Hi Sarah, how are you? Please tell me about yourself.
Hi! I am really good, thanks. I work as an artist (a painter) and occasional art director; you may know my work from collaborations I’ve done with musicians. I’m living back in my homeland, New Zealand after spending thirteen years based in Australia. Its good to be home but I’m too busy painting to enjoy it at the moment!
How do you start making art? When the first time you realize you good at it?
The art making obsession started when I was a child- I would pretend to be sick I order to stay home from school and work on my latest ‘series’. I didn’t believe I was ‘good at it’ until aged 16, when a few teachers at school were very very encouraging. I did win my first art prize at age 12 however, at a local fair; I had made a clay mask of a goblin from the movie The Labyrinth.
What things inspire you as an artist?
Movies inspire me because they are masterpieces of imagination. Photographs inspire me because they appear so naturally perfect, but you know so much work has gone into the shot. The biggest inspiration though, is the desire to make my friends smile.
How you define your style?
Watercolour and ink paintings of little heroes, painted with a love of the medium and the subject, often bright, often naughty, often funny.
What’s your fave material to work with?
I like to paint in water colour on really heavy, smooth paper. Lately ink has become an obsession also; Windsor & Newton Coloured Inks are my favourite.
How did the collaboration with Ladyhawke come about?
We met when I was at art school and Pip was making music, but not yet as ‘Ladyhawke’. A few years later we both moved to Sydney and in the tiny apartment we shared, she and I began to work on the early visual images for Ladyhawke. The Ladyhawke art has been around for as long as the Ladyhawke sound.
How’s the creative process? Do you listen to her songs while making the artwork?
She lets me listen to her songs as they’re written, so I already have a feel for the songs, but yes when it comes to making art for a specific song- I listen to that song on repeat while I’m getting the idea together. When I’m actually painting, I listen to books and have movies playing because otherwise my mind wanders too far.
Beside Ladyhawke, have you made any other music related illustration?
Ladyhawke was the first, and I credit our collaboration with launching my international career. I’ve since worked on album covers and illustrated several other bands and musicians. A love of album art has been life long for me, and I was very inspired by the music/visual art relationship when I studied art.
Your most fave album art ever?
Led Zepplin – III, Roxy Music –Country Life, Little Feet – Waiting For Columbus, and everything that Derik Riggs did for Iron Maiden.
If you got a chance to making artwork for any musician/band, who would it be?
Jay-Z. Or to paint Nicki Minaj as a pin-up girl.
What’s your dream job?
Painting Fleetwood Mac for Rolling Stone magazine. And illustrating for a movie.
What do you do in the free time?
My girlfriend and I just moved into a new house- I’m spending a lot of time trying to make it look like a tropical dreamland. Also, I like to cook. And to explore.
I’m painting thirty small paintings which were commissioned a few weeks ago, and I’m working on large portraits works for my debut solo show… maybe I should bring it to Indonesia!