Harmony of Shape





The harmony of shape created by the oval shape of the woman’s head crowned by the smaller oval of the baby possum creates an almost symmetrical, harmonious composition.


It is a simple image that, reinforced by the harmonious shapes, tells a great story of friendship between the woman and the possum.

Herbert Basedow made a number of journeys into the interior of Australia, documenting the life and customs of the Aboriginal people. He carried a variety of cameras, depending on his method of travel.


Some images taken with large format cameras using glass plate negatives are of superb quality, while others taken with small, portable cameras, when traveling by camel, are soft and blurred even though the subjects and composition may be excellent.


“Light, portable Kodaks only were taken – a No. 2 pocket folding and a No. 1 panorama. Mr George carried a No. 1 pocket folding apparatus. The films were kept in tins, the lids of which were sealed with strips of adhesive plaster. (1)

Herbert Basedow (1881-1933) “Woman with Pet Possum on her Head” (1922)


H. Basedow (1881-1933) Notes on some Of The Native Tribes of Central Australia, David M. Welch, 2008, p. 129


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John Lovett


John Lovett is an Australian artist working in oils, watercolor and mixed media. Since commencing his career John has held over thirty five solo exhibitions and taken part in many joint ones. John’s work is represented in private and corporate collections in Australia, United Kingdom, Europe, Asia and USA. John’s passion for his work and his open easy approach to teaching make his books, DVD’s and workshops thoroughly enjoyable, extremely informative and always very popular. His articles are regularly featured in “International Artist” magazine.      




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© 2017 John Lovett (all text and images unless otherwise stated)