I created the storm (self-portrait)
2022 Emerging Artists Award
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About the artwork and sitter
This self portrait is called ‘I created the storm’, and is a representation of the artist, with her cat.
“I created the storm that I had suspected was looming all along.
My father, never a fan of indoor pets, was awfully surprised when I told him I’d bought a kitten. This confession initially created a storm, made up by none other than my own father’s fury.
“On the long journey home, with my new fur friend in tow, a lighting storm followed us closely behind. It was symbolic of the chaos her predetermined arrival had caused.
“I, the instigator of the kitten, felt no other name could ever suit her better than Stormy. Two years later, for my recent 18th birthday, I decided to get another kitten, except this time there was no storm, my father enthusiastically agreed.
About the artist
Tara Bursic is a 19 year old emerging artist and illustrator. Unconventionally, she decided to complete four years of consecutive online study, which allowed her to dedicate additional time to doing what she loves most, creating. Tara also enjoys creative writing and story telling, which she tries to incorporate into all of her portraits.
This small and beautifully executed painting has a power and magnetism beyond its scale. Tara Bursic is a 19 year old emerging artist, who is a storyteller as well as a painter.
In this work, the atmospherics created by the background and the storm, contrast with the calmness of the expression and the pose. What is it about this beautifully rendered cat that has created such a storm? How are our inner worlds echoed by the atmospherics of our environment? The unanswered questions are a treat for the viewer to bring their own interpretations to bear.
Brisbane Portrait Prize
“On the long journey home, with my new fur friend in tow, a lighting storm followed us closely behind. It was symbolic of the chaos her predetermined arrival had caused.”
Behind the scenes
I begin my portraits by hand-drawing the exact composition of my piece. While more time consuming than tracing over a photo as some artists do, I choose to sketch, which challenges me to capture a specific emotion or mood by eye only.
I use acrylic to build layers of depth and add dimension. The final touches, like the whiskers or the sparkle of the eyes are always my favourite part.
The progress photo shows Juno, the second kitty I refer to in my statement, resting on my shoulders, intently watching me paint. After the shock had subsided of bringing home Stormi, my Dad realised that cats are a joy, and created no storm upon the arrival of sweet Juno.