eld on the Australia Day weekend, it was perfect weather for viewing artwork – and ducks! A lot of attendants were glad to be out of the house on that wet weekend. Unfortunately, Coondoo and flooding in Gympie prevented our Mayor, some sponsors and participants from attending. Even the markets, live entertainers and wine and cheese were kept at bay. Not to worry, Ricky Modin filled in to present prizes and give speeches  left, right and centre. 

With an extra 50 more entries to last year, the fifth annual Rainbow Beach Art Festival  was the biggest “Brushes by the Sea” yet. Local artists from around the Cooloola Coast area of Rainbow Beach, Tin Can Bay and Cooloola Cove were eligible to enter, and enter they did. Organisers Bev Starr and Peggy Howe were delighted  to see the flood of photography entries, the section was well supported by the local Camera Club.

The Jewellery returned to the Craft section and a new category, Drawing, was introduced. There were also more Quilting entries this year  – Bev said her jaw dropped with “all those quilts!” and Peggy commented that many more teens had bravely entered their work in the sections other than Young Artist. In fact, there was only one category – Watercolour that did not include work from our younger residents.

 National Mortimore  Prize Winner, Tricia Reust kindly travelled from Redcliffe to judge  for us, good practice for when she continues the tradition of the Best in Show recipient, being a judge in next year’s Mortimore award. Tricia conducted a drawing demonstration, which raised money for playgroup and donated her artwork from the morning for further fundraising. Tricia stated that it was a rare thing that our community had – such a positive community for artists to thrive. Many artists received a special mention for their work.

Tin Can Bay Photography Tours’ Ken Ferguson for Photography was unable to attend, luckily Gympie Patchworks’ Margaret Sanderson and Denysse Swan had judged the for Quilting the previous day.

Peggy Howe gave a big thank you to co-host, Bev Starr – especially for answering computer questions and arranging artwork. She thanked Ian and Glennie Thomas for their generosity with making stands, the quilting ladies and golfers and all the other volunteers who helped with the set up. As it was pounding down outside, Bev Starr made everyone admit to saying “Gosh we needed the rain!”

Organisers applauded Rick Modin, saying there was so much effort on the Sport and Recreation Club’s part, and that the event would be impossible without Rick and his team behind them. There were big plugs for local businesses, most family run, urging locals to give our support back to the sponsors. This year the Encouragement Awards for each category was sponsored by newcomer Café Jilarty at Rainbow.

Section 1 was Our Local Area. Sponsored by the Rainbow Beach Sports,  Memorial And Recreation Club; “Bush” by Lena Brodin was the winner of the acquisitive prize and the encouragement award was “Home” by Carolyn Smith, the judge loving her the artist’s interpretation of the theme.

Sponsored By Rainbow Shores Resort;  Tricia Reust felt Section 2, Acrylic was the most difficult section to judge and deemed “The Magpie Fight “by Carolyn Smith as the winner with “Pied Oyster Cather” by Annette Wiggins given  the encouragement award.

Section 3, Oils, was sponsored by the Rainbow Beach Tourist Centre. “Flood Plain Sunrise” by Robin Hines won the section and “Bush Fire” by Shirley Markwell was rewarded with the encouragement award.

 Rainbow Beach Meats sponsored Section 4, Watercolour . “Snowflake fantasy” by Carolyn Smith won and the encouragement award was “Flowers” by Leonie Guerin.

 Tricia Reust said the winner took photography to the realm of artistic endeavour. In the  Photography Section, sponsored by Foodworks, Brenda Stokes was thrilled to win with “Sunset Wollogorang” and the encouragement award was “beautifully composed capturing motion and focus” was won with “The Eagle has Landed” by Neita Lindfield.

 Always impressive with the work involved, Quilting was sponsored by Ed’s Beach Bakery and the accolades taken by Tina Guy  with her “eye catching”  “My Secret  Garden”   and “Around the Bend” by Ann Weller won the encouragement award.

 Cooloola Realty sponsored Craft (section 7) to reward Gaybrielle Stewart with her beautiful embroidery in  “Bottoms Up!” and the Encouragement Award was well deserved by Grant McFarlane with his driftwood creation,“ Bones”.

 A very humble Graham Chappill won Section 8, Drawing  with “H.O.F.D.I.”, sponsored by Cooloola Cove Landscaping And Garden Supplies & Cooloola Hire and encouragement award was “Last Man Out” by Hayley McFarlane.

 Dr. David Smith  supported the Young Artist (9-16yrs) which was won by Jasmin Adams with “Kurt” and “Inside Out” by Georgia Modin received the Encouragement Award. Judges gave two special mentions to Caitlyn Hayes for her artwork.

 Polly Parrot won Young Artist (9 & under) Annie White  a prize from Surf & Sand Safari Tours. Jonas Hempenstall won the Encouragement award with his “Revenge”.  There were two special mentions to Jasper Yallowley.

 After such a huge line up of prizes, there was suspense to hear the ever popular People’s Choice Award winner. Sponsored by the Rainbow Beach Sports, Recreation & Memorial Club , it was Rick Modin’s job to announce the 2013 winner was Carolyn Smith with “The Magpie Fight”.  This is the third time in the last four years that Carolyn has won this coveted prize.

 Each year a different local community group is selected  to be the recipient of the monies raised by the Festival.  “Brushes by the Sea” 2013 supported the Rainbow Beach Play Group  to purchase outdoor equipment. The afternoon saw the ever popular goose raffle with over $1000  of prizes including a  $250.00 photo shoot and various  accommodation and meal vouchers. Playgroup would like to send a big thank you to all the sponsors for goose club raffle including: Phocus Photography, Debbie’s  Place, Pavilion Restaurant,  Waterview Bistro,  Rainbow Beach Meats   Luke Simpson, Serenity Beauty, Beauty by the “C”  – Body Shop, Kylie’s Hairdressing, Bitchy Chix , Mitre 10, Skydive, Thirsty Camel, Tribal Travel, Bessie and the IGA . Due to the flooding, the Club kindly postponed the  raffles to another busy afternoon, to maximise fundraising efforts.

Peggy was glad to see the younger generations soaking up the artwork, is very keen to see more children enter next year. This family friendly event regularly has two or more different family members – sometimes a generation apart – enter their creations.

Once again, organisers received lots of praise for the conclusion of another (the fifth!) successful “Brushes by the Sea” Art Festival. With the “Mystery Painting” name Tsunami, artwork bought and sold, artists and organisers relaxed and enjoyed a quiet evening (with BBQ on the deck) as the blue skies appeared.



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