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Humans of Eumundi - Natalie Dyer



 

Most childhoods are spent making lifelong friends and playing in the backyard.

Natalie Dyer spent hers searching for a place to call home, but she didn’t find it.

What she did discover, however, was an understanding that home isn’t necessarily a place, but a feeling. And that homely feeling fo Natalie was sketching.

“I always withdrew to drawing as a way of making sense of things, or if I was upset when growing up, I would lose myself and it would totally relax me,” she explained.

Born in England with a father in the British Army, Natalie moved to Germany, Saudi Arabia, Kenya, New Zealand and Australia… all by the age of 8.

No matter where she was in the world, art was like an international language for her to reach out and connect with humanity.

“It’s not just art, but creativity is important in our life,” Natalie explained. “Creativity… both giving, receiving and being it.”

“Creativity is like a pressure valve and a revitalising spring in our life. Being creative or receiving someone else’s creativity - whether in art, music or dance theatre - has the ability to release all sorts of emotion.

“Whether we are anxious, sad, happy or however we’re feeling, creativity can be that release button or pressure valve for emotion.

“For me, art has always been emotive.”

So, she sketched, and sketched, and sketched.

By the age of 17, Natalie’s impressive adolescent portfolio gained her a prestigious opportunity to work in commercial art for a Sydney-based advertising agency as a trainee graphic designer.

It wasn’t just her career which started to blossom, but her love life too.

It was here Natalie met her future husband Chris and together, the duo pursued their creative endeavours all while expanding their family too.

Four children later and a move to Brisbane, Natalie said juggling motherhood with a career in the arts had it’s ups and downs.

The flexibility of hours was a bonus as Natalie could make school carnivals and events, however the entire Dyer family are all too familiar with the smell of burnt veggies as Natalie would slip back into the studio “just for a few minutes” and forget about dinner burning away.

“The joke in our family was always... dinner is ready when the smoke alarm is going off,” she laughed.

With her eldest now 32 and youngest 26, Natalie said her children cook for her now.

Despite a few dinnertime struggles, it appears Natalie’s children influenced her artistic path, for the better.

Starting professionally as a graphic designer (before computers really became a major part of design), Natalie said she didn’t really catch that wave as raising children tended to coincide with the advent of computers.

So, when the children went to school, she decided to pursue her passion for fine art rather than embrace computer-based design.

“I think fine art was really where I belonged,” she added.

And a career in fine art was where the magic happened.

Natalie went on to paint 225 original paintings for a 5-star boutique in Perth, which she describes as “an honour”.

As was being invited to the Malaysian International Shoe Festival as a guest-of-honour for international shoe designer, Jimmy Choo, for the launch of his new couture range.

“That experience was amazing. The arts are so respected in a very different cultural way in Asia,” she explained.

“My work was danced around on a glamorous stage by beautiful liturgical dancers before Jimmy Choo, who I was surprised to find was a lovely, humble man.

“I actually bought seven pairs of shoes in one hour at the shoe festival (not Jimmy Choo’s though),” she laughed.

She has also regularly appeared as the guest artists on board a number of cruise ships around the world taking her to Hawaii, Bora Bora, Tahiti, Thailand, China, Vietnam and New Zealand.

“This was a treat and I found lots of inspiration from the people and places I met onboard,” she said.

“This travel has allowed my work to become well-known and collected worldwide, so that has been fantastic. These days my work is exhibited in galleries in the Uk, Singapore and Malaysia as well as onboard some ships that cruise predominantly Europe.

“I have felt so grateful and lucky to have had these opportunities.”

After a childhood and career spent exploring different parts of the globe, Natalie is beyond content to finally find a place to call home, the Sunshine Coast.

The natural beauty of the beaches mixed with the lush hinterland and the cosmopolitan ambiance of the nightlife is where Natalie finds her inspiration, and sells her world-renowned work at the Original Eumundi Markets.

“I love interacting with people and clients, this is one of the wonderful things about Eumundi, you meet people at the coal face so-to-speak,” she said.

“I love introducing people to the experience of art, as often in our busy lives many people never get to visit galleries or exhibitions.

“So, when they have opportunity to see your work in their environment, it is a special thing.”

It may have taken her a lifetime to find a place to call home, but she always had her sketchpad.

And to find that homely feeling anywhere in the world is a special, special thing.


 

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