I create original, unique and often quirky mosaic art works!
I enjoy teaching my style of mosaics to all ages!
Hi my name is Deb Dodd and I live near Benalla in North East Victoria, Australia. I grew up in regional NSW where I met my husband Jamie. We were married in 1992 and have raised 2 amazing sons – we are now proud grandparents! We have lived in the Benalla area for about 18 years.
As a teenager, I had an interest in visual art but was exposed to limited opportunities and experiences and struggled to find a medium that suited me. I was accepted into the Melbourne College of Decoration in 1986 but didn’t make it through the first year; it wasn’t for me and I lacked confidence in my ability, struggled to connect and didn’t seek out what I needed.
I worked in Admin, Child Care, Community Services and in a support role in schools. I completed studies in Disability and Aged Care but always felt that something was missing for me. I discovered mosaics when I was about 35 years old! I was pretty well hooked straight away, but kept it as a hobby for several years until I was able to share my love for mosaics and its use as an art therapy whilst employed in 2 local schools.
My mosaic skills have developed over time through trial and error and lots of practice! Having a basic artistic ability has been helpful but thankfully, being a brilliant painter, drawer or designer is not a requirement for the type of mosaics which I create.
My passion is to incorporate salvaged materials into my designs when I can. I love the variety of textures and colours that crockery and other salvaged items provide and it allows me to create one-of-a -kind pieces which are never replicated. I love the nostalgia that a piece of crockery can evoke and also the surprise it can generate when it is transformed into a piece of art. Some of my art pieces are functional too – chipped or broken teacups can be used to decorate an old teapot to be transformed into a planter!
The majority of my works are created using the direct method of mosaics where the tessera is attached directly to the final base. I prefer to use simple hand tools and techniques with very little manipulation – how a piece breaks/cuts is often how it stays. My tools include mosaic glass cutters, tile nippers, a hammer and a ceramic file.
At this stage I am not tempted by automatic tile cutting machines or diamond bladed electric cutters for china! Not saying that won’t change down the track, but at this stage in my artistic journey, I am enjoying the imprecision and unpredictability of the process in the works that I create.
Developing a chronic pain condition (fibromyalgia) left me struggling to manage my pain, passion for mosaics and responsibilities. It has taken me several years to find a balance so that I can continue to create and inspire others. I feel that 2019 is the year for change and I invite you to support me on my journey.
If you are in Benalla, pop in and say hello to me in my new studio! I’m usually there several days per week, however times may vary (click on ‘visit/contact me’ for further details).
North East Artisans 122 Bridge Street Benalla
Thanks for reading!