2013 South Yarra Arthouse, South Yarra
2014 Tussock Gallery, Point Lonsdale
I now live in Melbourne, Australia. Born in rural Australia, growing up on my family's sheep farm, I lived for the outdoors and riding my horse fast, across lush country paddocks. I could not wait for summer holidays at the beach. Even then, seagulls attracted my attention.I studied Art and began my career as an art teacher. I married a man of the land. Two years into our love story, lIfe was idyllic until my husband was diagnosed with life threatening cancer. I gave up art teaching and researched the link between diet and disease and how a healthy diet might support my husbands recovery. The outcome of my research produced 22 healthy eating cooks. The Taste of Life series took me around the world several times. They all became best-sellers, selling more than 2.2 million copies in Australia, New Zealand, UK and USA. I had no time to paint or think about my much loved art.
My husband survived his first cancer only to be diagnosed, 23 years later, with a second, totally unrelated terminal cancer in 2003. He lost that battle in 2006. We spent much of our precious time together at our beach house, in Point Lonsdale, where seagulls became a constant, and a thread to a developing story. You can read about this story in my memoir, The Seagull An Unexpected Love Story. During a very difficult time in my life, seagulls became a symbol of inspiration, motivation and empowerment.
I never imagined I would get the opportunity or the drive to paint again, but seagulls knew better...
The single seagull represents the lesson in being alone. In its aloneness, the seagull is never lonely. It understands the value of self review. It steps away from the distractions of life for a reason. It wants to know its soulful purpose. Its not afraid to turn its face on itself. Often, you'll find the single seagull at the waters edge. It knows the water never lies. The water enables the seagull to look deeply within. In its reflection, it sees both soul and spirit - the life force of its spirit. It waits, patiently, for the voice of the heart to speak wisdom, to know how it can learn and grow more in its purpose. It knows from where the wisdom comes. It knows it cannot hear the voice of the heart over the chaos of the crowd, and so it makes time to be alone because in its map it was always written that it would walk the road of its evolution to evolve in spirit. In doing so, the single seagull becomes the example of self love, and in its love of self, its attractiveness makes it ready to love another.
Two seagulls represent the image of the perfect love story. They are each others abundance and each others home. Their love isn't the love of hopeless attraction, lust or even affection; theirs is a much deeper love - uncompromising and unconditional. Each enhances and advances the others journey. The love of the perfect love story walks in the same direction; eyes looking forward and out, not looking inward. This love holds hands when when its important to hold hands and releases hands when its important to let hands go as as theres time to stand by the waters edge, as one, away from the other, and away from the chaos so as to hear the voice of the heart speaking. Though two will travel as on, each much remain diligent in the knowing of their own soulful purpose and follow the path uniquely meant for them. Only then, are two truly one, because in each others spritual evolution is the spiritual evolution of the other.
A group of seagulls represents that we were not born to always be alone to know our spiritual journey. We were born of a soul group. When we lose our way and need direction along the pathways of our journey, these other souls come and go in our lives. They come from different different lands and different cultures. They help us grow in understanding our soulful reason. When we grow in understanding of our soulful reason we are awakened. Our innate knowing evolves our spirit, and so we advance our way along along the road that leads us to our spirit home. SOmetimes, souls of our soul group stay with us for a short time while other souls stay with us for the duration of our entire journey. No matter how long they stay, each soul has a role to play to support our journey home.