My name is Tony White and I’m from Tasmania, Australia. I wake up, having dreamed about painting and make my way to the kitchen to make a coffee. As the dark, golden espresso drips consistently from the spout, I steam my milk. It transforms from thin to a luscious, velvety liquid that pairs perfectly with the double-shot of espresso that awaits.
As I pour the milk into the coffee, to create one of the best ‘marriages’ in the culinary world, it occurs to me that I need to do a painting, using only espresso, with no paint. I did that and although the coffee painting was a long time ago and unsuccessful, it was a turning point.
As a kid, I always drew stuff. I was never very good, but perhaps better than the kid next to me, most of the time. I remember having a set of water paints given to me as a gift. They were little round cakes of barely-there pigment. It came with a little brush that had about 5 hairs in it. I was around 9 years old. It was great fun. I remember being upset when certain colours ran out.
It was then that I accidentally started to learn how to mix colours. When I was a teenager, an elderly English lady moved next door to us and became fast friends with my Mum. I hadn’t painted since the old cakes ran out years earlier, but when I found out our new neighbour (Beatrice) was a watercolourist, I was immediately hooked again.
She was great. She bought me a set of Winsor & Newton Artist quality paints with the proviso that I paint with her in her studio. I did. It was amazing. She taught me so much about paint being fresh and expressive and vibrant. I loved those days.
Unfortunately, she moved away, and I stopped painting. This whole time, I also played guitar, so music took over for the next 20 years or so.
I was inspired one day to pick it up again, so I got some materials, set up a spare room as a studio and away I went. I was hooked. Again. It was around this time that the coffee incident happened. It is true that I dream about painting. I did then. I do now. I love it. It is infectious.
I began attending workshops of some of the greats in the field and I was soon inspired to teach a workshop myself. My local Art Society hosted it and it was full and a great success. I used to teach guitar, so I have always loved the teaching side of things, so it was a natural fit. I love it.
Materials I use are Schmincke paints, Saunders Waterford 300g ROUGH paper and various brushes. I have been paying a lot of attention to my Youtube channel that is slowly growing. I love teaching. Making tutorial videos for YouTube is very satisfying as it gives me direct contact with other artists and students all around the world.
I am lucky enough to have begun gaining a strong reputation as a tutor and having quit my day job a little over a year ago, I am keeping busy, teaching all over Australia and starting to head overseas with it as well.
I am inspired by light. Even in the most innocuous of scenes, if the light is dramatic and the mood is misty or sharp or rainy, then I’m in. I believe a painting should move you emotionally and if you have to explain it, then it isn’t doing its job.
If I had any advice for anyone out there, it would be to immerse yourself totally into your painting. Be a student of the greats. Copy them for a while but be very conscious to develop your OWN style and vision. It takes time and it is forever evolving. Keep going. Paint. Paint. Paint.
Tony, I love your enthusiasm. And, of course, your work.
Thank you Laura. 😊
Stunning art! Thank you for sharing your journey and work!
Thanks so much Teresa. Great fun.
Thank you Teresa. Great fun.
Outstanding work and a great story of your journey.
Cheers. Thanks for reading. 😊
“I believe a painting should move you emotionally and if you have to explain it, then it isn’t doing its job.” This is a very profound and accurate statement. It’s true of any visual medium. Your work is lovely. I really like the rich neutrals. They’re delicious.
Oh thanks. I really do that to be true. Art is not decoration. Thanks for reading. 😊
Welcome, like your style, it give me the sense of watching a watercolor from time gone!!!!! Very nice.
Thanks Walt. Glad you like it. 😊
I’ve always enjoyed Tony’s work having followed him on Instagram for a long time now but it’s great to learn so much more about him via this feature! Thanks so much for sharing Charlie, all the very best!
Thanks for the kind words John. Appreciate the support.
Tony, your paintings definitely evoke emotion and they are definitely doing their job! Thank you for sharing your artistic journey with us.
Oh thanks Sandra. I love that you like them. 😊
Thanks a lot Mary. 😊
Such a great article! I love the story about the neighbor who inspired you to paint again. I remember those watercolor cakes in pans with that same kind of brush we used in kindergarten. I really like your style and the play with light. Let us know in the US if you will be coming this way to teach!
Hi Rebecca. Thank you for the kind words. I am actually looking to book some time the US in the future so I’ll be in touch when the time comes. I appreciate the support. 😊
Lovely paintings and a great story! I’ll check out your YouTube channel.
Thanks Sharon. Yep, please subscribe if you can and tell your friends. I appreciate the support. 😊
Your work is amazing! I started watching one of your videos and I am mesmerized by your skills. I wasn’t able to finish watching it, but will definitely return! I did enjoy your quick video on quick tips. Too funny, but down to earth! Thanks for sharing your work and story.
Thanks so much. I appreciate it. I am incredibly funny and annoying. Hahah. Na thanks for watching. Please subscribe and share if you can too.
The paintings are marvelous.. Totally loved it.
Thank you. I appreciate the support. 😊👍
I love your paintings. They’re beautiful ❤️
Thank you Loan. I really appreciate the support. 😊
I’m inspired to continue learning.
Good stuff Ananda. Thanks for reading. Check out YouTube channel too. It has some tutorials you might enjoy.
Wonderful painting. 👍
Thanks so much Stephanie.
Wonderful reading your evolution into a watercolourist. …and exactly for those reasons that you’ve written ….light quality, rain, mist….that I love watercolours. Your work is superb.
Thanks Veenita. Yep, WC is amazing… LOVE it. Thanks for the nice words. 🙂
Beautiful paintings. They are very enchanting
Thanks again, Stephanie.. 🙂 Too kind.
Thank you, Tony. I am really enjoy. So freshly, so gently… so nice!
Thank you so much, Marina… Glad you like it. 🙂
Thank you to everyone for the kind words and support of my work. Too kind. I really appreciate it. Please subscribe to my Youtube channel if you haven’t already. I’ll be posting there a lot more often starting now…. 🙂 Thanks again and thanks to Charlie for featuring my story and work.