Linda Parkinson-More Alive Than Ever

Linda Parkinson may be a late bloomer when it comes to showcasing her art, but it’s something she has always loved. With a new exhibition 'Alive' due to open at the start of November, Linda talks about her life as an artist and her inspirations.

Linda's Background

As a child, Linda grew up drawing and reading a lot. She always wanted to write and illustrate children's books. "I shelved that later on when I reached high school. I decided I wanted to go to Uni after working for a few years and ended up studying a Bachelor of Arts in Visual Arts because I'd always enjoyed art and wanted to get better at it," Linda says.

Upon finishing her degree, Linda always thought she'd make a career out of art. Instead, she was employed in an office, doing freelance work. "During that time, I entered some artwork into competitions, got married and had two beautiful daughters who are now adults." Linda then put her dreams of being an artist on hold to raise her children.

Linda's long and windy road to becoming an artist was only just beginning. Linda went through a few personal issues that effected her motivation to create. Her marriage broke down and she suffered the loss of her mother.

"There was a period where I just didn't feel like creating. A year ago, I really got back into it, mostly as therapy. January this year I really engrossed myself and became keen to get my work showcased and be a full-time artist," Linda says.

With a number of exhibitions coming up, Linda is really start to find her place in the world of art and Alive will prove how art has brought Linda new life.

[caption id="attachment_952" align="aligncenter" width="294"] A nearly completed piece for her new exhibition 'Alive'[/caption]

Art and its many different materials

When it comes to art, there are many different ways artists represent themselves on canvas and paper. For Linda, watercolour is her preferred material. "I love watercolour because of the way it looks on paper," Linda says.

When she was first returning to art, she mostly used acrylic paint, not one of her favourite materials. "If I made a mistake, I can just remove it easily and paint over it which is why it is good when you're learning. Watercolour takes a lot of time and concentration. It's easily wrecked."

Since her time at university, Linda has been using all different materials to re-train herself. "I had to go through and re-explore charcoal. It's all been part of the journey of getting direction and healing, just getting to explore and play around," Linda says.

Of course, the materials can also influence the style of art. Linda says that when she uses acrylic paint, her work becomes more abstract, tending to be more about the exploration of colour. "I'm still working my way around acrylics because it's different. With watercolour, I only need a little bit of paint because of the water but with acrylic paint I tend to forget just how much paint I need".

[caption id="attachment_953" align="aligncenter" width="254"] A rough sketch of a piece Linda is working on[/caption]


"I like to try and represent something as it is. I'm quite realistic," Linda says. It's no surprise that Linda's next two exhibitions will explore this realistic approach. More on that later.

Linda owns two cats which often become the subject of her artwork. "I find lots of things interesting. I'm inspired by trying to show something that's beautiful and as it is," Linda says.

Linda's strong Christian faith has also been a driving force behind the creation of her art. She will often illustrate different scriptures.

[caption id="attachment_954" align="aligncenter" width="250"] Copyright: Linda Parkinson[/caption]


Linda is about to showcase her work at a new exhibition titles 'Alive'. The exhibit will run from November 1st-November 11th at the Hunter Artisan Gallery and Cafe in East Maitland. This is something that Linda has been working hard towards and something she is proud of.

Alive shows Linda's journey of feeling alive again, emotionally and spiritually. It will focus on things like waterfalls, animals and more of the natural world.

Working on Alive has inspired Linda to pursue more of the real-life and less of the abstract world. "I'm wanting to work more on animals and people now. I feel really drawn to people now. I did plant life illustration at uni and I do enjoy painting that, but I would also love to paint more animals." Linda says that the abstract painting she was doing before was more of a reflection of her headspace rather than a reflection of her artistic abilities.

Alive will highlight Linda's change from abstract art to the more realistic imagery that she is inspired by.

To create realistic paintings, and to create this exhibition, Linda spends a lot of time observing. "A lot of art is really observing and seeing. You can quite easily spend a lot of time watching before sketching," Linda says.

Linda's training in illustration taught her a lot about accuracy and its importance when illustrating real-life things. This is particularly important for her exhibition next year.

[caption id="attachment_955" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Copyright: Linda Parkinson[/caption]

In Their Element

Linda's major exhibition for next year is titled 'In Their Element' and is all about exploring creatives doing what they love and required a lot of observation, research and dedication from Linda.

Some of the artwork will feature dancers in their element. "I've always appreciated dancers and the skill involved. The strength and beauty is inspiring," Linda says.

Linda says that the idea came about from her wanting to paint other creative people. Her youngest daughter came up with the name and the exhibition was born.

"It's such a broad scope, painting people doing what they love. It made me realise that I am in my element with art," Linda says.

To gain inspiration, Linda studied various pictured of dancers. She also attended a violin recital in order to paint a violinist in her element. "The strings of the violin were almost dancing. The bow was moving in a different way to the strings," Linda says.

This exhibition will also feature surfers and worshipers and is sure to inspire.

You can follow Linda and her artwork on Facebook:

[caption id="attachment_956" align="aligncenter" width="218"] Copyright: Linda Parkinson[/caption]


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