Hervey Bay artist shares motivation behind book projects

I JUST wanted to draw pictures and write a story for my granddaughter.

Hervey Bay artist Gavin Patterson is showcasing some of his original watercolour paintings that feature in his recently published children’s book Wassat Aminal? at Banksia Seafood and Grill in Torquay. PHOTO: Shaun Ryan.

That was the message shared by well-known artist Gavin Patterson at the launch of his children’s book, Wassat Aminal? in Hervey Bay yesterday afternoon.

Friends, family and some Fraser Coast Councillors gathered at Banksia Seafood and Grill along the Charlton Esplanade to listen to Mr Patterson’s motivation behind the project.

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“It is something that I took on for my granddaughter Sophia. There was never the intention for it to be a commercial success, but if people buy it, that’s great too.”

The book is beautifully illustrated with Mr Patterson’s watercolour paintings of some of Australia’s most iconic creatures.

Mr Patterson has been exploring his artistic talents since he was a child and even changed from working as an engineer to an architect because the new career allowed him to draw more and use his creativity.

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“The funny thing is that I never drew as much when I was an architect but I have since picked that up again.”

Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour officiated the launch of the books.

Cr Seymour told Good News Fraser Coast it was good for local culture that community members were producing and sharing stories.

“There is a lot of creativity here on the Fraser Coast,” he said.

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The second book launched by Mr Patterson was an edited version of Reminiscences of a Queensland Pioneer by Edward Fitzgerald Armitage – his great grandfather.

“I never met my great grandfather but I became fascinated by him as I was told stories about his life when I was young.”

Reminiscences of a Queensland Pioneer was first published around 100-years-ago and tells the story of Armitage’s arrival in Australia and his settlement in the Wide Bay.

“I thought it was a great story and re-edited it with my wife. Extra information and notes have also been included,” explained Mr Patterson.

Cr Seymour said the book was an important one for the region.

“You see the connection between Edward Fitzgerald Armitage and the people he meets. Through his reminiscences you get an account of Australia and Queensland’s historic events,” said Cr Seymour.

The mayor said the book also detailed some of the major engineering feats that Armitage led in and around Maryborough as well as the sad tale of what happened to local Aboriginal communities.

“This book is very important because it captures the language that he recorded so well but it is also an important document for Queensland history. We are fortunate that Gavin has put this out there again.”

You can get your hands on a copy of both books at Banksia Seafood and Grill in Torquay or the Visitor Information Centres in Maryborough and Hervey Bay.

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