As a singer and lyricist, Candie Payne enjoyed success and worked with such luminaries as David Byrne, Paul Weller and Mark Ronson.
However, it’s art rather than music that is her great creative calling and she recently opened her first solo exhibition at RedHouse Originals Gallery in Harrogate.
The Age Of A Flower features artwork across a range of media including original drawings and prints, interior design and installations.
Her work pulls the viewer into a world of dreamscapes and storytelling that is communicated through imaginative design. “The nature of the art I do lends itself to different ways of presenting things,” she says.
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Payne was born in Liverpool and raised there and in New York, and though art was her great passion from an early age she became disillusioned with art college and left after three months.
She was then asked to join a band which took her career in a new, unexpected direction. “I always loved singing and I thought it sounded like fun.”
She went on to release a critically acclaimed solo album, I Wish I Could Have Loved You More. After a while, though, she grew tired of the rigmarole that came with being on the road and touring.
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Throughout this period she continued with her artwork. “I never really stopped drawing and painting. I always had my sketchbooks with me whenever I was on tour.”
So when she decided to move away from the music business she was able to fall back on her art skills. “I was lucky that I had another creative outlet.”
Payne, who moved to Harrogate a year ago, likes to play with themes, such as the flow of time, and together with recurring motifs like the image of a flower this characterises her work.
She enjoys the creative freedom of being an artist. “Coming up with an idea is challenging but once I’ve done that I find the process very meditative,” she says.
“It’s something that isn’t dependent on anyone else. It’s all your own work that comes from your own imagination. So when I create a piece of art and it’s something beautiful then I’m genuinely proud of it.”
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With this exhibition she hopes to introduce her work to a wider audience. “I’m venturing into design, particularly interior design, and the possibilities
of where I can go with it are limitless.
“But it’s very important to me that the integrity of the original artwork remains intact within each piece and is always translated into the ‘design’ in a way that isn’t lazy or reliant upon digital manipulation. So I want to make sure I build upon what we’ve started with this exhibition.
“The original drawings and paintings must always remain the feature so that the journey from pen and paper to interior piece is always visible. We’ve worked so hard to show that with this exhibition and I really think we’ve achieved it.”
Candie Payne: The Age Of A Flower, runs until November 16 at RedHouse Originals Gallery, Harrogate.