Do you support other artists?

One of the things about being an artist  in New Zealand is that we’re all practicing our art in small country. We may not all know each other, but when we do meet we’re generally a pretty supportive bunch. We blog each other’s work, support each other’s exhibitions, chat online … and generally bolster each other to keep at it. And some of us buy each other’s work – not just because it is a fellow Kiwi;’s work – but because we have a genuine love of their work. There are only a very few artists worldwide whose work I collect, and I have talked about them before.

There are a small handful of Kiwi artists I have work by and only two I actively collect. Tanya Dann is one of those. I am lucky to have three of her stripe paintings, one of which was done especially for me. Last year Tanya had to make a decision about the direction of her PhD and that led her to a series of work on the Damselfly. That series isn’t complete yet and she is thinking about its future. But the interest in the series was so strong that she decided to do a small work each day throughout February. I have been following with interest and this weekend decided to branch out from her stripes – and am now the proud owner of three of her Damselfly works. Why three? I thought they’d look amazing hung together. Here’s one of the works that will be winging its way to me this coming week. So happy…

Crusade No. 60: Honor what you love

This month Michelle, over at the GPP Street Team site, said “This month’s challenge is inspired by Valentine’s Day.  We get to celebrate the love we have for partners, family, and friends.  I hope you also indulge in some self-love…like taking a day, or just a few hours, to enjoy some creativity time.  I’m thinking it will be interesting to reflect on all the things we love.  People in our lives, things we like to do, places we like to visit, food we love to eat, art supplies we can’t live without – that kind of stuff.  You can make lists of favorites, or focus on a singular subject.  You can be serious and sentimental, or simple and sweet.  You choose.  Make some declarations.  This will give us a chance to get to know you better, and maybe we will learn about something that we will love too.”.

I thought about all kinds of things I could honor; pets, family, art supplies, work, travel. But in the end it had to be Tony. Why? We’ve been together 20 years this year and love being a couple. When we were in Italy in 2010 one of the artists we traveled with said “You two are so devoted. Every time I look round you’re keeping an eye on each other. You really support each other”. Yes, we do. We are each other’s biggest supporters, most loyal advocates, best friends…


There is nothing more important I can think of to say to you tonight than – thanks! Thank you for being a friend, for listening to me, for sharing your life with me, for providing inspiration when I visit your blogs, for being part of my world. You matter to me. The last few weeks have been busy, and art-free, and I’m likely to keep being so busy for a while yet – knowing you are out there creating away feeds my soul. Thanks.


I have spent the afternoon looking at, and thinking about, what inspires me. I have flicked through old art journals, magazines, art supplies and read a few blogs. Here’s some thoughts on what inspires me. What inspires you?