Graham Christensen started painting in his early 60s which lead into his newfound career of landscape painting.

Graham and wife Sue were living on the Gold Coast when they decided to move back to Palmerston North for retirement, and to be closer to their growing family.

With Graham being into farming and agriculture for the majority of his life, Sue was concerned that he would be too bored coming home to just retire.

In 2012, while still in Australia, Sue decided to purchase a few painting lessons for Graham's birthday in a bid to get him out of the house.


From those first three lessons, Graham kicked off his painting passion which started him delving into agricultural and landscape scenes.

"We were looking for things to do [for retirement], what could we do?

"Buying a block of land was always going to be a part of that," he said.

Once the pair got a farm on the outskirts of Palmerston North, Graham turned a room in the back of a barn into a painting studio space.

He explained that painting with oils takes a while to dry, so he would go between painting in his studio and tinkering on the farm throughout some of his days.

"My studio has heaps of space, which means I can spread all my gear around.

"I've got a couple of easels and I've got stuff hanging on the walls, there's plenty of storage."

At first, he was on edge about how his paintings would change when moving back to Palmerston North.


He painted bright tones of the Australian outback.

However, since being into farming his whole life, this meant that Graham had a vast variety of life experience to paint the beautiful scenes that he does.

The 72-year-old grew up in a family of farmers which set his agricultural career up, and resulted in him studying in Europe to further his studies in animal production.

Graham explains that he likes to document his opinions on elements of agriculture that existed in his generation.

"I used to paint all sorts of things because I was learning.

"A couple of years ago I started to focus on where I'd like to go, what I'd like to paint… Old woolsheds, old barns, dogs, stock, drovers, old sheds - and that's because I like it and I feel very comfortable doing it."


He says when someone wants to buy his art, he encourages them to feel for something in their heart when choosing a piece.

The Charm of Rural Manawatu will be opening on Sunday, August 2 at 3pm with an opportunity to meet the artist over refreshments at the Feilding and District Art Society, 104 Manchester St.

The exhibition runs until Saturday, August 22.