Christine McKinney. Photo by Conor Ross Photography

Five minutes with….Christine McKinney aka CMK’s Doodles

Christine McKinney shies away from the limelight. You may not recognise her if she walked past you on the street but you’re sure to recognise her work, especially if you walk through the streets of Armagh at Christmas.

Christine, aka CMK’s Doodles, lights up rooms, window displays and anything else she can get away with doodling on with her impressive artwork. Away from her art, she loves drag racing…here’s our latest five minutes with…

Why did you choose wall murals as a career/business?

Well, I never planned on doing wall murals, it’s something I just fell into and thought I would wing it and give it a go. I had built a 74 Volkswagan Beetle and used it for drag racing and I decided to doodle all over it and it got people’s attention. Then a local business got in contact asking me to do murals in a children soft play and I decided to give it a go and I ended up doing murals all over the place, so decided to make a business out of it.

What are you most proud of in your career to date?

I’m proud that I was able to start the business and get it off the ground – having worked on every week and that I’m known for my work, as well as the ability to work all over Ireland.

What is your favourite thing about your job?

The smiles on the faces of my clients, especially the kids. I do a lot of work for children that has autism and kids that can’t sleep in their room, so when they get murals they want to sleep in their rooms; they can be calm looking at the murals.

What has been the biggest challenge in your job?

I have been lucky so far I had no real big challenges. When Covid hit it was bad, as I had to close down, but when I was able to work I had months of work to catch up on.

What is the most helpful advice that you have been given?

I never took too much advice from anyone about my business, I really just winged it and trust that my art would do all the work for me. I have gave plenty of advice to others that has started businesses similar to my own.

If you could choose anything else to do, what would it be?

Hmm that’s a hard one. I could not picture doing anything else, but if I had to choose something I would probably go back into Youth Work.

What do you think your best quality is?

Maybe problem solving. My job can be tricky at times but I always find a way to get the job done. I think outside of the box.

Name three things that you like doing outside of work..

I love going on adventures such as walks around abandoned places, chilling at home with my pups and, of course, drag racing.

Tell us about a secret skill that we don’t know you have.

Pull Wheelies on a car, ha

What is your most prized possession?

My Beetle

What is your favourite food?

Can I say all? Ha. But pizza for sure! Pizza is life.

What is your favourite book?

Really don’t have one; I’m not a reader as you can tell I’m more about the pictures in a book.

What are you currently watching?

I don’t have a show that I’m watching right now but I like documentaries, so I love to watch those.

If you were to watch a band/singer live, who would it be?

Linkin Park, for sure!

Dead or alive, who would you most want to meet and why?

Ryan Reynolds because he is awesome and would have the craic!

Main image: Christine McKinney. Photo by Conor Ross Photography

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