Australian Native Bird Artist
Becoming a painter in my senior years has taken place in a very organic way. In different periods of my life I have been a textile designer, a cartographer for the Hydrographic Office within the Australian Navy along with being a haute couture dressmaker. Combined these skills, alongside afforded time in my retirement years, have allowed me to hone in on a new hobby.
I have been a member of Birding NSW for 15 to 20 years. In these early years it was curiosity which took me on multiple birdwatching trip in the outback. Allan Richards, as group leader was instrumental in many of these arranged camping trips. It was towards the end of such camps that I would paint a bird on a card for the leaders, guides, cooks and driver as a thank you. My first unofficial bird cards.
Over the years it has been the vibrant colours of our birds that has kept me continually drawn in and focussed with such interest. After a few years of accumulating originals in watercolour and acrylics I took the gamble and found a local printer to reproduced them into cards for my friends. When developing a composition, I reference images from the internet, source old bird illustrations from books and calendars along with photographs sent through email from my bird watching colleagues who enjoy knowing their wide zoom lens is capturing the details I aspire to reproduce.
Fast forward to today and my cards along with prints can be found in the Hazelhurst Regional Art Gallery in the Sutherland Shire where I reside, a few centre within NSW National Parks: Audley, Pilliga and Minnamurra along with the Bright Art Gallery and Cultural Centre in Victoria. A display of my cards can also be found at the Birding NSW monthly club meetings.
Information taken from the Birding NSW Newsletter July-August 2023, permission given by Norma Ikin.