Meet The Maker: Hannah Stockman

Inspired by the beauty of still-life and celebrating the everyday, Hannah.J.Stockman's work embodies the shapes, textures, curves, and organic form that we see in day-to-day life, and nature.Fig & Olives & Pears & Grapefruit are the first in a series of limited edition art created for A&C by Hannah. We chatted with Hannah to get to know her, her connection with art a little better and her favourite spots in Auckland to eat.

01 - Tell us a little about your background in art and your first creative influences

I’ve been creating art of some kind ever since I can remember. I wasn’t an overly academic or sporty child and I enjoyed my own company. So I found creating art of any kind came quite naturally to me, so by the time I left high school, studying art felt like a natural progression. I studied at Whitecliffe College of Art & Design for about a year and a half and loved it. However, the pandemic came along and eventually, lockdowns made it too hard to be able to continue. I think I got what I needed out of the time I spent there, I’ve learnt a lot of practical skills and theory that I still use to this day. 

I really fell in love with all of the technical aspects of things like drawing, colour theory, and art history. Learning how every major event and point in history has been impacted by art in one form or another is so fascinating to me.

02 - You created these first two pieces exclusively for A&C - Tell us about these pieces

A&C is such a nurturing environment for my creativity. I’m always so inspired by our pieces and the new ways we are able to create beautiful displays. Creating these pieces for A&C was a real match made in heaven for me as it allowed me to blend my love of interiors into still-life painting to create something that complements both A&C's visual identity and my own. The two pieces work as individuals and a set, the joy of working on them at the same time is that they feel like a strong pair.

03 - Where do you find inspiration?

I’m always inspired by my everyday life and the things I’m surrounded by. I’m constantly being inspired by new colours, textures, and shapes and I love that I can take these things and create something entirely new. As I’m such a visual person, I love to go to galleries, watch movies, flick through books, and explore new places. My love of food and cooking is also reflected in my work and I’ve found it nice to be able to blend my passions. I’m also always inspired by other artists and love to see what other people are doing, social media is an amazing tool to share and connect with like-minded people.

 04 - Art means different things to different people, what does art mean to you?

Pure expression. To me, it’s all about the ability to create something completely new, and completely unique to my own experience and how I view the world and in turn myself.

05 - What is your creative process like?

Generally, inspiration for a piece will come from a single object, or I might look at how a few things have been arranged and think ‘That would make a great painting’ I like to create a mood board of colours, compositions, and reference images. Finally, I’ll lay down a rough sketch and start painting! I enjoy being quite fluid and intuitive with my application. 

06 - What is your ideal environment to create your art pieces? 

Music is a must. Depending on my mood it can be just about anything. I thrive in my own company and consequently enjoy spending some quality time with me myself and I.

07 - Who are your biggest creative influences?

I’m inspired by all types of people and art forms. The people I find myself most inspired by are New Zealand and Australian artists. I love how small and tight-knit we are as a creative community, I think it’s so important to create a supportive network around you as a creative person, and being able to share and connect with like-minded people is really special.

08 - Creativity is not only to be expressed through painting, what other ways do you find yourself expressing this?

In almost all aspects of my life. I love photography, fashion, film, music, tattoos, Interior design. The list goes on. That’s been my biggest learning curve creatively, my biggest strength as an artist is the diversity of my work and just how many interests I have. I used to think of it as a negative like I needed to pick one thing and stick to it. But I firmly believe that’s what being a creative individual is all about, all the things that make up who you are and give you a unique perspective are what makes art so enjoyable.


[Best Place for]
Dinner... Bar Celeste on Karangahape Road.
Coffee… Ozone in Grey Lynn. The Food is amazing too.
Cocktail... Norma Taps at City Works. Nice wee local.

[What are you]
Listening to… Adrianne Lenker - Bright Future. One of my favourite female singer's new album so it is on repeat at the moment.
Reading… To be very honest I’m not the biggest reader but I’m trying to challenge myself to read more this year. I do love a good poetry book. One of my favourite authors is Orion Carloto.
Watching… I’m a huge movie fan, I recently watched Asteroid City and really enjoyed it.