I would like to introduce you to Lara Waldburger, mum of three, teacher and an extremely talented and emerging local artist. Lara exhibited her work at The Ruby Orchard towards the end of 2017 and we sold so many of her stunning original watercolours and framed prints. We are thrilled to be collaborating with Lara again this year. The Ruby Orchard will be exhibiting Lara’s Pennygum series throughout the month with a selection of really beautiful pieces exclusively available to purchase in store during March only. We will be exhibiting the two original watercolour paintings and I cannot wait to see them head to a new home with someone who loves them as much as I do. Also available are framed prints, stretched canvasses, framed canvasses in vintage timber frames, mounted prints, gift cards and gift wrap. The colours are just so pretty, clean and fresh against the crisp white background, you really must come and view the full series.
We asked Lara a few questions about how her passion for art began and her top tips for young artists. Have a read…
Where did your love for art and painting emerge from? Walk me through the step-by-step process you have been through to get to where you are today.
Goodness, am I somewhere? It doesn’t always feel like it! But thank goodness for passion, delight and new days each day! I have loved art always, since I was a little girl. I was blessed to have parents who encouraged me artistically and a wonderful teacher with whom I had lessons from pre-school (amazingly she ended up being my art teacher in matric too).
I have been through a couple of traumas in the last few years and painting has been a sanctuary for me. A place of quiet, solace, stability, comfort, safety, reflection and an outlet of emotion. Although I love oils, I have fallen in love with watercolour! At about the same time I fell in love with the beauty of the Midlands. And kind people around this beautiful part of the world have encouraged and supported me and invited me to share my art in their lives and with their incredible local businesses (people such as the lovely The Ruby Orchard, for example)!
I have an absolute love/hate relationship with Instagram (incredibly scary being vulnerable and I often find the ‘showy-off-ness’ very uncomfortable) but cannot deny the inspiration I have found there; the world-wide network; the support; the encouragement and the ‘gallery’ space.
With three children, when do you find the time to paint?
And I love those three so much! I also have a part-time teaching post, so it can all be a bit of a juggle! I actually only get the opportunity to paint once or twice a week but I try to make what time I get truly count. I’m completely invigorated and inspired on my long walks through the hills and countryside where I am blessed to live and I try to channel that inspiration, seasonally mostly, into my choice of subject matter for each sitting. I make sure my materials, space and ‘head-space’ are as prepped as possible so that I can delve into sketching and painting with purpose, as soon as the opportunity arises. Also, I’m up at 4am writing this! So one has to make the most of any gap caught!
What are your hopes and dreams for your art?
First and foremost I paint because I love it and it brings me great joy.
But I absolutely love seeing my art on beautiful, locally made products especially clothing and textile. I’m rather a sentimental person so for me every object in my home should be carefully considered and have beauty, along with purpose – and how much nicer when it isn’t mass produced, but rather locally made with absolute thought and care. I am very discouraged by malls and lack of quality and true beauty and by horrendous mass production, and I seek to buy as much as I can locally, to the point that I hardly ever get to a mall. I am absolutely thrilled and delighted by all of my collaborations planned for this year and look forward to seeing my art on beautiful, high-end bed linen, as embroidery, designs on gorgeous clothing for adults and toddlers, pottery, bespoke scatter cushions and tableware, amongst others, and am tremendously grateful to all the talented people and businesses I have the privilege of collaborating with.
It also gives me the greatest delight when a person selects my original art piece to invest in for their own home or space, or as a sentimental gift to someone.
I love being part of commission stories; I love people and their unique life stories and art is so personal that often it becomes entwined with an emotional event in someone’s life, which is very special. I have painted for people as a gift for the loss of a precious loved one; a unique wedding gift; wedding stationery; a new baby’s nursery; a baby shower; a mother’s milestone birthday – art must bring joy and a sense of peace to its owner and I am so very humbled and absolutely honoured when my art is chosen for that purpose!
If a young talented artist walked up to you asking for your advice and you only had a few minutes to give them your best tip, what would it be?
I would first ask for their advice! And then I might say be brave! And persistent & patient.
In terms of being brave – it’s a vulnerable place to put yourself out there, but be brave and tough and as authentic as possible! Make the art you love. Be persistent – keep on making the art, even on tough and disappointing days, and be patient (reminder to myself!)