When 8-year-old Bronte Goodieson first visited The Art Gallery of NSW she was disappointed her works weren’t already hanging. “One day you’ll be in here darling” her mother assured her. From a very young age, Bronte knew she wanted to be an artist, recalling an obsession with vibrant paints. “I’d spend hours on my balcony by myself, I just really loved all the bright colours”
Nowadays, Bronte paints full time, just as excited about the striking colours she played around with as a kid. Named after Bronte Beach, owning a gallery on Bronte Road and living on Beach Street in Clovelly, it’s no shock her recent work focuses on Sydney’s gorgeous sandy treasures.
“Coastal scenes are a really natural thing to me, I’ve spent years fascinated by these locations and how beautiful they are. I’ve spent so much time studying the reflection of the sky on water and figuring out how best to paint it”.
It wasn’t until 2019, after returning from a summer trip to Europe, that Bronte first realised her coastal canvases were something people were into. “A good friend was hosting an art night at her store Humble Beginnings…I only had four days to create some work, so I painted an aerial artwork of Wylies Baths in Coogee. The work sold really quick”.
Bronte’s work seems to move although it stands still. You can almost feel swimmers tracing back and forth in the pool or beachgoers rolling out their towels. There’s an abundance of energy and warmth in her craft, something she puts down to using different methods and materials. From high flow acrylic paint to watercolour, gouache, paint markers or spray paint, Goodieson isn’t afraid to blend styles in order to create something that’s truly unique.
Looking at her work, you might think Bronte paints on location but really she takes photos and brings them to life in her studio. “It can be a struggle to deal with the elements and if you forget something when painting outdoors it’s an issue”. Bronte is quick to remind me that “deep dives on Instagram are great for some extra reference too!”
A self-proclaimed workaholic, Goodieson is constantly fine-tuning her work, especially images for her print range. As a mixed media artist, she has studied both illustration and graphic design and makes use of these skills to always deliver something she’s proud of. Her process is often laborious but it’s all worth it for the perfect image. “I’ll tinker with the artwork in Photoshop, lay it out for printing, then work with a printer on multiple test prints, until the image is just right. I love how the work goes from an idea in my head to a sketch, to hanging in somebody’s lounge room”.
Of all the spots she’s hung her work, there’s one place that Bronte is most grateful for. On multiple occasions, Goodieson has had the honour of exhibiting her art at the Prince of Wales Hospital in Sydney.
“I have been so moved by the kind things people say. Many patients come to the gallery and tell me that my paintings got them through tough times in hospital, that my work brought them great joy, symbolising light when they were in darkness”.
When asked about what’s next on the cards, Bronte is psyched to share she’s currently working on a ski and snow series. “I’m finding it so much harder than painting the ocean scenes but enjoying the challenge. I may have to take a few weekend trips to Perisher”. Until then, drop by Bronte’s studio at 28 Bronte Road, Bondi Junction or snare yourselves a print over at her website.
Oh…and if you were wondering, in March last year, Bronte earned herself an exhibition in Art Start held in none other than The Art Gallery of NSW. A young girls dreams did in fact come true.