She must be some exquisite woman, must Cheryl Hodges. I can only surmise that, I don’t actually know the veracity of that for a fact as I’ve never met the lady. But what she produces is exquisite and I figure that a person of in-exquisiteness could never create product of such sublime beauty. Therefore Cheryl Hodges is exquisite to my mind.
Somebody else who is undeniably exquisite is my wondrous granddaughter Tessa Tiger Gordon. One of her favourite hanging out places is Basket and Green, up Elizabeth Street. It’s a delightful café and provides an array of playthings for the little folk. Tiges is very attached to the Mr Potato Head set to be found there, as well as an old telephone on which she can place calls to the important people in her world.
Another attraction here, apart from seeing Tess so engaged with conjuring up fun as only a three-year old can, is its Avant postcard rack. Particularly to my interest, from its free samplings, are those portraying the artistic endeavours by up and coming practitioners of artistic pursuits from the four corners of the land. On my last visit I gathered a couple of handfuls for closer inspection later. Once back in my abode by the river I discovered one depicting a collection of plant parts and a single insect. It was entitled ‘Australian Native Collection 2015’ and it was an offering from Ms Hodges. I am now ruing the fact I didn’t garner more of her exquisite image. In my amblings around the city I checked out all known locations of said card racks, but there was nary an extra one to be found. Undoubtedly they’d been snapped up by others with an eye for botanical (and zoological) beauty.
From childhood this artist has always enjoyed drawing during her growing up on the outskirts of Canberra. The earliest examples she can recall were her renderings of the characters from ‘The Muppets’ television show. Her love affair with this medium has now evolved into a full-time career. She enjoyed her art classes at school and moved into exploring calligraphy. photography, ceramics and painting – the latter using both oils and watercolours. After school she pursued a career in finance, but marriage and the delights of two young ones in the house saw her revitalise her art.
Around the turn of the millennium it was her then boyfriend who turned her on to botanical art. She had found her calling. The fellow was obviously a keeper for doing this so she wedded him. She has now included depictions of insects in her repertoire, but her mainstay are her gorgeous images featuring Australian native plants. She gathers specimens from the bush and finds it is necessary to always photograph them as many will wilt before she has had time to fully do them justice. She also uses her talent to educate on the many species that, unless action is taken, may not be around for much longer. She exhibits regularly and her works on paper and vellum are attractive to collectors, as well as galleries. Commissions continue to keep her busy.
Her process is quite demanding, consisting of the layering on of watercolours with tiny brushes and then filling in detail with dry-brush. Some more complex tasks can take a month or more to complete.
Although my knowledge of the flora of this great land is lamentably abysmal, I can certainly appreciate its beauty when presented to me in the exquisite manner that Cheryl Hodges is able to muster. I urge you to check into her website or Facebook page. I am sure you will be as charmed by her talent as I have been. She offers a range of product for sale, including cards. Perhaps you may like to take advantage of that, as well, to attain a piece of this exquisite woman’s work.
Artist’s website = http://www.cherylhodges.com/
Artist’s FB page = https://www.facebook.com/cherylhodgesartist/info/?tab=page_info