For our Arts special feature in May, we chatted to a collection of local creatives who are involved in the arts on the Shore...
Tony McNeight, Devonport
Channel Magazine: Please tell us about your special interest or expertise in the arts.
Tony McNeight: I run a bespoke travel sketching school for mature students that inspires those who haven’t sketched before to see the world differently. I am starting to run new classes in Takapuna from this month and also run sketching tours overseas.
CM: What most excites you about being involved in the arts?
TM: That moment when a student, who thought they couldn’t draw or sketch, realises they in fact can and, after one lesson, he or she walks away with a little work that they never thought possible.
CM: Name three people in the arts who most inspire you, and why.
TM: Joseph Mallord Turner, David Hockney and Roland Wakelin. Turner, because you feel his work in such a visceral way. Hockney, even at the age of 81, who continues to challenge himself through different media to push the boundaries of color and composition. Wakelin, my late uncle, whose versatility as a recognised Australasian artist inspires me to push my own boundaries.
CM: Please tell us about your latest arts experience and what it meant to you.
TM: I led a travel sketch tour to Sri Lanka last year. It was wonderful opportunity to see my students experiencing Sri Lanka through their own eyes, and transforming their visions onto their sketch books.
CM: Please complete this sentence: The arts are….
TM: ...compelling and transformative, with the ability to touch us in ways that defy words.