story as art

Whenever someone says to me, “I’m so not creative” or “I haven’t got a creative bone in my body” as happened again recently, I wonder how that narrative first emerges in a person’s mind and why it takes such hold in the stories they tell about themselves. In life, we all make creative choices every day, from what to wear through to how we can best navigate a difficult situation. Although my sister would say that her wardrobe is purelyRead more

Art workshop for Canberra Tree Week

On Wednesday 2 May, I will be introducing the “STEP into plein air” event on behalf of NatureArt Lab, as part of Canberra Tree Week at the National Arboretum. My artist talk is followed by a three-hour art workshop held among beautiful local endangered trees and flowering plants of the Southern Tablelands Ecosystems Park (STEP), Forest 20. “STEP into plein air” focuses on a creative appreciation for our natural environment, especially the gorgeous array of plants from the Southern TablelandsRead more

Sketching trees at Earth Festival

What’s not to love about painting trees? Even better, painting trees in the beautiful surrounds of Canberra’s Australian National Botanic Gardens. I was invited to demonstrate acrylic sketching techniques as part of NatureArt Lab’s course promotion event on Saturday 21 April at the Earth Festival – celebrating sustainable living with a great vibe, music, good coffee and healthy food choices on the shady Eucalypt Lawn. I introduced the acrylic demo with a statement about our relationship with trees and my appreciation,Read more

HMAS Adelaide commission

From birds to ships! When HMAS Adelaide commissioned an original painting to showcase the capabilities of a Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) ship, I was thrilled. I’ve painted ships before but not quite at this scale so I was absolutely determined to enjoy the whole experience. As usual, I took a deep-dive into the detail and worked closely with the Welfare Committee to create a painting that reflects a “typical day” of amphibious operations. I have portrayed HMAS Adelaide docking down, with threeRead more

Reading Tolstoy

Size 11 cm x 6 cm Acrylic on Arches paper SOLD Exquisitely framed prints available $290 This portrait was inspired by observing the subject sitting quietly under a lamp one winter’s evening, reading. The scene brought to mind the serenity and timelessness of a bygone era where literature and the appreciation of art, fine words and philosophy were lauded pastimes. This little portrait deserved a suitably evocative title which can be interpreted as referring to either the book or the sitter himself. Reading Tolstoy received a HighlyRead more

Elwood

Size 35.5 cm x 45.5 cm (14 in x 18 in) Acrylic on canvas Private commission – SOLD Whenever clients seek a portrait of their pet, I consider it a privilege to portray their much loved companion. I usually ask for several photos – high resolution is best – and where possible, I will meet the subject. I ask about character and other idiosyncrasies such as favourite toys or special places. This gives me a true sense of the animal asRead more

zebra finches

Brisk Zebra Finches (Taeniopygia guttata) Size 20 cm x 15 cm Oil on canvas board SOLD Inspired by birdwatching near Orange where Zebra Finches gathered in a noisy crowd among trees bordering a railway line. Gregarious birds, they form a lifelong bond between pairs. On this particular day, each bird had its plumage puffed out to ward off the midwinter chill. I kept the brushstrokes loose and background hazy to imply the light breeze rustling the branches. This painting hung in my exhibition “Feather and Ochre”Read more

flock bronzewing

Desert Flight Flock Bronzewing (Phaps histrionica) Size 51 cm x 20 cm Acrylic on canvas SOLD Outback Australia is the definition of vast. And the Mitchell Grasslands are an amazing part of this impressive landscape. Characterised by open grassy plains with few rivers and gorges, the Mitchell Grass Downs bioregion extends from central Queensland into the Northern Territory and is an important part of Australia’s pastoral heritage. It takes a long time to drive there from the coast but it’s worth the effort.Read more

fairy-wrens

Harmony in Green Red-backed Fairy-wrens (Malurus melanocephalus) Size 91.4 cm x 91.4 cm (36 in x 36 in) Acrylic on canvas SOLD Inspired after birdwatching in far north tropical Queensland, where verdant hills and rainforest canopy enfold lush grazing pastures, cane fields and banana plantations. A family group of Red-backed Fairy-wrens had taken up residence in the long grass near Camp Creek, sheltered from heavy monsoon rain by the sprawling passionfruit vines and shady trees. I have always sketched trees – each speciesRead more

eastern yellow robin

Dazzling Eastern Yellow Robin (Eopsaltria australis) Size 12 cm x 14 cm Mixed media on Arches paper SOLD This painting formed part of a set of three Australian robins. Inspired by birdwatching while camping in the Watagans National Park, New South Wales.    Read more