Well g’day viewers, my name is Graeme Stevenson
and I’d like to invite you to come on a journey of creativity and learning and adventure
through the series Colour In Your Life. There’s an Artist in every family throughout the world and lots of
times there’s an Artist deep down inside all of us as well. So grab your kids, your Brothers, your Sisters,
your Aunties, Uncles and Mums and Dads and come and see how some of the
best Artists in Australia do what they do. (Music Plays) We’re in the beautiful city of Sydney this
show to see an amazing artist, so come along and enjoy the ride, and see the
incredible talent that Sydney has to offer. Well g’day viewers. Welcome back to colour n your life.
We’re actually in Sydney for the next couple of episodes and I’m at the studio of a
lovely lady called Wendy Manzo. Wendy, welcome to the show. Thank you. It’s great to have you here. We’re going to
spend the day with Wendy, she’s a really, really expressive artist. Does some amazing things.
Now I’m standing in her studio, and she lives in a heritage listed home in
Sydney that was designed by none other than the great Walter Burley Griffin,
who also designed the Canberra layout which is pretty cool. But an amazing place,
incredible studio and the history in here’s just wonderful. But the artist that you are, very expressive woman.
You use a lot of spirituality with your work. Absolutely. You really work a lot with the churches as well,
as far as what you do. Hmm Can you tell me a bit more about that?
Hmm Can you tell me a bit more about that? I call myself a worship artist. Yeah, okay. I’m also a speed painter. Because we do our work in worship,
on stage, live, it’s our way of loving God. Okay, sure It’s just our way of loving God. And it’s really It’s a lot of expression, you’re one of the artists,
I mean sometimes an artist will be very close up and can be very close in.
But you really, really move into your paintings. There’s a lot of expression in what you do. Yes. So Yes, so you would say um, abstract,
expressionist, worship artist. Okay, so very, well you’ve already made a start on a
piece and as I said this is really fascinating to watch Wendy work, because she really does move
around the canvas, she’s like a rabbit going all over the place. But she does use a
lot of music in what she does as well. She gets a lot of interaction from the music you listen to,
ah, which is basically praise music, into what you do as well. Yeah. I believe that the music does change the atmosphere.
So praise changes the atmosphere. Sure And so I just go into that zone of
connecting spiritually to what I’m doing. Okay. And you had a bit of a design
history with jewellery there for a while? Is this how it’s all come about from one form of,
sort of, you know, structure and design to what you do now,
or are they completely different? I would say they’re completely different. But then,
if you’re creative it’s not completely different. If someone is creative, were
all created to be creative. Yes Like everyone is creative. Whether you’re cooking or
actually even being an accountant, your still creating solutions. Sure. Sure. So, being a designer, and the way
I want the studio to look before I paint, . or I want the canvas to look, the image,
or how I want to re-design, it’s all part of who you are Excellent, so let’s get stuck into what you’re going to do, and sit
back and relax guys because you’re really going to enjoy this. We, or Wendy, is going to be moving around this
thing pretty rapidly, let me tell you. Let’s go for it Alright Wendy, now part of what you do
as far as your pictures are concerned, and I read this in your bio, is that you actually
put a word down on the canvas and it’s obviously a very emotive word from what I can see.
What does the word mean to you? How do you start to do this? Ah, for me sometimes it’s the
first thing I’ll get from a painting. Hmm Will be a word, sometimes an image,
or a verse or a picture but usually it’s one word. And it’s like that’s the message; the message
of the painting, whether it’s love, or intimacy, or joy. Okay, so This one. So that’s the word for today is it? Yeah, joy. So we put it down and it’s… It’s all about ah, just be free to be happy That’s great. And it’s really word association I suppose isn’t it?
Sort of like, that’s, that’s… Nobody sees the word but me. Yeah, but it’s… you know it’s there. Yeah, I know what I’m doing. And it’s a foundation Okay. So you got some Matisse paint there.
Let’s throw that on and see how we go. I like your writing style too. It’s very free. Yes, as it should be.
Well now I’ll choose colours and start. Cool. Cool. Okay, well let’s see what you do then. You do a lot of these particular
pictures at the church were you go to. Yes I do And there’s obviously music playing and there’s
obviously there’s… Christian bands there as well? Yes, it’s live on stage. Uh We call it the worship team. And there are artists,
dancers, and singers and songwriters. That’s amazing. Just, just the paints that you’re using,
I mean you really don’t mind just working with your hands like that? I mean you just sort of dive in.
You don’t worry about gloves at all? It’s just got to be… I have tried to use gloves it just doesn’t work for me. Doesn’t feel the same? I need to be able to feel it. Yeah. I need to be able to flip my hand
over and use my fingernails. With your style of painting hands, ah, did you
just wake up one day and have epiphany and go ‘I’m just going to use my
hands to paint’? What happened? That’s a really good question.
I couldn’t get what I wanted with the brush. And I started to be able to get what I wanted to
feel with my hands. So I use my hands, I finger paint. And when I started to use a brush again after that, then I
would hold the brush along like that, so it’s loose. Very loose. I had to get away from that control. Some of those old masters use to do that too.
They would have three or four, four feet brushes and paint with really long brushes. Yeah, yeah, it’s the freedom.
And that’s what I try to express in my art work. It’s the freedom. Absolutely. Well let’s let you get back
to it for a while and we’ll sit and watch again. I want to be able to connect people, spiritually. To love. Okay. You know, art should be happy.
I think we’re in a new renaissance. Absolutely. Yeah, and I think that ah,
you know you mentioned the new renaissance and I actually hear that a lot.
Particularly when it comes to music and art. Yeah, yeah, definitely feeling it. Before,
if you had a creative mind, you didn’t have a real job. Yes, yes. Which, it’s all changed. Now you need creative solutions
for like everything even on the internet. You need creative solutions to everything. Absolutely. So it’s that creative mind, and it’s the mind of the artist,
the writer, the dancer and that. And it’s a real job. Absolutely. And that’s I think what the… shift in society’s going towards. Absolutely. Great words. That’s really cool. Okay, now what is that? You’ve got another
Matisse product, but what on earth is it? This, this is magic paint. Okay. This is iridescent medium, you can mix it
with colours, or just use it straight, and what it does… it just brings that…
vroom… heaven on earth. And it glows. Yep, in the dark, Yeah When the lights off… Yeah, seriously, yeah. In the church, you can see,
if I use it on the canvas, it still glows. Get outta here. Yeah, it’s amazing stuff. It picks up the light. That’s pretty cool. Alright,
well let’s keep busy, you’re sort of right into it. Yes, yes. I’ll stop every so often and ask a question. Okay Alright, so, you’ve got a large pot of gold paint there. I use a lot of gold And, ah, once again, it’s Matisse this brand.
But, um, you were just saying beforehand that it’s really important,
if you’re going to do this properly, to use… Use good paint. Yeah Use good paint. You can’t use child’s paint,
or little tubes of… Use good paint. Even the canvas that you’ve got, I see that
there actually double stretched at the back. Yeah, professionally stretched… Don’t use the ready brought things.
Cause for me, I never know when it’s going to be absolutely brilliant. Yeah Cause I just paint like that. I can’t tell, I can’t
judge beforehand, I just step up and paint. . So, if it’s absolutely brilliant and it’s
on a not so nice canvas, I’ve blown it Yeah So, always use good canvas Absolutely. Alright, so you’re about to use this,
and what are you going to do with it? Um I love the fact that you just drag it
out with the spatula in your hand. I think it’s great. Alright,
we’ll let you get stuck into it again. The brush. It looks like a Regent brush.
You just, you have a particular type of brush you use when you’re
doing this particular type of thing? I like… That is a regent brush, yeah. I like it really long and fine. So it’s not controlled. Okay. So I can just lightly, and if I want to, you know. And I can just sort of see your just straight into the pot again. Yeah. And just pulling it all out. Yeah, yeah, yeah. If you make a
mess in the paint pots, fix it later. Yeah, okay. Sounds great. This painting here,
and I’ve seen some other similar works, but is this part of a series that
you’re doing that is very similar? Ah, in a way, I’ve been asked to paint this one three times, as it turns out.
The first night I painted it, it was sold twice. Uh huh. And one of the people was gracious enough to say,
no, let him have it, and I’ll have another one. Oh, okay. So I painted again. So, ah, she knows it won’t be exactly the same,
and I just said it will be whatever spirit is on it at the time. Sure That changes it, and it’ll be for you. Sure. But you do take commissions too don’t you? Oh, absolutely. Yeah. It’s sort of part and parcel of earning a living as an artist, so… Sometimes people will say, I want you to paint for me,
I want you to paint for me in worship, and… I don’t care what it looks like.
Just whatever you think that the spirit is on, that’s what I want. Okay. Well cool, cool. That’s the really cool part. Sort of like tuning into someone else’s emotion too. Yeah, yeah. Sometimes it turns out it’s exactly the same colour as
on their lounge suite and I have not ever been there. Cool. That’s great. And as far as… the series are concerned,
a number of the great masters used to paint series. Sometimes, you know, the same building, but in
varying positions, different colours, they would go through colour periods. So it really is part
and parcel of you know, being a whole artist as far as your genre of work is concerned. Cause… I have definitely gone through stages. Uh huh There was one stage where I was painting over
old canvases, and I had painted a lot of blue. And when I had painted over the canvases,
and I was painting like reds and gold’s over the canvases and I was just getting
this, you know what, nothings wasted. Sure. Nothing is wasted. So I had this whole
genre of reds that had little bits of blue and little bits of texture showing through.
Oh and I love that series. Yes. That’s beautiful. And in saying that… where are we going from here?
I mean I just love the colours that you’ve got but, what else do you feel that you’re going to do to this?
How, how are you going to continue to pick this up? Poppies. I’m putting poppies in this field. Okay Poppies mean ah, new life. They signify,
we know they remembrance, Okay But they signify life, death resurrection. So Wendy, how long have you been actually doing this? About ten years. Ten years. Coming up, ten years. And, how long have you been actually doing what you do with the church,
which is painting in front of an audience, well? About, about five years Yeah And I’ve been leading the art team
at Day Spring for about four years. And your intention is to really do
this throughout the country isn’t it? Yes, yes, I just started taking bookings for Queensland first… Cool. So you’ve… Just to raise up people and to give them an idea of what it looks like. Uh huh. And then from there, run workshops
were you raise up peoples creativity. Oh cool, that sounds like a wonderful idea, it really does. The workshops are amazing.
People who think they can’t paint and then suddenly you go, you’ve got to trick the brain in too,
and go straight to the heart, and when you find that place in the heart were they go,
you know what, that’s why… I believed a lie. Yeah I really can paint. Yeah, absolutely. That’s great. That’s really,
really cool. So, where do we go from here? We’re sort of still… I can see that you
probably want to put more colour down? Still playing with the field and the flowers. Alright …and then I’ll step back and actually have a look at it. Sure, but I’m really enjoying, ah, the looseness
of your technique. A lot of people think that, that art is rules, and I say to a lot
of people that either phone me or other artists I talk to is that there
are no rules. There are no rules. There are no rules. Freedom Yeah Guess what, elephants can paint. Yeah Do you think they know the rules? No. I must admit. That’s what I tell people in the workshops.
It’s like, you know what, you can paint. Elephants can paint.
Anyone can paint. Yeah Just throw some paint on the canvas.
Now let’s have a look at it. That’s great. Excellent. Very well done.
So part of the reason you paint as well is to really help others and part of that
was to help some kids too. Oh yeah, when I started. Yeah I…
actually didn’t believe I could paint, and there was one point where I wanted to support an orphanage,
two actually, and how am I going to do this? I thought well, what have I got in my hand, and I
actually had a paintbrush in my hand. Hmm I thought, okay. I’ll give it a go. Yeah. And there you are. Yeah But it’s a great story and it’s a great motivational story. Because you… had something said to you,
that this is what I need to do. Yeah, it’s like, wow, I just look
at enough money to put a well in. So these guys don’t have to
carry the water all that way. They’ve actually got a well on the property now.
Aw that’s the beginning of something. That’s cool. Really cool. If I can connect people to the heart
of something and to the spirit of something in the painting and sell it,
and feed an orphan… Hello! Ah you really have. I mean you’ve
solved the world’s problems pretty quickly to be honest with you, by using creativity. Yeah, yeah and that’s, yeah… That’s great Creative solutions. It really is. Alright, what do we do now? Um, I’m doing some… Some blue flowers? Some blue flowers. Beautiful. Just those little moments…
those little splashes of colour that change it all. Yeah. Give it some depth. Yeah So, the big… the big brush, looks like
you’ve absolutely assassinated that brush. This is my favourite brush. This adds the wind to the spirit. It does, does it? Okay. That’s pretty cool.
It looks like it was a watercolour brush. I’ve no idea what it was. I don’t care what it was. See that wind going through there… that movement and motion. Now before we were sort of
talking about the descriptive style of your work, and… I think it’s very expressionist. Really… It is. Yeah. Very expressionist. That’s what it is. It’s not impressionist.
I’m not trying to make… you know, it’s expressionist.
It’s larger… it’s a larger word. Yes. It’s… I just want to bring a little bit of focus in. Uh huh Yeah So how do you know when a painting’s finished for you?
I mean for some people it would be obvious. That’s a really good question. Yeah When do I stop painting? And I’m totally amazed,
that it’s usually a few seconds before, a few moments before the worship band finish. Okay And I just come to that point and go, I’ll step
back and look and you know what, we’re done. Okay And we’ll come to the end of the worship.
It’s like hmm, okay. There you go. There you go. Sometimes I’ll look at a painting afterwards and go,
nah, I need to tweak it here, I need to fix it here and it’s just… you know… Yeah. Not often. I just love the fact that you’ve got a
little bit of meat in your work as well. Which means there’s texture, there’s impasto. You can feel…
You know what; a blind person could come up to your painting… Oh, I’ve painted for a blind girl. There you go. Yeah. I have painted for a blind girl. …and actually feel it. She absolutely loves it. And I knew I was
painting for her at the time and . I did put a lot of texture in and she can actually
feel the different parts that’s in it Sure. Very important. Very important. And then we had an art lesson.
I actually taught her how to paint. You taught a blind girl how to paint? Yah. And it was good. Yeah? Yeah. She just sort of reached out? She painted great Oh did she? She felt the grace. Cool. Anyone can paint. I was going to say do you prefer using any one paint to
another or do you find they’re all effective for you? I like the thick structured paint much better. Hmm You can actually feel it. Now just need a bit of… I like that. Look at that. It sort of drips out,
I like it when it sort of drips out of there. Yeah. So sometimes you get a tube of paint or a can
of paint and it does exactly what you want it to do. Yeah, which is great Actually, there’s one more thing I want to do on this. Okay, and what is it? I want to get the last of the little bit
of gold iridescent interference paint. Yes… And I’m going to mix it with the varnish… Okay, And can you see that? Ah, look at that.
Can you see that? Can you see how it all, yeah That’s beautiful. Yeah. You can actually see the… Can you see? …gold fleck in there when you push it around. Yeah, it’s great stuff. So the gold gives you that like… iridescent… Well, what I can do is, just after a painting is dry,
I can go over and paint gold beams of sunrise… Okay, okay. Just that little bit of magic on the canvas You may not be able to see it on the camera.
In fact I can’t see it. Ah, there it is. And that’s why, when the paintings
hanging in somebody’s home, different lights, it’ll look different if you’ve used an iridescent interference paint
it will look at it from one side of the room, . then look the other side of the room and go, wow,
look at the sunrise on that I can’t believe that. Yeah. Okay, I think were done. Fantastic. Done. Well viewers, another fabulous day with an
amazingly talented lady. Wendy Manzo. Sensational. Thank you very much for having us in.
And as you can see, and we’ve discussed it before, particularly with an expressionist type
artist, which Wendy is, which is a really cool day… there are no rules. It just depends on what
you want to do; literally, this is just a journey, a personal journey. For you, it’s a
very spiritual journey as well? Always. Absolutely it is, yeah. But… also once again,
to our sponsors… for doing what they do for us as well… plus we’ve got some workshops.
You’ve got workshops on too don’t you? Yah. So if anyone wants to come and see Wendy about her
workshops they can get in touch with us at the site, colour in your life dot com dot au (colourinyourlife.com.au).
Also we’re, as I said before hand, if other artists want to talk to us about what we’re doing… as you can see
were in Sydney, so we’re really covering the country these days. We got other countries that are taking on
the series, which is just amazing and cool. So that means you will be seen by so many
other people throughout the world because of what you are creating,
which I think is pretty darn cool. That’s good. We’re going to sign off now. We’ve got a couple
of other artists to go and see while were down in the Sydney area, but as I always say, remember;
make sure you put some colour in your life. We’ll see you next time guys. Bye.