Introducing, Robyn Gray, an artist from Toowoomba, the garden city in Queensland. I am an acrylic artist and work in a modern or romantic impressionist style. The subject matter for modern impressionist work is drawn from local scenes and depicted in vivid colours and the subject matter for my romantic impressionist work is gathered from different reference material, with the composition from my imagination. But in between these styles I like to break out into a quirky/pop art style every now and then for fun, or even expressionistic landscapes in vivid colours with skyscapes which I have always loved to paint.
How did I get into painting? In my thirties I started sketching the kids while they watched tv and was pleasantly surprised to see a likeness. I then began taking classes with local artists, the first being the late John Perham, experimenting with every medium, over about five years. I settled on pastels for a while but couldn't work out how to preserve them without framing, so stored them in newspaper under the bed (where they still are). I then gave up art due to family illness until my fifties when I started dabbling in acrylics and was hooked again. I believe in the therapeutic value of creative pursuits, and that is why I decided to study Diversional Therapy in my forties.
Now I am retired from the workforce after a varied career, ranging from office work, merchandising, dental receptionist and as mentioned qualifying as a Diversional Therapist and working part time in this field for seven years in a psychiatric hospital, which also involved dementia care.
My inspiration comes from nature, the beach, and everyday scenes of life around us and I strive to convey the way the light picks up ordinary objects and turns them into extraordinary. My favourite style of art is romantic impressionism. There is no symbolism or complicated meaning to my work, it is what it is.
I will be donating 10% of my profit from each sale to Shake It Up Australia in future, and have made a donation equal to that from my sales so far, in memory of my late mum and Uncle and other loved relatives still living with Parkinson's disease. I tried to put this cruel disease out of my mind since her passing in 2008, but it continues to affect more loved ones and it is time I try and make a positive effort to help.
Shake It Up Australia Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation established in 2011 and in partnership with The Michael J. Fox Foundation promotes and funds Parkinson’s disease research in Australia aimed at better treatments and ultimately a cure.