|My relationship with the garden is symbiotic. I planted it in 1998 at a time when I was unwell and unable to paint. The task of planting the garden substituted for the gap in my creativity and as I pottered about, selecting plants for their colour, shape and height, nature became my palette. By yearâ€™s end my physical health was on the improve and the garden had put down its own roots. While I had nurtured it, the garden had nurtured me.
Landscape―large and small―has always been integral to my painting. But in 1998, work in the garden resonated at a very personal level. During the next few years, I watched plants growing, seasons changing and storms building just metres from my studio. The arrival of the mail was accompanied by the screeching of magpies; parrots gorged on native blooms and a friend ringing from Sydney remarked on the sound of crows on my answering machine.
Now, eight years on the garden is almost fully grown. At ground level, it is a lush mix of plants. From the elevation of the verandah, it stretches past the fence line into the distance. Above the garden, winds rage, clouds gather and seedpods scatter.