'Trevor' fetches top gong for artist
A COMMISSIONED painting that was never picked up has taken out this year's Grandma Moses Art Competition and earnt Chris Ireland a $1000 prize.
The real estate agent and owner of Chic with ARTitude studio at Ettalong Beach said she had known "Trevor" was special, but "it was a lovely shock" to win.
The acrylic painting of the dog with a bone certainly has character, and Chris said it had come together quite quickly in probably 6-10 hours.
Painting since just 2009, after being convinced by a friend to "have a go", and having now run her own studio for almost four years, Chris seems an appropriate winner of the Grandma Moses prize, having discovered her talent later in life.
However, at just 56 this year, she wasn't quite such a late bloomer as the prize's namesake whose career started at 78 and resulted in more than 1500 pieces in the last 23 years of her life.
Chris admits the studio and her art, specialising in portraits of people and pets, probably provide the perfect balance to the pressures of working in real estate.
She runs adult classes Wednesday and Thursday mornings and primary school-aged classes on Wednesday afternoons.
The difference between the two, she said is "kids are braver", not to mention helpful, coming up with lots of ideas on how their teacher could spend her prizemoney ... on them!
There were 179 entries in this year's competition, specifically for over-50s, an increase on last year.
Other winners were Irene Collings for her watercolour Sand & Surf, Sandy Solway in the novice division for Going for Broke and a double win for Sandra Stellino for Grass Tree Country and Seen Better Days in the Leisure and Learning Centre's art group and Central Coast-inspired sections.