22 October 2015

the fascinating work of Carolyn Swart

Beautiful art is everywhere and I have had the privilege to get to know the work of Carolyn Swart quite intimately, i.e. holding it in my hand, flip it over, turn it to the light, set it down and take it up again. 

Carolyn is from NSW, Australia, and for the last couple of years she has taken part in the 'signature exchange' which a small group of artists do once a year. This year however, a broken wrist prohibited her from taking part. But I thought I'd show you a sample of her work in mixed and multi media.. and she likes working with distressed plastic ;-)

Morning tea time - collage on card
'Morning tea time'  was part of the ICE 17 2014 - more here

" I am always thinking "What if.." I am a constant fiddler experimenting with design texture and colour, and as such I don't always obey the rules. " - Carolyn

cocktail waistcoat
"Mostly silk and voile on fine wool background. I also have a cummerbund I made to go with it BUT it is either one or the other you wear otherwise you look like New Years Eve all over....  heheh " - C

pink strips through orange
"I love this one, not sure if I will stitch it over or not. The colours are just so right to be together. I do like the simplicity of it. If I stitch the ribs they will be too stiff.  Not wanting to glue them either. hmm!  " -C

the green girl

"Plastic again, work in progress, I just love distressing it.... hehe The Green Girl is up to no Good!! Oh Oh!" - C

plastic art quilt
 " Picture of little quilt I am just finishing.. Mostly distressed plastic, string, silks all mashed into shape with free motion quilting.  Not quite A4 size " - C

my fave collage - soft and warm
"Unfinished as I love him..... Will not give him away....." - C

You can contact Carolyn through her email - remove the spaces :-) crowngypsy @ optusnet . com . au

Thanks Carolyn for sharing your art with us!

15 October 2015

Hobbs Wharf and its market

Where I now live there is a cute market every Sunday morning from 10am till 2pm. It's a little bit rural, a little bit quaint, with a little warm heart. There are all sorts, with yummy fresh vegetables and fruit some days, and plants, clothing and small little furniture pieces, all handmade. Did I tell you about the pies and pasties, the homemade bread and the semi-precious jewellery? There are also woodwork, woolwork, organic scrumptious lotions in pots all handmade and environment friendly, soaps and art.

It's the Hobbs Wharf Market, 134 Pinecrest Drive, Gulf Harbour, Whangaparaoa, and this time I will have a couple of paintings out just because I can, and will try to demonstrate some poppies I've been doing - seeing it is the centenary year of the battle of Gallipoli - if you're interested in the process of making little postcard sized art on paper.

I've also found this yummy little hall table at the local Hospice shop and promptly gave it a good scrub, then painted the top in a subtle pink. Next I doodled on it and started to colour it in.. so it will be waiting for you at the market to come and make your mark on it for free ;-)

Thanks for visiting my blog :-)
Best wishes

16 July 2015

a residency of a different kind..

For the next year or so I am fortunate to be on a particularly interesting residency.. living and working on a boat in the beautiful Hauraki Gulf! All went well with moving into my new creative space and it should be interesting to see in what ways these new circumstances will influence my work..

Anyway, having retrained my two cats to accept living on a boat, and sizing down the scale of my works just a little for them to fit into the new space, things have settled again into a smooth rhythm.

Just off the easel is this one done mostly in acrylics, with some graphite and a sprinkle of glitter for good measure and just because I can ;-) - called "queen of dotted hearts and green pears".  Size is 500mm x 400mm x 30mm stretched canvas and one of two new works destined for Gallery Helena Bay

Thanks for visiting - see again soon :-)

16 May 2015


There's something very special about the date above - The Riverhead Gallery is now officially open!

Donna Massey is the driving force and the artist behind the venture. Her recognisable style is well known throughout New Zealand and overseas and she has been painting from her own experience of outdoors adventures and trips for years. Always on the lookout for a challenge she has now entered the commercial side of the art world and I suspect it will be a wonderfully successful venture as well as an opportunity for growth and expansion of her art - as she'll be painting in her studio which is part of the gallery.

So if you would like to see an artist at work, experience her work as well as the work of a number of other artists whom she'll be representing also, then do visit The Riverhead Gallery, 1044 Riverhead-Coatesville Highway, Auckland... it is open NOW!  Opening hours are Wed - Sun 11am to 5pm

And there are two little paintings by me included in the current opening exhibition ;-)


20 April 2015

how time flies..

Goodness it's been ages since I've posted anything on this here blog.. Good news is that my art is alive and well and living in my head ;-)

So onto canvas (or something) it has to go and here is the latest little work.. going into a little gallery in Riverhead opening soon.  More news to follow - watch this space

leave no stone unturned

acrylic, graphite, coloured pencils on stretched canvas 600 x 600mm

see soon

21 October 2014

100 days project

One thing every day for 100 days.. how hard can it be?  Well, not too hard as I've signed up for the same thing for a second year.

I've learnt that it has to be something really easy and quick to do - the longer it takes and the harder it is, the greater the possibility that you won't complete the 100 days and drop out along the way.  And me being compulsive and a wee bit driven find it really hard to say I've lost the battle.. competitive I think, is what some people might describe it.

So I handmade a book with exactly 100 spreads and decided to do some drawing on each spread, then add some acrylic paint in watercolour technique and Bob's your uncle, not mine ;-) To make it a little more interesting I decided to start drawing a line and then close my eyes, keep going, and then try to end on the exact spot where I started, eyes still closed.  Then I would open me eyes, study the line, add some more drawing and then some colour.  I tried to visit the colours of the rainbow for around 15 pages each, with some transition in between.

About the hit rate of landing on the starting point, well you will have to page the book to find the answer... ;-)

It is for sale on trademe for a while and here is a one minute slideshow:

Thanks for your visit - till next time

12 October 2014

odds and ends, this and that

October is proving to be a busy busy month what with three paintings on 'commission' and an Art Swap to run.  On top of that I've signed up again for the 100 Days Project as I did last year - don't know why I do this to myself - but what fun it's been!

I've done some work on one of my 'recycled' paintings, acrylic work done on an older oil painting called 'home' ;-) - here is a one minute slideshow of the process so far.

And yes, I like to recycle things as consumerism is hurting this earth.. need to recycle, reuse, refuse refuse ;-) small footprint and all that
thanks for watching

20 August 2014

almost there..

had fun making a quick slideshow of the progress of this painting, it's almost finished, but will leave the final work for the gallery to reveal ;-)

Big show coming up in Hamilton, New Zealand on 5-6 September 2014 and I have five works packed to courier.  This is the first time for such a grand scale art show in Claudelands Events Centre, Hamilton - all the best for a great turnout The Art Sale !

two's company - mixed media on stretched canvas, 1020 x 1020mm

15 August 2014

a tart start

starting a new painting with drawing and first layers of paint.  sometimes I feel like stopping right there! had the fun, it's fresh and new, so I'll contemplate and enjoy it for a while before I continue ;-)

1000 x 1000 x 32mm, mixed on 12g fine weave canvas and hard wood stretchers - untitled

29 July 2014

It's done!

When is a painting done?  I always say it's done when I start believing what I see.. and it wasn't different with this work.  As it was developing it moved through the usual creative steps which I think is not new to the creatives: excitement, play, joy at being busy with the stuff, looking, thinking, wondering, doubt, disappointment, despair, rejection, recklessness, doggedness, keeping on keeping on, standing back, thinking, hoping, looking, thinking, relaxing, tweaking, seeing, believing, little more tweaking, then stop and look, I might even be in love a little :-)

title 'urban dwellers', acrylic and graphite on stretched canvas, 760mm x 1020mm x 35mm available from Black Door Gallery

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