Past, Present, Future

Reflecting on 2022

I enjoyed last year, and made great strides in establishing myself, creating satisfying work and building treasured connections, but on reflection I stretched myself too thin and attempted too many different activities.

My main goal was to create six small native flower linocuts, six large pieces, and six small miscellaneous pieces. I ended up with four of each, including a fundraising piece for Ukraine which raised $1000 thanks to you wonderful people.

I also taught twenty workshops, participated in seven exhibitions, gave five artist talks, was a resident artist, attended life drawing lessons, and coordinated our local art group.

From this I learned that for our family and myself to operate smoothly, I can do about 24 hours work a week. And of those 24 hours, only about 10 are on creating art. The rest of the hours are on workshops and the peripheral work that comes with running an art business.

As to what happens this year, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking…

The year ahead

For some time now, I’ve felt that while I am making strides in the technical aspects of my work and that my printmaking ability is steadily improving, I needed direction when it came to developing the kaupapa or concepts behind my work.

So I was delighted to be invited by Deborah Crowe and Emil McAvoy (two notable artists in Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland) to participate in a mentoring programme they run. As well as specific practical suggestions, they have been helping broaden my horizons and thinking. Currently this feels a little like emerging into the sunshine and blinking a lot in a slightly confused way, but it is also the direction I have been after to find more depth and cohesion in my work.

I’m looking forward to watching how this will manifest in my work. Currently it means a lot more reading and thinking. Other changes I am making are: to reduce the amount of voluntary work I do; cap the amount of workshops I do each month; increase the amount of time I spend experimenting; and attend more exhibitions.

These images are sketches I made to design my linocuts.

Dec, Jan and Feb

My last full newsletter was November, and when I sat down to update you on what I have been up to, I was surprised at how busy I had been.

Teaching-wise, I’ve held a still-life workshop, landscape workshops, a day of printmaking at the Methven Summer School, and drop in printmaking sessions at Te Ara Atea and Te Huanui gallery. A highlight was hosting a group at stunning Kura Tawhiti, Castle Hill while we sketched the magnificent mountains – thank you Selwyn libraries for organising.

Another huge highlight was receiving my copy of “Proof”, a book of printmaking in New Zealand compiled by PCANZ and featuring my linocut “Winter’s End”.

Other lovely moments were sitting around a log fire with my art group, life drawing at Oxford Gallery, printing shells with my travelling print-kit while on holiday, exhibiting at Nut Point, and attending a drawing class by Hannah Beehre.

As always, thank you to each of you for taking an interest in me and my work. It is such a motivation to me!