Sarah Hocombe

1999 QEST Scholar - Fresco Painting

Fresco is unlike other forms of painting because it relies on a chemical reaction to fix the pigment to the wall. Mineral pigments are mixed with water and applied to damp lime plaster. As the plaster dries, calcium carbonate crystals form on its surface, around the particles of pigment. In this way the painting becomes part of the wall. Sarah used her QEST Scholarship to research how fresco is used and maintained in cold damp climates.

As well as painting in fresco on panels and on site, Sarah paints in oil and acrylic. In addition, she uses the skills that she has developed for painting small scale designs for mural clients, to hand-paint illustrations. Her fresco and mural work is undertaken to commission for commercial, public and private buildings and her illustrations have been used on a wide range of products.

I chose this craft as a career because I thought it would give me an opportunity to contribute to improving the built environment, working in collaboration with a broad range of user-groups as well as other crafts practitioners.