James is a Yolngu artist; his country is in Arnhem Land the Northern Territory of Australia. His paintbrush is made of strands of hair tied to a small twig. The thickness of the lines and the way they are applied is very important. Beside Skin, they tell the clan and country of the artist. Only the four ochre colours are used. Yellow for the sun, red for the blood of Mother Earth; she bleeds for you when you are born and when you die. White is used for body designs in ceremony. Black has secret meanings but is also the charcoal rubbed into cuts to create raised scars for tribal markings.
James is a qualified teacher and interpreter; he is fluent in many aboriginal languages as well as English. His personal interests are teaching hunting skills and traditional values to young people, traditional painting and watching cricket. James met his wife, Peggy Anderson, when they were both at college. He also sometimes paints with Peggy and Peggy is an accomplished artist in her own right