Members of the aGathering group have been sharing viewpoints lately about what things we value about belonging to this group. One of the things that came out of the discussions for me was the pleasure and inspiration we get from sharing work of other creatives. Over the past two years I’ve been curating work from other artists / photographers in a local cafe space and love the opportunity to get excited about their work and have the pleasure and anticipation of having other people see it too. I would like to introduce a clever lady, Sue Morton, who as director of the Percy Thomson Gallery, was responsible for exhibiting some of my work in earlier years. Now she is creating her own work and she has given us an image from a series of portraits she has done about local identities in her area. More on her website www.suemorton.com and I will have the privilege of exhibiting a new series of her work at the cafe later this year.
But for now let Sue tell you about herself.
This image comes from a series of portraits I have done. It is entitled Jonet – the librarian Life unknown.
Not many people know anything apart from her life in the library but there definitely is a story there. Very much like our bank tellers and other over the counter contacts.
In all the pursuits I’ve turned my hand to throughout my life, art has been a constant. My training as a primary school teacher had a large focus on art, while my more than two decades as a member of the Stratford Art Society has helped me explore many different painting mediums, spanning oil and watercolour to murals and collages. My works have garnered awards and featured in major exhibitions, including HomeWork: Taranaki Art Now, developed by Puke Ariki. My cartoon series titled Farm Frolics, inspired by the many colourful moments managing a Central Taranaki dairy farm, found an audience of tens of thousands of readers when published in newspapers across the country for more than a decade. I also made art my profession while directing Stratford’s Percy Thomson Gallery for 10 years. Now, retirement has provided me another opportunity for artistic adventures.
My latest path has been combining my two present passions – painting and photography. Through a three-year diploma with the Southern Institute of Technology, I’ve discovered the wonders of digital photography and Photoshop. Above all, I enjoy the challenge of creating something new – who knows where this road will take me.