An introduction...

My Background

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 At school, my favorite subject was art. This love never faded and I went on to college to study art. I became a Commercial Artist, working in advertising, sign writing and a major city newspaper as a press artist.


My background has covered many  visual art skills; from calligraphy, brush lettering, set and props design, large scale banners and backdrops,  book illustration and graphic design of logos, brochures, flyers , posters and signage.


All the while I filled sketchbooks wherever I travelled and went to many life classes to draw the figure. Having also studied ballet as a child, I also love drawing dancers. 

My Medium

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I use many different media, such as pen & ink, charcoal, watercolours, acrylics, and pastels. Each artwork or subject, lends itself to a particular medium.


My house portraits have been very popular. They are usually worked in watercolour, pastels  or pen & ink. 


The first portrait I did was for my Mother; of her rustic brick and log house in the bush. That was in 1985. 


After she passed on I was gifted the picture back and now it holds much sentimental value for me. 

As do my  portraits for those who commission them, usually for special anniversaries, and gifts.  They often include the family pets...which makes a house a home.

My Inspiration

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I am an outdoor girl and much of my art is  directly influenced by my love of the natural world.

Being also a Commercial Artist/Designer I am, of course, influenced by the brief!

My Blog

About Serena

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 Born in London, I migrated to Australia with my family at age 12 (we were Ten-pound  Poms!) 

I had a very creative upbringing. My mother, a well-known painter &  potter, encouraged myself & my three sisters in the visual & performing  arts so that we were artists, musicians, ballet dancers etc. 

I trained in Brisbane in  Commercial Art – Design & Illustration, gaining a  scholarship to attend Art College. Then I worked as designer in a Poster  Company, in advertising agencies here & in the UK, & as a press artist  for many years for the Courier/Sunday Mail. Since having a family, I have worked freelance from my home studio. Work has  been as varied as posters (the old art of ticket-writing), murals, sign-writing,  stage sets & props, banners, trade fair backdrops and graphic design (logos,  business cards, letterheads.)  

I have always maintained a passion for art. I fill sketchbooks wherever I go  – inspired by the world around me. The beauty & drama of landscapes.  Compositions created by man & nature. The human figure – the nude, dancers  in motion, figures on a beach.

 My house portraits grew out of drawing many different houses on my  travels. When a shoulder injury  curtailed working on a large scale, the  idea formed that I could promote this as part of what I do as being not so  physically demanding.

 I had some years earlier painted my mother’s house as a birthday present for  her, which led to a subsequent commission by some friends who were very proud of  their renovations. It has proven to be a very popular idea & I have  completed many commissions. A painting captures more than the physical appearance of a place. It captures  the spirit, & the composition utilises the best of the setting to convey the  atmosphere of a property and show its best side! I can also leave out or  disguise powerlines, poles, meter boxes etc. The house is immortalised! As in my own experience, the value of the artwork increases with time…when my  mother passed away, I received the painting back and it serves as a fond  reminder of the past.
I have often been asked to include the family pets in a  painting – some that are already in heaven, once again grace the front steps or  veranda (worked from a photo) in the house portrait. Others I have drawn from  life only to hear they have passed away but are also immortalised in the  picture. Some are of homes long demolished, recreated in a painting.(Reference  supplied by photos, descriptions & in one case reading a book written by a  relative!) Some I have had to show with renovations completed & garden  landscaped! One had to be shown how it was in earlier times, so I had to  deconstruct the renovation!! I work in all media except oils (at present), but it seems watercolours and  pen & ink are the most popular. Acrylics & soft pastels produce a more  painterly effect. As a change from houses, I have produced a portrait in pastels of a row of  baby possums on a branch for a wildlife carer. A souvenir for her when her  “babies” are released to the wild. And lately I have been commissioned by store & restaurant owners to  capture their businesses for posterity! The portraits make an ideal birthday, anniversary or wedding present that  lasts forever!

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