My mum bred birds when I was a child, with an incubator, hand-feeding, and all of the mess. I’ve helped a Red-tail Black Cockatoo climb its way out of the egg, and had the adult bird sit on my chest and preen my eyelashes for me. I’ve seen many of these birds up close, and had the chance to learn and love their nature.
Part of why I paint birds is the intricacy of their feathers. There is a lot of elegance, pattern, texture and colour to them, especially when in motion, which is satisfying to paint. I like to create a composition with lots of movement, and to saturate the light and colour a little to create something that conveys beauty more than a photo can.
I choose watercolour because it bleeds, and you can layer and throw so many pigments together, creating variation in the smallest space (a feather). Each pigment behaves differently, and I’m always working them in different ways to see what they can do.
I picked up the paintbrush after birthing my first daughter, Frankie, in 2014. I launched my art prints as a business late 2016, after delivering Greta. This may sound counterintuitive, but parenting makes painting feel good.