I have always loved making art. One of my earliest memories is of being at kindergarten, painting at the easel with bright poster paints on big sheets of butcher paper. Kindergarten was all about that easel and those paints for me. The teacher had to force me to go outside for playtime. It was no surprise, then that I went on to complete a Fine Art Degree, and later a Diploma of Education in Art & Craft.
However, for various reasons my career path did not take the trajectory one might have expected with these qualifications. I ended up in the Public Service, where I have been for over 30 years. In the intervening years I worked hard and raised a family, and art fell to the background. It was always there though, tapping me on the shoulder. Sporadically I would try to keep the creative flame alive by attending life drawing sessions, or teaching scrapbooking, or taking a short course in botanical art or watercolour.
It is only in the last few years that I have turned to art
more seriously. I feel an urgency to ‘use it or lose it’ andI look forward to the day when I can retire from my fulltime job to focus more on art. Sometimes I wonder how different things would have turned out if I’d been more consistent with my art practice. I’m nearly sixty and I still feel like a beginner.
Though I love to try new things and experiment, my current comfort zone artistically is with pastels, watercolour and sketching. If I could give some advice to anyone who is wanting to get into art it is this: – spend time with like-minded people. Attend art classes, go to life drawing, go out sketching with friends, join art societies, seek out other creative people who genuinely love art and being creative – and there will be a mutual exchange of ideas, experience and support.
That is why I love being involved with WAA – you’re ‘my people’.