Your browser is no longer supported. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

About

I'm an artist and experienced facilitator who runs participatory workshops using fine art, three-dimensional modelling, sustainable design, photography, map-making, and walking. I'm passionate about working with people outdoors in an informal setting to harness their skills and awaken their creativity.

Mauritius workshop with the Coral Communities team and Reef Conservation. After travelling with the community by boat to their no take zone, they were asked to make the shape of their Voluntary Marine Conservation Areas (VMCAs) and speak about where they sat in relationship to the shape. Photograph: Andy Hughes

My methods are visual and my work is often ethnographic in nature. I am practical, adaptable, and have worked in a variety of global environments. I love to travel and have recently visited Norway, Sweden and Finland as part of a new international Nordic North walking group that exchanges knowledge about heritage, and sustainable tourism, and also publishes action-based research.

I see a workshop as a participatory artwork where skills are exchanged, ideas explored, memories unearthed, and feelings expressed. The aim is to find out how people view landscape and cope with change. The resulting data – both physical and perceptual – is then mapped, recorded, and exhibited or published.

Through a formal training in the arts, grounded in fine art, I’ve developed strong drawing skills, which are key to how I develop, communicate, and illustrate ideas. I’m also trained in spatial design, sustainable design, and digital art and design. A growing interest is photography and video, with the focus on working with people to co-create images and film.

My outputs

Mauritius workshop with the Coral Communities team and Reef Conservation. A walk led by Reef Conservation and the community to a mangrove nursery. Photograph: Andy Hughes.

Mission

By re-awakening or reinforcing a strong connection between people and their landscape through art-led activity, I hope to give people the tools and confidence to make their voice heard. My aim is to facilitate community input into the future of their landscape to bring about a sustainable outcome that also benefits landowners and stakeholders. I believe that collaborating on an equal footing with community, research institutes, and relevant organisational structures offers the best way of achieving change and influencing decisions at policy level.

Our projects

MSc Digital Futures, University of Plymouth, final major project distinction & publication

BA Hons Design Studies First Class, Goldsmiths College University of London

Interdisciplinarity, co-creation and open source are core modes of working

Leverhulme Artist In Resident, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Published. Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, Fellow of the Eden Project Florilegium Society

Irish. Brought up in Cornwall, UK in a coastal community. Sea person. Dyslexic & proud.

Zanzibar workshop on Fundo Island with the Coral Communities team and Mwambao Coastal Community Network. The community talk about the map they have made together, interviewing each other about what they have described. Photograph Timur Jack-Kadioglu.

Sectors, clients, research & development

I’ve undertaken a wide variety of environmental and art-based projects and led practical workshops all over the UK, Europe, and in Africa. I’ve worked in the educational, charity, government and design sectors and also created websites and publications. Recent clients include: University of Plymouth, Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Ffiona Fyfe Associates and Reef Conservation.

I was recently awarded an Agritech Cornwall Innovation Scheme to develop a prototype service for landowners, which I am in the process of testing.

The following keywords summarise my research: #visual methods #creative methods #sensory ethnography #participatory mapping #new materialism #open data #open source #community-based knowledge #indigenous rights #co-production #perceptual data #natural heritage #cultural heritage #movement heritage

Work in print

Zanzibar workshop on Fundo Island with the Coral Communities team and Mwambao Coastal Community Network. The community and facilitators reviewing objects mapped into a resilience grid on the sand. Photograph Timur Jack-Kadioglu.

Places matter. Place plays a central role in human experience. As the Canadian geographer Edward Relph has pointed out in his influential monograph, Place and Placelessness (1976), human beings have a deep need “for associations with significant places” – it is important to us to connect with place and “transcend placelessness” so that we can develop an environment for people that reflects and enhances the variety of human experience. (3) The sites chosen by Dominica Williamson reveal their phenomena through her and the project participants’ bodily experiences of these places, her #tagscape project allows our senses to connect with what is unseen beneath the visible landscape and captures experiences and meanings that are usually unnoticed in everyday life.

Dr Kayla Parker, excerpt from an essay about my work appearing in a zine called TAGSCAPE.

Access Zine