Grazing Beneath The Old Gum 50cm x 40cm Original Oil on Stretched Belgian Linen by
artist John McCartin
Scenes such as this inspire me, also looking at the works of Sir Hans Heysen painted in the Adelaide Hills nearly a century ago, plus a morning cup of coffee helps me get started. This scene I discovered back in 2006 and have painted several works from this area. A forty-minute drive south from my studio is the actual site, just outside the village of Ashbourne in the Adelaide Hills. The GPS co-ordinates are 88 Green Road Ashbourne SA. Green Road runs off the Bull Creek Road just after the avenue of trees coming from the direction of Meadows.” It is a beautiful property with oat crops and improved pasture, with magnificent old River Red Gums dotted throughout the paddocks. These gums are ancient, many hundreds of years old and saved from being cut down by Sir Hans Heysen who would pay the farmers 50 quid to leave the gums, now they are preserved by the National Trust.
This delightful painting shows stunning use of light, structure, perspective and balance to produce a wonderful scene with enormous depth and dimension. John said; “This painting was based on a scene I discovered while driving along a side road just off the main road. Awed by the beauty of this location I stopped and hopped out of my car to take it all in. The Adelaide Hills region is a beautiful rich mountain area sandwiched in between the McLaren Vale grape area, and the wide-open spaces of the inland plains of the Murray Valley SA. For many years it was dairying area creating great wealth but this changed when hobby farmers and yuppies moved in to take up land for hobby farms, thus continuing the wealth in this district. Its claim to fame is a stunning Bluestone built homes, small villages and of course now vineyards that sees more and more visitors travelling to the Adelaide Hills district.
John McCartin was born in Sydney on March 9th 1954, and showed remarkable drawing ability at a young age and felt strangely attracted to the Australian landscape. Painting as a hobby since 1974, John has now taken on landscape painting more seriously and on a professional basis since 1991. He has been influenced greatly by artists such as Hans Heysen, Elioth Gruner and Arthur Streeton whose unpretentious works have inspired him over many years. In 2011 John won International Artist Magazines prestigious first prize, making him ‘Best artist in the world’. It was a complete surprise to a humble John, yet a reward for the incredible artworks he produces. As part of his prize, John was given the opportunity to travel and paint through the English countryside & through areas of Europe. His six-week study tour created some amazing paintings, of which this is one. John who lives in South Australia travels widely to capture his subjects, always making sketches and studies as he travels. He has been described by many of Australia’s leading artists as one of the most talented artists in Australia and now the world agrees! He has currently won 104 international art awards.