Tell us a little about yourself and what you do.
I am an illustration-artist based in Eastern Suburbs of Sydney. I am a character artist, and in 2015 I created a cartoon-character named Gertrude, that I based on my own failures and disasters as a chef! Gertrude dreams of becoming a great chef, but she is flawed, eg she cannot stop day-dreaming, and also has her own take on the workings of the world. I initially drew Gertrude only as a black & white image using Copic Multi-Liner ink pens, but now often use gouache to add colour to her surroundings .
I post regular updates of Gertrude’s world on social media, and with this collection of artworks spanning three years, I was represented by ArtSHINE Gallery at the New York Surtex Trade and Licensing Show in May 2018. In August 2018 I held my first solo exhibition, titled: “Gertrude – The Gal That Couldn’t Cook” , at Waverley Library Galleries in conjunction with CBCA Bookweek. I joined SCG in 2016, and have contributed to their annual Anthology in 2018, and am joining them for the first time in their annual group exhibition, titled “Food”, at Yuga Gallery in Glebe curated by ArtSHINE in November 2018.
Gertrude’s Choco Salad (Framed) – SOLD
Pen & Ink on paper, 32.5 × 39.0 cm
Where do you get your inspiration from when you create your art/comic?
I am greatly inspired by the American, now retired, cartoonist Gary Larsson, who created “The far Side” , a single-panel cartoon series that was syndicated internationally for 15 years until 1995. He drew animals having human experiences, and with human attitudes! I grew up in Sweden, and read children’s books by Astrid Lindgren, illustrated by Ilon Wikland, and it is her renditions of children growing up in Sweden has inspired the way I draw Gertrude.
What are the five words that people who know you would use to describe you?
Creative, humorous, curious, loving, compassionate
Gertrude’s Pilates With Aubergines – SOLD
Pen & Ink on paper, 37.5 × 32.5 cm
Tell us about your very first job and what path have you taken since then?
My first job was as a dog-walker at a very young age of 12, back in Sweden! I still love animals, but these days keep a cat, work in a part-time admin day job, and paint and draw on days off and on weekends.
How do you usually plan your daily activities?
I plan by writing important tasks down, and cross them off as I go through them Anything that is a priority task is high-lighted, and tended to before its deadline.
Gertrude’s Kitchen Chaos (Framed) – $300
Pen & Ink on paper, 39.5 × 39.5 cm
As an artist, what is your biggest frustration?
Using time effectively and with balance, and the tech revolution we live with. i appreciate social media, as this is how Gertrude.s followers got to know her, but using increasingly advanced technology is at times frustrating.
How do you connect with other artists, and your customers (i.e. how do you network)?
Via social media, ArtSHINE Gallery, through memberships like Randwick Art Society, the Next Chapter Art Group, Bondi Road Art School, and Sydney Comics Guild.
Gertrude with Macarons -$200
Pen & Ink and Gouache on paper, 28.0 × 31.0 cm (Framed)
Your advice to an artist who is just starting out?
It is important to surround yourself with like-minded positive people! Share and receive helpful information and tips, and collaborate on projects, eg like group exhibitions.
How did you find out about ArtSHINE?
I entered a competition, which called on artists to collaborate on a project by ArtSHINE Gallery, titled: “Draw Me A Calendar” in 2015.
What is your proudest moment so far?
Professionally: being represented in New York by ArtSHINE at the Surtex Trade and Licensing Show in May 2018, and holding my first solo art exhibition in August 2018, at Waverley Library Galleries, in conjunction with CBCA Bookweek.
Personally: committing to and following through on milestones of importance to me..
Gertrude In The Egg Cup- $300
Pen & Ink on paper, 30.0 × 40.0 cm (Framed)
Who do you most want to meet and why?
Gary Larson, American cartoonist, creator of “The Far Side”, and because of his off-beat and sometimes irreverent sense of humour!
What is the most important lesson in life that you have learned?
To appreciate life, have gratitude, to give, and to protect those we love.
Where do we find you and your products? (
i & f: @gertrudebymariewidolf
Need help in mapping out your Art practice journey?
- Just starting out? CLICK HERE
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Call Vinh on 0410 636 138