Gail’s watercolour world
ARTIST of the Month at Douglas Art Base (DAB) in Mossman is Gail Shaw and her works are showcased on the Feature Wall of DAB’s Mill Street Gallery for all of April.
Gail works with watercolour and her representations of the tropical north are both subtle and bold, using the transparent nature of watercolour to highlight the elusive qualities of the plants and animals of this environment.
Gail worked in the advertising industry for 40 years as a copywriter, art director and creative director in agencies in Australia and overseas.
“While painting and drawing since early childhood, my adventures in pure watercolour really took off after a short art course at the Tin Sheds Gallery at Sydney University,” Gail said.
“I then joined a group of other watercolour artists in a weekly workshop and took part in more than 10 annual watercolour shows at Balmain’s Watch House Gallery,” she said.
Having studied watercolour with Ian Chapman at the Julian Ashton Art School and taked workshops with leading watercolour artists Alvero Castenet, Joseph Zbuvic, Helen Goldsmith and Cherry Hood, Gail became a volunteer art teacher at a women’s refuge in Sydney’s Kings Cross.
“My husband and I moved to Whyanbeel Valley in 2004 where I have a custom-built studio,” Gail said, “and I joined Art House Port Douglas as a watercolour teacher.”
Gail received a Regional Arts Development Fund grant in 2010 for a solo exhibition, Painting Paradise, held at Karnak Playhouse.
In 2016 Gail was invited to join Port Douglas Artists in a group exhibition, Gondwana’s Garden, at the Tanks Centre in Cairns. “Last year I began teaching watercolour workshops at DAB in Mossman, and I continue teaching in my studio in the Whyanbeel Valley,” she said.
Gail has tutored at four watercolour courses at DAB over the past two years and with up to 10 students per course, her popularity is evident.
The DAB Gallery in Mill Street, Mossman is open Mondays to Saturdays from 10am to 2pm. This semester’s program guide and course details are available on DAB’s website www.dabmossman.com or by phoning 4098 3337.
Whyanbeel artist Gail Shaw