Meet the Maker Monday | Christine de Klerk
What is it that you do artistically?
I'm primarily a pastel artist drawing realistic fauna and flora. Occasionally I also produce mixed media and acrylic paintings. A new venture is paining old, boring pieces of furniture.
Why do you do what you do?
I cannot help myself! It gives me immense joy and fulfillment creating something beautiful and vibrant. My goal is to bring joy, colour and happiness with creations. If my paintings can lift a spirit, cause eyes to sparkle and bring a smile to someones face, I have done my job.
When did you start in your industry?
It all started about 3 years ago when I did a 'Blooms' painting course with Jacquline Coates and from then on there was just no option of stopping something that brings immeasurable happiness to my life.
How would you describe your style?
Realism with a touch of contemporary art sometimes making an appearance. I create realistic fauna and flora art which reflects my deep love for nature and the creator.
Has your style changed over time?
Not so much changes as expanded. I've branched out to portraiture seascapes painting on furniture and framed black boards. As an artist you are always responding to things you experience and see around you. You try new techniques and are inspired by other artists. You never stop learning or aspiring to produce the best possible art you can.
What does inspiration mean to you and who inspires you?
To me inspiration is that bubbling excitement I feel when seeing something beautiful. I can hardly wait to try and put what I saw onto paper/canvas. God's creation is my constant inspiration. Textures, the reflection of light, eyes, the exquisite colours and patterns. And in nature, flowers, animals - these are the things that excite me.
What memorable responses have you had to your work?
I perceive any response to my work as a win. Capturing someone's attention long enough for them to engage and actually respond is amazing in my view. Last year during the Southern Art Trail I have my big elephant prominently displayed in the doorway of our venue in the Albany Plaza. A few people stopped in their tracks with various comments, but "he's eyeing me off" was the funniest comment I got.
What have you been working on recently? A few smaller projects, mainly flowers before I tackle two big projects that I'm very keen to start. I've also been painting on furniture, brightening up old boring pieces.
What is your dream project?
A commission for a big painting to be displayed somewhere prominent where it will catch the eye of many people leading to more commissions or sales of my art. I just love what I do, but I need to earn money from it. I can't just keep hanging it in my own house :)
How would you describe the Arts & Culture scene in Albany?
Vibrant, evolving, prolific and exciting.
You can catch Christine on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Christine-De-Klerk-Art-496880574185592
Or Instagram @christinedeklerkart