All the following paintings can serve as inspiration for larger pieces. If you see one that you would like to commission in another format, please contact me about it.
I am happy to create a tailor-made painting for you!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound Fiordland 1 Pastel Painting

“Sound of Silence No. 1” | 42 x 56 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound Fiordland 1 Pastel Painting

This is the first painting inspired by a visit to Doubtful Sound. The journey was magical.
It was cold and wet. The colours were muted because of the rain and fog. Sound, too. There was an otherworldly light that would probably be the right setting for a Māori creation story. Ribbons of clouds wafting across the mountains. Sometimes we almost flew across the eerily still water – and then drifted in silence when they cut off every engine and generator.
I hope to write about this day in greater detail sometime, but for now this painting expresses the atmosphere of our experience and captures the feelings and memories.

Want to bring home >Sound of Silence No. 1<? Send me an email!

This mini watercolour abstract painting also was inspired by our visit to Doubtful Sound. If you’re thinking of creating a vignette or gallery wall, it could be a fitting addition to “Sound of Silence No. 1”. Framed and matted, this ‘mood painting’ also would look lovely on a mantlepiece or on a smaller wall, together with other travel mementos, like vintage maps for example.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound 3 Watercolour Aquarell

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[21 x 10,5 cm, aquarelle papier satiné, 50 €]

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Glenorchy 1 Pastel Painting

“Summer’s Day in Glenorchy” | 42 x 56 cm | SOLD
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Glenorchy 1 Pastel Painting

We arrived in Queenstown on New Year’s Day, and the city was so very full of people that we decided to ‘escape’ the next day 😉 Glenorchy was rather a spontaneous decision – and WOW am I glad that we went there!! The drive alone would have been worth it for the stunning views we discovered, but we also spent a few hours exploring the Glenorchy Lagoon which was just amazing. (Stay tuned for more paintings to come from this day!) It was strange to spend the first days of the new year in this heat. I think it was about 35°C. The colours seemed very exotic – and I tried to reflect that in this painting. This is *not* a fantasy, the colours really were that unusual!
The painting shows a view from the Glenorchy waterfront. This is the northern end of Lake Wakatipu. You can see the famous jetty that has been featured in myriads of Instagram posts in the background. Those trees are right next to the equally famous red Glenorchy ‘boat shed’ (the restored steamship depot).

The original painting has found a new home! If you are interested in a print, please, send me an email!

A completely different view of Lake Wakatipu inspired this mini watercolour painting: the sunsets we saw from our hotel room in Queenstown. It was so hard to go to sleep, because night just wouldn’t come and the light was so beautiful!

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Lake Wakatipu Watercolour Aquarell

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[14 x 18,5 cm, handmade paper, 60 €]

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Wanaka 1 Pastel Painting

“Evening at Lake Wanaka No. 1” | 42 x 56 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Wanaka 1 Pastel Painting

Where do I even start? On New Year’s Eve 2017 I took a walk along the bank of Lake Wanaka, and as corny as that sounds, when I returned I was not the same person.
“Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life – and travel – leaves marks on you. Most of the time, those marks – on your body or on your heart – are beautiful. Often, though, they hurt.” (Anthony Bourdain)
Often it is both. It’s beautiful *and* it hurts. This is another experience about which I hope to write in greater detail – and there will be more paintings to come (one larger piece is included in this collection – just scroll down a bit)

Want to bring home >Evening at Lake Wanaka No. 1<? Send me an email!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Fox Glacier 1 Pastel Painting

“Fox Glacier” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Fox Glacier 1 Pastel Painting

The story of this painting is interesting, because I didn’t expect to be so inspired by the Fox Glacier experience. At times I felt a bit underwhelmed actually. The atmosphere was strange. The glacier looked kind of ugly and dirty depending on where you stood – But then there were moments when suddenly the perspective was just right, or the light became very dramatic, and these moments have impressed me so much apparently that when I painted this scene I was completely ‘in the flow’. I don’t even remember much of it… It’s one of those pieces that seemingly painted itself. I hope to finish one other painting about Fox Glacier soon, showing the opposite view we had on the way back.

Want to bring home >Fox Glacier<? Send me an email!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 1 Pastel Painting

“Abel Tasman No. 1” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

This ist the first of several paintings inspired by the hike around the Abel Tasman National Park. Scroll down for more!

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 1 Pastel Painting

Especially when I paint trees and flowers, or forests, I ‘hide’ shapes and figures between the layers – I love to add a bit of whimsy 🙂
The longer and the closer you look, the more you will find!

Want to bring home >Abel Tasman No. 1<? Send me an email!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 2 Pastel Painting

“Abel Tasman No. 2” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels on acid-free, age-resistant watercolour paper, 300 g/m²]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 2 Pastel Painting

We took a water taxi trip from Marahau to Anchorage and then walked back along the Abel Tasman Coastal Track.
I think this day alone has given me enough inspiration for years.
I have said this before: for me, this place offers the perfect combination of a forest right next to the sea. It is definitely one of the places I want to return to and spend more time painting.

Want to bring home >Abel Tasman No. 2<? Send me an email!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Wanaka 2 Pastel Painting

“Evening at Lake Wanaka No. 2” | 100 x 70 cm | 2600 €
[Soft pastels on acid-free and age-resistant passepartout cardboard, 300 g/m²]

Want to bring home >Evening at Lake Wanaka No. 2<? Send me an email!

My New Year’s Eve walk at Lake Wanaka will always be one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. I’ll never forget the light, the wind in the trees, the depth and shades of blue, the vineyard around the corner, snow-capped mountains in the distance, and the endless sky above.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Wanaka 2 Pastel Painting

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Cardrona 1 Pastel Painting

“Cardrona Flowers” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on acid-free, age-resistant watercolour paper, 300 g/m²]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Cardrona 1 Pastel Painting

Want to bring home >Cardrona Flowers<? Send me an email!

Both the pastel and the mini watercolour painting were inspired by the flowers we found in the Cardrona valley.
I have tried to choose watercolour pieces that would make a good addition to the pastel paintings. And I like this combination here a lot!

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Cardrona 2 Watercolor Aquarell Painting

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[15 x 15 cm, handmade paper, 60 €]

And I added another watercolour piece that was inspired by the flowers on the South Island:

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Flowers 3 Watercolor Aquarell Painting

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[20,5 x 10,5 cm, handmade paper, 60 €]

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Taiaroa Dunedin 1 Pastel Painting

“Taiaroa Head” | 42 x 56 cm | 1500 € 
[Soft pastels on acid-free, age-resistant watercolour paper, 300 g/m²]

Want to bring home >Taiaroa Head<? Send me an email!

This is the view from the Royal Albatross Centre (Taiaroa Head) across the bay towards Dunedin.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Taiaroa Dunedin 1 Pastel Painting

I am not a hobby ornithologist (at all…!), but I absolutely enjoyed the visit to the Albatross Centre. It is the only place in the world where Royal Albatross nest and breed on a mainland. Such impressive birds – and so funny, too 😉
And I have to say, compared with most of the other places where you can watch birds/animals, this tour of the albatross colony is a truly fine and successful example of eco-tourism.
And it didn’t hurt that the headland is beautiful, with many breathtaking views – on the day we visited quite in the literal sense, because it was very stormy. But that was fortunate actually, because the albatross that were not breeding loved the wind!

I chose a different paper for this piece than I usually use. The grain and pigments create a texture quite unlike what you often see in my paintings. It was exactly what I needed for this motif – and so interesting that I used the paper for a couple of other studies afterwards.

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Hooker Valley 1 Pastel Painting

“Hooker Valley No. 1” | 70 x 50 x 2 cm | 1800 €
[Soft pastels on gesso on canvas]
This painting either has to be kept behind glass or I will varnish it -> then it would be ready to hang on a wall and didn’t need a frame

Want to bring home >Hooker Valley No. 1<? Send me an email!

I wanted to give you a better impression of the different materials and technique with these details. The textures are very different. The pigments on gesso and canvas have an unusual effect other than on paper / cardboard.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Hooker Valley 1 Pastel Painting

The Hooker Valley Track is one of those ‘NZ Must-Do’s – And even though it is a bit like ‘Karawanenwandern’ (caravan hiking) in peak tourist season, it is also absolutely stunning. There’s a reason (or rather many reasons) it’s that famous. This is definitely not the last painting I will create of the place!

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Lake Pukaki 1 Pastel Painting

“Aoraki and Lake Pukaki No. 1” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Lake Pukaki 1 Pastel Painting

Want to bring home >Aoraki and Lake Pukaki No. 1<? Send me an email!

I think my friends will say that for someone who professes to not even liking mountains that much, I’m painting an awful lot of them…. 😉

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Lake Pukaki 1 Pastel Painting

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Aoraki Mt Cook Lake Pukaki 2 Pastel Painting

“Aoraki and Lake Pukaki No. 2” | 56 x 42 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Want to bring home >Aoraki and Lake Pukaki No. 2<? Send me an email!

I LOVE Blue. I think I should spend a month in the area around Aoraki / Lake Pukaki (and Lake Tekapo, too) just to be able to paint all the shades of blue… The 3 paintings above (Hooker Valley and the two Aoraki/Pukaki paintings) show scenes that took place not even 24 hours apart from each other – Sunday afternoon, Sunday noon, Monday morning.

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound Fiordland 2 Pastel Painting

“Sound of Silence No. 2” | 42 x 56 cm | 1500 €
[Soft pastels and charcoal on natural white 100% recycled watercolour paper, 220 g/m², acid-free]

Want to bring home >Sound of Silence No. 2<? Send me an email!

I was so happy to see the New Zealand Christmas Trees on the south island, too! I fell in love with the Pohutukawa in Paihia (Bay of Islands, North Island), and it was wonderful to meet them at Doubtful Sound of all beautiful places…
I would really like to grow one in my garden 🙂

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound Pohutukawa 3 Watercolor Aquarell Painting

This is one of the original New Zealand ‘watercolour action paintings’! [ca. 19 x 24 cm, 190 g/m² study quality watercolour paper, SOLD] It was also inspired by the Pohutukawa at Doubtful Sound.

The original piece has found a new home! If you are interested in a print please, send me an email!

I added another mini watercolour painting that was inspired by Doubtful Sound:

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Doubtful Sound 4 Watercolor Aquarell Painting

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[21 x 10,5 cm, 190 g/m² study quality watercolour paper – this one can only be shipped with a passepartout (mat), so I would have to know the frame size you have in mind in order to quote a price]

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Our tour of Doubtful Sound started at Lake Manapouri, and this mini watercolour and ink painting was loosley inspired by the scenery there. There’s a pastel painting about the place in the works, but that will have to wait for the next south island collection.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Lake Manapouri Watercolour Aquarell

If you are interested in this watercolour, please, send me an email! You can buy the mini painting ‘solo’ or in combination with one of the pastel paintings. Let me know what you have in mind and we can talk about the details.
[14 x 18,5 cm, handmade paper, 60 €]

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Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 3 Watercolour Aquarell

“Abel Tasman No. 3” | 29 x 42 cm | SOLD
[Watercolour on aquarelle cardboard, laid paper, 230 g/m², acid-free, light- and age-resistant]

The original painting has found a new home! If you are interested in a print, please, send me an email!

This was one of the first paintings I finished after returning from New Zealand. I was still in the habit of using watercolour (I didn’t bring any soft pastels with me on the journey, because that would just have been one big mess…). But this isn’t ‘simply’ one of my action paintings, I handled it quite similarly to the way I paint with pastels: layer after layer, and then work out all the shapes and textures.

Katja Schmitt New Zealand Abel Tasman 3 Watercolour Aquarell

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“We leave something of ourselves behind when we leave a place, we stay there, even though we go away. And there are things in us that we can find again only by going back there.”
– Pascal Mercier, Night Train to Lisbon

I believe part of what I do, when I paint the places that we have such a special connection to, is to find those ‘things’ that we left behind. For those of you who have been to New Zealand: I hope you recognised something of yourself. Thank you for accompanying me on this journey.
– Hei konā rā, Katja

Click here to see the North Island Collection!