The work of Brisbane based artist Rhiannon Langford transports you to a pastel coloured dreamscape; a place with animal eyebrows, a woman climbing a ladder to a jungle of cacti, even a hipster sporting a glorious beard with a dog draped gracefully over his shoulders.
For Rhiannon, art has always been a huge part of life. Her love affair started when she bought a roll of butchers paper from IKEA, and over the years, the creation of her art began to transform into a way to discover herself and express who she really is.
While some artists are complex in the mediums they work with, the majority of Rhiannon’s work is centred around the simplicity of water colours on paper. “I'd like to experiment with other mediums, especially painting onto wooden surfaces, but for now, water colour seems to fit,” she says.
Having recently turned 24, the young Brisbane artist wanted to create something that summed up what her previous year meant to her, and what she had learnt about the person she had become. The work now stands 1.5 meters tall and radiates a pure, raw honesty. This is one of her proudest moments in her career.
While countless Australian artists inspire Rhiannon, one in particular stands out. “Miranda Skoczek can do no wrong,” she laughs. “Her work is bold and exciting, but never sloppy or messy. And Miso- she knows her own style so thoroughly and she never strays. I respect that.”
Through the eyes of Rhiannon, the whole world is an inspiration - from people and places to the silliest things we do in our day-to-day lives. But she is inspired most by relationships; specifically the relationships between people and their environments, or the relationship we have with ourselves.
While some artists try to convey a message in their artwork or start to create their ideas with serious intentions, Rhiannon feels it’s more important to be open and honest with everything you do. She finds that if an artist can’t achieve this, or at times become almost fully revealed, the artwork will just fade into nothing. She believes that without a preconceived intention it’s easier to allow your true self to slip onto the paper. “Looking back at some of my paintings, I've realised just how revealing they actually are. It's a worry,” Rhiannon said with a smile to herself.
Yet being this open and honest isn’t always easy. There have been times when the negative comments that come with being an artist started to get to Rhiannon. However, she has learnt to deal with critics in her own way. When asked about how she copes with these critical comments, she simply responded:“Problems start when you bother yourself with what people will think, how your work will be received. I've found myself at this great place of late where I care less about people’s reception to my work. I think that helps. In truth, I want people to like my art, but if they don't, that's ok too.”