In the Studio: Meet Our Artists!

Looking at an artwork that piques your interest in a gallery, you might think to yourself: what’s the story of that artwork? What was the process of its creation?  Getting behind the scenes of a piece is always an exciting experience that helps foster a connection with an artwork and the artist behind the piece.

With our revamped In the Studio feature, select artists across Bluethumb can invite you into their workspaces! Take a first-hand look into the places where the magic happens, works in progress and inspiring musings of the artist. Here are ten of our favourite posts over the past few months to get you started.

Lunchtime, January 2021 – Kate Rogers

This was taken by my brother, Luke, around lunchtime. I remember that I’d started walking to the kitchen for breakfast, but noticed something I wanted to fix up. This explains why I am still wearing what I wore to bed, why I was oblivious to him taking the photo, and why I’d forgotten to make it to the kitchen (I like breakfast). I remember reading somewhere that a real passion makes you forget yourself, to eat… and also that you need to go to the toilet. For me this is art.

Embracing the power of imperfection, Kate Rogers is creating art for our times and is one of our ten artists we’re keeping an eye on in 2021. Head over to our recent blog to find out who else made the list!

Raw Canvas Series, January 2021 – Kathleen Rhee

I love working with raw canvas! The finish, the soft matt texture and ghostly details cannot be replicated with any other canvas base. When you see the work you just need to touch that beautiful surface… nothing can compare to real original art, it really does have have a beautiful presence and energy that is wonderful to live with]! This is artwork is titled Raw Canvas Series Blue.

Contemporary Australian abstract artist Kathleen Rhee draws inspiration from the natural world to create her soothing body of work. Her aim of bringing the outdoors inside undoubtedly gives a sense of solace to a viewer. See more of her works on her profile.

Some Studio Chaos, January 2021 – Li Zhou

I learn something from everyone. And when you view yourself as a student and not someone who knows it all, you realise that there is still so much to be learned everyday, and that keeps you open-minded and on the look out for new things and for me that’s what really makes life worth living.

Keep up-to-date with Li Zhou’s artwork and artistic endeavours In the Studio on her profile.

Soon! – January 2021, Marija Morozova

Working on finishing the background, then I’ll go over all the female figures again, and put second layer/finishing touches […] Then it’s done! I’m having such a great time painting this one, absolutely love it. And when it’s done, I’ll be working on more little flower paintings, it’s been a while…

Marija loves keeping her collectors informed with the process of a piece, her current shows and studio insights. Want to see the finished look of Ophiuchus? Head to Marija’s profile.

Disney Pixar Soul Promotion, December 2020 – Todd Simpson

In the process of painting ‘New York City Soul’, an artwork created for the Pixar promotion in honour of their new movie Soul, about a jazz teacher who finally pursues his passion when reaching the afterlife. Bluethumb are giving three amazing artworks inspired by the film including this one from me.

The competition Todd created this unique piece for may have finished, but you can always find more of his incredible and highly sought after pieces on his profile.

Summer with Monica – Dec, 2020 – Brent Lukey

I’m currently working on a series of conceptual portraits with artist/model Monica Nam. It will be an ongoing summer project with the work ready mid-year for exhibition. Here’s a sneak peak.

Alongside becoming a finalist in last year’s Bluethumb Art Prize, Brent Lukey has a number of photography accolades under his belt and some exciting projects on the horizons. Stay tuned by following his profile.

Finishing Touches, December 2020 – Bronwen Hunt

Those final tweaks of a painting… to be honest I don’t think I ever like signing off and saying ‘it’s finished’.

Ah, choosing the right time to put down the paintbrush – a classic problem for many painters! 2020 was a big year for Bronwen Hunt on Bluethumb. We can’t wait to see how this year fares for the artist! Stay in the loop with her posts In the Studio.

Drawing is Everything! November 2020 – Sally Browne

My art practice is centred around drawing. It’s at the heart of everything I do. Sometimes I get so busy with commissions and running a business/kid wrangling etc. that I struggle to carve out the time to sketch.

This week I took action and started an expressive drawing course at a local studio and I’m delighted I did. The purpose of the class is less about accurate drafting and more about emotion and mark making, which is something that really resonates with me.

We work large and fast, and are encouraged to draw or paint over the drawings we become too attached to! It’s turning out to be an invigorating drawing class and a valuable lesson in letting go.

Bluethumb veteran Sally Browne has been a longstanding bestseller; taking a deeper dive into her thought process behind her art gives further insight into the pieces themselves. See her depictions of Australian flora and fauna on her profile.

Final Touches, November 2020 – Cheryl Harrison

I just realised I’m matching my artwork… Just receiving its final touches is this energy-charged piece inspired by its muse, the ocean, and spending time taking it all in. I spend time everyday by the sea, just being still and just being a small part of things.

Sometimes it’s as calm as calm can be with glass-like water, particularly here in tropical Queensland where the reef hugs the shoreline. BUT, equally as awe-inspiring is the other end of that spectrum, when the wind starts to speak and the mood becomes electrifying, …I can watch it for hours. Please keep a look out for it in my profile where you can enjoy the finished piece.

Abstract artist Cheryl Harrison has had a busy 12 months on Bluethumb; browse her profile here to see her most recent work as well as well as her posts In the Studio.

A little bit about my process, October 2020 – Maria Harding

I always paint in at least two stages, firstly the background, painted in a loose abstract way, at this stage, I don’t plan much but rather go with my intuition for colours and gestural brush strokes.

Then I take a look at it and decide what needs tweaking and what type of bird/s and where I think they would work on the canvas. I like the element and of surprise by doing it this way and it stops me from overthinking and being too perfectionist about everything.

I’ve been tempted to leave the backgrounds as finished paintings, but then I can’t help myself and end up adding in a bird or two #putabirdonit 😂  This painting is called Bound for a Bower and was a commission for the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre as an installation on their entry stairway.

For birds with an ethereal twist, take a further look at Maria’s profile and her other engaging posts In the Studio.

Assessing results, October 2020 – Christina Doyle

Having built up a series of small prints I’m working on how to join them to make a workable composition.
The finished work is ‘Take Me to the Beach‘ and is listed on Bluethumb.

Christina Doyle is a painter and printmaker based in Victoria. After living in Melbourne for most of her life, she designed and built her dream home in the country town of Daylesford. Christina is currently working on a series of acrylic paintings on canvas, mixed media and printmaking projects which reflect her new surroundings. Find out more In the Studio.

Now you can see what your favourite artists are up to, reach out to them directly and fall in love with their work all in the same place! Explore new posts by creatives across Bluethumb.

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  1. Vicky says:

    Thanks for sharing. The above articles are sooooooo interesting of successful artists.

    I find this very daunting. Will I ever make it ??

    • Grace Wye says:

      Hi Vicky,

      Thanks for checking out the blog! Success is always a daunting thought as an artist. What matters is that you’re doing what you enjoy – how can people not be attracted to that?

      If you’d like any other pointers, please feel free to email the team at 🙂

      Grace @ Bluethumb

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