Chrissie Heughan is an artist who works mainly with handmade cheap paper, but also with other art forms such as collage and mixed media, printmaking, and sculpture. Most of her subjects are abstract, botanical, and environmental.
She is also known as the mother of British actor Sam Roland Heughan. Sam is best known for starring as Jamie Fraser in the Starz drama series Outlander (2014-present), for which he won the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Cable Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor and the Saturn Award for Best TV Actor.
Outlander actor Sam’s mother, Chrissie, has become an international artist over the decades with a huge fan base in her industry but tends to be invisible on social media. She has exhibited and lectured nationally and internationally, and her work is in public and private collections in Scotland and abroad.
Since graduating from Art College, Sam’s mother has continued her work and career as a professional artist and freelance lecturer. Chrissie teaches at various art institutions, lecturing on papermaking, printmaking, mixed media, and sketching.
The Hyougan Papermaking Workshop introduces participants to the ancient art of papermaking from beginning to end, including pulping, shaping, melting, and drying. Find out more about Chrissie Heughan below; her early life, how she raised Sam, her relationship with his father, her own profession, and much more.
How Old Is Chrissie Heughan; What Is Her Ethnicity?
Although she has not yet disclosed her birth data, it is assumed that she is currently around 60 or 70 years old. An artist, gallery educator, and performer, Heughan is of Scottish descent.
While her actress son Sam was born in Scotland, Chrissie herself was part of a hippy community in London called Gandalf’s Garden with her now ex-husband.
It was inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien.
How Did Chrissie Heughan Begin Her Art Journey?
Chrissie developed an interest in papermaking through experimentation with pulp and consequently became fascinated with the process and making of hand-glued paper.
To gain her professional skills, Heughan studied Art and Design and Fine Art (Portfolio) at Dumfries and Galloway College of Technology.
She also holds a B.A. (Hons) in Drawing and Printmaking from the Edinburgh College of Art (1995).
After graduating from college, she did an internship at the Japanese Cultural Affairs Centre, Mino, Japan (2001) and a Studio Centre Residency at the Vermont Studio Centre, Johnston, Vermont, USA (2002).
She was one of six international artists who participated in the Paper Village Art Project in Mino, Japan in 2001. During her time in Japan, Chrissie also studied papermaking with a paper master. There she worked and learned alongside the masters.
Some of the other educational institutions where Chrissie has gained teaching experience include; Mixed Media, Trinity Academy, Edinburgh – 2003, Paper Construction, Portobello High School, Edinburgh – 2003, Indian Scroll Painting, Edinburgh Primary Schools, Ocean Terminal Edinburgh – 2003, Mixed Media – Masks, Edinburgh Primary Schools, Edinburgh Zoo – 2004, Art Activities/Workshop Leader, The Fruitmarket Gallery – 2009.
She has also received training in bronze casting, at the Royal Academy, Worshipful Company of Founders, and Piccadilly.
Heughan’s Beginning As A Paper Maker
Christy’s profession in handmade paper began in 1996. Initially, Heughan used richly colored paper for a series of vibrant printed hanging hangers and ran a series of papermaking workshops for Waverley Care Trust. These were specifically designed for people living with HIV.
Since 1997, Sam, the actor’s mother, has had a studio at the Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop. There she initially worked with paper pulp to create surfaces on which to print and make collages or new shapes.
In 2005, Ms. Heughan began making some bronze castings from folded origami paper, playing with the notion of transience and permanence; fragile paper as opposed to metallic mass.
She visited Japan again in 2006 to participate in an international exhibition at the Street Museum in Mino and Gifu.
Chrissie Heughan Prizes, And Awards
Chrissie began to win awards and prizes for her work as early as the mid-2000s. One of her first major awards was the Edinburgh Council Professional Development Award 2005 – Bronze Casting.
The following year, in 2006, she won the Professional Development Award from, Scottish Arts Council. The following year she received the Friends of The Royal Scottish Academy Award, Friends of the RSA, Edinburgh.
Then in 2010, Chrissie won the Professional Development Award again, Scottish Arts Council Craft Award, Edinburgh. Heughan has also received awards for bronze casting and for her Japanese papermaking studies.
Heughan Former Husband And Sons
Until now, it has been a mystery who Chrissie’s ex-husband and the father of her sons were. However, it is reported that Heughan’s ex-husband left her and their two sons when Sam was only three years old.
After Chrissie’s husband left her, the Scottish papermaker had to raise their two young children alone. According to Louanne Lee’s syndicated article, Heughan brought up her two sons in rural Scotland largely on her own from the time Sam was a baby.
To support her family, the British craftswoman worked odd and menial jobs; she worked as a crank shoemaker while also continuing her college studies.
Chrissie met her husband decades later, in 2014, but he was ill with leukemia at the time. Shortly after the reunion, Hughan’s former partner died from the disease. Chrissie and her ex-partner named their sons Sam and Cirdan, characters from Lord of the Rings.
Chrissie Heughan Other Son And Sam Heughan’s Sibling
While one of her sons, Sam, concentrated on acting, her other son, Cirdan, is married to his long-time girlfriend, Victoria Lorison, with whom he has a child.
In 2008, Cirdan went through a difficult time when he was diagnosed with testicular cancer. However, after treatment, his son made a full recovery.
What Does Chrissie Heughan Do Now?
During her career as a papermaker, Chrissie has worked in a number of roles. Firstly, she is now an elected professional member of the Society of Scottish Artists.
She has served on many of their selection, arrangement, and arrangement committees; she is a committee member of the Fife Dunfermline Print Workshop.
Chrissie also occasionally oversees projects where Japanese and Scottish artists engage in paper exchange. She is also one of the leaders of a specialized paper for South West Australian artists.
She has her own business line called Chrissie Heughan Paper. It is based in EDINBURGH, UK, and is part of an industry of agents and managers for artists, sportspeople, entertainers, and other public figures.
Chrissie is also a teacher. A graduate of Edinburgh College, she has taught and organized numerous paper, printmaking, and mixed media workshops for a wide range of the public – adults, children, and people with disabilities.
Some of the organizations and institutions where Heughan has been a tutor include Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop, Fruitmarket Gallery, National Galleries of Scotland, Waverly Care Trust, Artlink Central, Edinvar Housing, Leith School of Art, Edinburgh College of Art, Gracefield Arts Centre and primary and secondary schools in Edinburgh and the Borders.
Somebody Created Heughan’s Fake Profile
In November 2020, the actress’s son Chrissie had to take revenge on the internet after someone created a fake Twitter profile in his mother’s name. The Balmaclellan native condemned the trolls who hid behind the fake online profile claiming to be his mum.
Chrissie’s son shared an Instagram account pretending to be his artist mother on Twitter. The Scottish actor commented on the act, saying he blasted the “disgusting people”.
Sam spotted the fake page through a fan, who also forwarded him a private message from whoever created the fake handle. Apparently, the fake social media handle had reached this person, telling him,
“How are you today? I’m Chrissie Heughan’s (Sam Roland Heughan) mum. I saw your comments and interest in my son and his work and I appreciate you on his behalf”.
The mimic profile additionally wrote a text message,
“Though he doesn’t always get the time to speak to his fans personally, but his constantly receiving the news of people claiming to be him, collecting bank details and money from his fans, I feel terrible whenever I get informed of it, hope you’ve never been a victim. I will love to get a response from you.”
The shocked fan, who received the news late, shared it with Sam and urged him to stop it, saying, “Unbelievable! They have crossed the line. Please report and block this fake account.”
Does Heughan Have A Husband?
Although Chrissie, who now lives mostly in Edinburgh, has a family life, there are still uncertainties about her extra-family life, especially when it comes to her current married life. Although there is an Instagram handle next to her name, the profile hasn’t seen any new posts since 2013. She is still moderately active on Facebook, but there the mother of two mainly talks about her artwork.
Despite all her popularity in the European art community, she has not yet given details about her life outside of work; who her husband is, and so on. On the other hand, given that she has hardly spoken about this aspect of her life, it is likely that strangers will hardly ever find out who her current partner is. Whether or not she is married at all.
Quick Facts ABout Chrissie Heughan
|Edinburgh College of Art, Dumfries and Galloway College of Technology
|Cirdan Heughan, and Sam Heughan
|Chrissie Heughan Facebook
|Chrissie Heughan Instagram