• Shipping Worldwide
  • Free Shipping & Free Returns In Australia
  • Afterpay Available
  • Shipping Worldwide
  • Free Shipping & Free Returns In Australia
  • Afterpay Available

News Detail

Artists of the Outback Creative] Jeanne Barnes

Artists of the Outback Creative] Jeanne Barnes

Artists of the Outback Creative] Jeanne Barnes

Why do you make your art?

Ever since I was a very small child, I was always drawing something. I remember when I was about 8, I would take A4 lined sheets of paper, and design rows and rows of shoes, There would be over 200 tiny shoes on each page, and I had a stack of pages! Drawing , painting and designing have always been my outlet for creative expression, and to this day, if I’m not able to create, I don’t feel good! It’s like breathing, really! I need to create same as I need oxygen.

How do you make your art?

Sometimes I have a carefully laid out plan of what I want to do, with preparatory sketches and ccolour schemes. It often involves many hours of research and going out into the bush to find live specimens to work from, as with my botanical paintings. Sometimes I’m doing a complete life cycle of a plant, I have to wait until it flowers, gets leaves, and makes seeds, so one painting can take a year to put together.

Most of the time,though, I work spontaneously. I just start by getting some paint onto the paper, then make up the rest as I go along. Maybe after I’ve splashed some paint onto the paper, I’ll decide that a bird would look great in that spot, or a person, and It just develops from there. Some end up in the bin, but other times, some of my favourite paintings have been done this way, and often they’ve been the ones to be snapped up by a buyer very quickly.

What does it mean to you?

To be a full-time artist is a dream come true for me. I attended the Johannesburg School of Art, Ballet, Drama and Music, now known as the National school of the arts, then went on to study fine art at tertiary level, with painting as a major, but took a bit of a detour when I was offered a jeweller apprenticeship, and long story short, I ended up in Kununurra with my family, managing and designing ranges for a high end jewellery retail store, whilst painting part time. Shortly after moving here, I was offered representation in an art gallery in Kununurra. It went so well, that in 2016, I made the somewhat terrifying decision to quit my management job to paint full time! It’s been about 2 years and I haven’t needed to find another job, and I’m loving every minute of the artist life!

What Inspires you?

Nature inspires me the most, and also people. I’m fascinated by people with interesting faces, with their history, written in the lines on their faces. That’s why I love painting older folk, and specially aboriginal people. They have fabulous features and they’re some of my favourite subjects.

Who inspires you?

There are so many artists who inspire me, so I’ll mention just a few. My number one absolute favourite artist would be Gustav Klimt. His beautifully embellished paintings just take my breath away.

Although my work is very different from theirs, I’m also greatly inspired by the work of Stephanie Law, who is an amazing illustrator, Amanda Sage, a visionary artist, Yoann Lossel, a master of graphite and gold leaf, Richard Chao, a superb watercolour artist, and Arone Meeks, a most innovative and incredibly unique aboriginal artist.

Where inspires you?

The Kimberley, Western Australia. I’ve lived here for just over 9 years, I love this land, and draw so much inspiration from it. There is a never ending supply of things to paint, landscape, critters, people, water. I think the fact that I am so isolated here, helped me to grow as an artist and follow my own part without too much outside influence.

What has been a turning point for you?

I used to paint reasonable paintings before, in oils and acrylic, but didn’t have a style that stood out as unique at all. But one day, in 2014, I decided to try watercolours. I had no training whatsoever in the medium, so I just played around a bit with them, and suddenly, I had come up with a style which was mine! It was a huge turning point for me. People loved it and I started to make lots of sales, it was all very exciting! At around the same time, for some reason, I bought some gold leaf, probably because of Gustav Klimt’s influence, and started to incorporate that into my paintings too.

What makes your art unique?

Besides finally finding my own style, I use real rough diamonds in my work. I’ve tried to find another artist for years, regularly doing Google searches, and I can’t find another artist using them. I only know for sure that I’m the only artist in Kununurra who does it!

To learn more about Jeanne, please visit her profile by clicking the following link.

Jeanne's profile