YES, CHRISTMAS APPROACHES, WITH SOME DELIGHTS FOR THE EPHEMERIST..Christmas cards, Christmas wrapping paper and tape. This time last year we posted a beautiful article by Michael Aitken about magnificent and charming 19th century Australian cards.
For now we look at Christmas cards from a very different angle – that of the current day rural artist making hay from her talents by painting and then producing Christmas cards, calendars, children’s books and the like.
The artist is Marg Whyte. She takes her ideas from her local environment, be it nature or work on the farm.
This card was inspired by good rain – Whyte writes that the batallion of Sturt’s Desert Pea sprang up with that rain.
Santa comes to the bush – its not like the North Pole
Whyte advises that Santa thought he was helping, but he split the mob of sheep an picked up the kelpie – leaving the sheep without any controller.
This looks like another card showing that Santa is not completely at home in the bush – he creates a dust storm driving at speed through a dry pink lake. With a few strokes, we have a great sense of the bush folk with the big hats and bare feet.
Birds celebrate Christmas
Whyte seems to have a special interest in capturing the bird life. Here are a series:
Emu chicks decorate a belah tree.
Whyte thinks the wedge-tailed eagle has mistaken Santa’s cap for a furry marsupial meal.
Based in Wentworth, New South Wales, Marg Whyte is her own marketeer. This is of course a common phenomenon these days. The good news part is a wide selection of cards beyond those from the major card manufacturers. The worrisome point is for any future attempt to document 21st century greeting cards. How can a comprehensive collection be put together?
To contact Whyte, try Marg Whyte 28 Cadell St Wentworth 2648 Tel 03 50273208 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In recent cards, Whyte uses the kangaroo as both a holy figure in the landscape and part of the gift giving part of the celebration.