As a youngster I was always interested in drawing. This interest turned into art as a subject at Lytton High with Stan Bugden. He had a great influence on me and created a desire to carry on with art throughout my life. I attended Ardmore Teachers College and majored in art for two years and then came back to Gisborne to teach.
From 1996 I taught in the art department at Gisborne Boys High School until I left in 2007. This allowed me more freedom to paint. I had also joined the Gisborne Printmakers group at Lysnar House in 1997 and this has been an important part of my art journey. My art has been heavily influenced by the natural world which I think goes back to my great great grandmother Marie Hansen, a well-known gardener and herbalist. Her daughter Johanna married into the Andrew family and this love of gardening has come through the generations.
Garden plants and produce provide subject matter for my work as do the amazing autumn leaves from deciduous trees. The latter has led to a series of a painting every year from Eastwoodhill. My great uncle Roy is my connection there as he looked after plants for Douglas Cook.