Welcome to Mamamia’s art endeavour, the Voulez-Vous Project. Every week we celebrate emerging artists, designers, illustrators, creators and women who knit using their vaginas. (Kidding. Maybe.) Our aim: to help the internet become a slightly more beautiful, captivating, or thought-provoking place by making art accessible.
To find out more about the Voulez-Vous project, click here. Click here to see all the previous Voulez-Vous posts.
We can stare at a picture one day and see something completely different the next. Our eye is always picking out different elements for us to focus on at any given time. For Michelle Bradley, an artist who works under the name ‘Dear Mabel’, this concept is the core of her paintings.
“I see my paintings as a ‘Where’s Wally’ element, as you can sit and look at them again and again, and always see new things,” she told Mamamia.
Michelle is a self-taught artist who began by emulating elements of her work from other artists she admired.
David Bromley, Gordon Richards, Rosetta Santucci and Becky Blair – each of these artists provided Micehlle with inspiration in different ways.
“As time has gone on I have wanted to find my own style, and have spent the last few years doing that. My style developed because of these influences, but also because I don’t have the patience to let paint dry.”
She has always drawn, always found herself experimenting with colour and creativity. In fact, her biggest regret is that she chose to do typing over art in Year Nine.
Painting by Dear Mabel.
“One thing I remember being fascinated by as a child was creating a rainbow pattern with crayon, and then covering it over in a dark colour, only to use a pencil or similar to reveal a pattern below. I think this fascination has been part of the development of my style.”
Michelle is incredibly clear about why she gets up each morning to create.
“I like beautiful things, and I am constantly inspired by what I see around me, whether it is shapes, patterns or colour combinations,” she said.
“I like the art to be beautiful because it makes me happy to look at, and I get inspired when something that is at the far reaches of my mind (and I often don’t know it is there myself) comes to fruition. I often work very closely to the art, and look at small sections at a time. I won’t really understand the full balance of the colours and shapes until it is all finished. It often amazes me how the balance works.”
Click through the gallery below to view more of Michelle’s work.
To see where you can buy Michelle’s art, click here.
Do you know an artist (or are YOU an artist) who creates beautiful or thought-provoking work and whom you think should be featured on Mamamia’s Voulez-Vous Project? Send an email to [email protected].