Category Archives: flower

Outside the comfort zone…


You may have noticed that I haven’t been doing any photography recently, or any painting. Or blogging for that matter. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t been creative. I have in fact been pushing myself in an entirely new but related creative direction – getting to grips with digital media  and learning how to use Photoshop for creative expression.  Here is one of two “creatures” I have had to create from 10 of my other photographs – a composite image. It’s not technically perfect (I am a beginner in this area, after all), but it is part of my creative journey of creating and exploring and learning. True  to my own style, it is full of symbols, includes text, has rich colour, high contrast, and a sense of drama. I hope it creates a feeling that there is a story to be told. It is one of two images that attempt to answer  questions about ancestry and belonging.

Here is the other image. They are very different but both part of the same story.

tui lady for print 27062013

When we challenge ourselves creatively (or mentally or physically) and push outside of our comfort zone, when we shun the familiar and comfortable and when we try something different, new, challenging or difficult – its not easy. It can feel scary, intimidating and weird. You can feel, like I did, clumsy and awkward, and deeply frustrated at times.  But now  I can see the effort was worth it… this is literally “my ideas brought to life by me” through new skills I have learned. That’s a nice feeling for any artist – to be challenged and to grow creatively.

What you find when you have given up on looking…


There is something about orchids – something provocative, erotic, exotic, exclusive, delicate, and mysterious about them. They seem to be such an unlikely plant to find in a suburban backyard garden in Taranaki. Surely they must need special care and attention, such as special food, fertilisers, glass houses, etc? Mine has sat neglected in a pot in the garden, sheltered from the worst of the rain and harsh mountain and sea winds, but not assisted with special care or attention. It looked like a very sad plant…I had almost given up hope of it ever doing anything after 4 years of basic neglect. Then last week – what I thought was a dead brown stalk suddenly and magically bloomed, just as the wind and rain announced that winter was well and truly here. There it was, the most stunning orchid flower – in my pot, in my garden, in the rain!

As the weather was getting wilder and wetter, I cut my precious brown stem and brought it indoors with its one flower and a further six unopened buds.

It is elegant and beautiful. And it not only thrived but blossomed when it seemed there was no hope left. For that, I love it even more.

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