This is a slightly different version of this week's The Messenger article. It's the full interview as told.
I met Janice and Peter Charlish at the very first Artisans Market held in conjunction with the North Lakes Farmers Market. Their mosaic creations and artworks were certainly popular. Peter and Janice have lived in North Lakes just over 9 years. They recalled that when purchasing their land there were no roads and they were driven by the salesman through the bush in a four wheel drive. As we chatted during the day I became aware just how talented this local pair was.
Peter does the mosaic and Janice is the painter. Is this correct?
This is basically correct however Janice occasionally does mosaic work – also Janice introduced Peter to mosaics after she did a mosaic workshop.
How long have you(plural) been doing your chosen art form?
Approximately five years actually painting and creating mosaics. However Janice has always had a creative flair and an eye for colours and design. Janice owned a florist business in a past life and enjoys assisting with interior decorating.
How did you become interested in it?
Peter saw the work that Janice was doing and became interested. At that time Peter knew retirement from his management position was not far away and realised that mosaic would be a good hobby. It is now more of a business than a hobby. Peter retired in February 2008 and began selling at the Eumundi markets the following month. The intention was to discover whether his productions were saleable. Peter soon found that sales exceeded his expectations and ceased selling at Eumundi in December 2008. The reason for this was that sales reached such a level that it became like a production line and left little time for creativity. The distance to be travelled was also a factor.
Did you do classes or did you find that you had a natural talent?
Peter did a couple of workshops with Jacqui Douglas a well known mosaic artist however mostly he is self taught. Janice attends art classes with Janina Liddell.
What inspires you?
Peter likes to create something different. Peter has mosaic items such as chairs, surfboards and is presently doing a guitar. Peter has created garden art with pots, pipes, cement slabs etc as well as smaller interior items like photo frames, fruit bowls, drink coasters and wine coolers
Peter’s most popular items are large mosaic mirrors and lazy susans. Peter’s productions are completed in ceramic tiles, mirror, glass tesserae, recycled china, pebble and shells etc
Janice is the guiding light in regard to colour choices for the mosaic creations.
Other than the markets where can people find your artworks?
Peter has creations at the Seaside Gallery in Redcliffe also the Slab Hut Gallery at Samford and the Bribie Island Community Art Centre at Banksia Beach. Peter and Janice also sell from home by appointment.
Do you do commissions?
Peter and Janice both do commissions. Peter has done several exterior mosaic commissions in North Lakes as well as Noosa. Peter is currently doing a commission for a customer at Chandler involving three cement columns which will form part of their boundary fence. Despite accepting this particular commission Peter prefers smaller jobs. Janice has done painting commissions locally.
If so, is there a different process when creating a piece for a particular piece?
Accepting commissions allows the customer to have input into designs and colours as well as choosing the medium to be used. This is an interactive process which allows the customer to have increased ownership of the final product.
What are the benefits of selling at a market as opposed to via a gallery?
Markets allow more interaction with potential customers and / or people who just want to talk about mosaics. It is amazing how many people have created something in mosaic and Peter enjoys providing advice on the mosaic process. He is happy to answer any questions.
When the artists markets opened at North Lakes it gave the opportunity to display our creations locally. We use this market to advertise so that local people are aware of our existence.
How long have you been living at North Lakes?
We moved to North Lakes over 9 years ago. We built our house on land fronting the lake opposite the sales office. When we purchased the land there were no roads and we came through the bush by four wheel drive with the salesman.
You can see Janice and Peter’s artwork every Sunday at the North Lakes Artisans and Farmers Market or ph: 0430362269. All photos supplied by Peter and Janice.
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