Thursday 27 June 2013

Savusavu, Fiji

Just back from Savusavu in Fiji, where I spent a wonderful week. Great weather, great group and amazing environment which is so rich and lush. There are more "greens
Savusavu is a town where time has stood still. Nothing changes which makes it so unique. Very few tourists (if any), no commercialisation and the local people run on "Fiji time". There is no rush and no pressure. No meals to cook while at the family run resort of Daku - in fact - nothing to do but paint and sketch.

After 16 courses in Fiji, I still look forward to returning the following year. My mornings are spent teaching botanical art in the yoga shala, high above the resort with spectacular views over Savusavu Bay. The balmy breezes glide through the shala and the peace is broken only by the staff bringing us freshly made pancakes with honey, or a delicious homemade cake as we enjoy a break.
The grounds on the resort, with the beachfront bures on the left

I am continually astounded by the spectacular sunsets, which occur most evenings. It is almost a group gathering as we stand by the waters edge to watch the sun gently sink into the sea.
The work produced over the week astounded even the particpants, as the brilliant coloured heliconia and crotons were painted in all their glory.
Here are a few of the paintings from the week. There were people on the course who had done no drawing or painting before, so it was a thrill for them to have such beautiful work to take home.
Next course: 2014 May 11-18

Sunday 2 June 2013

Botanical Art & Sketching in Beechworth

Just back from my second visit to Beechworth Victoria in 3 months. Beautiful place. This time I taught a workshop in Drawing and Painting Banksias.
The "secret" is all in observation, and the Fibonacci Spiral. Draw what you see. Understand the plant and its construction. I have a second Banksia workshop planned for Canberra on 21-22 September. Should also be lots of fun.
Details of Banksia menziesii

I actually managed to find time to sketch the Beechworth Post Office on my recent visit. I love the architecture of Beechworth and have, over time, managed to get some of the beautiful historical buildings sketched.
Each year I also take a "Sketching Historical Beechworth" workshop where we (naturally) sketch around the town. Its a fabulous weekend and one I look forward to.
Beechworth Post Office