My arts or creative practice (including details about my specific focus within that art form/practice and my strengths)
I have been working as a painter since 2003. I mainly paint landscapes and have a deep affinity with the land. I have supplied paintings to galleries as they were completed and worked from home raising my son at the same time (who is now 25 and living in Australia). I realised one day I had actually produced and sold over 1000 paintings since 2003. I have been represented by an Art Gallery in Queenstown. I also created merchandise from my images and supplied merchandise as well as selling it at my local creative market which kept me connected to my local community and allowed me to enjoy seeing the pleasure art brings to lots of people in a very accessible and affordable way.
My track record of experience and success - or the track record of experience and success of the creative or artist that I will partner with
I have won a merit award at 'The Great Waikato Art Show' and an open class award at the Waimarino Art Awards, and I was chosen to judge an award offered in Taumaranui. I have been given two artist residencies , one through the Mackenzie Country District Council for six weeks and one through Arthurs Pass Alpine Motel which was just for a week. I have done some solo shows.
Describe the experience you have had working with children or young people, teaching or facilitating creative processes
In my earlier days of working as an artist I supplemented my art income with relief teaching, mainly at a high school in Hamilton in the art and fabric departments. I have a diploma in Teaching Primary with a Major in Art and a Minor in Māori, graduating in 1992. I did advanced studies for teacher's papers also including special abilities and at one stage I worked as a special needs teacher in Kawerau. Different classroom teachers have used me as an artist model. Over the years I have also visited schools, most recently with 6 and 7 year-olds at a local area school, and done conference calls which allows students to see me at work in my studio and have conversations with me as well as showing me what they have been doing.
I like to fit in with the classroom programme and meet the needs of the children in front of me as they present. I also like projects to evolve and be flexible around where the children's learning takes them within the curriculum guidelines which is why I naturally suited working in early childhood education which I did for four years. I see art as being a vehicle for learning and discussing many things and not just a 'subject' as such. It is a form of communication and discovery about oneself, others, and the world in which we live.
Why I want to be part of the Creatives in Schools programme and how my involvement will link to my creative practice
I like working with children and I have been happy to do that for free when asked. I tend to hide away and don't like to compete for funding as I have been able to earn a living without it until this year. Previously, the majority of my work, both merchandise and originals, was going offshore from key outlets in areas of high tourism like Queenstown and Hot Water Beach, and I live in Raglan which is a surf town with international travellers too. Covid-19 has changed this, and I am looking to focus my career and energy differently and realign my art in a different way.