Allyson has been working at Māpura Studios as Media Assistant since 2008, and has also been a Māpura artist since 2002.
The Media Assistant role involves cataloguing digital copies of the student’s artwork, cataloguing photo’s from the classes and profiling Māpura artists for the website. “I’m in a unique position at Māpura. I work in the office on Wednesdays and attend my art class on Thursdays”. She loves the creative energy at Māpura; that comes from the other students and the tutors.
Allyson is currently working on a landscape, “Boatshed Café in Rawene”. “I had lunch a few times there with my parents a number of years ago, so I wondered whether I could capture the Boatshed Café on canvas. I think I have”. The Boatshed Café painting is part of a series of landscapes in Northland, particularly Hokianga where her parents lived for over 20 years. It’s a special place for her family, but everyone I’ve shown the artwork to has recognised where it is.
Allyson paints with acrylics, and draws her image with charcoal. She tends to pick difficult scenes that involve perspective because she is fascinated by how a 2 dimensional piece of canvas can be transformed into a 3 dimensional scene. “I love being able to create an art work that has a sense of depth and perspective”
Allyson also loves painting portraits. She painted her father in 2015, and painted her mother in the same year. “I took mum up to Studio One to see her portrait exhibited and I think she was very pleased”. Portraits are amazing to create because you see the character of the person gradually emerge on the canvas, and it’s sometimes not until the final highlights are added to the portrait that the character finally emerges. Noses and eyes are the trickiest part of the face to paint.
Allyson is the chair of the Local Advisory Committee of Auckland CCS Disability Action and is also on the board of Outline NZ.