Interested in purchasing artwork? Please leave comment with your email address. I'll contact you.
CV & work availabel at "Stylefile," "Art Access Australia," "City of Ryde."

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wesley Exhibition 3-10 August,220 Pitt St Sydney!

Hi, Friends, if you come near, please come. 
Wesley building dreams exhibition 3-10 August (*facebook link)
Where: In the Wesley Mission foyer, 220 Pitt Street, Sydney (map). Yes, @ the heart of Sydney! Closest train station : Town Hall. 
Time : Everyday from 9 am to 5 pm. Closed only on Saturday 9 August.
Artworks are created by people with disability. Each piece of art will be designed to promote inclusiveness and the importance of recognising people's dreams and aspirations.
Children aged 6–18 can join an special art competition with the winning artworks featured in the exhibition. Five selected submissions will win $150 prize packs from our major partner Eckersley's Art & Craft.
If you, or anyone you know would be interested in it, an entry form is here.

Many children have already taken part the comp through their school. 
Best wishes to the participating schools. These schools are involved:
Cromer Public School
Kensington Public School
Nuwarra Public School
Lucas Heights Community School
Manifold Public School
Bulli Public School
The Oaks Public School
Tullibigeal centenary celebration page
West Ryde Public School
Attunga Public School 

Friends, thank you so much for visiting this blog and encouragements. Wesley team and I really appreciate your warm national and international cheers. Children, thank you for participating this event.
Also, my special thanks to the Wesley team and my wonderful mentrees. 

You, too, have a wonderful weekend and a week. And paint dreams and love!

Happy Painting!!!

**Click the image below. It will take you to Wesley's facebook.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Wesley Building Dreams Inclusive Art Exhibition for People with Disability & Carers

Hi, Friends, our pop-up exhibition will be held in Sydney CBD, 3-10 AugustI'm enjoying so much sharing time with wonderful students in Wesley Building Dreams Inclusive Art ExhibitionThe theme of "Building Dreams" is "inclusiveness" and the importance of recognising the dreams and aspirations of all, especially those living with disability and their carers. Special thanks to the generous support of our partner Eckersley's Art & Craft that has also offered prizes for school children aged 6-18 across New South Wales in Australia. Already the project has involved15 schools. Wow, this big project is ongoing across NSW! Terrific, isn't it? School kids, come join it! Here, *Entry Form. True to the very nature of the pop-up show, the detailed venue is secret at the moment. Friends, look forward to Wesley's official announcementNow, I'm mentoring students called "people with disability." 

HOWEVER, I believe my lovely students are people with "THIS ability"!! Each client is unique and nothing different from other people. 
Mentoring is, for a mentor, equal to learning from mentrees. I'm learning how I can assist students rather than teaching them. Also, I want to be a good entertainer and serve them! In this work below, I'm demonstrating a "wax resist technique" and "lift up." These fun techniques amuse students. We chuckle together. Hey, don't say, "Sadami, you look too good in this picture?!" In addition, in my eyes, everyone and anyone is beautiful.
The key person in a Wesley team and I agree that the most important point is to have fun with the clients and bring them dreams by artI heartily hope the clients take initiatives. I deeply respect each client equally.  

A black and white drawing is based on a photo by courtesy of Wesley. I gained the consent from the client to post the images. BTW, using a photo was very hard for me. Sounds strange? I'm not familiar with using photos to create portraits. For me, a live model is the best and much easier than photos. A live model's movements give me 3D info and I can get on a figure. So, I moved these two people in my mind and drew them on a paper (*Hope, my English makes sense!). 
Regarding using crayons, it's a handy water-resist technique to create white or any colours that depend on crayons, candles' original colours. See below, it's an example. It's up to you how to use it in watercolour painting. I use crayons very often for sketches and they are in my pencil case. 
Back to the topic, the Building Dreams Inclusive Art Exhibition. The Wesley staff and I are working hard to achieve the same goal, "bringing hope and joy." Wesley's positive feedback makes me happy. I want to make clients happy and I want to give carers a break by my art class. Fortunately, my many uni friends are, today, senior social workers and teachers. They cheer me up. Oh, I love the studnets and appreciate the Wesley team's backup, too. **Click a logo that will take you to Wesley's site.  

"Building Dreams" is a part of a wider disability research and awareness campaign centred on the latest Wesley Report, Give Disability Carers a Break before They Break Down.  
Did you know? 
  • Over one third of Australian households are involved with disabilities. 
  • 4.2 million Australians are classified as having disabilities. 
  • There are 2.7 million informal carers of individuals living with a disability in Australia.  (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2012)
Sadly, what others do not realise is that carers are often forced to sacrifice their own lives to look after someone they love. This project aims at supporting both carers and artists with disabilities. 
**Click a logo that will take you to Wesley's site.
My dream is that this project will go on "annually" like One Word One Day for indigenous children's literacy, we, Australian picture book illustrators have been supporting across a nation wide. If "Building Dreams Inclusive Art Exhibition," such a wonderful project is only for a once, it would be sad and a bit shame..., although it's really hard to gain stead resources in a welfare system. Let us hope this exhibition will go well and we can demonstrate a good result in order to get an enough budget. I'm happy to weekly assist clients throughout a year, if the project needs me.

You'll see your heart will know, "Dreams are more precious than gold," I like Enya's song.
Indeed, we need dreams to live our lives lively and happily, don't we?

I really thank for Wesley's kindness and this wonderful opportunity to do pay back society by art. Big cheers for Wesley, my students and school children willing to join this exhibition.
Friends, Happy Painting!
**Click a logo that will take you to Wesley's site. 


Monday, July 14, 2014

Sketching Children@NAIDOC, Library

Hi, Friends, are you enjoying sketching children? All of us want to capture their innocent beauty, don't we? I love capturing emotional children. I hope it would be the quality of my picture book illustration. 

Capturing children is not hard, I've learned. First of all, I've realised the importance of trust in my own eyes. All of us can tell how old a child is and what feeling s/he has. If so, we all have wonderful knowledge about what children are. Just use my eyes' perception and depict kids on paper. But why and how? I've observed children carefully with Qs. Always have a Q is a good approach. Just looking is not looking (does it make sense?). I often set a theme in a time frame, for example, "movement for 2 months" and tried it. Answers have become my precious artistic assets. A child's face expression and movement interest me most.

A first sketch is an Indigenous boy dancing a traditional dance at NAIDOC week event, (="National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee") in Parramatta yesterday. His movement and body language was so strong and full of pride. It was really lovely to see Aboriginal people's languages and cultures.

This was a black and white sketch.
NAIDOC Week celebrations are held around Australia each July to appreciate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. If you have interest, please click their NAIDOC History Timeline that shows Indigenous Australians' hard and painful history, yet, full of their pride and fight for human rights. It is, certainly, our Australian history.  

A second sketch is at a library where I go to study children picture books. A girl stood up and looked back for a moment, which was so charming for me. I could not resist it, although I did not draw the detail. A simplified drawing, in my view, can send a stronger message than complicated work.
A third sketch was a boy just standing. He was so cute! I simply like sketching and do it. Each child has a different age, a gender, body language and emotions. Furthermore, their human interactions always give me awe and joy in drawing and painting. These tens of thousands of sketches are my important references. I'd capture emotional moments and hope one day I can create it from my memories freely. Still a long way to go, but I love sketching children and people!
BTW, I've just finished up the illustrations. Editor Helen, Author and Mentor Ann are very happy, which makes me really happy, too! Also, big names such as Libby Gleeson and Elise Hurst celebrate my illustration work done.
I'd come back to sketching. Although the hand still has a pain, it gets much better. Really thank you for warm cheers. I'll enjoy mentoring people with disability, too. I want to grow as a person and artist.
Friends, Happy Painting!!

Friday, July 11, 2014

My Work "Dignity" in Official Catalogue of World Watercolour Comp 2014

Hi, Friends, exclusive!
Worldly renouned magazine, The Art of Watercolour will publish The Official catalogue of the competition : Over 1,600 artists and their painting(s) shown. My work, "Dignity" will be included in the catalogue, as I got through the first round. Very happy, even though I did not get through the second round. The detailed publication info is below. 
Publication in October 2014 - Colissimo International.
• The jurors’ comments
• Competition timeline 
• A world map of all the participants 
• French/English bilingual edition 
• 292 pages (projected) • 24 x 28 cm format 
• Printed on high-quality paper 
• Flexible binding with flaps
World Watercolour Competition Catalogue 2014
Additional Information
Page number292
Size24 x 28 cm
Reference number8095-1979
EditorDiverti Editions
According to their entry condition... 

What are the different phases in the competition?
In order to designate the winners of the “World Watercolour Competition 2014”, a jury of four renowned watercolour artists, moreover whose quality is 
recognised by the editorial staff of L’ART DE L’AQUARELLE and THE ART OF WATERCOLOUR, will judge the works submitted in five phases.
Phase One: 600 artists will be selected by the editorial staff of L’ART DE L’AQUARELLE based on the digital documents received as part of the application process. Selection will take place in November 2013.
Phase Two: 250 artists will be selected by the jury of four judges from the 600 selected in the first round. 
Phase Three: A shortlist of 20 artists will be selected by the jury to participate in the fourth phase based on the digital photos received. These artists will then send the two works to the address provided so that the jury can deliberate and designate the winners. These two works will be exhibited at the Narbonne Watercolour Biennial to be held in October 2014.
Phase Four: The jury of five judges will select the prizewinners in situ during the Narbonne Watercolour Biennial.
Phase Five: The results will be announced and prizes awarded at the opening of the Narbonne Watercolour Biennial.
                                               *          *          *
I'd send special thanks for the model (*who happily gave permission to submit it to a competition), nurses and friends who have encouraged me  -- you're one of them, Frineds. Also, I'd say, let us "enjoy" challenge. I hope I will grow as a person and an artist. 
"Life is beautiful and people are lovely," is my mantra.  
Happy Painting, Friends. 


Monday, July 7, 2014

Let's Enjoy Life Drawing!

Hi, Friends, did you enjoy a weekend? I did! Regarding the picture book illustration, one more spread to go. Thank you for warm cheers. This week, I'd chat over my colourful life drawings. Friends, how do you enjoy life drawing? I try varied ways to explore life drawing and find something new so that I can use it for other work. I'm interested in "moody direct painting," in particular.

1) Direct Painting
Below, I hardly drew lines and directly started putting colours on darker areas. Interesting! In a process, a figure looked like a negative space. Although balancing weight in colours was a hard task, it was a great fun and other life drawing members had an entertainment together. As this work had only a few lines, accuracy is questionable. But the mood comes up well that makes me happy. I need more practices to get used to direct painting. It's worth trying and will be fun. (*I always set a paper vertical.) 
*All used paper sizes are A2. Try a large paper. In my personal opinion, a bigger paper gives you more freedom and creativity. Look at little children's nice drawings on big papers. Strong brush strokes and confident lines are already a beauty!

2) Lines and Washes
This one is opposite to the first one. I emphasised lots of lines and played with washes to create a mood. Mmm... could be too busy. Never mind, try next!
BTW, what do you try in life drawing? Accuracy, proportion, value, what else? But they do not interest me much. Always a model's face expression and a mood fascinate me most. What do you think? In my view, we should enjoy life drawing rather than simply chasing up rigid meticulousness. We know it bores many of us at school or in workshops, class and ... sadly, some of us stop drawing! I want to tell others how fun life drawing is! Actually, I almost sing, whistle, dance from joy in life drawing class (**I do it silently! So, other members smile at me or laugh together).

My motivation for life drawing is simple and strong. What did/do you feel, when you see a human body? When I saw our human body, the awesome beauty really touched my heart and I chose watercolour  --- black and white was not sufficient enough to depict my awe.
My class's leader is wonderful, who encourages each of us to be "what I am" most. She loves my experiments and urges me to do lots more. It inspires me, especially, when I get stuck in picture book illustrations and portraits. So, I'm very happy to come and see life drawing class members... and want to enjoy life drawing more!

2) Quick Painting with a Big Hake Brush
My flat Hake brush is 9cm (=3.5 inches) wide. I'm still playing it around to learn how to use it. That rediculously wide brush, at once, won other members interest! Yes, that's the way it is -- "having fun together"! I'll try it more in a next term.
I'm playing with lines and value, below.
What about you? How do you enjoy life drawing? Let me hear your story.
Regarding picture book illustration, I'm working on "roughs" for the spread. Author, Editor Helen Chamberlin and Mentor Ann James help me to create it. I'm enjoying this project.
(NOTE *Rough = tries in black & white, colour in picture book illustration.)
Also, special thank you for your kind regards. My hands and the leg get better, which makes a physio and a hand therapist happy, too. They encourage me so much and I work on the given menu more than ever.

Let's enjoy life drawing in a unique way and share joy with same minded people. Take care (*we're in winter, brrrr!!!!). Have a wonderful week!
Friends, Happy Painting! 


Sunday, June 29, 2014

Helen Chamberlin, Mastery of Editorship Dedicated for Children's and Young Adult Literature

Hi, Friends, we’re working on the final stage of the illustration just before layout. A one more push is needed in a very tight time frame. My illustrated picture book will be included in "Helen Chamberlin Books," an *imprint* of Windy Hollow Books next year. Great honour and very happy.
I feel a gentle mother's protection, under Helen’s wings now. Certainly, she has fostered so many acclaimed Australian illustrators and authors for nearly half a century. These "Australian super stars" have been fledgling from her nest ...Shaun Tan, Gregory RogersAnne Spudvilas, Peter Gouldthorpe, Neil Curtis, Narelle Oliver, Sarah Davis and so ons, too many to write them up. 
This post compares Helen’s editorship to mothering with special thanks.
Helen Chamberlin
Helen Chamberlin’s Editorship Features
Illustrating a picture book text is difficult, because, as renowned author Mem Fox asserts, a long complicated drama like “War and Peace” is compressed in “Haiku” or an extraordinarily short text. Only **thirty two pages** are available for an illustrator to unpack the story and visualise it. Thus, illustration is almost mission impossible. In an illustrator's striving, a distinguished editor, Helen does these things to accomplish a project. As Tanner Award declares, “Helen epitomises the best of editorship, a quiet voice standing in the shadows behind the public faces, shaping and guiding, challenging and demanding." Her uncompromising determination is that readers should get the best levels of variety, quality and choice.
Wow, what remarkable professionalism! 

Helen’s Editorship vs Mothering
Friends, don’t you find Helen's professionalism above exactly overlaps good mothering? I feel so. Let’s chat over it.
The driving force of Helen’s professionalism is her pure love of children, illustrators and authors. That "motherhood love" leads to Helen’s enthusiasm of literacy and to want for excellent picture books. She’d love to offer the best work for readers. In order to create qualified work, Helen shows respect and absolute trust in creators. It encourages us, illustrators and authors to pull out of our best. Helen gives illustrators maximum freedom to produce pictures. But if necessary, a good mother Helen can give tough disciplines so that we will not go astray. Mommy’s tough love is great! All the elements above are from Helen’s devotedness for readers in her working philosophy. So, there’s no surprise that Helen has edited so many award winning books.  

Sounds too awesome to approach her?

Very Shy, Humble Mother/Editor Helen
In fact, Helen is a very, very shy lady and a sweet mum who prefers to stay at a backstage! Yes, sooo humble. Too modest (*I love silently sitting besides her, as if I were in Indian summer). Her body language is extremely gentle and polite.  
It reminds me of ...      
Rosa” withdrawn from a centre stage, a hidden beauty, yet sends sweet and rich scent. In a Japanese metaphor, an intentional backstage player is “giving others her found flowers.” Behind a curtain, she stands silently with empty hands, wearing on a satisfied smile in a humble manner, as if she did nothing to do with a great work. A flower holder is having a spot light and enjoying applause on the apron of a centre stage. 
I’ve felt so in Helen’s smile and body language. It's like an "excellent mother." Mothers do not show off their great job.  

However, I’d say this for Helen's honour ; she is not quiet! She’s become very humorous and compassionate. Helen often makes me laugh with her profound knowledge of literacy and languages. Editor Helen is no less than a linguist. I feel...she can do a lexicographer, a semanticist and a pragmatist, while working on German, Italian and English morphosyntaxes. Helen taught them at school. All editors are really abundant in language like a deep ocean. I, a visual artist, always admire their bottomless intelligence and great language assets. 

Portfolio of Helen Chamberlin
Now, Friends, are you getting an image of Helen?
I made the sketches of Helen. Helen and I had a big laugh together!
I put it on a wall right before my desk. That sketch has encouraged me so much to get through difficulty In the middle of night. Helen said, “I’m honoured! It looks ?? yrs younger than me!” (*Put any number as you like and have fun.) 

Ehum! But other publishers editors and famous illustrators said my sketch is really nice! Yes, it captures who she is well. A sensitive, caring, cheerful Mum and Editor! So, her portrait has actually well supported me in the middle of night. I’ll write more about her help and you’ll get it below.

How has Helen been helping me? 
Helen is a great collaborator who always respects me, an illustrator. 
Helen wants my creativity, originality and beauty most in work. A thoughtful editor gives me free rein, but she pulls up harnesses, and gives a whip, if necessary. Similarly, a good and thoughtful mother tries hard to support a growing child, but she gives only necessary minimum help in illustration. Helen really, really wants my own style to bloom out  on paper. With her spot-on advice and support, my ideas have been coming up one after another. She also bravely takes risk to allow my experiments. I’ve been truly enjoying the project. A sweet mum has a discipline that leads kids to a right way! Yet, she always gives a creator room for a decision -- it's amazing. 

Helen knows creators' burden and happiness well
Helen said, "Enjoy illustration" at the beginning of the project. I felt she well knew how difficult illustrating is and joy must come first. How many people on the earth know that art work will not shine without joy? I’m convinced that Helen’s empathy is genuine. She has the deep understanding of creators' delight and pain. Wonderful. 
"Enjoy illustration," has become my motto for art work and picture book illustration. 

Editors Do Mothering for Creators 
As I mentioned in the past post, Helen Chamberlin is the Australia legend editor in our publishing industry – she’s so thoughtful, intellectual, sensitive, wise, humorous, enthusiastic for literacy and full of love for children and colleagues. When I had a chat with "Margaret Wild" -- another Australia legend for her mastery of writing and editorship --- we agreed that good editors are doing mothering for us : illustrators and authors. It’s not coincidence that most editors are women who work so hard silently. 

Yes, Helen has been mentoring me so that I will show my best in watercolour illustration. I'm very happy to have been working with her. Thank you very much. Helen nurtures an illustrator struggling in work and a caring mum gives well balanced sweet spoil and discipline.
Now, I'm head down and get on the work! 

Friends, I've got to concentrate on the illustrations in a dead hurry in following weeks. So, please pardon me, if I should not update the blog each Monday (I'll try!!). I'd appreciate your great support. 
Work with your admiring editor! It's a great fun and you can learn lots.  
Happy Painting!!

*"Imprint copy" is the publishing info you see in every book, usually on the second or fourth page, but sometimes on the last page. A different use of the word is that publishing houses can have several imprints - usually for different genres. 
**Usually, a picture book has 32 pages. Some picture books have 28 pages. 



Monday, June 23, 2014

Talent in What You Love

Hi, Friends, how is your weekend? I relaxed myself in sketching and prepare for the watercolour teaching. Regarding discovering a talent, very well-known advice is "do what you love." Your favorite area is your heaven, isn't it? My only favorite area in art was black and white drawing. Do you like it? My passion is not rational or logical, but quite simply, I've really liked drawing. That's all. 

Friends, have you ever heard this very famous fact ; ultimately, a person's drawing skills is equal to her painting skills ( = a person's painting ability does not go beyond her drawing skills). Black and white is foundation. If you want to learn watercolour painting skills, "Draw, lots of black and white," is very good advice. It sounds like a round way that discourages learners who want to find a quick solution. Unfortunately, no such an easy way to learn watercolour. So, we encourage any students/learners to work on drawing. 
Why is a black and white drawing so important? In my view, b & w is the best way to study value and mood. At the same time, it's fun for me to play around in b & w. Once, I loved black & white drawing more than other school friends. My friends got bored and quickly gave up dessin and croquie. I got hooked and my crazy enthusiasm for drawing puzzled the friends. My ages-long drawing skills have come out a traditional style in painting. I started colour pencils before getting into watercolour. I fell in love with watercolour only a few years ago (So, Friends, have confidence!). It is not hard to loose up watercolour with the solid drawing skills and to move in from the traditional style. Another bonus from drawing skills is my current caricature and cartoon drawingʚ(ˆ◡ˆ)ɞ
In my experience, drawing capacity = painting ability. 
Today, I enjoy playing with colours. Are you a type for taking a line for a walk or colours in sketching outside? I'm the latter one and hope colours sing and dance on papers!
Some artists clearly use lines more than colours, but I do not. These are my most recent b & w. Interestingly, like my colour, it comes up loose. If you have good drawing skills, it's not a big deal to get how to handle colours. 
My current work has all come from the most favorite area, drawing. In other words, if I did not love drawing, I would never become a visual artist. 
As I mentioned in the first paragraph, "Your favorite area is your heaven," we have joy in work of things we like. To find our loving things is easy. Pursue it. Yes, our enthusiasm and love overcomes difficulty. A talent is in your preferred area.    

Finally, I'd devote this quote for anyone. Some people, in particular, still tell me with a sigh, "Oh, Sadami, you have a talent. I don't have it." Humble people do not realise this wonderful and amazing talent.

“I told her once I wasn’t good at anything. She told me survival is a talent.” 
-- Susanna Kaysen
... and 
“When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, 'I used everything you gave me.” 
--- Erma Bombeck

Friends, Happy Painting and Drawing! Let me hear your favorite area. 
Do what you love and ... Love what you do! 
Let us use what we have and have fun always!!