Local Artists Who Have Inspired Me

Just over 4 years ago we moved to Sydney and very soon afterwards I got stuck in to seeking out local artists. Some of them I stumbled across on the net and others I found myself in the same art competitions with. Of the four I want to highlight, I have only met two and only one of those have I had a conversation with in person. The other two I have connected with on the internet and one of those has been very generous with their encouragement of myself personally.

Olivia Alexander
I have never seen Olivia’s work in person although one day I do hope to visit her studio here in NSW but Olivia has been a great encouragement to me. I wrote to Olivia when I was extremely discouraged in my art practice and she generously answered me with a list of ideas. I found Olivia’s work when doing searches online for local Sydney artists and discovered that we also share the same beliefs. Olivia’s work is so bright and organic with so much movement and joy often depicting the ocean in a abstract style. She is an internationally acclaimed artist and often speaks of her work being sold in Europe. You can view Olivia’s work on her website which is here.
OliviaAlexanderPaintingThe Reef 5 (used with permission)

Mellissa Read-Devine
Mellissa has also been an encouragement to me in my personal art practice. Her work is very distinctive as she works in acrylic on canvas often exploring nature and birds in bright colours. She also works as a printmaker and art tutor. I met Mellissa at the Sydney Easter Show a couple of years ago after following along with her work online and finding myself in a handful of art competitions with her. She was doing a demo on the Derivan stall at the show so I took the opportunity to introduce myself. I love her style and am inspired by her dedication to her art practice. Mellissa’s website is found here.
Mellissa Read-DevineMellissa with one of her latest works (used with permission)

David Lake
David’s work is also instantly recognisable. His landscapes are always moody and set at a time of day when the light plays tricks with the colours. He often chooses scenes you would not expect and I am always drawn to them. He paints dusk often and this is my favourite time of day. The light at dusk is so unique and his artwork reflects that unique quality every time. He and I are in the same art society and I have found myself in the same art competitions a few times. You can view David’s profile here and here.
David Lake paintingMoonrise – Hobbys Yards (46 x 61cm)(used with permission)

Sally West
The year after we arrived here I decided to take every opportunity I could afford and enter art competitions around Sydney. It was when I was accepted into the 2013 Hornsby Art Prize that I met Sally West. I did not know who Sally was at the time and in fact our meeting was extremely brief, she was dropping off her work at the same time as I was. Sally went on to win the prize that year. I have been following her work via twitter ever since. Her style is loose and her paint is thick and she often depicts scenes around Sydney especially in the city and on the beaches. I love her style and find her still life work inspiring. You can view Sally’s work here on her website.
Sally West Painting“Natives From Captains”, 100x100cm, oil on canvas. (used with permission)

Each of these artists have inspired me in different ways. Each one has an enormously different background, style and practice but I am encouraged by our local Sydney artists and how dedicated they are to their work. Thank you Olivia, Mellissa, David and Sally and the hundreds of other artists in our local area who plug away tirelessly with varying degrees of success but hopefully with personal satisfaction in their work. You all inspire me to press on regardless of my age, ability or financial reward.

PS. If permission is given I will add some images of these artist’s work at a later date.

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