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Journeys near and far are never complete without a sketchbook in hand for Lake Hawea artist Renee Walden.
Walden, who works with watercolour, pen and mixed media, captures intricate details during her travels — be that in her own backyard or during her annual six-month sojourn to Europe, alongside husband David Walden.
Their travels mean her sketchbooks are never blank for long and once complete are — quite simply — a work of art.
Art has always been a part of her life, but was something she had not been able to focus solely on until 2012 when the Waldens sold their website design business.
‘‘Ever since then I’ve just been painting full on.’’
Although some of her works are created to capture the beauty of landscape she has come across, others are commissioned.
She has enjoyed both elements, but there was something special about creating an artwork that was ‘‘meaningful to someone’’, she said.
Walden specialises in painting outside and often takes her sketchbooks with her on excursions to capture the many sights.
‘‘I hike a lot and I climb and my sketchbook goes with me everywhere. I even took this to Patagonia on a climbing trip,’’ she said, while browsing through one of her many books.
‘‘Later, when I go through these books they are just full of little memories.’’
Walden likes to teach others how to do the same, so has workshops planned in January and February.
One of the courses will be on a Saturday, which will possibly focus on flowers inside and outside.
The other workshop will take place over a weekend, which will specialise in painting outside.
‘‘The first day we will go somewhere beautiful and paint landscapes and the second day we do buildings.
‘‘Basically, I give you all the skills you need to sketch outside, which is my thing.’’