From the age of 5, Catriona knew that Art was something very special to her. She had loved to draw from when she was old enough to hold a pencil.
Her passion for glass, came while studying for her Design and Applied Arts Degree at Edinburgh College of Art. She really enjoys the layering qualities that glassblowing encourages and uses colour techniques and glass carving to create three-dimensional worlds within each form.
Catriona’s work is created to be cheerful, bold and full of texture. She wants to uplift the viewer with her use of colour combinations and clean feminine shapes. Her inspirations come from the world around her, and the sanctuary she finds within certain environments – walking in the woods in her native Scotland, or sitting having a coffee next to the graffiti of Bristol. She likes the juxtaposition of these different themes, and uses opposites throughout her work. This can evolve from a contrasting colour or surface texture, to the use of light and obscuring of light. Opaque glass has always had importance in her creative development and likes the way it can look like ceramics.
"By using opaque coloured glass I can convince the viewer that they are looking at a piece of glazed porcelain. Only when they realise that the interior of the piece is transparent, does the material reveal itself to be blown glass. I like carving through the layer of opaque colour to create these "windows" into the interior world within"
Catriona would describe herself as a maker first - a skilled Craftswoman. She likes the process of making, and has spent the last 18 years honing her technique. She has studied at Alfred University, NY State, USA and has completed a 2 year Post-graduate diploma from the International Glass Centre, West Midlands. She has worked for other makers and taught in various institutions.
In 2013, she was honoured to win the Silver Award for Glass from the Craft & Design Magazine. This resulted in a pull page spread in the Craft and Design Magazine, issue 229. She has also been a finalist for this award in 2014 (Issue 235), and 2016 (Issue to be announced).
In 2015, Catriona was awarded a place on the Crafts Council UK’s Hothouse 5 mentoring programme. This invaluable knowledge has helped her with her own Craft Business, and moved into her lampwork and jewellery studio at Old Market Manor in the Old Market area of Bristol, England.
In 2016, the filmakers R&A Collaborations picked Catriona as one of their artists to capture on film. The films "Dance of Glass" and "Sparks" are available online via vimeo. Please watch and share by clicking on the link - www.vimeo.com/catmackglass.
In October 2016, Catriona was successful in obtaining a studio space at the prestigious Centrespace Studios (Studio 21, 6 Leonard Lane, Bristol, BS1 1EA) and has become part of the long running co-operative artists space.
As well as her own business, Catriona is also Part-time Manager of Potter’s ceramic cooperative shop in Bristol. Cat is in charge of running the retail space, which is home of 26 ceramic artists local to the Bristol area. Each month Catriona invites, plans and displays Guest Potter exhibitions of contemporary ceramics artists from the South West.