They say it is a combination of three things that make us who we are. Our upbringing, life experience and genetics. It’s safe to say Michelle could not escape any of those forces as she quickly developed a love for creating things as a little girl.
She traces her love of painting back to her late Grandfather, a talented landscape artist. “Somehow the smell of oil, turps and the old furniture of his studio blended together and was seared into my memory” she recalls. He and Michelle’s grandmother both painted. Then her Mum and sister also took up the practice, so she was never far from a canvas. One of Michelle’s most treasured memories was painting with her Mum Dorothy and after she passed away at age 46 it was a long time before Michelle picked up a brush again. She says, “it has been an emotional journey to end up where I am now as a full-time artist”.
Michelle leans towards Expressionism although she admits “I struggle to completely define my work in a traditional context”. Nor is she bothered by it. She continues “I feel I am most in the zone when the strokes are loose and uninhibited, I do not like to overwork a piece. Some of my paintings are created solely with a Palette knife, some with brushes and others a blend of the two. Sometimes the scene dictates these choices other times it is a mood thing”.
Michelle draws much of her inspiration from the Australian Landscape, especially the Gold Coast Hinterland near where she lives, and northern New South Wales where she was born and spent much of her 20s and early 30s. Michelle acknowledges “The unique beauty and diversity of this land has always been truly captivating to me, fueling me creatively, and challenging me to explore new and latent emotions that I truly believe are waiting to be discovered in my Landscape interpretations. She continues “The land seems to connect with people in a profound way and if I can evoke a feeling, mood or even a memory with my work I am a very happy, yes, a contented artist”.