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Painting a pastel sunset with Janette Humble

Janette Humble's artwork

Colour in Your Life featured artist Janette Humble appeared on Colour In Your Life Season Twenty One (21).

Read a little bit about the artist here, and support our site by joining and watching the episode below.

Janette Humble was a classical musician in her previous life and her work is infused with colour and movement. She aims to capture snippets and impressions of the world as life flashes by and she exaggerates colour and perspective to portray the emotion, humour or drama felt in that moment. Now living in Adelaide Janette’s favourite subjects to paint are animals, people and the natural world around her. Largely self taught, some say that Janette’s paintings are edgy, vibrant, emotive and expressionistic.

Janette paints lots of subject matter, but her favourites are dogs, birds – on big canvases with big brushes and lots of feathers and movement- , landscapes – especially the outback – One of her daughters has worked in the outback for the last couple of years so she sends some amazing photos and the stories around them for Janette to turn into paintings.

Janette Humble also likes painting beach scenes – humour and people having fun. She has recently been painting still life with vivid, bold colours and slightly abstracted – learning how to really see all those shapes. Janette and her husband travel around Australia as much as possible to get ideas and photos, and just to absorb what she sees. Janette paints mainly from her studio but she is doing more plein air painting – it’s quite a different skill. Soft Pastels were her first and remain her preferred medium – how can you beat those luscious and vividly coloured sticks of chalk! Every colour at your fingertips, and then all you have to do is wash your hands.

Janette is drawn to colour – bold and vibrant. She is fascinated by colour combinations and the juxtaposition of one against another and how to use that to create drama, sizzle and mood. Janette tends to squint a lot when she works, to cut out all the clutter and unnecessary detail so that she can simplify what she sees. She uses vigorous mark-making and brush strokes in her works as she likes the energy and movement it creates. Janette aims to capture the essence of what she sees, be it the mood, drama, light or humour.

The world is so rich in colour. Nature does it perfectly. Just look at the Aussie outback – the red/ orange earth against the bright green trees tipped with orange and yellow. The cobalt blue skies against the wheat yellow grasses. The green gums with hidden ochre’s and deep blue shadows. And all the many colours in the bark and trunks. Snippets of colour that are perfectly placed to harmonise and pop. Most people don’t see this – they just see a tree.

Janette Humble works with soft pastels, oils and acrylic and she paints so that she can share the beauty of what she sees through her eyes, and feel that if her painting creates an emotion in the viewer or makes someone smile then she has achieved that goal.

Janette has won a number of prizes and awards, has been a feature artist on Bluethumb and Ozartfinder. She holds solo exhibitions yearly and her paintings grace the walls of homes in Australia, the U.K., Germany and Singapore.

Watch Janette’s Episode Here:

You can contact Janette Humble about her art tips or art techniques directly via her website at

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