A sneak preview for you VIP's of Ron Esplin's new Series of watercolours - 25th Jul 2012

Crail

Don't you love the smell of the sea?

Edinburgh is my birthplace, but before coming to New Zealand my father Tom was Art teacher at Buckie High School on the Moray Firth in the North of Scotland. The smell of the North Sea left an impression on me, and I have always loved the sea and living close to it.
When we first came to New Zealand it was for a year, followed by another year in Scotland before returning for good as a family to settle here in Dunedin.

Two and a half times round the World in ships:

As a result I travelled one and a half times round the World by ship, then in 1969 I repeated the exercise returning to the UK for a two year OE, again circumnavigating the Globe.
With salt water running through my veins, it was a fantastic experience to return to Scotland in 2008 and revisit the many fishing villages along the East Coast of Scotland. I took as many photographs as I could, and had the satisfaction of often standing on the spot where one or other or both parents had sat to paint these very same scenes.

New series of Scottish Fishing Villages painted with love:

I know I am known for painting local scenes here, but I have started a series of paintings of Scottish fishing villages that you can now enjoy a sneak preview of.
Why don't you see if you can use Google to locate the first three, Findochty, Crail, and Portsoy.
I hope you like my renderings of them, they have been painted with love.

NEWS FLASH! - 26th Jun 2012

NEWS FLASH!

A mobile exhibition of Ron Esplin watercolour paintings of Dunedin:

"Window on Dunedin" has moved to 300 Moray Place. Thanks to the owners of the building, the Bowen family, the nine watercolour paintings that provide a snapshot in and around Dunedin will remain on public display.
I am happy to have feedback from any of you who take a moment to appraise them when you pass the "AON" building in Moray Place.

Mauri Angelo Exhibition at the Dunedin Community Gallery from Monday 1 to 8 July : 

Take some time to look at the stunning collection of art work at the Dunedin Community Gallery by Mauri Angelo, Artist, Teacher, Landscape Architect, and University Lecturer.
Please note you only have a week to catch this exciting exhibition demonstrating a lifetime of dedication to producing fine art. 

Check out Maurie Angelo's biography:

London City Literary Institute and Ealing School of Art ; Dunedin Teachers’ College Ilam School of Fine Arts, Canterbury University – DipFA 1965; Lincoln University – Post Graduate Dip Landscape Architecture . Awarded: NZ Institute of Landscape Architects Student Merit Award 1988; Woolf Fischer Fellowship; QE II Arts Council Grant .
Formerly primary and secondary school teacher NZ, Australia and London; Head of Department of Art, Cashmere High School, Christchurch; Tutor, Advanced Studies for Teachers Unit, Department of Education; Art Teacher, Christchurch Girls’ High School; Head of Department of Art, Shirley Boys’ High School; Lecturer in Design, Lincoln University. President, Art Teachers’ Assn, Canterbury.

Exhibited in NZ, Italy and London:

Mauri has exhibited paintings extensively in New Zealand, Italy, and London and the UK, having lived for a number of years in each of these countries. 
It is not often we have the opportunity to view work by somebody of his pedigree.

Have a look at his website as a taster:

maurie.angelo.gen.nz

Poster for Maurie Angelo Exhibition:

Follow this link to see the poster for Maurie Angelo's Exhibition:


NEWS FLASH!








"Window on Dunedin" Mini exhibition of Ron Esplin Watercolours of Dunedin - 7th Jun 2012

24 hour a day exhibition a dream come true:

Any artist would leap at the opportunity to have an exhibition that runs 24 hours a day, has high passing foot traffic, does not need to be manned, and is at no cost.
A dream come true? Well it came true for me when I entered the ANZ at 71 George Street and asked them what they did with the little cubbyhole wndow space that faced into the Main Street in Dunedin.

Two week slot in the first two weeks in June:

The teller directed me to the lady who administers the space , and as luck would have it there was a two week slot available in the first two weeks of June. 
I had not counted on my still being on crutches after my hip replacement operation, the supreme optimist in me assuming I would be leaping around like a rabbit within a month of surgery.
Ingenuity is required to transport the nine paintings and fill the space while two arms are still providing mobility on crutches!

Crutch contortions and dogged determination wins through:

I will not bore you with the details, but I did it, and am pleased with the resulting exhibit.
Take a look if you are passing along George Street and see if you agree. "Window on Dunedin" is a collection of nine watercolours with a focus on Dunedin and surrounds. 

"Window on Dunedin" Mini exhibition of Ron Esplin Watercolours of Dunedin runs to 15 June 2012.

Access the website and photograph on the following link:

"Window on Dunedin" Mini exhib ... ion of Ron Esplin Watercolours



Ron Esplin Painting contributes to Otago Hospice Charity Auction - 28th May 2012

Ron Esplin Painting contributes to Otago Hospice Charity Auction

Cocktails at The Temple Gallery Hospice Charity Auction:

The stunning Temple Gallery was the venue on 18 May for drinks and nibbles and an Auction to raise funds for The Otago Community Hospice.
Lyn Chapman, the Hospice fundraiser, and Anne McKenzie and Rachel Bird asked a number of artists including Ron Esplin to donate a painting around "Butterflies" as the theme.

Ron Esplin Painting completed in tight time frame:

The timing for Ron was problematic, as he went in to Hospital for a hip replacement the week before. The operation has been a success, however Ron went home on Tuesday 15 May, with the deadline on Wednesday 16 May the task was to complete the work in twenty four hours..
Undaunted Ron began his painting as soon as he arrived home, and completed it the following day in time for the Auction. He chose a close up view of a Red Admiral Butterfly because of the spectacular markings and the warm colours of these insects.

Mission accomplished despite Hip operation:

"Thank God for an occupation that can be applied when immobilised" Ron says.
The finished butterfly painting is 260mm x 130mm and features the creature in predominantly orange and red against a sky blue background.

Successful Fundraiser:

The end result of the successful evening was raising over $20,000 for the Otago Hospice, satisfying for all concerned.

You can view this item and the painting by following the link below.

Ron Esplin Painting contribute ... Otago Hospice Charity Auction

Arrowtown Art Escape - 3rd May 2012

Art Escape in Arrowtown:

The conditions were perfect as we drove from Dunedin to Arrowtown for the inaugural Arrowtown Art Escape.
The weekend had been planned to co-incide with the spectacular russett colours of Central Otago in Autumn.
Seven artists had planned to meet from points all over the South Island of New Zealand to enjoy a weekend of work and play in spectacular surroundings.

No time was wasted getting down to work:

No sooner had they arrived than the paints and easels were out and the artists were capturing the Autumnal glow on paper.
Adrienne Pavelka had positionned herself outside our base of Burnbank Cottage, and was creating a beautiful pen and ink wash of our temporary accommodation.  Ron Esplin was out on the Main Street of Arrowtown surrounded by the glow of the late afternoon sun filtering through the trees and doing a watercolour of the iconic scene.
Sue Simpson had arrived with her husband Bob and they were unloading their gear in eager anticipation.
The evening was spent in the convivial surroundings of the spacious modern additions to the back of the cottage and hidden from the street. The fire was blazing, the pot luck dinner and wine irrigated the conversation, and we turned in that night satisfied with the efforts of our first day.
The following day was Saturday, and activity began early as Don and Annie Offwood, Adrienne, and Sue wanted to catch adjacent Lake Hayes in the still of the early morning. Ron and Julie spent the day in the spectacular surroundings of the cottage in Arrowtown and practiced their crafts in the comfort of home.

Sing along Saturday night:

Saturday night was an even more social gathering, comparing the artistic efforts of the day, exchanging information on the process and business of art, and later singing all the old favourites with Ron on the guitar and Julie with the melodica.

An event to be repeated:

For Julie and I, Sunday was the day we returned to Dunedin, still basking in the warm glow of good company, superb weather, and honest effort..
The success of the weekend has set the scene for a repeat in 2013 and the hope that we can enjoy similar experiences, surroundings, and conditions.

To view the pictures click on this link: Arrowtown Art Escape

Balloon Flight over the Kapiti Coast - 19th Apr 2012

Documentary prompts visit to Feilding:

Documentary makers Mel and Tom Edmon live in Feilding and after hearing an interview with Jim Mora on National Radio  featuring Julie, they decided they would like to do a documentary on her.
So it was that at the beginning of April Julie and I flew to Wellington, then took the train to Waikanae to be picked up by friends and driven to Levin to meet Tom and Mel.

Fancy of flight follows filming:

After a day of filming inside, we drove with Tom and Mel to Feilding for dinner, then to their superbly situated rural property overlooking Palmerston North and Ohakea.
Much of the next day was taken up with more interviewing, during which Julie mentioned ballooning was on her bucket list. As luck would have it our friends in Levin that had picked us up the previous day had connections with a local balloonist.

Painting opportunity not missed: 

Ballooning being very weather dependent, Dennis the balloonist asked us to call him at 4.30AM the following morning to confirm the conditions were suitable for the flight. I spent the afternoon painting the superb local scenery on a perfect still Manawatu day and hoping the same conditions would prevail in the morning.

Conditions perfect and all go:

So it was at 6AM on the Sunday we were crammed into a four wheel drive with Tom and Mel and a load of filming gear driving to rendezvous with Dennis and his crew in a field near Levin.
The surreal experience of witnessing the giant envelopes unfold and expand against the blue sky was unforgettable. After safety instructions we tumbled into the basket, just Julie and I, Tom, and Dan the pilot, with Mel choosing to stay on solid ground to film us.
Our flight of 25 minutes climbing to 1200 feet and sharing the sky with flocks of white birds and cattle below us and Kapiti island in view beyond the coastline was memorable.

Soft landing:

 The silence was broken only by the roar of the burners every so often, and all too soon we were drifting to a remarkably soft landing in the paddock of a sleepy looking lady farmer, still in her pyjamas to see the spectacle of her unexpected visitors.
 After packing up the gear, we all congregated at a local cafe for a welcome breakfast, voluble and exhilarated after our adventure. 



Ron presents a watercolour of the Roslyn Health Centre to the Health Professionals: - 23rd Mar 2012

New Painting of Roslyn Health Centre by Ron Esplin:

The charming and prominent Roslyn Health Centre building prompted Ron Esplin to use it as a subject for one of his watercolour paintings, and he had great pleasure in presenting the finished painting to Doctor Peter Borrie.
The historic Villa at  271 Highgate, Roslyn, Dunedin was built around 1921. It was once quite isolated because access to Roslyn from the City was via the winding Littlebourne Road and Highgate.
 Roslyn was named after Roslin in Scotland. Many street names and some district names in Dunedin derive from similar features in Edinburgh and its surrounds.
The suburb of Roslyn, where the Roslyn Health Centre is situated, lies atop a crest which forms part of the inner ring of hills around Dunedin. It is one of Dunedin’s premier suburbs to live. Excellent sun and views of the inner city can be gained from the Roslyn overbridge, which is 2.5 kilometres northwest of the city centre, and 150 metres above sea level.

Cablecar part of Roslyn history:

Roslyn was in earlier times served by two separate cable car lines, one came up Stuart Street from The Octagon, turned half right at York Place into what was then called Albert Street, continued on past the end of that street through a short section of the Town Belt, past Otago Boys' High School, across the bottom of Littlebourne Crescent, and up to Highgate at School Street, then dropped down to Kaikorai just before Nairn Street, where a turntable in the road turned cars through ninety degrees and sent them south-west into their shed if it was time to go there.

Stuart Street extension links Roslyn to Central Dunedin in 1953:

The route was eventually turned into a four-lane highway in 1953, cutting Littlebourne Crescent off from Littlebourne Road, going under a new bridge and undergoing considerable widening on the Kaikorai side, restricting access to Ann Street and Oates Street.
In the past couple of years Roslyn has gained popularity, as it undergoes something of a renaissance as a dining and shopping hot spot, away from central Dunedin.

A commanding view over the City:

The Roslyn Health Centre overlooks the City of Dunedin, and Roslyn Village which has two Supermarkets, two restaurants, cafes, a takeaway store and designer clothing stores, all of which are just walking distance apart.
Today the Roslyn Health Centre boasts three doctors, Dr Peter Borrie, Dr Marj Copland, and Dr John Wood plus nursing and administrative staff.
There is a roomy carpark at the back, and a comfortable waiting room looking out onto the City.
They can be contacted at Phone: 03 477 6471, Fax: 03 479 2582, or email: roslynhealth@xtra.co.nz




The Papatowai Challenge 25 February 2012 - 5th Mar 2012

The 16th Papatowai Challenge 2012:

On Saturday the 25th of February Julie and I went to the Catlins in the South of the South Island of New Zealand  for Julie and her friends Jo Stodart and Margaret Jones to compete in the Papatowai Challenge.
This is a 15.5km walk or run in the beautiful coastal surroundings of Papatowai, approximately two hours South of Dunedin..
This was the 16th Papatowai Challenge and was Julie's sixth and Jo's fifth time to tackle this event which is a pre-season fun run and walk from the holiday home of Bev and Wayne Allen in the Catlins and is held annually.

A varied bush beach and hill course:

It begins outside the holiday home at the south end of Tahakopa River Bridge,crosses the bridge over the Tahakopa river, leads through native bush before emerging onto the beach for a refreshing beach walk or run before climbing a steep track to winding unsealed roads over the tops of the hills through farmland . The road then descends through native bush with tantalizing glimpses of the sea, the beach, and the finish. A gritty three kilometers on the flat along the riverside finally takes the exhausted competitor full circle back to the holiday home in Papatowai. 

Finishers rewarded for their effort:

The finishers and spectators then tuck in to well deserved platefuls of pancakes smothered in jam and cream, and hot saveloys from the pot doused in tomato sauce. Wayne and his sponsors then give out spot prizes to competitors and awards to placegetters.
We were happy to learn that our friend Margaret was the second placed walker, and Jo won a spot prize
The event on Saturday was notable in that it poured with rain soon after the start but this did nothing to deter the more than 400 competitors who saw it through to the finish, and the rain stopped before the festivities.

Ron presents a framed print to organizer Wayne:

At the prizegiving at the end of the event, Race Organizer Wayne was proud to display a framed print of Papatowai bridge that had been painted by Ron on a previous Papatowai Challenge.


Ron finds painting a less exhausting pursuit:

I had not been idle while the runners and walkers were battling the elements, I had taken my paints and brushes and completed a watercolour of Papatowai Beach between showers, "draw a line a day" as my Dad used to say.
All this meant that we were unable to hear The Arty Farty Hour on Otago Access Radio at 11AM, so for any of you who went to Papatowai or were otherwise unable to hear the programme, here is the link.

http://ondemand.wizz.co.nz/media/ondemand.php?uid=1316750203-413-13


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