JENNY BENT ~ FOUNDER & CREATOR OF PARSLEY PIE
Jenny Bent is the founder of Parsley Pie & has been running her Hale based art club for 17 years!
I LOVE LIFE!
“I have many passions!
On a personal level I love my family! Family time is very important to me!
I love art, music, going to festivals, dancing & animals, I have been vegan for about 6 years too!
I also love watching movies! I love being outdoors, in the elements preferably by the sea or in forest!
I love life!
I often wish I could manage on only 2 hours of sleep a night, but I’m a right 8 hours a night girl, otherwise I’m a right grump bugger!
More about my personal life later………
On a professional level, I am super passionate about business! & I absolutely love helping kids to feel happy, proud & confident through creativity!
I am still as passionate about freedom of expression than ever! I love running my own business!
Creativity is part of our human nature! I’m on a mission to make sure that the importance of creativity & self expression in all of our lives, is never forgotten!
Jenny was born in Knutsford, Cheshire, in 1974.
She lives in Hale with her husband Nik, their 6 year old son Theron & 2 pet goats, Pepper & Diablo!
Always full of ideas & with a crazy imagination Jenny didn’t enjoy school or college particularly, & couldn’t wait to get out of the education system
“I like to learn through my own merit & experiences & not just by following someone else’s observations or ideas.
I don’t like being told what to do, its as simple as that! I’ve also got a very very determined streak, there’s 3 good reasons for you why i’ve never been employed!
Im proud to say I’ve always worked for myself & made success of it!“
“I left school at 16 & transferred to another school for 6th form, which again i just didn’t like! So i ended up at college! On a personal level I had total blast, meeting new friends, & getting up to much mischief!”
But although Jenny spent three years at college, she didn’t really draw or paint, & she considers herself to be a self-taught painter
“I met some ace people at collage & had some good times, but I did not get on well with many of my tutors. I felt I could never please them. I felt I was stuck & failing because I was not doing things the way they expected. I was not a lazy student; I was just brimming full of ideas & passion & I wanted to get all these ideas out! I found it hard! I didn’t want to play their game & be suppressed. I found the painting and drawing classes and the methods of teaching very un-creative, un-imaginative & tedious. I felt dictated to, bored, restricted and as if my creativity was being drowned. Any desires I had to paint were crushed. My creativity was almost crushed too, so I decided that if I couldn’t paint what i wanted to paint, I’d transfer my enthusiasm to anything that involved working in 3D! Consequently, I concentrated on sculpture, metal work, ceramics which i did very much enjoy and I also loved photography & I still do to this day!”
On a positive note, this provided Jenny a with a great deal of knowledge about working with many different materials, & this works fantastically well now in her art club, where kids are encouraged to explore & be experimental with different materials & individual projects!
“I loved working with metal & for my final A-level piece i spent months welding a gothic & tree root inspired chair! From scratch! It was tough work, in my boyfriend at the times garage. I did it totally on my own, it took me ages! I had an idea & ran with it! I was so excited & happy by my work! No one else did anything remotely as daring & different or unique but because i lacked the planning material, the design sheets etc I got a rubbish grade. That was the final nail in the coffin for education form me. I’lll never forget that………
I had no desire to go to Uni & the chair experience clinched it 100%. I’ve never ever had any regrets about not going, i knew if i went to Uni I would be putting my life on hold, putting ME on hold. I just wanted to get on with life & follow my own path & be FREE …….& that is exactly what i did!
When I left college in 1994 I began to paint constantly! I also continued to do photography & also work in 3D”
After leaving college Jenny just got on with it! Doing odd jobs, cleaning, babysitting all sorts along side painting & creating to earn the pennies!
“I would say I was a professional artist since 1999. Thats when i really started to make money from selling my art & getting commissions”
Jenny specialised in creating original oil paintings, multi media pieces and photographic/digital images inspired by the female form & nature.
She also produced highly textured more abstract pieces too, experimenting with many different materials include grass, resin, plaster, adhesives & fabric!
Jenny worked on many private commissions over the years & gained a great deal of commercial work from restaurants, hotels & interior designers. She also exhibited and sold her work all over the UK in private and public galleries. Her art work has being featured in various magazines including The Erotic Review! & Cheshire Life and on National Television.
She has private collectors of her art work Nationwide, including a private collection of paintings at The Inns Of Court in London & also in America and Spain!
Jenny also used to make her own paper, greetings cards & decorative boxes to sell in local shops & craft fairs.
She made 2 different types of boxes, some were made from grass mixed with resin & pressed flowers & others were made using Papier-mâché with plaster of Paris!
In around 1999/2000, along side working in her studio, she began too run art workshops in schools all around Cheshire and Manchester.
“The natural world, the female form, music and my imagination inspired my art work. & I love dancing & enjoy many different types of music! Rock, Classical, Latin American, Thrash Metal! I also love music from Turkey & Egypt!
I was also a professional Belly Dancer from 1997 – 2010 which has helped fund my career as an artist. I frequently used to dance in my studio while painting, which helped me stay motivated and inspired, especially late at night! More about that later!”
THE START OF PARSLEY PIE
In need of a more stable income, as selling art & gaining commission work was at times a bit hit & miss, Jenny set up Parsley Pie Art Club in 2001!
WOW! & 17 years later! I am so happy & proud to still be running a very successful and highly recommended children’s art club here in Hale!
“I love it, i really do! I cannot think of anything else I’d rather do to earn a living!
Many of the children who attend my classes have been doing so for years!! Some for over TEN years! WOW! I think its ace! Passion & grit = everything!”
Jenny now has over 18 years of experience and expertise working with children creatively!
Children of all ages and all abilities! Toddlers right through to Teenagers! She’s also has a lot of experience helping children with special needs too!
“I don’t consider myself to be amazing or a master at any one kind of art but I do think I’m great with kids! I’m a master experimenter with an excellent knowledge of all different types of material & techniques! This i feel lends itself vey well to the art club, where kids really do want to get stuck in & explore different mediums & ways of doing things & be a bit messy! Go for it! that’s what i say to them & the kids love it!”
Read in more detail about the Parsley Pie business & how it has evolved over the years!
“I don’t paint much myself now, but I am super creative in many other ways! It’s not that I don’t have the time to paint, I just want to be more active & be outdoors more! I can sit & paint when I’m old!
Obviously with my son, Theron, we are always in the studio making crazy messy stuff together, painting & building epic clay models! Of course in the Parsley Pie classes I love inspiring & guiding the kids! I am very keen gardner too & love being creative in outside with the design of the garden & with plants, flowers, hand-painting stones & buying weird & wonderful statues & pots! I also love cooking & doing creative stuff around our home, redesigning rooms & decor!”
Jenny aka ZALIAH!!!
“It all started with my love of the band Hawkwind! & my own steely determination to pull myself out of a bit of an emotional black hole.
I knew they had dancers on stage with them, & one day, after only having had a few months of dancing lessons i just thought sod it. I wrote a letter to Dave Brock! A few months later he called me. He actually called me! To cut a long story short, i ended up dancing on stage with Hawkwind a few times, on two different UK tours! Having realised I was pretty good at dancing & entertaining people, I also began performing at other events!”
Jenny AKA Zaliah worked as a professional Egyptian Belly Dancer for over 13 years dancing at: weddings, private parties, schools, Corporate & Charity functions, girls birthday parties, Community & Cultural festivals and Women’s events.
Zaliah also performed for Cherie Blair, John Lewis department stores, TV celebrity Jenny Powell & on stage with The Crazy World of Arthur Brown!
As if running a the Parsley Pie business, painting, dancing & being a cat mum wasn’t enough! Jenny also spent a few years doing photographic modelling too!
In 2010, shortly before discovering she was pregnant with her son, Jenny decided to retire from professional dancing! But she still enjoys dancing on nights out, at festivals & around the house!
“So 17 years has whizzed by! It really has! In a glorious messy painty whirlwind of colourful ups & downs but definitely mostly ups!
In May 2011 I had my son, & in June 2016 I married my Greek beast Nik! Being a working mum is at times a challenge, but life would be dull as Hell without challenges! I love being a mum & I love my business!”
Now Jenny’s main focus is Parsley Pie, her club in Hale & building the brand & of course being a wife, mummy to Theron & a goat mother!
“I’m happy & feel very fortunate to have had all the wild & interesting experiences while doing my art, belly dancing all over the UK & modelling! but I’m more content now, settled in myself, with great self esteem (not something I’ve always had) But I did sometimes feel I was a bit of a “Jack of all trades” & now my business focus is purely on Parsley Pie I feel that Im more of a master now! With 17 years of experience under my belt!
Running a business is hard work but if you have passion you can get through anything! The times when things are tough, you are skint, tired & stressed!
With grit, passion & self belief you can keep going!
I don’t work full time, I only really work during term time, apart for the a few holiday workshops a year! So its ace!
I have fantastic life! I feel incredibly blessed. I have plenty of time to spend with my amazing hubby & our beautiful mini troll Theron and our 2 chumps in the garden! YAY!!!!
Nothing is perfect, things are ever changing, I’m far from perfect! I still wish i could slow my brain down sometimes & not get anxious about silly things, not be so uptight & impatient at times but on the whole I’m happy with me & I LOVE LIFE! It’s precious & precarious! So make the most of it!!”
“I spend as much time as possible with my husband & our beautiful 6 year old son Theron & our families & friends!
I used to have 7 rescue cats but over the last few years they have all died of old age! So pet wise at the moment, just the goats Pepper & Diablo! I love spending time with them, goats are such funny creatures, very affectionate & fun of character! Im hoping one day we’ll get a dog, but not just yet!”
LIKES, INTERESTS, HOBBIES
“Walking in the wilds! Up hills, up mountains, in forests!
Yoga, well my kind of yoga is lying flat on my back doing breathing exercises!
Dancing! It’s good for the mind, body & soul
Veganism. I’ve been vegan for 6 years. I am very passionate about reducing the the amount of pain, death & suffering to animals & the destruction of our planet
Im the worlds worst & slowest reader, but i do dabble about a bit reading Buddhist philosophy!
I love food! I love cooking, & I love eating out!
I can not live happily without music, there’s always music blasting out around the house! We really like going to going to gigs and festivals too!
I adore the sunshine, although i hate sunbathing!
Plus I also love being organised & de-cluttering! Minimising the amount of “things” “stuff”! Getting rid of pointless objects around me! Ibelive the accumulation of too many material “things” & too much stuff is not healthy, they drain good energy & brain space!”
Materialistic & flashy people! Impoliteness, impatience, arrogance, people driven purely by money.
Moaners. Negative thinkers.
People who don’t appreciate life or what they have or who are never satisfied!
People who don’t like any kind of music with any real measure of passion
Business for Punks by James Watt, stuff by Bill Bryson, Clive James, anything by His Holiness the XIVth Dalai Lama
Horror movies & gore galore! Kill bill 1 & 2, Benidorm, Last of the Mohicans, Best in show, Peep Show, Nightly night, The Walking Dead, Dexter, Gladiator, Vampire & zombie films! Frozen planet, My New Best Friend, Spaced and so amy more!!
Well anyone who knows me, knows I love my Metal music! But I also enjoy some classical, blues & reggae!
Here are a few of my faves! ~ Black Sabbath, Testament, Omen, Sabaton, The Smiths, Over kill, Pink Floyd, The Doors, Dio, Adele, Helloween, Led Zepelin, Manowar, Bob Dylan, Queen, Abba, Accept, The Stranglers, Megadeth, Ordo Funebris & The Scorpions
I also love Middle eastern & Egyptian music too!
Lori Early, John William Waterhouse, John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti
“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education…..”
Thanks for reading, I look forward to meeting you soon!
BE YOU! & LET YOUR CREATIVITY RUN WILD ALWAYS!