ART: Nick Daley in front of just one of the buildings he sketched in his book Welcome to Rockhampton.
ART: Nick Daley in front of just one of the buildings he sketched in his book Welcome to Rockhampton. Meg Bolton

Iconic CQ buildings helps artist clear haze of depression

SURROUNDED by a hazy cloud of depression Rockhampton artist Nick Daley sunk deeper and deeper into wallow of despair unable to pick up a brush or pen.

For almost 20 years art had been his escape, an adventure and his passion until his creativity ground to a halt along with his happiness when he was victim of workplace bullying in the late 90s.

Nick described the time in his life as almost unbearable as he battled severe depression, stress and anxiety.

"I had a nervous breakdown," Nick said.

He worked as a concreter, was a keen artist and had 30 hours recorded towards his pilot's licence when life as he knew it changed forever.

He finished work, quit his pilot licence and put his paint brush down.

"It just got to the stage where I couldn't concentrate," he said.

Nick was later diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

His battle with depression may have started 20 years ago, but his mental health still waivers from time to time today - although ever since he recommenced art he has been slowly piecing his happiness back together.

Nick said he found solace in is drawing.

He picked up his pen after a 10-year break and slowly returned to the art-world, enrolling in oil painting classes and setting himself a new goal.

 

Artist Nick Daley sketches buildings across Rockhampton.
Artist Nick Daley sketches buildings across Rockhampton. Meg Bolton

Since 2016, Nick wandered across the region for his book Welcome to Rockhampton, which features oil painting sketches of prominent buildings.

"I just enjoy doing buildings and seeing an end result because it's a challenge," he said.

Nick's book features 22 buildings including Rockhampton Post Office, Shandon House, St Joesph's Cathedral and Gracemere Hotel.

 

Nick Daley in front of just one of the buildings he sketched in his book Welcome to Rockhampton.
Nick Daley in front of just one of the buildings he sketched in his book Welcome to Rockhampton. Meg Bolton

While Nick grew up in North Queensland, his wife Moira is Rockhampton born and bred - he enjoyed combining her past with his present passion.

Nick takes photos of the buildings and then sketches and paints the buildings across a number of days.

Welcome to Rockhampton was Nick's first book, but after taking a liking to his new hobby he has set his sights on releasing another within the next two years.

He looks forward to adding the collection of books available at the Arcade News Agents and the Information Centre where his first book is available for purchase.



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