Credit: Portrait of the Artist – Photographer Christopher Allen – taken Christmas 2021 in the orchard…
“There is definitely something grounding about standing and observing, of documenting the contours of the land.” Gill has been abstracting her landscapes lately, a new challenge in her art practise which has been a constant in her life. She remembers being a child fascinated by colour, introduced to potato prints by her aunty and being bought a set of paints by her father.
“Colour is a dominant part of my work and it is the thing that brings everything that I do together. I have a big love of bright colours.”
Flowers are another subject Gill is passionate about capturing in her work. She begins with scribbles of water soluble crayons blending these with water and overlaying with soft pastels. Creating in this way is play for Gill, a fun, joyful exploration of colour, form and character.
She reaches for many mediums to express – charcoal for strong lines, soluble pencils for finer marks and ink also plays a part in her making. Her garden studio is filled with art materials and inspiration and she calls it her sanctuary.
“There is power in those deliberate first marks, as the pencil touches the clean white of the page capturing that intimate moment between the artist and the land. An indelible link is formed which time may fade but not erase,and that lives on through the artist’s interpretation.”
The above is a short bio put together by Carly Thomas – thank you Carly!
Gill received her Bachelor of Fine Art in 1997 majoring in printmaking at Otago Art School in Dunedin. She later went on to study a City and Guilds in Further Education Adult Teaching in 2004, qualifying in the UK. Since this time she has taught creative workshops both in the UK and New Zealand. Gill currently work from her cosy studio in the beautiful Horowhenua region of New Zealand. Colour is a dominant part of her work which extends to a range of media, her favourite being soft pastels for their beautiful range of vibrant colours. Subject matter includes semi-abstracted landscape and still life. The Galleries
My Father…a strong creative influence
My father’s words reflect my response to nature…vivid colour, texture, and atmosphere…
“Nature has waved her magic wand like a venerable fairy godmother to warm the hearts of bee lovers and give the bees the opportunity to fill their waxen cells with the aromatic nectar of the flowers; wild thyme from the chalk downs, the tall rosebay willowherb, the scented clover from the fields and wayside, the pendulous blossoms of the lime trees, and the pink bell heather just coming into bloom on Headon Hill. Up yonder in the apiary adjacent to the Highdown Inn – amid a canopy of giant bracken fronds and elm saplings, the beekeeper sits in his camping chair watching the winged harvesters come sailing in with their loads of colourful pollen and nectar. There is a continuous symphony of sounds from a thousand and more vibrating gossamer wings – music of the wild borne on the sun warmed winds from the west.” Bernard Allen 1904 – 1990
The Musician – another important form of self-expression…
I have a always loved music and it definitely sits side-by-side with my art. I began my music appreciation at age 9 on the piano with classical compositions by Chopin, Beethoven, and Tchaikovsky…and later leaned toward my favourite contemporary composer – Elton John. I took up the guitar for song writing, making my way back to the piano to compose originals. I perform with several duo’s and enjoy jamming at folk festivals. A few links below to my music sites.
Thank you Musichaven Photography for the photo. Taken at The Globe Theatre, Palmerston North 2022.