This is a record of my art making, the experiences that I have in everyday life that inspire me and a document of the paintings that I produce. Sometimes I will mention different facts or stories that bear some relevance to manu / birds and New Zealand native flora. One of the key ideas within my work is the celebration of the uniqueness of the native species within Aotearoa / New Zealand.

Friday, September 23, 2011


Piwakawaka Koanga 2011

Well I don't know about you, but I am one of those people who loose some of their mojo in winter. Something about the short days, frosty mornings and random snow falls which channels my inner bear and makes me want to just sleep and eat. A little bit of sunshine can make all of the difference and this piwakawaka (fantail) heralds a creative spurt (I hope).

There are many subtle layers of umbers, siennas, blues, creams, ochres that have been layered up to create the texture of his plumage. I probably spent a bit too much time on him and this photo really doesn't do him justice, it is slightly overexposed and has flushed out the colour. I am not going to complain about too much light though! The name 'Piwakawaka Koanga' refers to 'Spring Piwakawaka'. I like the idea that that play with words can also talk about the action of how the wee manu bounces around the place. He should be listed for sale soon.


Julz-FG said...

So lovely to see you have your blog up.Like you I love the spring and your lovely little piwakawaka

ella thomas said...

Aww, thanks Julie :) Wasn't today just gorgeous?

Gillian said...

I'm so glad he is mine - your painting is stunning and it looks so amazing in real life. Thank you x Gill

ella thomas said...

Hey Gill,

Sorry I have only just found your kind comment. Thank you and I am so pleased he has gone to such a good home :) x

About Me

My photo
Auckland, New Zealand
Ella Thomas is a contemporary artist who lives in Auckland, Aotearoa. She is of Ngapuhi descent and has a passion for the beauty of the whenua (land), the sea and for the unique flora and fauna of New Zealand. The concepts that are explored within Ella's work are based upon notions of conservation, ecological balance and extinction. Her paintings often feature nostalgic patterns reminiscent of the mid to late 1800's, the era when European colonization occurred. It was during this time that many unique species of birds became extinct. The rarer a bird became, the more prized a specimen of it became. Alive or dead. Much of Ella's paintings are celebrations of the unique character of our surviving taonga (treasures). Ella has a Bachelor of Visual Arts and has been working within arts related industries for many years. She has paintings in collections nationwide, Australia, England and the USA. Finally the plunge has been taken and Ella has committed herself to fulfilling a dream, that of becoming a full-time artist.