I feel so lucky that I get to collaborate with such talented NZ artists. I caught up with Tabitha Maxwell, AKA Tamaasa and asked her a few questions so that you can learn more about her, her background and where she draws her inspiration from to create such gorgeous artwork that is one of your firm favourites offered by Just A Little Bit Cool.
I live on the west coast of Auckland, and have always lived near or on one of our wild, West Auckland beaches. I love the ocean and our beautiful landscape. The Tui's and Kereru come up to my property in the foothills of Waitakere daily, which is pretty magical and where I draw a lot of my inspiration from.
I like kindness, no hang on a minute I love kindness! Well really I just like the idea of society banding together to create a positive, and beautiful future for our next generation, and I love the idea of my art being a part of that movement.
I absolutely love the ocean, it is my favourite place on the planet, there is nothing more satisfying than heading out into the waves to replenish your soul.
My other love would absolutely have to be my four year old little lad. He keeps me balanced with his calm, relaxed nature and I adore our little adventures together travelling around NZ. Becoming a mum was without a doubt my most cherished achievement - he has shown me a really magic cool life that I never knew was possible.
Other than that anything creative truly makes my soul happy. I have painted and designed clothing ranges, jewellery ranges and I spent the younger part of my creative life working in interior design, designing furniture and art creations for a family run business. I have also worked on illustrations for overseas publications and books. I love to get involved in any kind of cool collaboration and expanding my knowledge is really powerful.
MUSIC FOR THE SOUL:
I am definitely a soul, reggae, ska girl and love all of the Fat Freddy's, Trinity roots, Little Bushman and Six Sixty songs - there's magic in soulful melodies. But you could also catch me listening to Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, and some good old folk music.
Wow this is hard to pinpoint just a few! I definitely have a lot of influence from Frida Kahlo - I love her inspiration found in nature and the questions raised in her political and socio economical work questioning gender, race and society in general. I think that it's really important to consistently be chasing that in my work as it is something I am super passionate about.
The graffiti artist Miss Van is highly influential to me, her romantic and gorgeous almost renaissance artworks are mind blowing, rich and I get inspired by her mad work ethic too - I would love to be able to pump out work that quick!
I also studied with Owen Dippy and would say as an influential NZ artist I truly respect his work, it is outstanding. But there are so so many I could go on and on..
SOMETHING TO LIVE BY:
Kindness - just be kind, it costs nothing. The world is full of so much harshness already that the gift of kindness to another person is so massive.