NAOMI SHINGLER - 2016
Artist & Filmmaker
HOW WERE YOU FIRST INTRODUCED TO THIS TYPE OF WORK AND WHAT DID YOU ENJOY ABOUT YOUR EARLY EXPLORATION OF IT?
I was first introduced to digital art whilst doing a degree in film and design at AUT University. I have always loved learning new software, and Photoshop was a program I had already experimented with back in High School. To discover that I could use it to produce paintings in a way not all that dissimilar to traditional painting, was exciting!
My early exploration began with discovering that my favourite gothic/fantasy artist, Anne Stokes, was in fact a digital artist herself. For so long I thought she had worked with oils or acrylics, due to the texture and detail in her pieces. It was an inspiring revelation for me, and for the 3 years after that digital art was all I produced.
More recently I have been getting back to my roots and working with real paint and pencils, but digital medium will always remain a big part of everything I do.
HOW HAS YOUR WORKED CHANGED AND DEVELOPED OVER THE YEARS? WHAT FACTORS DO YOU THINK AFFECTED THIS?
As a young girl I drew fairies, princesses, and fantasy beings. I don’t think much has changed since then – well, at least not the subject matter! It doesn’t matter if I am working in; acrylic, digital, or pencil, whatever I produce tends to have some influence from the fantasy genre.
The time spent at university studying various digital medium has definitely been the biggest influence so far, it really expanded my view on what ‘is’ art. The possibilities for artistic expression are so vast.
Graduating and leaving that long period of study has also been a big leap for me. Suddenly you are on your own, there is nobody there to give you a brief and a deadline. That kind of freedom is so delicious! It has been amazing to now have that time to ask “What kind of art do I want to make?” and indulge in the unrestricted creative exploration of my answer.
PLEASE DESCRIBE WHERE YOU WORK FROM? WHAT DO YOU FIND SPECIAL ABOUT LIVING OUT WEST?
For now I continue to work from my upstairs bedroom, which has a pleasant view of the surrounding farmland and native bush. I have one entire wall covered in pin board (floor to ceiling) which I enjoy covering in inspiration I find. I hope to build my own studio space eventually, and use my accumulated wall collage as actual wallpaper!
West Auckland is such a special area (although I may be a tad biased). Our beaches are raw, wild, and majestic. As are the people who live near them. The tranquillity of living amongst such rich bird life and native trees is utterly priceless.
WHAT CAN VISITORS EXPECT TO SEE WHEN THEY POP BY YOUR STUDIO DURING OPEN STUDIOS WAITAKERE?
Expect to see a mixture of work including; short films, digital art, and a variety of traditional artwork. I also have many projects on the go, so you’ll most definitely get to see some works in progress too.
NAME YOUR TOP 5 SECRET SPOTS YOU LIKE TO VISIT IN THE WAITAKERE RANGES?
1) Bethells Café. Not so much of a secret for us locals, I love the live music evenings. And their kumara chips with aioli are delish!
2) There is a patch of Kauri growing amongst the bush on our property. Sometimes when I need a quiet moment I like to visit them. They are especially precious now, what with all the devastation of Kauri dieback disease.
3) Goldie’s Bush. It is such a pleasant walk, and the waterfall is especially beautiful after a patch of rain.
4) Te Henga Walkway. Another lovely walk, the beautiful views almost make you forget you’re exercising!
5) There are so many quaint little spots I find myself in around Waitakere. I feel like that moment when time drifts out of mind and you’re completely immersed in exploring and enjoying nature – that is a secret place unto itself.