Sunshine Coast-based abstract artist Michael Bond embraces vibrant colour in both large and small format paintings. Michael, a self-taught abstract artist, who has developed a distinctive painting style, layered with colour and built up with acrylic, oil, pastel and graphite has become a fenton&fenton fave.
We discovered Michael with our first Peace of Art event back in 2014, being drawn to his striking and bold compositions that explode with colour. His work is quickly gaining widespread recognition and popularity, and it’s easy to see why. The vibrancy of his work, whether in muted or bold hues, really does bring a room to life.
From where it all started to a very scary and recent health scare for Michael, read on for our interview with Michael on art, life and what keeps him motivated.
What did you want to do when you were a child?
When I was a child I went through lots of different ideas about what I was going to do when I grew up, from working with animals as a vet to becoming a forest ranger. Never once did I think I would become an artist, even though much of my childhood was spent creating and painting.
How did you break into the art world?
Having chosen a career in hairdressing it was actually one of my clients who suggested I put my work on Instagram. So, it was via social media that I was discovered and decided to paint more.
Who bought your first piece of art and what was it?
I think it was the hairdressing client and it would have been a painting of flowers as that’s what I was painting back then.
What was the best piece of advice you were given when you were first starting out?
There are no mistakes with art! And, no right or wrong in the art world. The important thing is to just paint.
What inspires and motivates you to create every day?
Fortunately, I don’t need much motivation to paint. Painting is part of who I am, an extension of me. It feels very natural for me to just paint. If there are times I do need some inspiration, I’m very lucky and don’t have to go very far to get it, living in one of the most beautiful parts of the country on the Sunshine Coast.
What is your creative process in producing a piece of art or body of works, and where do you create your work?
The work I produce is very organic in nature so there is no set process in producing a piece of work. There may be a loose idea of whether the work will be something light or something more moody and dark. Artwork may go through many stages layering the paint and building structure and form. It’s during the process of actually painting that I develop an idea as to the direction I want to go.
I am lucky enough to have a studio at home, which allows me to paint whenever I want. The studio is downstairs and it is one of the first things people see when they come to visit, which means it can be a challenge to get people out of the studio and upstairs – LOL!
What inspired your latest body of works for Supernova?
The body of work that I have produced for the exhibition Supernova is all about change. As an artist, I believe it is important to change and evolve, to keep challenging yourself. This body of work is more vibrant and bold than previous work and pretty much sums up my own personal journey. Change and growth is part of life.
What do you do when you’re not producing art?
I find I paint most days not because I have to but because I love to. When I’m not painting I also love to spend time on the beach with my partner Greg and our dogs. We have two fur balls ‘Harry and Phoebe’. I love the company of friends and catching up for relaxed lunches and dinners. Living here in Noosa has that relaxed chilled vibe, so life pretty much always feels wonderful. I am also a frustrated interior stylist and landscape gardener, so this also occupies my time.
We were shocked and saddened to hear about your recent major health scare. Can you share with our readers what happened?
Yes, of course. A few weeks back now I suffered a major heart attack. While undergoing treatment I suffered heart failure. Fortunately, I’m on the mend and getting stronger and more positive every day. To some extent, we all like to think of ourselves as invincible, and unfortunately when it came to my health this was the case with me. The experience has changed my life completely. It made me realise it can all be gone so quickly and you don’t always get to say goodbye, do everything you wanted to do or finish things you have started.
Sometimes we’re given another chance and the opportunity to change. I am so grateful that I got this chance. My first day back in the studio I did sit for a while and I thought to myself how bloody lucky I am that I get to do what love every day.
Finally, what advice can you give someone who is looking to purchase art for their home?
I would say to people to buy what they love. If it speaks to you, if it evokes a feeling, a memory or an emotion, then buy it! Before somebody else does!
Join Michael and the fenton & fenton team on Thursday, May 3 at 6pm in-store at Prahran for the launch of SUPERNOVA. Don't forget to RSVP here.