Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Happy New Year!

"Feeling Sheepish"
25cm x 15cm Soft Pastel on Aubergine Colourfix

Sorry I haven't posted for a while, but I have been saving myself for this challenge!

Yay, first of the year and first day of Leslie Saeta's "Thirty in Thirty" challenge!

I wonder how many I will actually complete :)

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

another oldie

going through old files again and came across this one from a couple of years back, still can't stay away from those haybales  :)

Wednesday, 27 November 2013


30cm x 30cm Oil, ink, gold and copper leaf, opal dust and probably stuff I can't remember :)

Shabby Chic(k) :)

Starting to practice little dailies - 8 x 10 pastel on terracotta colourfix :) Don't laugh

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Missing Winter

"Missing Winter"

 60cm x 50cm watercolour underpainting on white colourfix...its been a while since I painted a landscape, its also been a while since we had some lovely cold, damp weather...this must be my way of wishing summer away!

Hopefully this will be posted as a timelapse later this week on my youtube channel :)

Thursday, 14 November 2013

makin' a mess :)

having some fun with wet mediums after a bit of a 'dry' spell haha...must be a bit obsessed with natural textures and patterns at the moment so I did this little 8 x 10 trio of lichen on tree trunks using modelling compound, opal dust, acrylic paint, oil paint and anything else I could get my hands on. Not sure if you can see from the photos but they have a nice little sparkle thanks to the opal dust ( which is suspended in acrylic medium). I also have started a small oil and gold leaf birds nest...in progress last pic... needless to say, my studio doesn't look neat and orderly anymore!

Thursday, 7 November 2013

happy place :)

Still haven't had the chance to paint, but on the up side, this is my new space all set and ready to go, although I still need a bit of storage for paints. Now everything looks so neat and tidy, I know it will never look like this again so I have taken some pics for posterity! Note one of my studio hounds in the second pic! The last two pics are of the view from the front of my studio, at night and day, I am sooo lucky. The only problem is that there is so much natural light I think it will hard to duplicate it in the evening if I am working on the same piece, but I think with some creative curtaining and some natural light globes I can work it out.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013


Whoa what a week that was! We moved ourselves, (four adults), my husband has a truck license fortunately, with a lot of help (much appreciated) over the course of the last week. What a mammoth task that turned out to be. But we made it, now its just the unpacking blargh! On a fantastic high note, in the middle of all the chaos, the Armadale Artists Society, of which I am a proud member, held their 25th Anniversary Exhibition. As usual they put on a wonderful show and I was so honoured and humbled to pick up not only first prize, but the Patron's Award and the Manse Award (sponsored by a popular local restrurant). 'The Watcher' won the Patron's Award and 'Security' won first prize and the Manse Award! To top off a great exhibition I sold 3 paintings - The Firebreak, Security and Home (which was supposed to be not for sale but there you go!). I have a fantastic new space for my studio, with access to the house and to the garden with a clear roof and glass on two sides, now I just have to find my stuff! Anyway I hope to post some finished work this week and get myself back into a good routine...:)

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Downstairs Creations

While I am waiting to get back to painting, I thought I would share some of the wonderful Art Blogs that I have been lucky enough to find. John Brisson's Downstairs Creations is one of my favs. John finds the most inspiring and thought provoking quotes and his blog has introduced me to all manner of interesting art forms such as woodcuts and lino cuts. John also posts some lovely watercolours and pastels too. I have tried to add his link to my list of favourite places but its not working so I will add a link here: downstairscreations ...enjoy! :)

Sunday, 13 October 2013

on the move

Its official, we are on the move to our new home, moving day also coincides with opening night at My Art Society's 25th annual exhibition ( typical) in which I have 8 paintings entered. I guess at least they will be safer there than packed in with all the furniture :) so I probably won't be posting much for the next couple of weeks, but as soon as everything is set up I am sure I won't be able to keep myself away from the easel! Anyway, wish us luck! yippeeeeeeee

Sunday, 6 October 2013

toot toot

I'm sorry if it sounds like I am tooting my own horn, but I am so excited, these are the Judges comments from my prize in York (still haven't come down to earth yet). Also the Town of York have purchased the painting to hang in their permanent collection, I feel so honoured!

Cat. 4.  Pastels, sponsored by Dr Rosemary Turner with Local Businesses & Community
Leesa Padget, "Beef Cake"     
Judges Comments
This arresting profile of a cow is beautifully created with its very successful play of warm and cool colours. 
The treatment of the subject, particularly the soft and atmospheric qualities, demands the viewers’ empathy. 
The accomplishment of the artist is evident in the application and use of colours to portray an intimate interpretation of the subject.
The time of day and the surrounding environment is beautifully captured through the play of light on the cow’s head and back.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Pastel Prize

Yay I am so excited, last night I found out I won the Pastel Award at the York Society Art and Craft awards for my bull painting 'Beefcake'. This morning we are driving out there to accept it, and it looks like we have finally sold the house as well (fingers crossed) so happy days all round ;). Cant wait to set up my new studio, then I am going to have a go at the 'Daily Painting' thing...

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Nicky Road Farm (panorama)

I have painted this farm a couple of times now, it is a long abandoned intensive chicken farm. Although in its day it was notorious for its poor treatment of the unfortunate birds, since then it has been closed and nature has begun to reclaim it. It is now quite a lovely spot (how long before it becomes houses, who knows :( ). The morning light hits the silos, and they glow, the long grass is golden and lovely and birdlife and insects are abundant. There are actually 3 or 4 silos in real life, but for the sake of the composition I chose to paint just two. This was a challenge for me to paint smaller and the panorama was really tricky...

'Nicky Rd Farm'
 35cm x 80cm white colourfix with pastel and alcohol underpainting

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Julie Ford Oliver

My apologies for not posting recently, I have been so busy with life in general, selling house, family etc, but I hope to have a new finished piece to post soon. In the mean time I would like to introduce you to my new favourite oil painter, Julie Ford Oliver. I am not normally into  still lifes, but you really must have a look at her work, it is so different from anything I have seen before. I bought the Artbyte Julie made on her technique which she calls 'fracturing' and I can't wait to try it out when I have my new studio setup...Also she is a wonderful teacher and seems to have time for everyone :)

On a completely different note, let me introduce you to the little houseguest we recently found behind our couch, isn't he cute? I think he/she will definitely be the subject of a painting or two!

Monday, 16 September 2013

and the wierdness continues...

Do you remember my 'weird dog' painting I started a while ago? well I haven't been inspired much lately because we have been trying to sell our home and every time I start making a mess someone wants to come and have a look. Anyway, I had some watch parts (impulse buy on ebay late at night :)) and the Artists Society I belong to are having a small paintings exhibition soon, so I thought I would go all mixed media. That is how my doggy became clockwork insects. As usual my photography sucks, I took some photos before and after framing. Basically I made an experimental background with inks and gold and copper foil, then arranged the clockwork parts on the paper, glued them down and framed them in shadow box style frames. I placed some leaf skeletons and twigs sprayed with 'Pearlizer' under and above the matting to add to the 3d look. I think they are kind of cute? It was so much fun naming them...they are - "Clockwork Moth", "Gyro", "Insectoid" and my personal favourite, "Pincer Movement". I think I am going mad :)

Saturday, 7 September 2013


Little fun pieces just because I felt like it :) and I had frames that fit them!

"Sunshine" 15cm x 30cm Terracotta Colourfix


"Needlepoint" 15cm x 25cm reclaimed sand Colourfix

Saturday, 31 August 2013

Beefcake continued

there are so many colours in white shadows, also please ignore the ant that crawled across the third shot :)

Beefcake Progress Photos

Turns out this guy has been a bit of a head scratcher for me, but here is his progress so far. His shadow areas are quite tricky as I am working from a black and white print of the photo I took (stupid me thought this would make things easier!) He is such a startling white in real life but realistically, in nature white is never truly white! and the background, well who knows where that will end up...anyway, meet 'Beefcake'

Thursday, 29 August 2013


I thought I might post a few of my sketches that I use as plans and warmups. They are fairly average, not particularly good drawings, but I have vowed to practice sketching everyday (that will never happen :)). Yesterday I tried using a grid for the first time as I was really struggling with proportions on this giant bull that I photographed, is this cheating? Whether it is or not, it certainly improved the outcome! I will be starting this big feller today so I will post some progress shots...:) By the way, does anyone else have problems moving pictures around on their blog pages? I gave up on my gallery page because nothing ended up where I wanted it to be or the size I wanted!

Monday, 26 August 2013

Another firebreak

Yes its another firebreak painting, I have some new things on the easel but this is the only one I have photographed yet. I am definitely camerally challenged :)

Thursday, 8 August 2013

Helen Edwards

During my wandering on the internet I often look up images of artwork hoping to stumble onto another wonderful artist, and I am often successful. I follow all kinds of artists, mixed media, pastel, oil painters, you name it. Anyhoo last night I found this lady, a fellow Aussie called Helen Edwards. She works in pastel and oil and there doesn't seem to be anything she can't paint, wonderful work and well worth a look :)

Monday, 29 July 2013

Another little one

Hello all...this is a little piece I have called "Light Through the Reeds". I will post the timelapse of this one when I have edited it. It is 40cm x 40cm on white Colourfix with Art Spectrum and Mt Vision pastels. I have used an oil based understain this time, I first read about this technique in Richard McKinley's great book "Pastel Pointers". He is such a master of atmosphere, colour and edges...one of my all time favourites. It was a lot of fun. I have kept the design simple so I can use this as a demo, I wanted to rely on colour, design and atmosphere rather than detail. :)

Monday, 22 July 2013

Lost and Found

Hopefully a potential 15 minute demo in lost and found edges (why oh why can't I take a decent photo? :() ) Challenging myself to work smaller, and daily, this one is 20cm x 12cm on colourfix with alcohol underpainting.

Monday, 15 July 2013


This one was finished in a mad rush this morning, signed, photographed (poorly), framed and dispatched to a show before I even had a chance to properly asses it. I know I will stare at these photos for a week now, picking out all the parts I could have improved, the one positive about it is that I can't fiddle with it even if I want to! Even if no-one else likes this piece my heart was full when I painted it, I have painted this scene before and it is just a joy to weave a tapestry of little lights and darks, tiny shapes making up bigger, simpler shapes. It is one of my favourite ways to use pastels, letting the colours play off each other and letting things organise themselves. Now I have three weeks to prepare for a workshop, and if I get time I am going to dig out my oils, reading Julie Ford Oliver's blog has really inspired me :)

Tuesday, 9 July 2013


That wasn't actually that hard, the Aboriginal name for Mt Nameless, used by the Eastern Guruma people...there you go :) you learn something new everyday.

Monday, 8 July 2013

Clear skies ahead

Well my other half looked at my painting last  night and said, "did you get bored and just stick some badly painted clouds in?" and he was right. I had no interest in the sky and the clouds I painted were all over the place value and perspective wise...so off they came this morning and this is the next effort. I think I will let this one percolate for a couple of days and then frame it. I have been looking for the right subject to put in a moon and I think this one just needed something simple to balance out the negative space in the sky and the raging colours of the mountain. The tentative title is 'The moon and Mount Nameless' (a lot of imagination went into that...not) This is a painting of a mountain in a little mining town in North Western Australia called Tom Price, and yes the mountain is actually called Mount Nameless! Although I think the Aboriginal people already had a name for it and I must try to find out what that is. The mountain forms part of the Hamersley Ranges and the area is heavily mined for iron ore...which explains the predominance of red and orange. :) Once again the photo does not reflect the values accurately, the foreground highlights are actually quite subtle...sigh

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Gettin' there

Next instalment...enjoying the process but not necessarily the outcome...:) Still can't get good photos of the colours, the values are much closer in real life and the greens are much less saturated...