Today we’d like to introduce one of the owners of Paint Plot Australia, Tova. She was born in Sweden and has lived between Australia and Sweden for the last 6 years with her Australian born partner Michael.
Tova has a great passion for photography and particularly loves to capture anything that is beautiful and paint it, which is one of the reasons her and Mick commenced Paint Plot. She has a great love of animals, (maybe not spiders) especially Horses, Cats and Dogs. Tova is the photographer of their striking Ocean Sunrise Kit and we have a few questions to get a bit of an insight into her, the creation of Paint Plot Australia and the very popular paint by numbers kits.
What was your motivation in starting Paint Plot?
Mick and I love crafting and we both try different methods to help us relax. Paint by numbers is the best combo as it is meditative, fun and rewarding, all at once. Whilst we were out trying to find kits to paint, we noticed there weren’t many good local stores around that specialise in paint by numbers. So after much research Paint Plot Paint by Numbers was born. We wanted everyone to enjoy this hobby as much as we do, therefore we have our weekly vote where we ask our community which paintings they like the most. We simply want to offer prints that we feel are missing on the market and that our community love.
Another reason is that we want to be able to bring our work with us, so we can visit my family in Sweden as much as we'd like. Paint Plot and the community it comes with, has given us this opportunity and I am so grateful for this.
What draws you to photography and art?
My parents have always been interested in art, they're both very creative and my mum went to art school, she's been crazy about paint by numbers ever since I introduced her to it. No doubt this has been passed onto me. Ever since I got my first phone with a camera, I've been trying to take photos of everything I find beautiful. I particularly love photographing sceneries and close-up photos of insects and flowers.
Where is the Ocean Sunrise photograph taken and what made you take it?
The Ocean Sunrise photo is taken in a place called Bermagui on the Southern Coast of New South Wales in Australia. Mick's father takes us out on the ocean to go fishing most mornings when we're in this area and I always try to capture the sunrise. I remember taking this particular photo as I loved how the sky was reflecting in the ocean even though the ocean was moving. Not long after I took this photo, we were surrounded by dolphins, it was a magical morning.
When you look at pictures for Paint by Numbers, how do you know which ones will work well as a painting?
I personally prefer when there are a lot of colours in the photo or painting, it makes it prettier and more fun to work with. There can't be detailed faces or animals in the distance, it will just look blobby. The picture can't be too dark or light as it usually looks a bit funny when the paint by numbers painting is finished. The sections will blend into each other and it just won't look as nice at the end.
Could you give our community some advice on which Paint Plot Paint by Numbers kit to choose if they are first starting out?
The paintings in our Abstract Collections have bigger sections and are therefore the easiest ones to start out with. These paintings will get finished a lot quicker so if you're not sure if you're patient enough for paint by numbers, these are the kind of paintings to start with. One of the best parts is, is that it doesn't matter if you paint outside the lines, it will still turn out beautiful! My favourite from this collection is “Vibrant Lion kit” but they all have bright colours and are fun to work with.
Can you tell us about the main differences between living in Australia and living in Sweden?
The first thing that comes to mind is that in Australia, basically everything is dangerous, and in Sweden, nothing is. Down under, there are sharks and crocodiles in the waters, there are poisonous snakes and spiders in the parks and it's even dangerous to be out in the sun because of the thin ozone layer. It kind of makes it exciting though because there are so many fascinating animals everywhere you look.
In Sweden I feel more relaxed as I know that when I feel something touch my arm, I know it's not a huge huntsman spider walking on me. On the other hand, there are no surprises in Sweden, it's a bit boring looking out over the ocean knowing there is nothing more than seaweed and a few small fish out there...
Do you have any other hobbies?
Apart from doing paint by numbers and photography I love travelling!