Island Woman – Watercolour and Gesso


Island Woman – Watercolour and Gesso

Experimenting with a watercolour – gesso combination, I painted “Island woman”. She reminds me of someone from my past in PNG New Guinea islands – maybe from New Britain or New Ireland.

Like other mediums, watercolour paints have names and pigment intensity. This Aussie Red-Gold (Daniel Smith) paint has to be my favorite, but I use Payne’s Grey in almost everything, so I had to prove to my students, I could easily divorce Payne’s Grey for another colour. I think it is a brilliant colour. I hope you like it too.

The Tranquility of New Ireland – Watercolour Story


The Tranquillity of New Ireland

In April 1990, several months after I was crowned Miss PNG (1989), the PNG Red Cross sent me on a national tour across Papua New Guinea. The tour was to promote the work of Red Cross in charity, disaster relief, blood transfusion services and youth growth and development programmes. This trip enabled me to learn new things, see new places and make many friends. It was a discovery of the magnitude of the work of Red Cross had done in the country and how many people dependent on these services. I was happy to be part of it all and be an ambassador for Red Cross. Unfortunately this privilege no longer exists in the quest due to lack of funding and the changes to the beauty pageant.

During my Red Cross travels, I also saw some of the most beautiful parts of PNG. Pictured is a small coastal village we passed during my tour of Kavieng, New Ireland Province. I took this picture of the house on the waterfront. A few days ago, I was delightfully surprised to find the picture (above) while going through some photos from 27 and 28 years ago. It brought back many memories of the wonderful time I had experienced.

Immediately, I had to paint this little house. The colours I chose reflect the glorious feeling I had during that time, while experiencing love and friendships; the tranquillity and wonders of my beloved PNG. I was very lucky to see a lot of the country during my reign.

I hope you like the images. Feel free to comment and share the tranquillity and beauty of this beautiful PNG Province.

 

 

 

 

Leaves – Watercolour


J.K.Leahy Watercolour 2017.

I’ve been working with the basics of watercolour again and seeing more colour than dirty water on paper. The “Leaves” study is an example of clean colour.

Rescuing good habits is a result of teaching art again and as my friend Terence said, it is good because teaching is learning.  I am teaching my students and learning again, all the good habits I had forgotten.

Above is a render of leaves from my garden. Some of you may know the blood-red foliage of Euphorbia cotinifolia (Caribbean Copper Plant, or Red Spurge) which I often photograph and post here. The sap is poisonous, but this hardy small tree is a favourite because of its gorgeous foliage. I caught on camera a few coloured leaves at the end of autumn when the leaves went from green to golds and orange before they all fell. Above is a negative painting (homework) for my students who are learning different watercolour techniques. If you are in Brisbane and want to join my classes, please email me for details on joycelinleahy@gmail.com. I hope you like this study of the leaves.

 

Lik Lik Rokrok – Little Green Frog


“Liklik rokrok” means little frog in Papua New Guinea pidgin. I once designed and will be bringing back a collection of children’s T-shirts called “Liklik Rokrok”.  Watch this blog for the re-launch later this year.

Frogs play a huge role in our environment and especially the condition of our environment. I have a special affection for this little frog. It was wonderful to find a short YouTube video posted by “Love Nature” about their life and how they have changed over time. I hope you enjoy this video as much as I did. It is amazing to learn about how a tiny creature could evolve throughout revolution and protect itself from predators to this day.

Bird of Paradise – Watercolour


The Bird of Paradise – Papua New Guinea

Bird of Paradise watercolour by J.K.Leahy. 420mm x 297mm on 300gms paper.

Papua New Guinea has over 30 species of the Bird of Paradise. I am currently painting this study of the male Lesser Bird of Paradise.

Painting the white feathers is simply not painting the watercolour paper with any pigment. It is not easy to add backwash to enhance the white feathers without completely covering the white paper. I didn’t want to tape or mask it out to add extra challenge…

I think my next one would be better. What do you think?

Vanishing Point – Poem


A sleepless walker strides by dusk

The Brisbane River glassed

Beyond the vanishing point, houses blackened

A large orangey pink blanket covered the sky

It reflected on the river glass

Under the trees, an egret beamed

Its milky white feathers lit the roots

The walker disturbed the egret

The bird flew towards the orangey – pinkie sky

Looking to where the bird landed in the tree

The walker spots an odd couple – he tall and large

She is tiny and frail

They stand, side by side, arm’s length apart

Their arms are each folded; awkward

They stare into the river

Maybe they were speaking about the glassy river

Or the orange sky, the sleepless walker or the egret

There is a promise of love beyond the vanishing point

The walker smiles. Maybe sleep is coming tonight

Fatoumata Diawara


Fatoumata Diawara is a favourite from the World Music scene. Those of you that are new to my blog, I like to post some of the music I listen to from across the world. If you have guessed it, you are right, I don’t always understand what they are singing about, but musicians all over the world share one universal language which my heart understands. I’m sure you can too.

Born on Ivory Coast to Malian parents, Fatoumata Diawara moved to France to pursue her music. The guitarist became critically acclaimed not only for singing, but song-writing and performing in movies. I love her music, so I hope you will  enjoy it too.

Tribalmystic is storytelling about people, places, and things that have extraordinary stories. Author: Joycelin Leahy

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