Tasmania’s Tarkine Wilderness…. Art


2017 was the third year of a gathering of creative people (about 150 artists) in Tasmania’s Wilderness…… Takayna (the Tarkine), on the rugged West Coast. This unique area should be offered more protection by affording it National Park status, not to “close” it to visitors but to maintain its environmental and heritage values so that future generations can enjoy it as we do. Art is a language which we hope will give more insight into the inherent value of Tarkayna.

An exhibition of works is currently on display at the Long Gallery in Hobart, Tasmania showcasing artworks created. These are my entries in that exhibition , along with the promotional invitation

“South of Temma”, Acrylic, charcoal and sumi ink on colour fix paperSouth of Temma smaller file

“Coast”, Encaustic

Coast

3 sets encaustic bracelets and matching pendants…. all SOLDEncaustic art in jewellery settings

“Enchanted”, encaustic,Enchanted

“Layered”, Encaustic SOLDlayered

“Tarkine Treasure: Trowutta Arch“, pigment ink on Vellum, miniature. SOLDTarkine Treasure Trowutta Arch

Promotional flierTim 2017 advertise

“Turmoil”, encaustic. Turmoil

“Unleashed”, acrylic on stretched canvasOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Fine art originals (encaustic paintings) in jewellery settings. “Day’s End”. SOLDWearable art Day's End

Fine art originals (encaustic paintings) in jewellery settings. “Sarah Ann Rocks”. SOLDWearable art Sarah Ann Rocks

Fine art originals (encaustic paintings) in jewellery settings. “Rain Forest”. SOLDWearable art Rainforest

Serendipity… encaustic painting


Every year Tasmanian Regional Arts has a themed competition open to female artists. This year’s theme was Serendipity (entry was in 2016 for the 2017 exhibition). I am proud that for the fourth year in a row I am one of the finalists with a work titled “Les Femmes”. Accompaning the work is an artist’s statement, addressing the theme.

Les Femmes 2016 Encaustic $230

Les Femmes

“SERENDIPITY”. My favourite word.

In my art serendipity is perennially evident…. the flow of wet in wet watercolour, spattering, spraying and working in partnership with the medium to see what evolves. Fluidity and serendipity…. they go hand in hand in much of my creative, non-illustrative, art. With my students I also encourage them to be brave, go with the flow and enjoy the serendipity of some styles of art.

I have worked with encaustic waxes with the little craft iron in craft work for a few years but this year went to a workshop in NSW to do larger works on board with encaustic medium brushed on and using a flame (heat gun), incorporating oils, and even setting fire to shellac on the surface. “Art-alchemy” and what wonderful fluidity and serendipity as forms emerge out of the coloured, molten surface. A degree of control, decision making about scraping back and other approaches but enjoying the serendipitous nature of this new medium.

In this work, “Les Femmes”, female forms emerged….. …….2016, an exciting new, fluid medium, suggestion of female, and the theme of Material Girl….. serendipity indeed!!!!

Post Script…. unfortunately TRA will cease due to cut in government funding. Sad for the art world of our tiny island state.

New from the Easel…. watercolour, Encaustic and Acrylic


1945

“1945” Encaustic incorporating photos (photo transfer) dad took in Hiroshima immediately after the dropping of the bomb in 1945. Also incorporated  is a photo transfer of a copy of the peace treaty he was given as a witness to its signing. I do not do many historical works but this is special. For many years I had been wanting to do an artwork based on dad’s experience but could never find the right medium….. until I discovered encaustic art. Perfect to suggest the devastation and the age and I could use copies of his actual photos. On display at Burnie Regional Gallery, Tasmania as part of Burnie Coastal Art Groups. TasArt exhibition.

after-the-fires-2016

After the Fires, 2016″. Encaustic. I finally finished this work, started some months ago. Tasmania experienced unprecedented fires in 2016 and returning to some of the charred wilderness areas I find they are both sad and hauntingly beautiful. That is what I aimed to relate in this wax work. Setting fire to shellac on the surface, gives another link of the artwork’s creation and the fires we experienced. On Display at the Tasmanian Art Awards at Eskleigh, Perth Tasmania, first weekend November 2016.

nelso-bay-sunset

“Quiet Times, Nelson Bay, Tarkine Coast”.  Watercolour. It had been a wet day but on dusk the rain cleared and soft colours were so soothing. A quick photo shoot to record the changing light and later in the studio this watercolour took me back to the moment. 

struggle-for-survival

“Struggle for Survival, Sarah Anne Rocks, Tarkine Coast”. Acrylic with texture paste on gallery stretch canvas. I did this work earlier this year but felt the bleached log was too stark so recently re-worked that. Happier now as the red lichen takes on a more important role. The branch and bleached twigs are skeletons decaying, but rotting down they provide nutrients for the native geranium in its own pocket. Lichen is an amazing organism which is incredibly well adapted to harsh conditions such as here on Tasmania’s West Coast. On display at TASART Burnie 2016

wedge-tail-eaglein-the-treetop

“Tree top Eagle”, watercolour. The eye was improved after taking this photo. A small work makes it tricky to do the eye detail Sold

wip-eagle

WIP. Wedge Tail Eagle. Watercolour.  Contrasting with the “wildness” of encaustic I have also enjoyed doing some careful illustration of birds over the past couple of weeks.” Ihis will be on display at my stall at the Tasmanian Craft Fair, Deloraine,  Nov 3 to 7th, 2016

Encaustic paintings


I have been thoroughly enjoying exploring encaustic art both in teaching the basics to others, experimenting more myself and attending a workshop with a fabulous encaustic artist, Mo Godbeer. So much to discover…. more pics to come

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Commission challenges


 

Fishing Tasmania  portrait format

While busy at this time of year restocking and going to events, I have managed to complete some of the commissioned work and have sent a couple off to their new homes. The watercolour above went to live in NSW yesterday. I have previously done a “Fly Fishing Tasmania” in a landscape format and reproduced  it on fridge magnets. The challenge for this commission was to create a similar feel in a portrait format, making sure to capture the sense of light.

 

Aurora inspired pendant

This encaustic pendant, inspired by the skies of Aurora Australis, will be off to USA to match the bangle bought by a lovely lady visiting Hobart on a cruise. I also need to do a silk bracelet for her to match a pendant she bought. I have done 3 paintings for it but none are quite a close enough match so I will work on that again today.

 

girlfriends 4

At the craft Fair I had some small matted watercolours of my “Ladies Day Out” loose style figures. These are  based on Robert Wade’s  “Bob’s Blobs” which I so loved when I attended a watercolour workshop with him years ago. I really enjoy doing these and the instructions for this were…… 3 friends dressed in red, yellow and purple. I did 3 works (all have been collected…. this was a practise), so the “three  amigos” will each have one. What a lovely idea for an original  Christmas gift for special friends.

Tasmania’s Tarkine Wilderness portrayed in wearable art


Tarkine collection for. IM filmJPGThis is a little collection of current works based on my visits to the magnificent Tarkine area of West Coast Tasmania.

A silk scarf, “forest greens” with a handpainted silk brooch using a solar technique. The others are pendants and a bracelet each containing a miniature encaustic painting. Inspiration (from top left)….. Sarah Ann Rocks, rainforest stream, logs at Arthur R mouth, Nelson Bay, button grass plains, the ocean (bracelet}.

Winter days in the Studio…. “serious” painting, art play and quirky stuff


Winter is a time of runny noses, colds and ‘flu. But it is also a time to enjoy keeping warm inside, creating artworks without feeling guilty about all the time spent indoors.

I always keep busy creating but don’t photograph and post many of my works. Today I had a quick look around the studio, grabbed my most recent works and the i-pad and got photographing…… outdoors (it was a lovely clear afternoon).

Firstly, I intended to finish this acrylic on canvas………. I have added some of the seaweed but I want more texture in the front.

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I have asked a few friends what they think and, as expected, have had a few different responses. I have finally decided to go with what I originally thought (as I tend to do) …. I will add some sand from the location to give authentic texture, in addition to implied texture through spattering, dry brush, scumbling etc.

IMG_0095I take a few classes each week, usually in watercolour, and in the most recent we focused on tone while re-enforcing the importance of timing, and working with increasingly drier paint to achieve strength. We painted a winter snow scene in Sepia…. no other colours to distract….. purely tonal. Aiming for a sense of depth with softer distance and harder, stronger edges to the fore.

I have also been enjoying the colour and flow of dyes on silk, making more of my silk miniatures in a brooch which accompany my hand painted scarves. I have a couple of venues waiting for new stock of these and hope to get on top of putting some online on my handmade shop in the next few weeks. While taking photos of these I finally got around to taking a few pics showing some of the many ways these sets can be worn. I gave up trying to find a suitable willing model and used my dressmaking form and a head form (they were most co-operative). More ideas are posted on my Silk Watercolours blog (listed in my links)

,soft pink purple cool blue bright orange deep pink blue lime IMG_0076IMG_0079

I have been asked by one venue to do some quirky, fun stuff… so that I did and, yes , it was fun. The card is from handmade paper (made at the last workshop I took at a local Tasmanian Regional Arts branch), and beautifully polished pebbles collected from local beaches. These my sister and I love picking up on beach walks when she visits, she takes them back to back to Victoria, tumbles them and posts some back to me for my STONE BIRD card creations. I spend ages playing with these beautifully smooth coloured stones to see what characters I can find.  Very meditative…. oh yes, that new thing “mindfulness”! The little watercolour and ink girl is just for fun…. colour and smiles.

IMG_0094                                              just for fun

Whenever I am in the studio for a few consecutive days I tend to experiment with something new. This time I  explored  a combination of a silk painting background under an encaustic artwork in a pendant. I am happy with the result … soft silk watercolour with the intensity and dimensionality of an abstract encaustic painting suggestive of a network.

IMG_0102 2

And last week I had a call from the local newspaper, The Advocate, asking about a forthcoming workshop I am taking at Tasmanian Regional Arts Sheffield on Making Little Boxes for trinkets, jewellery etc. They needed a pic so I gathered what I could find, made a couple of new boxes, put one of my handmade scarves in one and an encaustic pendant in another and sent them some images to play with (none of me with my red drippy “winter cold” nose and bloodshot eyes!)

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If ever I get artist’s block I just reach for a different medium…. my studio has everything at hand……. my most favourite place to relax, work and play. Such is the life af someone addicted to creating.