Electric Mum: Artist Donna Rankin on the love for her kids e.g. Jack River

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NAME

Donna Rankin

WHAT DO YOU DO?

I am an artist, an art teacher and the Founder of HeART to HeART Australia

And It Stoned Me 🎨💕 Artist statement* Each human has a morning ritual, even if they don’t have one at all. The repetition of the rising of the sun drives us out of dreaming and into our patterns that often repeat and repeat and never change. Sometimes you cross paths with humans that travel a certain pattern in the universe that intrigues you enough to change your own. My daughter sent me this picture of her partner drinking tea in the morning, a ritual that she had re-found whilst falling in love with him. Each morning at his house in Mollymook, they religiously make a cup of tea and listen to Van Morrison’s ‘And It Stoned Me’ on the balcony. This ritual takes her back to her childhood; the morning ritual of the local radio, porridge simmering away and the eternal cups of morning tea that warmed childhoods constant change. This painting is about transitions and reformations of morning ritual, it marks a moment of observation - metaphorically and physically, of appreciation for slowness and the importance of these rituals. I chose hues of transition - purples, pinks and soft blues, colours that speak of turning and the newness of the morning, and matched them with the steadfastness of old furniture, echoing Hopper. The interior detail is vast, yet the outside world was intentionally left a blur. Brett’s body is bent softly, oblivious to the photo being taken - he is thinking, dreaming - lost in his ritual, and perhaps oblivious to the depth of observation of my daughter. #artist #australianartist #brettburcher #jackriver

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FAVOURITE BAND?

Abba

FAVOURITE SONG?

Dancing Queen

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FAVOURITE FEMALE ARTIST AND WHY?

Jack River, she is strong, intelligent, soulful, she is my daughter.

THREE OF YOUR HARDEST MOMENTS?

My hardest moment was losing our beautiful 11 year old daughter Shannon. Then the hardest moments to follow were moving forward, picking myself up, and trying to be strong and learn to embrace living again.

 Holly, Donna and Shannon

Holly, Donna and Shannon

I love the concept of 'Electric Lady'. I see Electric Ladies all around me, my young 9-year-old friend Ruby who has written a brilliant speech about being inspired by Malala Yousafzai, my sister Sharon who is dedicating her time to caring for her beautiful Mother In Law who is suffering with motor neurone disease, friends who are dedicated teachers, doctors, nurses, midwives.

Electric Ladies are Mothers who pour love and energy into their children, who give up their life for the souls in their care. An Electric Lady is a woman who is true to herself, who is passionate about life, who dares to stand out and step up.

WHAT MAKES YOU WANT TO GIVE UP? HOW DO YOU BOUNCE BACK?

Sometimes life can challenge us in the most extreme ways. Personally it has been connecting with others, reaching out, helping others, that has helped me bounce back. Being the founder of Heart to Heart Australia, there have been many times when I have wondered whether I am on the right track, whether all my time, energy and devotion to the greater vision is the path I should be following. At these times when I feel like giving up the magical universe sends me a message.....it may be that I unexpectedly bump into a parent of a young girl who has been a participant of the Heart to Heart program, and with tears in their eyes, tell me what a profound impact Heart to Heart had on their daughters life. These encounters make me bounce back.

WHAT WOMEN DO YOU LOOK UP TO?

I look up to the following women: Holly Rankin (Jack River), my daughter, who follows her passion, is true to herself and is dedicated to her vision. Oprah Winfrey and Ellen, strong woman who use their power and position to make positive change in this world. Layne Beachley, 7 time world surfing champion, a strong Australian woman who dedicates herself to helping young Australian women follow their passion through her foundation The Layne Beachley Aim For The Stars. Catherine Hamlin, an Australian obstetrician and gynaecologist who founded the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital, the world's only medical centre dedicated exclusively to providing free obstetric fistula repair surgery to poor women suffering from childbirth injuries. And so many others...

Like HeART to HeART Australia on Facebook and follow Donna on Instagram here