It would be easy to mistake Michaela Voigt for a gardener with so many gardening books on her bookshelf, but she is actually an artist.
The Gore woman said she used the books to study for her artwork, which typically focused on flowers.
“I don’t like gardening much but I like flowers,” she said.
She would often photograph different flowers she came across which inspired her work.
Japanese flowers featured in some of her current work after a recent stay in Tokyo.
While she was experimenting with painting at the moment, she was truly in her element while drawing.
“I like my pens. I always go back to them.”
Voigt always had an interest in art, but had started pushing into the art scene only in the last couple of years, she said.
Recognition from other artists online had really motivated her.
“It’s just cool seeing people commenting that are bigger New Zealand artists or even international people that start following.”
She had been involved in local exhibitions and even won the best painting and the supreme award at the “West Otago Taste of Art” exhibition last year.
She was now looking forward to her first solo exhibition which will take place in Mandeville in August.
“I did have another gallery up Dunedin way ask if I wanted to do one, but I wanted my first one to be a local one.”
It was a way to give back to the community that had supported and encouraged her, she said.
Two of her pieces were hanging at Table Talk Cafe in Gore and she would often receive praise from members of the community.
Her goal was to develop her art into more than just a hobby.
“It’d be cool to put pieces into some international shows eventually.”
Though she sold most of her artwork, there was one piece she would never sell, she said.
It was inspired by flowers from her late grandmother’s garden.
“I wanted a personal piece for the house.”