For Johanneke Strydom, art was always part of her life. Since childhood, she could get lost in drawing and painting, and enjoyed art lessons from a very young age. After school she continued pursuing this passion, and took on different mediums. But it was oil paint that provided the preferred medium to express herself most fully. The rich colours, the creamy substance and the thick texture, gave her a way to capture the deep feelings that were stirred as she was witnessing the wonders of the wild world around her.
Brushstrokes and paint became the language for her to express the feelings of connection and presence beyond words. She was raised as the daughter of a zoologist, and enjoyed much of her young life in the wilderness and unspoilt beauty. Creation always had a huge impact on her, and became the place where she felt most alive and connected.
When she discovered “en plein air” painting, it was a perfect match. The French term plein air means out of doors and refers to the practice of painting entire finished paintings outdoors, on location, capturing a fleeting moment in time with it’s atmospheric quality, in one sitting. It provides for her the place to be immersed in her surroundings. To capture the essence of her experiences. To stay in the moment and respond to what she sees and feels in a direct and quick way.
This approach leads to a more impressionist style with loose brushwork, thick paint and intense colours.
In 2014 the family with 4 children moved from the city to a deserted old farm in the Karoo to build a new life. It was this silence and solitude, that led her to pursue painting full time. She draws inspiration from the vast Karoo landscape around her daily.
Art Qualification & Training:
- Art classes from age 5 – 20.
- One year course in Art History – Unisa.
- First year painting – Unisa.
- Virtual Art Academy: 2017 – 2019.
- 5 day workshop with Rene Snyman, 2019.
- Art books of Kevin Macpherson.
- Online course of John MacDonald.
- Part of Plein Air Festival Noordhoek, March 2020.