years.
Christine was a member of the Welsh Office delegation to the Emirates.
In Spring 1995 she was invited by the British Embassy in Abu Dhabi to mount a display of her work at their Embassy Garden Spring Fete. Visitors to the Dubai International Art Centre in the United Arab Emirates will be able to see examples of Christine's paintings.
As a guest of the Ruler of the Sharjah Emirate, Sheikh Doctor Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, at the opening of his Natural History Museum, she presented His Highness with one of her paintings of the Brecon Beacons.
She was later invited to visit the exquisite gallery in Sharjah, which houses his private collection, and which now includes her painting.
Christine has had a solo exhibition of her work at the Edinburgh Festival, Scotland.
She has been interviewed on the radio and television several times demonstrating her unusual craft.
Her framed paintings and her exclusive greetings cards (some depicting ancient Celtic designs) have been on display at the art gallery in The Celtic Manor Hotel, Newport and she has had stands at many annual National Eisteddfods of Wales, as well as the National Urdd Eisteddfod in Cardiff.
She is a proud member of the Norwegian Church Gallery Gift Shop, (upstairs in the Norwegian Church) a thriving cooperative in the beautiful Cardiff Bay, and is looking forward very much to the re-opening of the gallery gift shop when it becomes safer to do so, given the Covid situation. In the meantime – she paints, contributes to the local Stanza poetry critical workshop and the Poetry Group in Y Gaer, the local library. She walks in her beloved Beech woods near her home nearly every day and is happy with her life, including her beloved family and friends - as long as she can paint!
(Incidentally Jane, Christine's eldest daughter, has provided invaluable help in developing this website, and deserves this public acknowledgement and sincere thanks from her grateful Mam. Thanks Jane, cariad.)