Overwintering Shorebirds.

What a superb collection of prints from Firestation Print Studio and Migaloo Press. The exhibition, organised by Kate Gorringe Smith, was to create awareness about the plight of our migratory shorebirds. Their environment is diminishing due to development upon their feeding areas.

These birds fly from Australia and New Zealand through Asia and into the Artic regions. There they bred and then return, some non stop for 9 days, back to Australia and New Zealand. They do this journey every year. An incredible journey!

This journey has inspired numerous artists to create a beautiful and varied collection of prints.



Make the most of exhibition opportunities.

It’s important to make the most of each opportunity that arises when trying to get your art out there for people to see. What could be better than concurrent exhibitions here in Melbourne and Florence Italy.

The Firestation Print Studio and Il Bisonte in Florence are exhibiting work by 30 Australian artists, including myself. Now really to make the most of this opportunity I would have headed over to Florence and their opening, wishful thinking I’m afraid. But the exhibition at Firestation Print Studio looks lovely, thanks to John Hinds for hanging it and Edith for organising the exhibition. There are 3 artist books being put together that will go to Libraries here and in Florence. Now that is what I call a grand opportunity!

Artists in the exhibition include; Elizabeth Banfield, Peter Ward, Sue Poggioli and Annie Day.

Art, make it your own!

Just completed a collagraph workshop with the very talented Sarah Amos. She has this amazing ability to make her work look oh so easy and yet it is actually rather tricky! Mind you she has 25 years of experience. I had this great plan that I would produce something special but that’s not how it turned out. This is when you appreciate the talent of an artist.

I learnt so much though. Design, technique and making your art your own. It was actually another artist at The Firestation Print Studio that I was chatting to and she said it’s great to do these courses and learn the techniques and skills but you need to use this knowledge to make your art your own. It’s very easy to try to emulate established artists but it is important to use your skills, talent and ideas to create your own special artworks.

I wanted to do something very clever, edgy  and thought provoking but I realised I enjoy making lovely art about places, birds, buildings and travel so why not use my newly improved skills to simply add to the art that I already make.

So this is the next step, the next challenge, to incorporate these techniques to strengthen and improve my art and continue to make my art my own.


The Beauty of Beechworth

Recently spent a few days in Beechworth, Victoria. What a beautiful area, so full of history, great places to visit, shops to look in, cafes to lunch at and wonderful scenery.

Beechworth is an old gold mining town, rich in the 1850s when hopefuls from all over the world came to find their fortune. Visit the cemetery to from where they all came.

The street scape has hardly changed and the streets are full off lovely old homes from the era.

Locally visit Mt Buffalo with spectacular views all the way to Mt Kosciusko in NSW. There are great walks to do and if you really feel like it, go abseiling!

Out past Bright is the beautiful area of Wandiligong. So relaxed. Apple orchards, deer farm, autumn trees and mountains on both sides. I could have moved there that day! And a delightful produce store with deliciously fresh produce.

The other great area for produce is Milawa. Visit Brown Brothers winery, fantastic place. The Olive Oil store, the Cheese Factory and a lovely gallery- Off Centre Gallery for local artwork.

Enjoy this beautiful area.

Print Weave Learn

Recently I learned how to print, colour, cut and weave some of my Lino prints. The very clever printmaker, Peter Ward, has shared his knowledge of printmaking and weaving and so I gave it a go. The results, not too bad for a first go. What do you think?

I highly recommend checking out Peter Ward’s beautiful, clever and original art works. These three are mine. By the larger, third piece I had a better idea of the little intricacies of the technique.IMG_6163IMG_6164IMG_6161

New Zealand Pacific Studio Art Residency

Two works completed at the art residency, based on the local area. They feature the mountains, hills, plains and forests in the area and a view of the Wellington Botanical gardens looking towards the homes on the hills.

It’s a great area, 1 hour to the beach, lots of mountains and hills and a river runs through the plains towards Wellington. There are the Rimutaka hills quite an interesting drive over but well worth the views.

This morning seemed to signal the end of summer as it was rather cool with frost and a beautiful haze with the sun just coming through.

Well worth a stay if you are thinking of doing a residency and everyone I have met has been helpful and friendly.

The closest big town is Masterton, about twenty minutes away. There is a lovely gallery and the locals artists have  a terrific gallery and studio set up using containers, it’s called ConArt. Great concept!

Thanks New Zealand Pacific Studio.

Art Residency

An Art Residency is a great way for artists to spend time really focused on their work. This delightful place is New Zealand Pacific Studio is not far from a Masterton in NZ. Near by is a sanctuary and a fabulous walk with the most spectacular views, especially when you add a rainbow!

NZ Pacific Studio enables artists from the visual arts, writers, dancers etc, from all over the world, to spend time developing their ideas and produce some terrific artworks. I hope my own art created here will be up to scratch!

Nearby is the delightful town of Greytown with lovely shops – organic produce, French bakery, art store, lovely clothing and gift stores, I highly recommend stopping here for a visit.

It’s great to see the Arts being appreciated and valued!


Pop up Globe

What a fantastic experience! The Pop up Globe, all the way from New Zealand, has been visiting Melbourne and it was fabulous. It’s a great concept, being able to experience a Shakespeare play the way it was done hundreds of years ago. We had seats but the groundlings is probably the best place to watch the show and interact with the actors, it’s just that I couldn’t stand for two and half hours. Everywhere you sat you had a great view of the show. This show was ‘As You Like It’ a comedy with music, fun, innuendo and great laughs. I will definitely go ago again next time they come to Melbourne.

New and Old but all exciting!

Melbourne is home to some wonderful artwork, both old and new and all very exciting.

The current Triennial at the NGV features some extraordinary art with big ideas , big colour and simply big art! It was great to see so many people enjoying the variety of artwork. Visitors enjoyed the interactive instillations, walking in the art, laying on the art and touching the art, something you would not have been able to do many years ago.

I also loved the iconic Australian artworks from the 19th and 20th centuries at the Ian Potter Centre. It was great to see the art works that featured so heavily in my year 12 art studies many years ago! Margaret Preston, Grace Cossington Smith, (one of my all time favourites), Drysdale, Streeton, Smart, Olsen, they were all there, it was a who’s who of the Australian art world.

Picking up the brush!


IMG_5190IMG_5191IMG_5192I have’t picked up a paint brush for this sort of painting in probably a year and when I started again I realised how much I enjoyed painting. I have always loved painting naive style and using small detail mainly I think as I haven’t been taught painting but just did my own thing. I have also found I tend to use this small detail in many of my Lino prints as well.

It can be incredibly difficult to find time, especially when you work full time, to create all the art you want to make. It’s lovely to just sit, relax and not think about anything but just be absorbed in the creating of something new.

During the year I found I had spent most of my time working on my Lino prints but most of this work is black and white and I missed the colour. I do love a bit of colour and pattern! It would probably do me good to try some work with a more subtle colour palette so I might have a go at that on the next painting.

The top two works are based on the community gardens in St Kilda with Luna Park behind it so that you can see the roller coaster through the gardens. The third work is Castella st Lilydale, it probably needs a few finishing touches.