I have been working on a “forest”theme lately…quite timely as we’ve had massive bushfires here in Australia, so far destroying more then 12 million hectares and killing 25 people but also over a billion creatures, some endangered, in these forests and national parks. My paintings explore the idea of forest, what it means to me and others, and our memories, sometimes of beautiful places now lost. The works I’ll show here are of imagined places, and the multiple images show my process. The paintings are near to completion but I’m not totally satisfied yet.
The first work is titled “Forest dance” and is 35x35cm(14x14in). This one is probably finished. The painting on the right is the final piece.
The second painting is titled “Dry forest with fallen branches”, 75x75cm(30x30in), and needs some more work. The painting on the bottom right is the most recent rendition. Hope this helps you understand my process.
I’ve been making a bit more time for myself to be creative in my studio and have just yesterday completed 2 new paintings. It’s a relief to get back into art making again as I’ve been devoting a lot of time to the gardening project, but sometimes the need for art creation comes to the fore and I follow my instincts! The new paintings reference my love for the natural world and my experience of it, but are also very abstracted in format. It’s more about feeling the place and creating an abstract impression of this…called expressionism actually! Paint marks made on the canvas are significant in all my work…they point to abstracted ideas of objects, people etc. but also serve to lead the eye on a journey across the paintings, and to linger in areas that can be explored more. One artwork is a small forest painting, the other a beach. Both are refreshing and sustaining places to visit. “Forest wandering 1” is priced at $340 and is 40x30cm in size; the other is titled “Beach stroll”, a much larger painting, and priced at $995. Its’ size is 92x60cm. Both were a great joy to paint! Please reach me on my contact page if you’re interested in making a purchase.
Finished this painting just before New Years Eve last week….“Sunrise: mountain” is a collection of ideas/inspirations from nearly mornings on the mountain. Colours can be brilliant, with trees aglow; there is a lovely quality of light. A diversity of painting techniques were employed here: spray paint, dribbles, textured painterly sections. I’ve heightened the hues vibrancy to increase the impact of the work…it’s about memories, what I’ve seen and experienced.
I haven’t painted anything for 5-6 months….life has been difficult. My daughter had major surgery in December and is due for some final surgery soon. My mother also passed away early in the year….so there’s been a lot to deal with.
This week I felt inspiration rising again, after this great period of grief and distress, and have been able to take up the brush.
I started 2 works and have completed one, dealing with memories of the Australian summer and the powerful presence of the light and colour experienced in our coastal areas. “Byron trilogy: water, sky, beach” features dominant colours of yellow and blue, and spontaneous brushstrokes reflect the immediate experience of the coast at Byron Bay: the ocean and beach in vivid hues. It’s a joyous expression after a personal time of turmoil.
This week I’ve worked on a small piece, “Rockpool, Ballina” and I’m happy with the finished product. This piece alludes to memories of a favourite place to visit when my children were small. The rock pools at Flat Rock, near Ballina NSW, were full of delights if you waited patiently….tiny octopi, little bright fish, crabs, slow moving molluscs, starfish and the ubiquitous cunjovoi (sea squirts). What always intrigued me was the way the ocean flowed back into these pools at turn of tide, and refreshed life there. This is what I”m capturing in this painting…the gentle sparking flow of water that hid so many wonderful secrets. I’ve hinted at the presence of these creatures but have shown a few forms that allude to the cunjovoi in their brown and red colours. I find these memories wonderful and evocative; of magical wonderful timesnow passed. Perhaps you may find something that triggers such a memory on viewing this work.
I’ve been working on “Bangalow evening” for quite a while, deciding if I really like the vibrant pink…well I do, so it remains a major feature in this work. Bangalow is a small town in Northern New South Wales, and I’m assuming that it’s named after the ubiquitous bangalow palms that are native to this area , and up into south east Queensland. I have beautiful memories of sunsets while living in NSW, and in this painting I’m remembering the remnant rainforest around the small town’s edge. This painting has taken a couple of months to complete and I’m happy now with the result. I love the contrast between the sky and the trees. Hope you enjoy too.
I visited Central Australia 16 years ago and the memory of it still remains vivid in my mind. I’ve painted this encounter now, using the bright colours of the Uluru and Kata Jutaareas. These are monumental rock features and are Australian icons. My painting approach is abstract in style…it’s almost impossible to express the spirit and wondrous nature of these edifices any other way. The colour is high and vivid with reds, oranges and pinks and a splash of yellow. I’ve indicated features such as sky with a bright blue and remnant trees and small rocks in dark tones. My memory evokes feelings of appreciation of the grandeur of these places….I’m trying to capture the essence, the spirit of Uluru and the surrounding landscape. Hope those who have experienced this part of Australia (and those who would like to) can somehow connect with the essence of what I’ve painted.
Another small artwork has been completed from my studio…“Little lagoon”. Images of water seem to be a recurring theme in my recent work. I like the idea of mystery and coolness associated with places such as pools and lagoons. Much of my recent work connects memory with environment, and “Little lagoon” is really a collection of memories from places I’ve visited. Capturing the essence of these places is my intention.
“Tropic reef flow” is now complete, and I’m very pleased with it. The colour used created a joyous feeling for me….hope the same happens for you! In this piece I’m showing the essence of the coral reef experience…flowing water, the blue aqua ocean hues, glimpses of coral and sea life, tropic sunsets, the moving living thing that the reef is. I’ve snorkelled on the Great Barrier reef and this memory remains vivid for me to this day, and there’s also memories of swimming in rock pools and being amazed by the variety of life in those secret places. Hope you enjoy this work as much as I do!
I’ve recently completed another Remembrance painting, “Remembrance: Wetland swamp”. It’s a collation of many memories and some experiences of these dark and mysterious places. I love the way the bright and often grassy edge to wetlands is so vibrant in vivid greens, and bumps up against the dark secretive swamp area….the contrast is stark. In this painting I’ve made use of quick marks which act as detail in large one toned or coloured parts. The “marks” are important parts of all my paintings and though they may be small, are actually very powerful strong pieces of the picture acting as contrast or detail in open areas. Each mark is quite considered even though it has the appearance of being spontaneous. In “Wetland swamp” I’ve also employed the hidden/revealed approach to large areas of colour and there is a lot of complexity in the work. This gives the painting depth and an aliveness throughout. This painting is available for sale at $570.