Patricia is an artist, teacher and writer who has enjoyed these three occupations for twenty-three years. Since graduating from Technical College she has continued postgraduate studies in gilding, bookbinding, pastel, ceramics, watercolour and printmaking, and brings this knowledge to share with her students. At present, she is publishing online books on Miniatures.
Patricia has taught miniature painting for 21 years at weekly classes and by correspondence. She has been an exhibiting member of MASFlorida; Hilliard Society, England; Ku ring gai Art Society; the Australian Watercolour Institute; and Open Bite Printmakers. She is a Foundation and Life Member of the Australian Society of Miniature Art.
Patricia’s work is held in the collection of the Dutch Foundation of Miniature Art, Burnie Regional Gallery, Crookwell & Ku ring gai Councils, Kings School Parramatta, All Saints Bathurst, Marriott Hotel Group, Gold Coast City Gallery Queensland, Catholic University Strathfield. She wrote many articles on miniatures for the Australian Artist from 1989-1990 and her book “Creative Miniatures” was commissioned and published by Simon & Schuster in 1991.
Spirit of the Miniature – in her book ‘Creative Miniatures’ Patricia mentions the ‘Spirit of the Miniature’. Following are some of her thoughts on the subject. She says if she were to classify these thoughts in order of importance they would be –
- Design and effective use of tone – I would like to place imagination first as I see it as the difference between a small painting and a beautiful miniature but the work must first intrigue from a distance, force closer scrutiny and reward the viewer.
- Imagination – I admire the delicate technique of photographic realism but I am searching for more, that x factor which makes the work original and expresses the artist behind the work.
- An obvious attempt to miniaturize – Botanical art is a beautiful art form in a class of its own but unless there is an attempt at miniaturization it does not fit the criteria for a miniature. The 1/6 rule has never been accepted by ASMA (NSW) as elephants always cause trouble. Because of the small dimensions (4″ x 4″ or 10cm x 10cm) the society has adopted the rule that a portrait head should be no larger than one and a half inches (3.5cm) from crown to chin. The attempt to miniaturize has always been the rule.
- Good drawing skills – It is accepted that good drawing skills are present.
- Technique and knowledge of medium and support – There are some who feel that unless a work is carried out using dry brush technique it is not a true miniature but this limits creativity and denies the advance of knowledge. Dry brush stroke was used five hundred years ago when most work was on vellum which would swell when too much mixing or thinning medium was used. From 1770 on, when miniaturists learnt how to work on ivory, washes were used and dry brush was only applied when required. Dry brush is the secret weapon for the painter but, in my opinion, should be used sparingly. Coarse canvas and high gloss finishes oftern spoil good work. Every hand created art form can be carried out in miniature
For over three decades now Debra has been drawing and painting. She subsidized her art career with fifteen years as a biochemical design engineer, building biotech pharmaceutical facilities. Since then Debra has rendered a wide variety of subjects painting pets, portraits, architecture and wildlife. She enjoys using mixed media using a combination of acrylic or gouache, coloured pencil and artist’s pens to create realistic works. With a passion for miniature art she works mostly in small formats but has also created several murals. She works under magnifiers for her miniature work which has become more detailed over the years.
Marilyn Peck, a Foundation Member of ASMA New South Wales Inc from 1985, and awarded Life Membership in 19 , was instrumental in the formation of each of the four Australian Societies of Miniature Art. She held founding and early membership in each society. In 1988 she was Founding President of ASMA Queensland Inc, which is now defunct. She has written and illustrated two books.
Marilyn’s first book, The Waste Land Suite published by Macmillan Art Publishing in 2004 is her reponse to TS Elliot’s 1922 poem. The book is essentialy miniature art in watercolour.
Her second art book, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight containing miniature art in watercolour and gold leaf, will also be published by Macmillan Art Publishing. Date of publication to be advised.