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I started painting seriously later in life. My heart and my head are full of images that are seeking to find their way on to a canvas from what feels like many life times. Most pressing after being to Africa several times, were the animals. So I began there as both my camera and my experiences provided much material to explore. Springtime in a new house brought poppies and their beauty amazed me and so I started to paint poppies, exploring different approaches to capturing their beauty. Each subject demands a different approach. Elephants and rhinos want me to work with layers and layers to create a feeling of weathering and thickness. To me, beauty comes as I push and pull infusing blues and purples and yellows. As so many African animals are in danger of extinction, I find myself continually pulled back to painting them and hope that I can raise awareness and bring a glimpse of Africa to those who see my work.
As an artist I strive to let my heart and my soul be my guide. As a stroke is put down on a canvas I watch as a story progresses as the layers build and I seek direction for the next stroke and the next. Subjects like game drives on safari need abstraction to come to life and I pull on a different part of me to create pieces that for me represent the excitement of the drives. I have never been one who is comfortable taking a linear approach so in my studio you are likely to see an abstract in process, a flower study and an elephant all sharing the space, waiting for their turn and my attention. I love acrylic and typically work with many layers to get my paintings to where I want them to be. Working with thin and thick layers, thick and fine brush strokes, I strive to create a level of complexity that honours the subject matter and a piece that is interesting and intriguing to explore whether viewing up close or from a distance.
I strongly believe we are all part of a global community and that is it important to support each other and this planet. As such a % of all my income goes to the following charities: World Vision (sponsoring 2 children), Welcome Inn (City of Hamilton, foodbank and community resource centre) and Nkombe Rhino is a South African non profit organisation that focusses on the protection of Endangered species in Southern Africa. By supporting conservationists on the ground, from Anti Poaching units to Veterinarians and helicopter pilots, the knock on effect has been a positive contribution to the survival of many protected species.
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