Estuary Artworks 2011: Wild at Heart


29/01/2011 by Sarah Ritchie

Esturary Artworks 2011 Wild at HeartCompleted: 28 January 2011

Acrylic on canvas, 51 cm x 145 cm (20″ x 57″)

DEDICATION: For Simon. Without you, this painting would be nothing…literally.


After approximately 45 hours of painting and countless hours of research and planning, our painting for the Estuary Artworks 2011 competition is complete. I do say “our painting”, for – although I put the paint to canvas – the finished work was a team effort with Simon – who poured a mammoth amount of research into this project and contributed a fountain of ideas.

The brief, for the competition, was as follows:

This significant art competition, now in its fifth year, is open to all residents of New Zealand. Our aim, through the artworks, is for visitors to the exhibition to gain awareness of and appreciation for the [Tamaki] Estuary’s natural, cultural and geological features of regional and national significance and to motivate the communities to actively work together for its protection, enhancement and restoration. The judges will be looking for an original, informed and intelligent response to this theme.

The brief is highly specific, and so the composition we have submitted is far more akin to a “commissioned work” than a “pretty picture”, which – as you can see – it certainly is not.

The arts centre curator will select the finalists from all the 2D and 3D works submitted (last year there were 90 submissions and 36 pieces selected). The finalists will be part of a month-long exhibition at the Uxbridge Art Centre (11 Feb – 10 Mar). I will certainly let you know if my piece has been selected!


13 thoughts on “Estuary Artworks 2011: Wild at Heart

  1. leonabriggs says:

    Powerful painting! Once again, your work is awesome!

  2. Sarah Ritchie says:

    Thanks Leona. I really liked this piece…until I took the painting into the gallery and saw some of the other work that had been submitted. Then, I fell back into my old “compare myself to others” state and brought myself down with a thump. Not good, I know…I still have issues to deal with inside! I do appreciate your encouragement as sometimes it’s difficult to see things outside of oneself!

  3. Lynnette says:

    Love the strong message. It should get people talking, and that is after all the objective here. Do hope you painting is selected, it deserves to be. But you can never tell what the judges will decide as more often than not, they are guided by their own agendas and ideals. You should be proud of your achievement here. So, on to the next one!

  4. Sarah Ritchie says:

    You are so right Lynn. Art – like dance judging – is SO subjective. After years on the dance scene I am used to those kinds of opinions and agendas, so it won’t bother me like it might do otherwise. Yes…indeed…on to the next one (just have to now figure out what the next one will be!)

  5. […] using a fan brush. I discovered fan brushes – just this last week – whilst painting Wild at Heart, and it helped […]

  6. Jo says:

    What a symbolic piece of art, I love the colours! The message and motivation behind it are clearly illustrated, it’s fabulous Sarah, good luck!

  7. Sarah Ritchie says:

    Thanks Jo…I am biting my fingernails waiting for the curator to get in touch. Should find out today/tomorrow if the painting has been accepted into the exhibition…da, da, da, dum…

  8. […] big grin! I have just found out that my painting, Wild at Heart, has been accepted for the Estuary Artworks exhibition (opening night this Thursday). I feel so […]

  9. Jewels says:

    It’s impressive what you’ve achieved – very clever! (not that I’m surprised)… I’m loving the birds (trust an animal lover to notice those the most LOL) – you are awesome at birds! Maybe your next project should be to expand on the native bird theme 🙂

  10. Sarah Ritchie says:

    Thanks Jewels. Yes, you are right…I seem to be able to paint birds with some confidence. Good idea about the native bird theme…I shall explore that avenue further!!!

  11. Roseanne says:

    Hey Sarah!! Congrats for having your painting selected!! its brilliant!! I love staring at the details in paintings and reading into messages that each detail brings.

  12. Sarah Ritchie says:

    I agree. My preferred paintings are the ones which draw you in. Bit of a waste of time and effort if someone just walks on by really…you want someone to take that second and third look!

  13. […] knew the feeling of paintbush-dislike was growing when I painted Wild at Heart, and has only accelerated during the development of Getting Your Ducks in a […]

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Finalist, Estuary Art Awards 2011
Exhibitor, The Original Art Sale 2011


© Sarah Ritchie 2014

Please do not use copies of my original artwork for profit, however you are welcome to share my artwork images as much as you like!

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