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About the Artist

I am a self-taught artist living on the beautiful NSW South Coast. My practice includes creating contemporary collage artworks, freehand drawings and bespoke jewellery collections. My work is represented at Shop 3 Gallery in the coastal village of Milton NSW, where I am one of five artists and designers in our self-managed collective. Creating art and jewellery and the process of thinking through potential designs, sourcing materials and being inspired by all that surrounds me is a source of great joy and satisfaction (sometimes mixed in with a little frustration like all artists). It is ever evolving, and I am always learning and discovering each time I start a new project in my studio. I cannot imagine my world without creativity of some form or another. I feel so fortunate to pursue my passion and truly love what I do. I hope you enjoy taking a look at my art and jewellery galleries. Remember to visit often to see what is new and if you happen to be visiting Milton NSW, be sure to have a look in our gallery. It is small in size but huge in diversity and talent. We constantly receive feedback from people visiting our space how eclectic and interesting our gallery is with three contemporary fine artists, a specialist glass artist and a retro furniture restorer. Something for everyone. 

To those reading this, make sure you always take some time out to do something you love, whatever that may be!

About the creative process

My work has been a long-term learning process and experimentation with plenty of mistakes along the way. This journey will continue while I am still making art, and I see it as an ever-evolving practice. For my collages, there are basically two types that I create. Those in frames under glass/acrylic and those on canvas. Typically, those framed under glass/acrylic are smaller in size and those on canvas tend to be my larger works. Smaller framed works are constructed using collage elements that are glued using a tacking technique with waterbased glue and toothpicks. larger works on canvas are constructed using collage elements adhered and sealed using impasto medium for both purposes. My collage elements comprise a series of materials that include, papers, fabrics, my own monoprints, my own handpainted papers, gold leaf, wire and more. I source papers from everywhere and always have a collection of japanese Katazome shi papers on hand which I have used in many of my works since I started making collage. Fabrics are sourced mostly from Op shops, and on the odd occasion might end up in my wardrobe instead of the studio.

When I am planning my artworks, I like to use reference photos or thumbnail sketches as my base. This doesn't mean I stick rigidly to a format as I like the work to be more representational and fluid as it emerges. I use collage a little differently to many mixed media artists in that I use the collage elements as the medium, for their colour, texture and form. I rarely paint over the collage pieces unless it is design detailing and highlights. Instead, the papers and fabrics become the composition, the darks, the lights and the details. I enjoy clashing colours and textures and will often layer the collage elements to achieve a certain outcome in the work. I have learned how to handle various papers and fabrics according to their characteristics when adhering them to the substrate, which has taken time to perfect but is an essential part of the process. I take quite a long time to decide on the subject and composition of my pieces, as often the most breathtaking landscapes in reality do not always translate into the best compositions for an artwork. I usually only work on one piece at a time as I tend to spread when working so can have copious amounts of papers and fabrics out during the process but always have a complete clean up after each work so I have a clean space to commence the next project. I work in my purpose built studio for making all collages, drawings and jewellery and use our garage space for making my floating frames for all my larger works. That is a whole other story...

About the Jewellery

I am a self-taught jewellery artist which should not be confused with a Jeweller (which is a recognised specialist trade). Instead, I make one-off pieces of jewellery using a variety of elements and usually using cold joining techniques with rivets etc (not solder). I often incorporate collage or my art prints into the work and am always looking for interesting materials and components to use in my creations. I love the balance and contrast between making collage and making jewellery as it is a completely different set of skills but there is still a great deal of creativity used in designing and constructing each piece. I use a range of metals, wire, gemstones, crystals, pearls and much more. Every piece I make is unique and I have pieces of jewellery that have been taken all over the world. As I make a great deal of jewellery, I dont always have it on my webpage but there is a representation to show some of the work I have done. 

Acknowledgements

I am very lucky to have fabulous people close to me who have supported me in my creative journey. First and foremost is my husband, my wonderful soulmate for over 45 years, who always likes to remind me that he also is a great painter, which is true, however, as I remind him, house-painting does not equal art. To my three sons who, when growing up always understood that a creative project could take over the house at any time and that there is nothing wrong with takeaway. And now, their partners and children for always being interested. My grandchildren who stay each school holidays and make full use of the studio space for their own creations. And lastly, to my wonderful late parents, who were my biggest fans, always interested in what I was creating and were as thrilled as I each time a painting sold. They encouraged me greatly, and instilled their ethos of never being too old to learn. I love you all and you are all my inspiration.

Janelle x

 

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