Thanks To The Mice


My day job is working as the Veterinary Manager at a medical research institute. We have an animal facility with a significant number of mice and I work with a team of dedicated animal care staff to make sure the mice are well looked after. Contrary to popular belief, an animal that is suffering does not lead to good research outcomes and so our efforts to keep the mice in a positive welfare state result in better treatments, preventions and understanding of diseases.


I (and many others) look forward to a day when animals are no longer necessary at all for medical research. Until that day comes, however, I am glad that there are people like myself and my team who have the compassion necessary for what we do, for the sake of the animals.

In memory of all the mice that have played a role in medical research discoveries, I painted this piece – ‘Thanks To The Mice’.

With eternal gratitude, for the human and animal lives saved and suffering eased worldwide as result.

Rona Barugahare

Gallery Visit – Artsite Gallery

Yesterday I had the absolute pleasure of dropping in to Artsite Gallery.

Exhibitions at Artsite Gallery, Kate Jones and Graham Marchant
Exhibitions at Artsite Gallery, Kate Jones and Graham Marchant

The Gallery is located on Salisbury Road and most weekends I wander past it on my way to Nauti Studios after buying painting materials in Newtown. Yesterday I noticed they had some new exhibitions and finally decided to have a look.

There were two exhibitions on, I really enjoyed the works of both artists. Kate Jones’ Ornithology showed detailed and lively paintings of mostly Australian native birds – particularly interesting as the artist works with taxidermy specimens, some of which were the subjects of the paintings. It was difficult to tell which were of live birds and which were preserved, which is an testament to the artist’s skills both as a conservator and a painter.

Graham Marchant’s The colour of Light also greatly appealed to me, with his vibrant use of colour. I learnt to do very detailed still life pieces when I was learning in high school and it was delightful to see such richly detailed pieces, mostly collections of gorgeous poppy and iris flowers.

The real highlight of the visit however, was meeting the Director, Madeleine Tuck-field-Carrano. She very kindly took the time to chat with me and gave me bucketloads of great advice, from building a CV, to pricing paintings and then on to more technical aspects of how to create high quality paintings that will last. Her advice has been a great springboard and I have already done a bunch of research on local competitions, canvas, impasto techniques and ways to improve my website and online presence in general.

I am very excited to up my game and find out a whole lot more, so that ultimately I can start to create some really high quality paintings that are built to last.

I really like their website (and green policy!) it is really well laid out with the right amount of detail on their artists and exhibitions. If you have the time – definitely pop in and check out some gorgeous works in real life!

Rona Barugahare