Living with Koalas artists - Kerrie Anne Rawson

100 Artworks for a Koala entry by Kerrie Anne RAWSON    Title: ‘Plight’  – charcoal on timber

Living with Koalas artist - Kerrie Anne RAWSON

Kerrie Anne RAWSON

Charcoal artist based in Blayney, NSW Australia.

100 Artworks for a Koala entry: Title: ‘Plight‘ . Size: W 80cm x H 100cm (framed in black timber W 87cm x H 110cm)   Medium: charcoal on prepared timber fibre board

“The devastation that our Australia koala habitats were subject to by the fires of late 2019/20 was heart breaking. I wanted to create a regal piece that states ”notice me and the plight of my life that I have endured. A face that depicts more than an Australian animal, a face that depicts life, an individual existence of a species that’s, saying, “I’m here, see me, hear me, help me.”  Kerrie Anne Rawson

I have always had the urge to create and recreate with what I believe I see. I never knew how much colour there actually is in our natural world, our environment, until I took up painting in oils, I learnt a lot about myself and how I actually see the world. I still call myself a beginner even though I have been drawing most of my adult life. You never stop learning and I am very much self-taught. You only learn what you are exposed to. I try to imitate what I see in my view and create an extension to go that one step further, with shadows, light and life itself.  I have learnt through trial and error and each error I make has brought me closer to where I want to be, so therefore, error is part of achievement.  It’s part of my journey. 

What brought me to my now medium – charcoal?   I find that I see things very literal, hence Literal Art, and I feel that there are more colour tones, warmth, feeling, touch, then just what we look at, being in black and white.  Most of us miss the tones in-between. It’s more about seeing, then just looking. It’s about bringing it out from the surface, into a further dimension. I have a passion to perfect the ballet dancer, but I don’t just what to achieve just the subject, I want to see the dancer as if she/he is about to spin the unexpected feeling that my work has the potential of movement in simplicity of many, many tones.  

Preparation is the key to obtaining my overall outcome. The actual surface that I work on is actually part of the work itself, so I actually prepare my own boards, using a mixture of gesso, bondcrete and water, creating the surface texture that I will use for each individual piece that will match my chosen subject. This piece I have chosen a hard texture to draw out, levels of depth for facial features, hair and shadows for reflective lightening and the at times the harshness of the Australian eucalyptus tree.

Medium used is charcoal, from (soft) black, and (soft) vivid white, grey just appears with the use of blending and removing what is not required. The entire surface always starts off completely white, with every piece that I have worked in charcoal. My tools that I use along with the use of compressed charcoal to achieved the desired effects are brush work, my hands, fingers and sharp metal, along with at times, natural sponge and air to take away the excess. A vacuum is also a very useful tool, not only for clean up but for removal of unwanted medium usage. 

Each layer, which there are many are sprayed with a fixer individually as the work develops layer upon layer, this procedure is done very carefully, as removal of any medium will distort your desired result. This is done while laying the work flat on the ground and spraying above over the work so that a layer floats down holding the minute particles of charcoal in place, hence not disturbing the worked surface.

I see the framing of my pieces as an extension to the piece itself, the framing and the matting, brings out tones, which complete the subject. None of my pieces are actually finished until they are framed. 

I have participated in many exhibitions, starting from agricultural shows, where I have received encouragement awards and placements, to local hometown exhibitions, to being invited to exhibit my works in different locations such as Central Coast NSW, Lake Macquarie, and regionally in the Central Tablelands area. I have recently been invited to exhibit one-on-one in private settings, which has been really welcoming and a more personal reflection of my pieces required where suited for different location, from homes, to offices. 


Living with Koalas 100 artworks