In 2002, McPeake had to abandon a long career in stage lighting design due to the loss of most of his eyesight and returned to arts education and practice on a full time basis. He has been awarded a first class Honours Degree in Arts, Design and Environment from Central Saint Martins (2005), Post-Graduate Certificate Learning and Teaching (2011) and a PhD from Chelsea (2012).
His PhD thesis, Nibbling at Clouds – The Visual Artist Encounters Aventitious Blindness, is an holistic study of the impacts vision loss has on the visual artist. The thesis draws on the experiences of a panel of artists (who lost eyesight in later life) and includes his own experience as well as how he has developed his own practice.
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