“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
Self-portrait of my Grandfather the Artist Ernst Weitkuhn
Art School Proprietor, Senior Art Teacher
I believe it is important to begin drawing and painting with a solid technical fundamental base of realism. Like when building a house, a strong foundation is vital. It is from here we can break free to create whatever our heart desires.
Some people choose abstract art, because they simply don't believe that they can learn to paint realistically, other students have problems to break from stiffness and realism to create something of their own, anew and fresh.
It is of great value to have a knowledgeable art teacher, in fact several teachers if possible and an environment you feel supported and comfortable in. All else will fall into place automatically.
Everyone can be taught, the speed is determined by how much the student is willing to put into practice what is learned. Having said that, regardless of how much time a student will spend, there will be progress.
Having taught for so long, I learned that certain aspects of tutoring works better and have developed strategies by which students advance faster, in particular the first couple of years.
When I see a student struggle with their work, I remember the feeling of inadequacy well and the questioning of my own abilities in this field when I started out. Every artist walks through those stages. I was the student once, taking classes and making all the same mistakes. I don't see my students ever failing, but their potential, probably more than they ever do.
My love for the arts was sparked by my grandfather the artist Ernst Weitkuhn whom I loved dearly. After having received arts training for three years at the Peter Schneider Atelier in Germany, I became a commercial illustrator and practiced this profession for over 15 years.
In 1991 I immigrated to Australia and continued to work as an artist and illustrator. But my English was terrible, so to learn English fast, I finished a degree in Graphic Design / Illustration, at the QSPGA, Queenland School of Printing and Graphic Arts when arriving in Australia in Brisbane and worked later for five years as a senior art teacher at the Gold Coast Art School in Southport.
My clienteles includes major companies such as BP, BHP, the Queensland Government, Channel Ten and many more.
One of my favourite projects over the years was the creation and co-directorship of Illustration House Pty Ltd, a Visual Literacy Centre with adjacent Gallery and art school, training children, adults and teachers alike in art and visual literacy. I left the business due to the terminal illness of my late husband to care for him until his passing in 2005.
I passionately held numerous roles within the arts industry, including presentations and lecturing of art business seminars and discussion rounds for emerging artists. Teaching became my main interest in 1999. But I also operate as art show judge and present talks in relation to artwork critiques, business skills and planning within the art sector.
In 2009, I was invited to join the board of the Regional Arts Development Fund Committee Gold Coast City Council. My role as a committee member involved making recommendations to Arts Queensland for the funding of emerging artists and art organisations and stayed in this position for over two years.
In 2003, I was nominated as Member for the selection panel for the Biennale Internazionale Dell'Arte Contemporanea organised by the World bank, UNESCO and the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in Florence, Italy for the selection artists from Australia.
On a personal level I have found utter joy and peace in my marriage to Deane, yes, the best husband in the world and through my three grown children, Tristan, Catharina and Marin and my eight year old granddaughter, Chelsea. But the greatest joy of all resides in the powerful conversion to Christ in 2010, which directed my interest into missions and humanitarian work that is a vital part of my life today.