Artist profile - Heather Dixon, Howden

Staithes - view from the beach, acrylics artwork

Staithes - view from the beach, acrylics artwork - Credit: Archant

Yorkshire Life contributor Heather Dixon comes from an artistic family but never imagined her own paintings would ever see the light of day. Here she explains how that’s all changed

Waves at Craster

Waves at Craster - Credit: Archant

‘I draw and paint as a way of unwinding,’ says Heather, a magazine journalist specialising in homes and interiors. ‘Like many people I am constantly working to deadlines and travel thousands of miles every year, so it’s a joy to take time out and lose myself in something so absorbing.’

But as the spare bedroom of her home near Howden, East Yorkshire started to fill up with canvases, friends and family urged her to enter them in local exhibitions. They quickly started to sell and Heather’s output increased as she became more and more involved with Yorkshire’s thriving art community.

‘I got swept along by it,’ says Heather. ‘Working as an interiors writer I understand how the choice of artwork says as much about the owner as their furniture and colour schemes. Many people spend more time choosing a painting than they do an expensive piece of furniture because it’s such a personal thing. It made me realise that there is a demand for all kinds and styles of art and that encouraged me to keep going.’

Heather, who paints under her married name of Heather Burton, began with portraiture and figurative work but recently turned her hand to land and seascapes inspired by the coast and countryside of Yorkshire.

Heather Burton works from a spare bedroom at her home near Howden

Heather Burton works from a spare bedroom at her home near Howden - Credit: Archant

‘I paint in oils and acrylic, mainly with a palette knife,’ says Heather, who occasionally gives demonstrations of palette knife work to local art groups. ‘There’s something very spontaneous and exhilarating about working with a knife and I’m always discovering new techniques and finishes - I’m probably just a frustrated plasterer at heart.’

Heather’s work has sold through solo exhibitions at Junction, Goole, and City Screen York; open exhibitions in Beverley and The Ferens in Hull; the Art and Heritage Festival in Staithes; Off The Wall, Beverley, and Street Art Hull. Heather also has work for sale in Creation Fine Art Gallery, Beverley, Look Gallery in Helmsley and The Hungry Artist in York.

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‘I think there is a significant increase in the number of people buying original art these days,’ says Heather. ‘There are so many creative and highly skilled artists in Yorkshire that you don’t have to go far to find something very personal and unique.’

Breaker - inspired by the waves off the North Yorkshire coast

Breaker - inspired by the waves off the North Yorkshire coast - Credit: Archant

Find out more about Heather’s work at

01430 431398