Childhood friends Leigh (LeeLee) West and Shoni Jones with their bright turtle masterpiece.
Childhood friends Leigh (LeeLee) West and Shoni Jones with their bright turtle masterpiece. Jordan Philp

Colourful creations: Life size marine creatures in Bay

CHILDHOOD friends Leigh (LeeLee) West and Shoni Jones have injected vibrant colours into the landscape of the grounds at the Fraser Coast Cultural Centre in Hervey Bay. 

There was plenty of dancing, a picnic and loads of laughs when LeeLee and Shoni created their latest life size masterpiece in Hervey Bay.

What started as clay models have been transformed into bright and colourful marine creatures you can up close and personal with.

Celebrating the diversity of our region's marine life, a turtle, two dugongs and a hammerhead shark are the newest editions to City Park (area around the cultural centre).

Clay models were given to a local fabricator which were then turned into life size fibreglass marine creatures created from 3D scans before three local artists worked their magic.

And it was quite the creative process.

LeeLee got straight to work after her initial look at the three metre long turtle.

"I didn't realise how big it was, I had a 'holy wow' moment," LeeLee said.

The freelance artist and graphic designer got her creative juices flowing with the use of pastel sketches before designing and painting the real thing.

"I saw my best friend at a coffee shop when I was sketching and I knew she was really good with the brush so she helped me out," she said.

 

Local artist Karen Roberts with her masterpiece, the bright dugong, which is now a part of the landscape at City Park.
Local artist Karen Roberts with her masterpiece, the bright dugong, which is now a part of the landscape at City Park. Jordan Philp

This was when the fun began.

"Give us eight tins of paint and a big turtle project and there is a lot of dancing, we had a ball," Leelee said.

"Shoni packed lunch and we had a picnic near the turtle.

"So much love and happiness and joy poured into this turtle." she said.

 

Local artist April  Spadina and her colourful creation a hammerhead shark.
Local artist April Spadina and her colourful creation a hammerhead shark. Jordan Philp

Nicole McBride, who works for council as the Principal Officer of Cultural Services, said the whale had been celebrated, so it was time for something different.

The animals are secured to concrete pads and visitors can interact with the artwork.

"You can get up close and personal and touch and feel the animals," she said.

The other talented local artists to brighten up the space are Karen Roberts and April Spadina.

 

(L) Geoff Bellert and Daniel Coyne from Advantage Profiling Service with fibreglass sea animals being installed in front of the Fraser Coast Cultural Centre in Pialba.
(L) Geoff Bellert and Daniel Coyne from Advantage Profiling Service with fibreglass sea animals being installed in front of the Fraser Coast Cultural Centre in Pialba. Alistair Brightman


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