Tell us about your art, your background and what inspires you
I was born in Albany, on the south coast of Western Australia. As a child I was always sketching – mainly horses, as they were my passion, but also family pets and other living creatures around me. I trained as a primary school teacher and was chosen to specialize in art teaching.
A move to the northwest of Western Australia in the early 80s was, however, the beginning of my journey as an artist. This beautiful, stark and dramatic landscape inspired me to learn to paint in oils. From this beginning I then embarked on an art/ design course further developing my skills in drawing, painting and design.
What inspires you?
My inspiration gradually changed to become more of a focus on detail within the image, the lineal, textural and repetitive nature of plant and animal form more and more a driving force in my work. There has always been another side to my art practice – my animal caricature. This developed over time from working in mural painting in hospitals and schools and is a fun and whimsical counterbalance to my more serious contemporary work.
Now more of my art is created from printmaking techniques, and subtle textural elements innate in the medium have made for more diversity in my image making. I am still growing as an artist and am excited by the possibilities that the natural world presents.
How does VIDA impact your work as an artist, designer, teacher?
VIDA has had a huge impact on my art practice. My artwork has always been very structured but working with VIDA has shown me that this very structure is an inherent part of who I am as an artist. It is this innate design focus that makes everything I do translate amazingly as fabric design. This knowledge has given me affirmation as an artist and has inspired me to grow and explore more. And I have such a ‘wow’ moment with the arrival of every order!
What made you want to explore art inspired fashion?
To start with, I love fashion! And I have always had a fascination with how designs and imagery can be made to fit into different aspects of the world around us rather than as 2D artwork hanging on a wall. Mural painting satisfied this fascination on one level, to see my images blown up larger than life onto walls, doorways and pathways was always quite an amazing experience.
Designing on the smaller canvas to be part of ‘wearable art’ in the form of scarves has been a delight and motivated me to further explore my capabilities purely in design format.
How do you think VIDA is different from other choices out there?
VIDA has an ethical business model. There is no exploitation of the makers. They are treated with dignity and respect. They also benefit from every sale with an educational program which potentially gives them more autonomy in their lives. All VIDA pieces are made to order there is no waste. And this also maintains an exclusiveness in designs. Customers can be assured that their fashion piece is unique.
Naturally sourced high quality fabrics are used in the creation of fashion items. This shows an environmental awareness by the company and creates a product which complements my designs and is unique and exclusive.