I am now registered as a professional artist and have a new site Crocoart.com
Since my early childhood, I have both enjoyed and been quite adept at drawing (sketching) and cartooning but only started painting in 2002. I decided to take some ‘Adult Education’ classes initially in oils to learn the basic techniques. I followed this up with watercolour classes, again to learn the techniques. In 2012, I decided to embark on an Arts Degree. After completing the first two units (in which I scored a Distinction and a High Distinction), I decided that while working full time, I could not do the degree and work, and have time to enjoy painting. So I have put this on hold.
I enjoy painting in oil, acrylic and watercolour, with the latter being my current favourite medium. I paint a variety of subjects and my paintings have travelled to new homes in many parts of the world. I am particularly known for the humour that I try to introduce into some of my works, such as Herman the hermit crab who lives in a crab meat tin home instead of a shell.
I have been a collector of minerals since the mid-1980s. As an extension to my mineral collecting, I also enjoy photography, particularly ‘micro’ photography (many of the specimens in my collection are micro-minerals). I find it a challenge to then extend this further into mineral art, predominantly through watercolour paintings, and generally paint from photos rather than directly from the specimens themselves.
I have been concentrating on painting minerals in particular over the last couple of years. I try to learn from each one that I do and apply those learnings to subsequent paintings. I also try to paint mineral specimens that are a little more challenging, such as metallic or transparent colourless minerals.
The most recent paintings have been done on black paper or card, a particularly challenging foundation for watercolours. However, the results can be quite spectacular and difficult subjects such as transparent crystals can come to life.
* Commissioned to draw some mining-related illustrations for A Community Guide to Environmental Health published by Hesperian, California. * Presented (remotely) at the 2010 special Mineral Artists' Gallery at the Westward Look Hotel, Tucson. * Had my biography as a Tasmanian Mineral Artist published in the US magazine, Rocks and Minerals 86/6 (pdf). * Attended and presented at the 2012 Australasian Mineral Societies Seminar in Perth as Internationally Renowned Mineral Artist. * Was honoured to be commissioned to do a painting for the retirement of Prof. Pete Williams (Crocoite, Adelaide Mine, Dundas, Tasmania - watercolour and gouache on A2 black card). * Won the December 2012 Ballarat Society of Artists monthly competition with Isabella - watercolour on A3 black card. * Exhibited at the Ballarat Art Gallery's Backspace Gallery - Exquisite Collections - a display of minerals and mineral art. * Exhibited a mineral painting in the Ballarat Art Gallery - Director's Cut exhibit - Wulfenite, Ojuela Mine, Mexico - gouache and watercolour on A2 black card. * Exhibited at the 2015 TGMS Tucson 2015 Show.
As I have had a number of requests for me to sell my original artwork, I have decided to offer to do commission work on request. A number of the pieces listed below are commissions.
Do you have a mineral specimen that you would like to see as an original piece of art? Is there a specimen owned by someone else that you would like a painting of? This is subject to the owner and photographer agreeing to its use of course.
If the answer is yes, I will need at least a reasonably good photograph. Even better would be a number of photos from different angles, showing light reflected off different crystal faces. It should be noted that not all specimens are suitable for painting using the techniques I employ.
The artwork may be a watercolour painted on A4 (210x297mm) black paper or A3 (297x420mm) or A2 (420x594mm) black card. The price is dependent on the amount of effort required but most likely will start at around the AU$300 mark (unframed) for A4 and around AU$500 for A3, depending on the amount of effort required.
'My guarantee:' If you don’t like the result, there is no obligation. If I don’t think that it’s good enough, I won’t offer it to you.
(This is not a complete list of mineral paintings completed)