Hi. I’m Claire Bywater and thank you for visiting my site.
I’m a full time artist living and working in Nelson, New Zealand. Much as I love all manner of beautiful things, it is the built and natural environment that moves me to paint. Currently It's looking into and out of windows that has captured my interest.
With a design background I guess you’d describe my style as detailed, clean and contemporary. I also like the way that a particular perspective or close cropping can make you take a fresh look at the everyday and see it in a new and interesting way.
My overriding passion, and reason for this site, is to make artwork accessible in different ways and not be the exclusive preserve of a gallery. Original paintings with so much detail do take many hours of work. By scanning the original, a high quality copy (giclee) can be made at a reasonable price.
An artwork usually has a story behind it, which adds to its meaning and interest. Next to the gallery image will be a brief explanation about the inspiration and details about print options and prices.
I was brought up in South Devon, England and after 2 careers, 2 children and a move to New Zealand, I’m a late starter to this. Raised in a crafty household, drawing and creating things has been a constant companion from my earliest childhood. Most of my adult life has been spent teaching: first Social Work and then design sketching and drawing. I’ve been very lucky to work with inspirational staff and students in this second area which taught me so much.
All was ticking along very nicely until we were literally jolted out of our everyday lives by the earthquake series of 2010 /11 in Canterbury. Every aspect of daily reality was changed and it has been a major influence on my life and subsequent direction.
As 2014 drew to an end, we found ourselves at the empty nest crossroads and decided to create our own shake-up with a move to Nelson for a new phase in life. So after many years, I’m having a third career. I’ve come out of the artistic closet and am now painting and periodically creating wearable art full time. It’s a case of the teacher now doing what she used to talk about!