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Ciara Chapman


Ciara Chapman is a visual artist and illustrator based in Cork city. Ciara received a New Work award in 2020.

Tell us about your art.
I primarily work with digital illustration, using hand drawn images, Adobe Fresco and Adobe Photoshop. I’ve recently started developing my illustrations in 3D with a selection of high quality digital prints, embroidered artworks and origami characters.

Where are you based?
I’m based in Cork city.

What are you working on at the moment?
At the moment I am working on an extension of an illustration project I started in 2016 called My Chronic Pain Diary. This project involves 3 parts:
1. An illustrated book with over 100 illustrations from my diary project
2. An exhibition at Cork Printmakers for September which is Pain Awareness Month
3. An art trail of my diary entries in 3D installed in shop windows throughout Cork city.

Can you tell us a little bit about your career path as an artist? How did you get to where you are now?
Out of school, I studied Fine Art Printmaking at Limerick School of Art and Design in 1999 where I got a Diploma. I moved to Cork in 2004 and attended St John’s Central College where I studied Graphic Design. I continued working on solo and group exhibitions around Ireland. I hit an artistic block in my late twenties and didn’t return to art until I began working at Cork Printmaker’s in 2015 as Assistant to the Director. I began screen printing and was loving the chance to work on my art in such a creative environment. I had an accident in 2015 that left me lying in a chair for the next 6 years. I was determined not to look back at a portion of my life as wasted time. I started working digitally on my illustrations, this is a medium that suits my physical limitations perfectly. It also gave me the opportunity to work with amazing groups like the Electric Picnic, Pfizer pharmaceutical and Toyota Mobility. That brings me up to this year when I started my 2021 project because of The Arts Council’s Art and Disability Connect, New Work award through Arts & Disability Ireland.

If you have been a recipient of an Arts and Disability Connect Award, how has this impacted your career path as an artist?
The New Work award has completely changed my career path. This project has snowballed! The award is wonderful financial support but the confidence I gained and support I was given really helped me push my project to the next level. The cherry on the cake is the PR support. I’m not at all confident in my writing skills so having someone as wonderful as Stephanie Dickenson writing my press release and helping me focus my attention on the parts of the project that need the most promotion has been incredibly useful. I’ve approached people and groups to take part in this project that I could not have done a year ago. And everything I have done, I have done from a chair in my home.

Are there any standout moments in your career as an artist?
The biggest stand out moment in my career has to have been being shortlisted for a World Illustration Award in 2019. To be alongside some of the most gifted artists that I have ever seen gave me a serious case of ‘impostor syndrome’. I felt like it was surely a mistake. I still find it hard to believe.

Who or what are the most important influences on your art?
Artistically I am influenced by so many people and so many things. I look to animals a lot when expressing emotions and nature for colours. Artists I love are Oliver Jeffers, Jacob Stack, Eva Byrne, Gabriel Sancho and Sylvia Taylor.

What have been the greatest challenges of your career so far?
My own physical limitations have been my biggest challenge. A lot of exhibitions and festivals require the artist to be present for periods of time and so I can’t enter. Other challenges are picking myself up after rejections from projects I would love to be a part of.

Who is your favourite artist?
I’ve never had one favourite artist, but one major inspiration (aside from the artists mentioned above) is the musician Sia. I love the whole package of how she looks visually, her music, her incredible videos. I also find Agatha Christie very interesting. The way she can describe a person, their appearance, their character, their home/work/mansion/village, are all so well rounded – her talent is so inspiring to me.

What do you like to do for fun?
For fun I like to relax with my two rabbits. I love watching TV, I feel it gives me access to the world in a way I physically can not connect to. I like trying crafts I haven’t had the opportunity to try before. At the moment I’m giving felting a go.

Biography
Ciara Chapman is an award winning artist living in Cork city, Ireland. With an educational background in Fine Art Printmaking and Graphic Design, Ciara primarily focuses her practice on Digital Illustration and digital printmaking as well as mixed media pieces such as embroidered and origami artworks.

Commercially, Ciara has worked with organisations such as Pfizer pharmaceuticals and Toyota Mobility. She has won a number of awards, a Silver A’design award in 2019 and a commendation from the Institute of Designers in Ireland (IDI) for her project My Chronic Pain Diary the same year. Ciara was a finalist in the World Illustration Awards in 2020 and a finalist for the Graphic Illustration category in the London International Creative Competition for this diary project.

Ciara is currently working on expanding her diary project for Pain Awareness Month, September 2021 as a result of receiving a funding award from the Arts and Disability Connect New Work Award. Ciara is a member of Cork Printmakers workshop and the Association of Illustrators.

ciarachapmanillustration.com

The Rabbit Hole by Ciara Chapman

The Rabbit Hole, My Chronic Pain Diary publication by Ciara Chapman, 2021

I had an accident in 2015 that left me lying in a chair for the next 6 years. I was determined not to look back at a portion of my life as wasted time. I started working digitally on my illustrations, this is a medium that suits my physical limitations perfectly.

The Spinal Stimulator by Ciara Chapman

The Spinal Stimulator, My Chronic Pain Diary publication by Ciara Chapman, 2021

Winter is not my friend by Ciara Chapman

Winter is not my friend, My Chronic Pain Diary publication by Ciara Chapman, 2021

I made a friend today

I made a friend today, My Chronic Pain Diary art trail by Ciara Chapman, 2021

Self-portrait by Ciara Chapman

Self-portrait, My Chronic Pain Diary publication by Ciara Chapman, 2021


Artist Biography

Ciara Chapman

Ciara Chapman is an award winning artist living in Cork city, Ireland. With an educational background in Fine Art Printmaking and Graphic Design, Ciara primarily focuses her practice on Digital Illustration and digital printmaking as well as mixed media pieces such as embroidered and origami artworks.

Commercially, Ciara has worked with organisations such as Pfizer pharmaceuticals and Toyota Mobility. She has won a number of awards, a Silver A'design award in 2019 and a commendation from the Institute of Designers in Ireland (IDI) for her project My Chronic Pain Diary the same year. Ciara was a finalist in the World Illustration Awards in 2020 and a finalist for the Graphic Illustration category in the London International Creative Competition for this diary project.

Ciara is currently working on expanding her diary project for Pain Awareness Month, September 2021 as a result of receiving a funding award from the Arts and Disability Connect New Work Award. Ciara is a member of Cork Printmakers workshop and the Association of Illustrators.

ciarachapmanillustration.com

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