Friday, April 12, 2024

Art at church continues

It’s 2024 and the art installations at our church have continued, and I have continued to manage the team. 

In 2023 we made installations for Easter and Christmas. 

For easter we made very large semi-abstract artworks out of paper, inspired by Matisse. It was lovely to see the other ladies of the team come up with the idea and enact it. As manager I primarily concern myself with building and caring for the team, starting each project with enough time to complete it, and providing an administrative umbrella under which the other members of the team can use their creative gifts to serve God and their church community.

Christmas 2023 involved five cardboard/paper cutout layered artworks lit up inside boxes. We ‘unwrapped’ one each Sunday of December, with the final one being unwrapped Christmas Day. I actually did more drawing for this project than I had for any of them, which was enjoyable. Each artwork paired scenes from Christmas stories with titles of Jesus.

And for easter 2024 we decided to do something completely different and built an almost-life-sized tomb out of donated and recycled materials. It was a hit!

As this installation was the most robust out of everything we have made so far, there is talk of lending it out to other churches for their use in coming years.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Art installations at church

This year brought a significant gear shift on the art front, as I took a maternity leave of sorts from illustration - welcoming my daughter Bonnie at the end of January 2022.

My husband and I also started at a new church (Kurrajong North Richmond Anglican), and the change brought new ministries that I came to be involved in. One of these was starting and managing a team of artists to make meaningful art installations in our church hall - installations that were to compliment and enhance whatever was going on in the life of our church. 

Each of these installations was very much the product of collaboration - I can't take the credit for how well they each turned out. But I am proud of what we managed to do - especially since all contributors were volunteers and busy women.

The first installation was for Easter. We decided to make a crown of thorns, with the artwork changing slightly between Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday. 

Alicia making finishing touches

Good Friday 

Updating it for Easter Sunday - Rianna had the idea of adding flowers.

The term after Easter we further adjusted the crown of thorns to turn it into a grapevine for a sermon series on 'Peace and Rest'. 

The grapevine (Ruth and Alicia did a lovely job of the grapes and leaves).

After installing a wooden cross as a 'default' (Thanks Ray/Grandad/Bonnie's babysitter), the next big project was a giant advent calendar for Christmas. This was themed as a town of Bethlehem, where eight buildings would have doors that would open on eight consecutive Sundays from the start of November leading up to Christmas. I came up with the initial idea but intentionally kept my ideas vague and the three other artists on the team for the project ran with it and gave it life and definition. We ended up making the town out of cardboard, paint and sand, and having silhouette pieces for a nativity scene being found each week - with a poetic clue hidden inside each door which indicated what the piece for the week was and where it was to be found in the church hall. It was intentionally interactive and kid-friendly. In addition to this, we managed to get members of church dressed up in biblical costume and filmed doing Christmassy bible readings - with a video being shown each week in conjunction with the advent calendar. It was a lot of fun, and our church community really enjoyed it.

Hanli figuring out composition

Multiple making sessions

The finished town


Towards the final week

Myself, Gaye and Alicia posing for a shot (Hanli also worked on this project but is missing here).

Friday, December 31, 2021

Recent illustrations with Anglicare

Happy 2022!

After a bit of a break on the drawing front during my degree at Moore, I was glad to be offered some more illustration work around the middle of 2021. I ended up completing three illustration projects (of varying sizes) with Anglicare, for the Bible component of ESL classes. We partnered with the Bible Society, and the material should be coming out later this month. 

Here are some of my favourite pics. The images were produced using Procreate on an iPad, and are shown here with filters. They are for lessons on Ruth and Luke’s gospel.

For more regular updates on my art, check out my instagram: @ByJemimaNichols

Thursday, February 18, 2021

More Summer Portraits

This Summer I've been getting into some more drawing. Here are some of my pictures:  

This one of Robbie is in Watercolour Pencils. Done live, two and a half hours.

This one of Clare is also done live - but in charcoal. She wanted it in black and white.

This was the first of two commissions I had over the Summer. It was commissioned by a friend of mine as a gift for his sister and her husband. I completed it in December (in time for Christmas!) and it is in watercolour pencils, from some photos. 

This is Eevee - a beloved pooch of a friend of mine. The artwork is also in watercolour pencils and done from photos. 

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Five siblings: a portrait


In watercolour pencils, 2020. 

Friday, May 1, 2020

An artwork for Zegrac Explains

Fairly recently my brother approached me to do an illustration for a fun project he had been brewing, called 'Zegrac Explains' - which is something he was creating with the children of Yagoona Public School in mind.

The brief was to draw an otter and a bear in Victorian-style clothing sitting in front of a fire place. So, I set out to create a digital oil painting on an iPad using Procreate.

Here is the final result:

And here is a time lapse video of the process:

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Summer portraits

Recently a friend of mine gave me a large box of watercolour pencils. And when I say large, I'm talking three layers deep with what feels like a more overwhelming array of colours than a photoshop colour-circle. I also, incidentally, happened to have a portrait commission for a dog that needed to be done, and so had a ready opportunity to use them.

Now, I have collected and used watercolour pencils for some time, but I have been loathe to use them for any illustration work as I have often felt I was able to more easily create a repeatable colour intensity by using watercolours overlaid with coloured pencils (helpful for drawing the same character over multiple pages). However, I think I will try to use them more, as I am quite pleased with how this project turned out, and I think in the process I have better learned how to use this medium.

This is Banjo. 

Something I have also had the joy of doing earlier this summer were some family portraits for friends. Below are two of them. Both of these are done in coloured pencils, and drawn in the  multicoloured style that I have been enjoying over the past few years.

And, should anyone be interested to see the progress shots of Banjo, here are some pics: