Harriet Selka
Harriet Selka
Old Bedalian 2011

After leaving Bedales I went on to study Art Foundation at Leeds College of Art, now Leeds Art University. After this I got a BA in Fine Art Painting at Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh University.

I currently work as a freelance painter, working on lots of commissioned portraits and also Waterscapes. I began to receive commissions whilst in my second year at ECA. All my commissions are from either word of mouth or follow on from an exhibition. The fantastic network of OBs has helped me to get some commissions.

Bedales absolutely helped in getting me to where I am now. Bedales taught me fundamental painting skills, ones that are not taught in art school. Without the amazing studio space and support (mostly from Sarah Oakley), I would not have gone on to Art School. Having these fundamental drawing and painting skills allowed me to explore the bigger ideas once I went to art school and many of my contemporaries there never had the luxury of being taught how to draw or paint properly. 

I also had the opportunity to really develop my photography skills whilst at Bedales through the use of the darkroom. I continue to use the techniques I developed there and last year was included in the Scottish Portrait Awards with an image from a shoebox pin-hole camera.

Bedales also gave me invaluable confidence to speak about myself and my work in a productive way.

My photographs have twice been accepted into the Scottish Portrait Awards and I have exhibited paintings at, and received a Latimer Award from, the Royal Scottish Academy. Among various other exhibitions across the UK and Ireland, my painted Self-Portrait was being displayed at Piano Nobile, Kings Place, London, as a part of the Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize exhibition.