MOST 95-year-olds are probably sat with their feet up enjoying a quieter pace of life but for Jill Jennings she is out and about pursuing her hobby.

Often found outside in the summer months or in her studio, Jill, who lives in the centre of Alresford, exhibits her work at least three times a year.

She has been a member of the Alresford Art Society since 1995, having arrived in the town the previous year, and was a member of the committee and treasurer for nine years. She has also been a member of the New Road Artists since that time.

Jill has always painted in an abstract way and in recent years has developed a very recognisable style in mixed media. She creates collages based on the rocks of her beloved Guernsey, taking the initial shapes and planes that she sees, using them to create images of great depth.

Born and raised in Adelaide, she trained as a thoracic physiotherapist. In 1951 she achieved her life-long dream of visiting the UK to visit relations in Guernsey.

Having returned to the UK, towards the end of the fifties she decided that she did not want to continue her career in physio and a chance meeting with a BBC TV newsreader led to a job at Broadcasting House. From then on she had a variety of jobs, including two years in a Mayfair art gallery, interspersed with visits to Australia, until she retired.

She also took a course in History of Art at London University and was able to spend more time painting.

Jill tries to get back to the island twice a year and it was on one of her visits to St Peter Port that she attended a lecture given by Anthony Gormley. He was on the island to supervise the installation of his Insiders cast iron sculptures on Castle Cornet and she bumped into him the next day while out sketching. To Jill’s delight he invited her to sit with him and they discussed his work at length.

“My mother was a good watercolourist and I’ve painted since I was a child,” says Jill. “After I stopped being a physio I did contemplate going to art school, but lost my nerve. I would paint every day if I could and now feel that I have found my niche and will continue as long as I’m able to pick up a pen or paintbrush.”

Jill will be exhibiting her paintings in July.