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Lobster boat


LORRAINE JOY: Maine fishing vessel ©2019 (Watercolour & fluorescent gouache, 41 x 51 cm.)

The 36-foot (11 m.) LORRAINE JOY (formerly CHRISTIE ROSE II), was manufactured by Beal’s Boat shop, Maine in 1996. Licensed as a commercial fishing vessel (No. JFB35026K695), it has a fibreglass hull.

The Australian Red Cedar helm (ship’s wheel) was built in Australia by Alf Jahnsen (1913-1986) a boat-builder in the Forster-Tuncurry region, N.S.W. The vessel was renamed after Alf’s only daughter, Lorraine Joy – late, and much missed Mum to Denise and her sister Tracey.

Here, Denise (Skip) assists her uncle, Harvey Jahnsen with the fuel line, while her husband (Cricket) fills the tank in preparation for the next trawl. Up to 250 lobster traps with their brightly coloured Aussie green & gold marker buoys will be stacked up to 5-deep along the aft deck to stern.

The painting was commissioned by Tracey for Skip and Cricket’s 5th wedding anniversary.


VINCENT DEE: Portrait of Gary Roberts and model Clyde Puffer ©2019 (Watercolour, 32 x 42 cm.)
Commissioned by Pauline Roberts, Glenorchy, Tasmania.

Pauline Roberts approached me in February 2019 at the My State Australian Classic & Wooden Boat Festival in Hobart where her husband, Gary, regularly displays his stunning model boats. Pauline wanted a painting of Gary’s first scale model, an historic Scottish Clyde Puffer he had named VINCENT DEE in honour of his late father, Vincent D. Roberts. I felt there was a real father-son connection there and suggested making it a double portrait by putting Gary in the picture.

“Gary was the last to open his Christmas gift from the family. He had no idea. He just sat there, completely lost in it looking at every little detail. He took it to show each of his sisters…more tears. It’s really lovely, framed with a little name plaque, and in our sights every day!”
- Pauline Roberts

“Dad is so amazed…I found him sitting gazing at his portrait and at every little detail of the boat…We feel so privileged to have this painting in our family...Really, it’s the best gift we could have ever, ever had.”
– Tricia Bridges, Daughter


Portrait of Taffy Dora ©2019 (Wash & Pencil, 31 x 44 cm.)
Commissioned by Fifi Smith, Stony Rise, Tasmania.

Although Fifi Smith has had many pets in her lifetime, one little dog stands fondly above the rest. Taffy Dora (short for ‘adorable’) was around at a time in Fifi’s life in the 1990s when a lot was going on, and the significance of that was not lost on Fifi.

Based on one of the few photos in her possession came this artwork, which in Fifi’s words not only captured a likeness, but brought a most cherished friend back to life!

“…I sit here with tears of gratitude spilling over… and all I can say is OUTSTANDING!“ - Fifi Smith


MISCHA: Grand Banks GB999QN (Watercolour, 40 x 60 cm.)
Commissioned by Sarah Novati, Concord, N.S.W.

Sarah requested a painting for her husband Danny’s birthday. The brief was to include their home (c.1910), on which Danny had done a lot of work. Simple on the surface, but more difficult to pull off. The vessel is located in a secluded cove on the Parramatta River and although a public ferry service traverses the waterway, it’s at a great distance on that very wide river so while you might spot the vessel, lining it up with the house isn’t possible.

Without knowing anything about the boat, the grand in Grand Banks was the operative word; I wanted a dramatic view from water level. Time of day was equally important. In the absence of a dinghy or drone, I enlisted the help of my partner who set off up the river in a small boat in the early morning armed with a rough sketch of what I wanted. He sailed right around the vessel and captured some great reference shots; painting was based on a composite of these images and I had great fun creating it. I could have made the angles more dramatic but achieved instead a more restful composition.

“Wow Victoria. Looks fabulous. Don’t know if I’ll be able to keep it a secret ‘til May!”– Sarah Novati

Larger than Life: The Fabulous Miss Tildy of the Astor Private Hotel, Hobart, Tasmania

LARGER THAN LIFE: The Fabulous Miss Tildy of The Astor Private Hotel, Hobart, Tasmania ©2019 Victoria Kitanov (Pastel, 26 x 39 cm.)
Commissioned by Miss Tildy, Hobart, Tasmania

If, at around 182.88 cm. (6 foot) in bare feet, you think the lady may be imposing, just wait till you meet her in person! The wit, off-the-cuff humour and larger-than-life character of the fabulous Miss Tildy, Manager of the 1920s vintage Astor Private Hotel in Hobart, may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but she’s gathered a long & loyal client list of repeat offenders.

It was a privilege to create this portrait of a lady with a pure gold heart, and I love her to bits!


SEA BEE(Chris Bryan, Master & Commander) ©2018 (Watercolour, 42 x 68 cm.)
Commissioned by Jenny Bryan, Putney, N.S.W.

One of the loveliest men I have had the good fortune to have met through my partner David, was Chris Bryan. Though our acquaintance was brief, his wonderful presence remains unforgettable. Chris was seriously ill at the time that he and his wife Jenny commissioned this painting.

For Chris and Jenny, their little boat SEA BEE represented family holidays with their kids at little beach coves along the Sydney harbour waterways, weekend drinks & fishing with good friends, and a lifetime of very happy memories.

At one point, when I was really struggling with some of the technical aspects of the painting, David gently reminded me that there was a man out there who was no longer able to visit his beloved boat, but who could see in his mind’s eye a painting of it on a blank wall in his home. It was a reminder to stop sweating the small stuff and to remember why, and for whom I was creating this artwork, which later featured among his favourite things at the funeral service.

ValeChris (1955-2019)

‘…Now Voyager, sail though forth, to seek and find…’
From The Untold Want by Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass, (1891-2)

ALICE MAY (1927)

ALICE MAY (1927): In profile, on Coal and Candle Creek, Ku-ring Gai Chase National Park ©2017 (Watercolour, 76 x 92 cm.)
Commissioned by Mr Kerry Trollope, Balmain, N.S.W.

Designed and built by Sidney Wilson at Port Cygnet, Tasmania in 1927 is the elegant 30-foot (9.1 m.) timber motor launch ALICE MAY. According to the Australian Register of Historic Vessels, she was built from a variety of Tasmanian timbers, including pine varieties: Huon, Celery Top, Kauri, Baltic & King Billy, and Blue Gum. The Kauri ship’s wheel was made by Viv Innes for the Tasmanian trading ketch, HUON CHIEF, which was burnt at Constitution Dock, Hobart in 1938.

Named after Miss Alice May Marsh, a friend of Sidney Wilson’s wife, Frances, the vessel was also referred to as a ‘Sunday boat’ and used for weekend recreation.

Source: Australian Register of Historic Vessels / Australian National Maritime Museum ; Sydney Heritage Fleet.

ALICE MAY (1927)

ALICE MAY (1927): Bow view, alongside Ku-ring-gai Motor Yacht Club, Cottage Point, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, N.S.W. ©2017 (Watercolour, 22 x 34 cm.)

Purchased by Mr Kerry Trollope, Balmain, N.S.W.

Both the bow and stern view studies of ALICE MAY were purchased by Mr Trollope to form a memento of his lovely Sunday boat built in 1927. The bow view was also reprinted as cover art for the Royal Motor Yacht Club - Ku-ring-gai 2017-2018 Annual Report.

ALICE MAY (1927)

ALICE MAY (1927): Stern view; alongside the Akuna Bay wharf, Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, N.S.W. ©2017 (Watercolour, 20 x 28 cm.)
Purchased by Mr Kerry Trollope, Balmain, N.S.W.

Grand Dog Teddy

Grand Dog Ted ©2017 (Wash & Pencil; 28 x 35 cm.)
Commissioned by Mr K. Trollope, Sydney, N.S.W.

Grand Dog Buddy

Grand Dog Buddy Novati ©2018 (Wash & Pencil; 28 x 35 cm.)
Commissioned by Mr K. Trollope, Sydney, N.S.W.