Leanne Vassallo

Born into a family of artists and potters, I have had a ball of clay, pencil or brush in my

hand for as long as I can remember. Our family business ‘Hillcraft’ hosted international

ceramic instructors and I gained certification to teach at the age of 15. After completing

TOP Arts in 1981 I had been accepted into RMIT Fine Art but was pulled back into the

family business to teach and produce workbooks for porcelain dollmaking. China painting

and porcelain arts were my focus for the next 25yrs.

In 2006 I rekindled my love of oil painting and began life drawing again. In 2008 I started

portrait oil classes with Claude Ciccone , pastel & oil with Raelene Sharp as well as

botanical watercolour with Jenny Phillips at The Botanical Art School of Melbourne. My

years of painting 3 dimensional faces has drawn me to specialize in children’s pastel

portraits which have kept me constantly busy through commissions over the last 15 years.

I move between a variety of mediums depending upon the subject sometimes with a

thread of a similar theme. I like to explore subjects in both 2 & 3 dimensions. A study

drawing of a flower can begin with a pastel painting, followed by a lino cut as well as a

porcelain bass relief. I am currently inspired by the ever changing shapes and colour of

nature. The way the light can alter the colour of a lotus leaf from blue green to lime. The

shifting shimmer of a peacock feather and the structure of a butterfly wing when

enlarged 100 times. I like to work from real life objects and never cease to be in awe of the

patterns and rhythm that flows across every species on this planet.