Cradle Mountain watercolours… Tasmanian Icon.


 

Cradle Mt is not Tasmania’s tallest mountain but it is an icon. Located at the Northern end of the Cradle Mt Lake St Clair National Park, the dolerite peaks tower above Lake Dove (Lake St Clair is down the Southern end of the reserve, a five day trek which many walkers enjoy but which must be approached with good planning due to the very variable weather which may be experienced).

I enjoy painting our Tasmanian landscape, showing here the hard edged dolerite crags and the muted greens of the alpine vegetation. Typically there is cloud or mist encroaching from the west (right hand side) and often visitors are disappointed to find the mountain has “disappeared” . But this was a clear day so the majesty of “The Cradle” and Little Horn could be fully enjoyed.

CradleCradle Mt on a Clear Day, watercolour 2017, 36x26cm

Here is that mist that encroaches from the west.

Cradle Mt with a whisper of cloud     A Whisper of Misty cloud (Cradle Mt), watercolour 2017, 18x26cm (approx) SOLD

….. and a hint of Autumn Colour from further along the walk.A touch of Autumn at Cradle Mt

A Hint of Autumn at Cradle Mt, watercolour 2017, 18x26cm (approx)

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Art Fair Preparation…. watercolours


I have been taking my art to theTasmanian Craft Fair at Deloraine in Tasmania for more than 10 years. Although I sort of know what to do, I always find that towards the end I am coming up with heaps of ideas but not enough time to act on them. Not as many watercolours this year but I do probably have  enough (except for flowers), and today I have been cutting matts, wrapping in cello (close fitting bags when possible) and pricing (now that is tricky). Hint: re cellophane…. I always use the top quality PR range as it is crystal clear and sturdy. Here are a few of my latest watercolours ready to go to new homes. (available as early bird purchase)

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Loose style figures add life and umbrellas are great for colour. As the artist you can choose whatever colour umbrellas you want. I love the way the lady in the yellow jumper looks a little cautious in the wet, while the lady is the green jacket does not seem to worry.

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I used the cling wrap technique here to get some of the light patterns. Throw colours on, use the wrap.remove and decide what it wants to be. I love this imaginative style of working as you never know what will emerge from the surface.

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I visited Melbourne this year in late Autumn, early Winter, hence this street scene and the rainy day umbrella ones. I want to go back again for more inspiration. The flickers of white (unpainted  spots of the paper’s rough surface (300gsm Saunders Waterford rough), suggest sunlight.

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Another rainy day in Melbourne, and another loose style watercolour with flickers of light. SOLD

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Back in Tasmania for this one. My beloved Tarkine Wilderness Coast (Nelson Bay). We stayed for a couple of nights at Arthur R. This was the first evening, it had been raining but on sunset the sky cleared for a while and lovely soft sunset colours said “peace”.

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.

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“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. 

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“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

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“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

Tasmanian Waterfall… mixed media watercolour


I have a lovely friend (Laurie Davison) who takes the most magnificent photos of Tasmanian waterfalls and gets to ones no-one else does. No way could I walk where he does, so he has kindly allowed me to do my loose painterly interpretations of his photo.

This is a waterfall near Deloraine in the Meander Valley, Tasmania, at the base of the Western Tiers. I loved the greens in his photo, indicating the excellent environmental health of the area. So good to see.

A little more work to do on this. Mixed media painting, but it captures the freshness of our Tasmanian Wilderness

good health

I started with oil pastel as a resist to make sureI got some fresh greens and texture. The support is 300gsm Saunders Rough paper. After the oil pastel came the watercolour, wet in wet, but reserving some whites by not painting the area. A bit of dry brush for sparkle. Sumi ink for some calligraphic strokes. Scraping with a blade to bring back a few more sparkles and a few strokes of Chinese white. Inktense pencils were used to re-enforce some areas.

Gotta love playing with mixed media. I am fortunate to have a huge amount of art materials (the clock is ticking and I feel the urge to make sure I use them all!!!!!!)

Tarkine in Motion …Hobart, Long Gallery, Exhibition


I wish I could get to Hobart for the opening of the Tarkine in Motion exhibition tomorrow evening. Artworks evolving out of 70 artists responding to Tasmania’s Tarkine Wilderness will be on display at Hobart’;s Long Gallery until 4th February 2016. (50 of the 70 artists exhibiting in the is huge display).

Tasmania is fairly small yes, but it is about a 4 hour drive each way from our home to Hobart, so it is not as easy as non Tasmanian’s might think to “pop down” to our capital city.

I have already delivered some works to be hung but I have seen mine…. I really want to see those of everyone else. We will get down for bump out…. hopefully before others start collecting their treasures.

As you will see from these images of 4 of the 5 works I sent to be considered for inclusion, I was drawn, as usual, to the coast, the raw energy, the water movement and especially the rocks.

Geoartscape, Sarah Anne Rocks

Geo-artscape, Sarah Anne Rocks. Acrylic on stretched canvas.

Struggle for Survival

“”Struggle for Survival” watercolour, 300gsm SW rough paper. Sarah Anne Rocks, Tarkine Coast. 2015

working on colourfix

Red Lichen, Acrylic on Colourfix

The Calm Belies the Turmoil acrylic on gallery stretched canvas

The Calm Belies the Turmoil. Acrylic on stretched canvas

 

 

The preliminary photo from  Dan Broun of setting up looks good. A treasure trove of photography, painting, printmaking and jewellery…. and there will be floor talks. There have already been a number of musical and film performances which have been presented to enthusiastic audiences in Hobart. We want to save this last bit of Gondwanaland with its rich indigenous heritage rather than have it destroyed by logging and mining. Ironically, at present, much is under bushfires started by dry lightening strikes. Lets hope, at least, the old rainforest is not damaged too much. We so desperately need rain

 

Simple art that makes you smile


I can’t help but smile the whole time I am creating these fun little works (approximately A4). They have been done with decorating children’s rooms in mind but they do bring a smile to the face of “senior children” too.

o      . girl umbrella       girl skipping       girl fishing

girl bunch flowers        boy kite dog          girl balloons tulips

girl balloons            boy garden            boy golf boy cricket

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)

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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.

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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.

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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.