Having explored and experimented with a huge variety of art and crafts over many years - from calligraphy to decoupage to portraiture to painting, and just about everything in between - I have found that my passion is creating simple stylish contemporary paintings using all types of media, as well as specialising in making hand-decorated masks. I am self-taught and am always trying innovative techniques, networking with other artists, learning through research and experimentation ...
I spent my 20s (the 1980s) living in London and travelling extensively throughout Europe, and indeed the world. I had the most incredible time and integrated a myriad of personal and professional experiences that have helped enhance my creative side. During this time I worked for the International Planned Parenthood Foundation Europe Region, the umbrella organisation to which family planning associations worldwide belong. Cutting edge work in a wide variety of fields,which inspired me to continue working with various charitable organisations when I returned to New Zealand.
These days, I maintain a love of travel and always find something unique in each place I visit to incorporate into my painting style.
In September 2006 I spent time in the tiny French village of Labarthe-Bleys in south-west France, participating in an art course under the guidance of French abstract artist Elisabeth Poiret. Fantastic immersion into all sorts of art techniques and time for total creative play. Not to mention the incredible surroundings, food, wine, weather ...
In August 2007 I had the privilege to visit Alaska, a pristine and untouched wonder in the world's shambles. Capturing it's immense glory on canvas is no easy task, but my visit certainly inspired me to try.
In October 2008, after a week in Fiji absorbing the colours and tranquility, I travelled London to Venice on the Orient Express which was a unique and glamorous step back in time to a bygone era. Time ticks slowly, beautiful scenes pass by your window, and every need is tended to with style and panache. A very memorable little slice of splendour. In Venice I soaked up various art exhibitions which left me almost breathless and met various master mask-makers, acquiring new ideas and techniques, as I also did in Florence. The beauty of Venice is that even though time marches on, this amazing city retains all its ancient glory and its essence never changes.
I also spent time in Palma de Mallorca which provided more creative inspiration with its wonderful blend of ancient history and modern chic. Every time I visit London I find new exciting treasures, this time the Wallace Collection and other little out-of-the-way museums and exhibitions of beautiful things. There are more waiting for my next visit, there is no doubt.
In October 2009 I once again ventured to France (Provence/Riviera) and Venice (more mask and artistic research) with all the family. We also did a Mediterranean cruise visiting ports in Italy, France, Corsica, Sardinia and Tunisia. Heaps of inspiration, for sure.
For the first time since I was 15 I did not leave NZ shores during 2010. Life was too busy, so I took inspiration from my own backyard, right here in New Zealand.
In 2011 I took a cruise around the idyllic Society Islands, from Papeete, Tahiti, to Bora Bora, Moorea and some of the lesser known islands. It was an elegant relaxing way to take in breathtaking Tahitian beauty. The turquoise waters really are that turquoise.
Later in 2011 I took my son on a trip to the UK (London and Devon) where we experienced all the familiar sights and discovered some new ones together. We enjoyed the bustling city life and the quietness of the countryside. Then we journeyed to Istanbul, a vibrant thriving city with so much to offer.
In November 2012 I visited a friend in Melbourne, a city I always love to spend time in. As an avid horse racing fan, combining a visit with the Melbourne Cup carnival makes perfect sense!
I am always inspired by the colours and flavours of the Pacific and its many islands ... and also by the earthy tones and textures of New Zealand.
My current focus is abstract art, and I am continuing to develop and experiment with techniques and visual effects that I have learnt, observed and dreamt up. Inks are a current focus, I love that they can be so rich, yet also almost invisible, and always say so much when they float on paper.
Many of my paintings reflect my wonder of the sea, sky and land - depth of colour, ever changing patterns, and intriguing plays of light. I also enjoy exploring shapes, whether it be the female form, an object, or simply the clouds.
I am in my element when I'm painting, drawing, writing and creating. And more recently, when creating wearable art. Also when savouring good food and wine with family and friends, and being a kid again with my own kids.
I enjoy horse racing, skiing, cooking and writing, as well as keeping my heart and mind open to new innovative ideas. Inventing and investigating possibilities beyond the known is something I love to do ... forever creativating!
Please also see my website www.beyondlimits.co.nz for information about Creativation Workshops.