Starting the year right!

Starting the year right!

When I planned a weekend workshop called “Shiny Happy Flowers” I hoped it would attract lovely people and they could go home with two bright, floral paintings that they were super proud of.

And oh, the weekend met my expectations and so much more.

Twelve delightful painters joined me on Saturday morning, each with their own backstory on how they had arrived there, and each with an enthusiasm to throw some (Golden) paint on a canvas and make magic happen.

We talked about hero flowers, colour wheels, brights and neutrals (and mixed our own!), brush techniques, finding darks, ‘waratah tadpoles’, and line drawings. We ‘learned by doing’ complimentary colours, ‘golden rule’ composition and glass vase reflections.

Every person that attended was a delight and every painting they finished (or have almost finished!) is a fabulous explosion of colour and joy.

Quite simply, WOW!

Huge thanks to everyone who came along. Special thanks to the fabulous Debbie for bringing and sharing her legendary potatoes (and her legendary happiness) and to gorgeous Linda for all her help setting up and packing away each day. A total gem.

Steffi’s catering was top class too, I’m sure all would agree!

I hope all my weekenders made friends as well as art and that the paintings they’ve taken home are the most wonderful souvenirs of our time together.

If you are interested in a Shiny Happy Flowers Workshop, I may offer another in the second half of the year. It’s very different from a Paint Along as you order or bring your own materials, and you finish with original paintings that are all your own. I give you all I have and together we make gardens of colour. Just make sure you’re on the mailing list.

If you don’t want to wait, join us for Wednesday Wonder Workshops this term – we’re discovering ‘Fish’ for the first four weeks, and then ‘Faces’ for the last four. We’ll be learning a bit of anatomy and then completing a range of projects around each theme, studying some amazing artists, learning by doing and enjoying the fine company! The morning session is almost full, but the 6-9pm session still has a few places. Starts Wednesday 8 February for 8 weeks and all supplies are included. Click here to find out more.

Rainbow Upcycling

Rainbow Upcycling

Sometimes things that I KNOW won’t take very long to do, just have to wait their turn in my life.

But today was the day for this little shelf that I use at the back of my studio.

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Useful, but not beautiful by any means. And of course we all know…

Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.

William Morris

Which is, of course, often easier said than done.

But these palettes were left over after a Daffodils Paint Along last Thursday:

leftover-palettes

And so I quickly sanded the shelf and used them all up! My six year old joined in at one stage.

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And then, inspired by some colouring in books I have in the studio for that purpose, I used a #6 round brush and GOLDEN Titanium White Fluid acrylics and painted on a pattern of flowers, bugs and leaves to really tart it up, finishing with two coats of varnish.

finished

And it’s going to make me smile every time I look at it. So glad to tick this one off my list! Hope you’re inspired to do something similar if you’ve got a piece of furniture crying out for a facelift.

What a Carnival!

What a Carnival!

Have I mentioned I LOVE our Carnival?

And this year saw the realisation of a 10 year dream – to have my artwork featured on the front cover of The Chronicle Carnival of Flowers liftout magazine.

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With a little bit of help from my friends (thank you Tammy and Melanie!) I was able to supply art for the cover, and they also wrote a very nice story about me (and Maeby, the studio dog, of course!).

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The painting came to life in my studio a couple of months ago – they wanted me to use red, and I knew a face would work… meet Carnival Girl.

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They’ve drawn a winner and I’ll be heading into to The Chronicle office to present it next week! I don’t know who it is yet (although a LOT of people have been asking!). Seriously happy to have had this opportunity!

Just a few more pics of how lovely it is here in Toowoomba at this time of year:

My biggest Paint Along yet!

My biggest Paint Along yet!

Each September we have a Carnival of Flowers here in Toowoomba. It’s my favourite time of year!

This year I was honoured to have my artwork featured on the cover of the souvenir lift out and get a mention inside as well.

Another highlight was being asked to host a Pop Up Paint Along for the Toowoomba Hospital Foundation.

The lovely Foundation team of Melanie, Tammy, Anna and Pam did all the legwork, and I designed a Carnival inspired painting for 48 of us to paint together. For this project I needed an entire squad of Beautiful Assistants – thank you Jenny, Janita, Wendy, Roma, Libby, Lauren and Diana – and together we coached all these lovely painters through to the end (which was lucky because I’d left my notes at home!).

Congrats to the Toowoomba Hospital Foundation on a terrific event and for giving me this terrific opportunity. I was just delighted with the results!