She has been making and creating her whole life, but only recently has Katie Hedgman-Dalton started showing her art to the world.

Ms Hedgman-Dalton was one of the artists to take part in the recent Puanga exhibition, Then & Again, at Gallery On Guyton. Her eye-catching work, a group of ethereal jellyfish, was made almost entirely of repurposed materials: old dress patterns, scraps of wool and beads from an old necklace.

"The only thing that was new in the piece was the fairy lights."

Ms Hedgman-Dalton has recently completed a certificate in art and creativity at The Learning Connexion, which was her first foray into formal art study.


"I've been making and creating things for as long as I can remember, and I did art at school. But this is the first formal art study I've done since then."

Her work background is in retail - she works part-time at Gonville Cafe Library - but she decided "the time was right" to pursue her art more seriously. She was awarded a scholarship to complete her certificate course, and hopes to do the same for her diploma course, which is three years of part-time study.

Ms Hedgman-Dalton started exhibiting as part of her studies, as she was required to receive feedback from other people about her work. "My tutor sort of forced me into exhibiting at Gallery On Guyton with about eight other people, during this year's Open Studios."

She was delighted to sell six pieces of work. Out of that exhibition she was asked to join Optiv101, an artists' collective, and has exhibited with them.

Ms Hedgman-Dalton loves to work in 3D mixed media and collage. "I started off painting and sketching, but I love to tell stories through collage, and I'm really excited about 3D mixed media at the moment. I fell in love with the tactile quality of 3D."

Although she's been studying by correspondence, by coincidence her tutor, Donna King, also lives in Whanganui. "She has a very relaxed style of mentoring, so a lot of the things that I presented as pieces for the course were things I wanted to do, and we were able to fit them into the scope of the course."

Ms Hedgman-Dalton is uncertain what the future will be for her art, although she has two more exhibitions with Optiv101 this year.