Saturday, 1 April 2017

Welcome April ...

Fresh from the hottest February on record to now the wettest month in many, many years I think everyone in my region of Australia is looking to April with a great deal of hope - please, please produce some nice Autumn weather for us!

This month we feature an ANZAC tribute artwork by Kenneth MacQueen called Wild Poppies.  Our criteria this month is to use pops of red on your page.

CRITERIA - Pops of red

ANZAC Day (25th April) is our memorial day where we remember those who gave their lives in wartime. Your page doesn't have to be about this topic of course, unless you would like it to be - you can use anything that inspires you from the artwork - the muted feel of this piece, the subtle colours, the vision of a field of flowers, the use of watercolours, documenting a family war history, gratitude or remembrance. Please tell us how you were inspired.

A little about  Kenneth MacQueen

Kenneth Macqueen was born on 8 April 1897 at Ballarat, Victoria, the son of a Presbyterian clergyman. He moved to Brisbane with his family in 1898, and to Sydney in 1909. From 1914 to 1916 he worked as a clerk at the Colonial Sugar Refinery. He enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in 1916, and served on the Western Front.

In London after the war Macqueen studied at the Slade School of Fine Art under Henry Tonks and at the Westminster School of Art under Bernard Meninsky. After returning to Australia in 1919 he worked on sheep stations in New South Wales. In 1922 he purchased a property at Mount Emlyn, near Millmerran, in south-eastern Queensland, where he divided his time between watercolour painting and farming. His daily life of farming brought him into a close personal relationship with nature.

Macqueen was one of the first Australian watercolourists to adopt a formalist approach in which shape and colour play a dominant role. He served as a Trustee of the Queensland Art Gallery in 1959-1960. Kenneth Macqueen died of a heart attack on 21 June 1960 at Millmerran, Queensland.

This year we are putting the ART back into ARTastic and our main prize each month will reflect that -  this month featuring some arty products from Kaisercraft.

And as always a lovely prize pack for our random draw winner ...
Donated by Judy Willey

And now some amazing inspiration from the first of our team ...

I was inspired by the colours in the painting and the water colour technique which I used on my background.

The inspiration I have taken from this painting is the poppies.

I was inspired by the poppies and the profound memories of the ANZACs that walking through the poppy fields evoked in me. I was also inspired by the watercolours softness.

This topic is important to me. I was inspired by the colours, flowers and red.

I was inspired by the greyish blue watercoloured tones. Love the pop of red too.

I was inspired by the watercoloring, so I decided to use my ecoline liquid watercolors for it!

I loved the water colour, so I used it on my page for the background. I used this photo as I'm so thankful for the males in my life, and I just couldn't imagine what the wives and mothers went through, saying goodbye, as the men and boys headed off to war.

Over to you ......

Please upload the DIRECT link to your actual entry with the link tool on the LEFT by 11.55pm on April 30th, 2017.  We'd love to see your new paper, digital, mixed media or off the page entries. Why not try doing a pocket page spread?  Please no back-dated submissions.  

 Please note:- You may combine our challenge with a sketch challenge only - no other combining will be accepted.  Please include our inspirational picture and challenge details on your blog post as well as provide a link back to us at ARTastic  ... and don't forget to tell us how you were inspired by our challenge.  You may enter more than once in any month as long as each submission is with a different creation.  International entries are very welcome. 

Please call past on the 8th for our announcement of the March winners and our ARTastic 3T's - Tips, Tricks and Techniques for April


  1. What an amazing reveal. I love this month's artwork! I've added your challenge to April's Big List :)

  2. Your challenge this month has inspired me to step out of my comfort zone and try some small artworks... inspiring art from the DT girls