Throwback Thursday to this time last year when Jim and I were gallivanting around the south island of New Zealand.

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First glimpse of The Marlborough Sounds as we crossed the Cook Straight from Wellington to Picton.

What a fantastic culture to have experienced, constant music in my ears and colour in my eyes.

Some of my favourite images from two weeks travelling in Cuba! I visited Trinidad, Vinãles and of course Havana!

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When I first arrived in Mexico and heard about Magic Towns I was like a kid in a candy shop! I couldn’t wait to learn more and plan a visit. I then discovered Izamal and my heart jumped — a town painted yellow? YES PLEASE!

Jim and I hired a car and off we went. A road trip too…this day is going to be a winner I thought; it didn’t disappoint.

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Kim’s Cultural Colour Guide

What we call Mexico today was the land of the Mayan, the Zapotec and the Teotihuacan civilisations -dont ask me how to pronounce those! Although the Spanish conquest destroyed many native cultures, fortunately the aesthetic patterns and the use of bold colour still endure today, thank goodness!

Ancient civilisations mixed with some Spanish flair and you get a whole lot of creativity in one country. I’ve been high on inspiration for a while and in todays article I’ve hand picked 3 topics which have certainly made an impact during my visit.

Aztec Pattern

Imposing architecture, highly decorated pottery and geometric stamps were very much the design highlights of the Aztec Era. With so much going on back in those days I can’t cover it all, today I’m focussing on pattern which has inspired some mark making and colour combinations for my own artwork. …

People on bikes always catch my eye. Where are they going? Why so fast? Why so slow? as a mode of transportation that has been around, for what seems like forever, there is a sense of romanticism attached to it. I can’t quite put my finger on why I am so drawn to the image.

After an hour or so, exploring my local area here in Mexico I was fixated on catching these bicycle riders as they passed through Paseo Los Olivos.

I took the post production opportunity to experiment with different grayscale and monochrome effects — you know I love a high contrast black and whitey!

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It’s been 8 weeks since Jim and I landed in Mexico and I think you’ll agree it’s about time for some ancient ruins!

With lots of smaller ruins in and around Playa Del Carmen it’s great to have a constant reminder of what was here on the yucatan peninsula well before we arrived. Today I’m focussing on two larger sites of Maya history which I’ve had the absolute pleasure of visiting during our time in Mexico.

Our first trip took us 76 miles south of where we are living in Playa, to the Maya ruins of Cobá. This ancient place certainly has the wow factor! …

Keeping creative on the move

I get asked quite a lot if my hand painted photography is created in photoshop? Is it all digital? With this being this case it wasn’t going to be long until I tried it out!

With the accessibility of technologies and new platforms popping up every 5 minutes, digital art has since become more popular and I’ve definitely been inspired by a few artists using this media.

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Anton Milkov (above) see his gallery HERE

Joining the dots from inspiration through to completion.

To coincide with the recent release of 4 new art prints, I wanted to indulge in nostalgia for a while and review the process of this series of artwork. I say joining the dots from inspiration through to completion, in reality my process is more about building relationships of the different elements I want to work with: photography and abstract acrylic colour, inspired by culture.

To put down on paper what goes through my washing machine creative head is sometimes a challenge! …

It’s been a year since Jim and I left Perth, a good time for an update on the minimalist lifestyle we are living and a little review about how I’ve adjusted.

Living Out of a Bag

Jim often brags about how little luggage he carries, it’s a competition in his mind and between the two of us, a competition he will always win. Helped by the fact his DSLR broke and he’s happy wearing one pair of shorts for a month at a time — that’s another story.

When it comes to packing I’m sure you can understand the challenges of living out of bag. We’ve all been there, whether it’s a holiday, a weekend away, a travel experience, even camping! …

Our first weekend in Mexico and Jim and I were swept off to an island sitting between the Caribbean Sea and the Mexican Gulf on the north coast of the Yucatan peninsula. Holbox (pronounced Holbosh) is a dirt road and car free island on the cusp of over development.

A few years ago artists from all over the world were invited to the island. They immersed themselves in the island culture, talked to locals and interpreted what they found by creating beautiful murals. It’s hard to find a wall in Holbox not covered in art.

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The vibe is joyful and inspiring, the colours and designs are mesmerising and I was in my element! Murals are not my thing but they are very high on the list when it comes to my favourite type of art. …


Kim Youdan

Clarity Through Creativity

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