Berry Artist of the Week - CHANTELLE BECKETT

How long have you been an artist?

I have had the drive to be creative for as long as I can remember. Some of my earliest memories are of drawing and colouring. Art has always been part of my character. It drives me and brings me a level of contentment that is difficult to explain. This drive was what lead me to career in Architecture. Although I have been a practicing Architect for well over a decade, the need to draw, paint or otherwise be creative has never faded.

Have you entered any competitions or exhibitions? If so which ones

After taking a hiatus from fulltime Architectural practice at the start of 2018, I found the space and courage to place my art within the creative public forum. Since then I have entered and exhibited pieces within a number of local and regional art awards.

Most notably, my first entry was the 2017 City of Stirling Art Awards, at which my piece ‘Urban Drift’ was awarded a High Commendation in the Drawing (works on paper) category.

My acrylic portrait ‘Thou 5’ was also recently acquired by the City of Wanneroo Art Collection, after entry into their 2019 Community Art Awards.

My latest portrait ‘The Arrival of Hope’ is currently awaiting advice as to its acceptance into the 2019 City of Stirling Art Awards.

What do you love about art? What is your motivation?

I can’t imagine a life without art, without creativity, colour, form and light. It defines me and is something that seems to gild every moment. I am driven to capture and record the detail and intricacies in what I can see and imagine, and to inspire beauty and contemplation.

How would you describe your style?

I am not sure if I have a style. I am usually unexpectedly inspired to capture a thought, a perspective or a visual composition, and my style, if it might be called that, adapts to that process. At times it is detailed and layered. At others it can be pared back, structured and abstract. I guess it could be said I have a number of stylistic streams, depending on the subject matter I am inspired by at the time. This may be based in realism or abstraction.

Who/what are your influences?

I find influence everywhere.

Although I have many favourite painters and sculptors, from the Pre-Raphaelites to contemporary Australian portraiture, I am not necessarily drawn to a particular artist or style to inspire or direct my work. I find interest and inspiration in technique, brush stroke, colour and light. Often I am drawn to a piece that speaks to the work I am absorbed in at the time. I am always seeking new expressions and methods to capture a particular moment or impression, or to clarify a thought or image that is sitting at the back of my vision.

I am also intrinsically inspired by my professional work, in the way light can be folded and captured, how space can inspire and nurtured, in the balance of colour, and in the detail and finish that can be applied to make simple materials sing.

What are some of your favourite personal works?

My most valued recent pieces are all portraits, and I think that value is based in the opportunity to capture and record and intensely, scrutinise the complexities of the subject. I have great reward in the creation of these pieces.

Nonni-a Nonni-o Jess Missy Moo Thou 5

But, when in a more contrasting mood, I also love the freedom and release that can be found in the pure challenge of capturing light and colour in my landscapes.

Beyond Salt

What is your creative process?

It is predominately intuitive. It usually involves a thought or a visual inspiration which I capture on camera. From this stockpile, the imagery that most drives me is what draws my attention, and commences the process of transferring that particular visual inspiration.

Some works may sit partially completed for months on end, almost as if there is a missing piece of inspiration that needs to be discovered, or a mental image that needs to crystallise. At other times, pieces emerge rapidly; driven and insistent.

The creation of each piece has always seemed undefinable, unique and individual.

What are your goals?

My only artistic goals are to paint and create more and often, remain open to inspiration and embrace and enjoy what opportunities may come.


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