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For Yvette Swan, like many school students, art was her favourite subject. So becoming an artist was a natural progression which developed over the course of her primary, secondary and eventually tertiary studies. After graduating from high school, she studied at the University of New South Wales Art & Design (also known as COFA), where she pursued a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Breaking away from the familiarity of a paintbrush, she jumped into the deep end with a focus on photography and film during her time at COFA.
After a few years of travelling and working in Europe, Yvette returned to Australia with a desire to explore her creative experience through photography, which, she says, provided her with an immediacy she fell in love with.
Taking her commitment to the art of photography the extra mile, she worked not only behind the lens of the camera, but also learnt the print and framing processes. This created a full dimensional experience she describes as “a moment in which life comes through the image and breathes itself into the world”.
After a five-year love affair with photography, Yvette returned to the paint studio. At the time, her sister worked for an interior design company and offered her the opportunity to create paintings for a Sydney-based project. Yvette’s love for painting was reignited and she describes this as a turning point for her. She came back to her paintbrushes and hired a gallery where she put on her first solo, artist-run exhibition. This world of art brought with it a transforming energy and a chance to “meet people one is meant to”. The experience was not just about the art, but also about the people and being open to life.
Passionate about letting her inner-self flow onto the canvas, Yvette explains how her artistic approach never follows guidelines or carefully constructed plans. “Inspiration comes from surrendering to the space of who we truly are,” she reflects. What she loves about being an artist is the opportunity to be open to truth, freedom and love, and to allow that to travel through her and create her art. Big on abstract lines and colours, her work is a reflection of her free spirit and total surrender.
For Yvette, art is so much more than work on paper; it is an opening to self- discovery, awareness, and the core of who we are as beings. True living begins when we don’t underestimate the transformational power of the paintbrush or camera lens.