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My name is Jadwiga but I'm known as Yaj! I'm fifty five years old, have dashes of Eastern European blood, and would love a dog. I have lived in Herefordshire since 1979, after I left Lancashire at seventeen. I attended the Blackburn College of Art, Technology and Design for just one year, and am completely self-taught.

After working as a librarian and part-time shop assistant for almost twenty years, I recently gave up all work to be full time carer to my mother who suffers with dementia. I have been vegan since the age of seventeen, and my passion for animal welfare is one of the main driving forces in my life.

My chief inspirations are Edward Hopper, Tamara de Lempicka and more recently, a wonderful young visual artist, Thijme Termaat from Holland. Most of my ideas originate from the people and places around me, but it's ordinary life that fascinates me the most because there is no such thing. What I see in everyday situations, transforms into story once it hits my canvas. I try and achieve a sense of expectation and wonder about each project I work on

I work mainly in water-based oils on canvas blocks or panels but also use acrylics when time is against me.

And most importantly, I always make a donation from any sales to the Orang-utan Protection Foundation, the Blue Cross animal charity, Mercy For Animals and Animal Aid. Well, that's me done - now here's the interesting bit...