When he retired John Andersen decided he needed something to do so he picked up a paintbrush, began attending water colour lessons in Bundaberg and participated in YouTube tutorials.
What started as an opportunity to learn new skills has grown into a passion for John, with the artist opening his second ever solo exhibition called Colour Ways at Childers Art Space recently.
John, who now resides at Woodgate Beach, said although he spent many years working as a textile printer and colourist, painting was a new skill he had to learn.
“When I retired from work, which was about five years ago, I found myself wanting to do something, and in Bundaberg there were some free watercolour painting lessons,” John said.
“I went in there and took part in the basic course on watercolour painting and the rest is just what I have taught myself, as well as what I have learnt from watching many YouTube videos.
“We called this exhibition Colour Ways because when I used to work, my work was in textiles and printing as I am a qualified textile printer and textile colourist so my job was to match colours for dresses and shirts and fabrics.
“I have always been very good with colours so I put this exhibition together using all my colourists talents.”
John Andersen exhibition features 27 artworks
Johns’ exhibition is made up of 27 artworks including both abstract and traditional landscape paintings.
“I have tried to include a little bit of everything, rather than just sticking to one theme for the exhibition with everything from traditional paintings through to semi abstract and to full abstracts,” he said.
“With the way my art is going now I am more and more inclined to go the abstract way as it is a challenge and very hard as it all has to come from your head, there is no reference or anything.”
Having previously won awards for his abstract works, John said he believed the style of art was a way to express uniqueness.
“Abstracts to me is just coming straight from someone’s heart and imagination so they are putting themselves on the canvas, totally raw,” he said.
“At the end of the day the colours and everything else still have to work, so you still have to know your composition like a normal artist would to ensure it still looks good.
“90 per cent of my paintings start from just paint being thrown on the canvas in a loose, spontaneous way to get things moving and I then take it from there.
“Occasionally I will use a reference photo to get my perspective right when it is of a place in particular. When it comes to landscapes though, I know what a tree looks like and I know what water looks like.”
While the exhibition is currently running, John is still working away on other pieces, looking to enter into the Bundaberg Art Prize again this year.
“I am working on a piece that I am going to enter in the Bundaberg Art Prize as I was lucky enough to win an award last year for my abstract,” he said.
You can visit John Andersen's Colour Ways exhibition at the Childers Arts Space until Sunday 17 July.
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