John Hodgson qualified with a BA in Fine Arts at Cardiff in 1969, and has been closely involved with archaeology since 1984. A freelance illustration and design artist, he has produced interpretative reconstruction work for a wide range of professional bodies, including Archaeological Units, County Councils, Government Agencies and private companies. He has also been employed in a number of archaeological field projects in Southern England, maintaining and strengthening his “hands-on” approach to the subject.
John's initial training in art and design has underpinned his work in illustrating archaeology. A period of fifteen years’ work in carpentry, building and woodland maintenance, much of it at Allington Castle in Kent, informs his understanding of the rural environment and of early technologies. In the final analysis, archaeology is about people’s lives - and the lives of most people, throughout history and prehistory, contained a large degree of manual work. Experience of working processes and of making things, from metal, timber, stone and clay, has helped his understanding of artefacts, the ways in which they were made and used, and the best ways to portray the enormous depth and variety of human life through the ages.
John is also a Visiting Fellow in Conservation Sciences at Bournemouth University, where he has taught the application of graphics in archaeological and museum work, and the history and application of archaeological reconstruction drawing for both Archaeology and Conservation Sciences students. He researched the history, nature and function of archaeological reconstruction drawing for his PhD dissertation, which was successfully completed in 2004.
John was elected a full member of the IFA (now the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists) in 2003.
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