Auckland’s Justine Hawksworth has been creating her most recent works on wooden board and even vintage oars. The backdrop for each piece is an old marine map showing a part of the New Zealand coastline, overlaid with intricate imagery that Justine paints with amazingly fine detail, each one taking many many hours of quiet focus to complete. A collection of these seriously beautiful paintings have been produced as art prints for endemicworld – so you can have an affordable rendition of the original artwork on your walls. Yes please! We had a chat to Justine and a wee look around her studio…
Did you always want to be an artist? How did you get to this point? What has been the career and life journey to this point?
I always loved drawing and making things as a kid. I took art at school and had a great college art teacher who encouraged me to keep taking art and then apply for Art school. I gained a BFA at Elam majoring in Applied Design and then did my years Diploma at Teachers College. I taught Art and Design at Macleans College up until I had my kids. When the kids were little I tried to paint while they were asleep, and as they have got older its become a more full-time thing.
One of Justine’s superbly intricate artworks, combining the writings and imagery of a historical explorer with the femininity of lace, all painted on a vintage oar.
More of Justine’s oar artworks. She also uses aged copper (see gannet oar at top) and other mediums in various pieces.
What other creative projects have you worked on that endemicworld fans may not have seen?
I have another side business that I have started with a friend – The Bach Book – is a journal for recording the history etc of your kiwi bach, that we designed while on holiday over a couple of glasses of wine! This has now spread into a range of stationery items – visitors books, journals and cards.
The Bach Book – awesome gift idea for the true-blue-bach-loving kiwi!
Justine’s produced her own line of notebooks, cards, coasters and other gifts from her artworks (available here)
Intricate paintings on rocks – love these
New Zealand seems to be a real muse for you. What is your favourite spot in the whole country?
NZ is a real inspiration – particularly our love of the kiwi bach and all the memories they create for us. We have a family bach in Whanarua Bay on the East Cape. It’s a mission of a drive from Auckland – 6hrs! – but so worth it when you arrive!! Gorgeous views, great fishing and sea life, beautiful bush and birds. The bach is a no frills classic with no cell phone coverage or TV so very peaceful!
Beside art/illustration, what else do you love to do?
I love to go fishing but I suffer from sea sickness which slacks me off!
What are some of the fave things you have on your own walls at home?
A huge and very cool underwater photo by my niece Jenna Smith, an old whaling oar that we found washed up on the beach, and a turquoise ‘kina’ sculpture made from cable ties by Andi Regan.
Scenes from Justine’s home studio
What words of advice would you give to someone wanting to make art their career?
Don’t be afraid to start small and to ask advice – you’ll be amazed at what you can learn from another artist!
You’re drawing and you’re totally in the flow – Where are you? Describe the scene…
Most drawing for me happens at my studio table – generally I’m on my own with just the sound of the washing machine or the dishwasher keeping me company! But if I am in need of music – U2 live at Slane Castle or a bit of Ella Fitzgerald. Sipping? – probably just water but I would prefer it to be a large glass of Shiraz – possibly not a good idea at 10am!!
Who would you love to create a piece of work for (or where would you love to see your work)?
I still get a real buzz out of selling a painting and its always been a goal for me for my prints and paintings to stay affordable so that lots of people can own them. I’d love to be asked by a winery to use an image as a wine label – I’d even take wine as payment!!
Close up of some of the delicious detail in Justine’s work.