In November 2014 I was excited to be part of the 'Trees a Crowd' group exhibition at the DVAA Gallery in Darwin, NT. I was invited to interpret the tree theme with as much freedom as I liked and from the outset, I wanted to explore the strong connection between humans and trees. Some of my pieces included a 'family tree' made up of small tree portraits in the style of a human family tree and paintings of my clay head sculptures interacting with trees and nature. I also used the tree theme to break out of my usual style of portraiture whilst at the same time indulging my love of history and my favourite literary women.
Historically I have always been fascinated by Anne Boleyn, the ill-fated second wife of Henry VIII. I depicted the indomitable spirit of Anne gazing out with a strong fixed stare from the cameo of a severed tree limb. A young Daphne Du Maurier stares hauntingly from a wind- wizened tree and Emily Bronte - so at one with nature that she is part of the landscape she loved and understood so well.
My favourite poet Sylvia Plath is painted as a yew tree - inspired by her poem, The Moon and the Yew Tree. I have wanted to paint her portrait for years and somehow the tree theme gave me a window - a view to my own interpretation of this much loved and creatively re-created artist.
Click Here for the full gallery in more detail.