Monday, September 29, 2008


Its school holidays and Julia has taken Zoe to visit friends in Perth. Poor Zoe got sick and has an ear infection. They are hoping it has cleared up enough not to give her trouble on the flight. No doubt I'll hear as soon as they land. Anyway without interruptions from my little friend Zoe I should get a lot of art done. Usually when I plan to get a lot done something gets in the way, groan.

As my last work was about France or my dream of going to France one day (it now has a title "The Dream") I thought I'd make a detour and head off to Italy. The piece I'm working on at the moment has an Italian flavour. If I can't actually travel to these places I can at least go there in my work hehehe. That's the beauty of art, you can create your own world. I like to work in layers and people always seem to enjoy the depth I achieve so as I'm working on this piece I've taken a photo of each layer and will post the pics once its all finished. Will be interesting for me to see the transition too. I've just done layer six and its still got a long way to go. I knew I work in layers but didn't realise just how many. Ok on with the next layer!

Friday, September 26, 2008


Yesterday I lost myself in my art. It was a lovely relaxing time where I managed to finish off another piece. Its untitled as yet but its about my wish of travelling to France one day and eating cheese and pastries (without putting on weight hehehe). I used pages from a French phrase book and some images of old French posters as the base to paint over. I plan to start a new piece today so I'd better get cracking.

collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
76.2cm x 50.8cm (30"x20")

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The New Me

Here's my new hair cut. Photograph taken by very talented photographer Julia Thomas also known as my daughter and Zoe's mum. You can see more of her work on

Monday, September 22, 2008

My Time With Kris

My trip to visit Kris in Yorketown was so much fun and very relaxing. Its so good to have quality time with old friends. Just being in each other's company and having a laugh. I must say Kris spoilt and pampered me a bit. She did some alterations to a few of my clothes yay, but I think Friday night was the ultimate in spoiling. Kris had planned to cook me dinner on Friday night. She knows I love her meatloaf and roast vegies but before she put dinner on she ran me a bath, infused the bath water with some relaxing Radox and lavender bubble bath, lit some incense and told me to go and relax while she cooked dinner. As I was soaking, surrounded by bubbles, Kris brought me in a cup of coffee. I don't have a bath at home. We only have a shower and Kris knows I miss my bath time. While I was away I had such a sense of freedom, I made an appointment at the hairdresser and had my hair cut short. I will post a pic as soon as I can get someone to take a photo.

Kris' little cottage.

In the garden down the side.

Out the back.

Here's Kris sewing.
There are salt pans scattered around the area and in certain light they are pink.
Not sure if the photo captures that.

Main street of Yorketown.

Main street.

The old hotel in which we had a nice lunch of roast beef and roast vegetables.
The other hotel across the street.

Can't go anywhere without a visit to the cemetery.
Reading the headstones gives me a sense of the history of the place.

On the way home I saw this kangaroo sculpture.
Its companion the emu had been stolen by some pranksters.
It has been found and is waiting installation.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Yorketown Here I Come

At 5.15pm today I'll be boarding a bus to Yorketown to visit my old friend Kris. I even come with a gift. I saw it while I was in Horsham and knew that I had to buy it for her. I've never been to Kris' since she moved from Adelaide a few years ago. She always visits me when she comes to town so I thought it high time I did something about that. We've been friends since our children were young and our marriages had ended. We used to sit in each others bed with a cup of tea or coffee and have long girl talks. Can't wait to do that again, only now it will be Nana talks hehehe. Be back Saturday.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

No Art Till the Chores Are Done

My peach tree is full of blossoms. A true sign that spring is here.

The exhibition committee at Gallery M liked our proposal and liked our work and although we haven't been notified officially I'm fairly confident that we will be able to hold our exhibition there next year. We had an exhibition meeting on Wednesday night so we could catch up on plans and ideas and where we are up to in terms of our work. Zoe was secretary and thoroughly enjoyed her position hehehe. We voted on the name for our exhibition which is "Peeking Through Someone Else's Window". Its basically inviting the viewer to take a look at our lives and the things that are important to us from the mundane of the every day to our dreams and aspirations. The exhibition will be about the importance of family and friends and what "home" means to us. I think its very special to have three generations of women working and exhibiting together.

My artwork has been flowing rather nicely lately. Finished the background of a new piece yesterday. I know artists have times of drought and times when everything just goes right. Having a solo exhibition in the SALA Festival meant less time at the easel so not much creating was going on leading up to the exhibition. Returning to my everyday life was a bit difficult after all the hype and organising etc but now I'm back on track and my art is flowing so nicely I can't wait to get to the easel. I don't feel like stopping even when I know I must attend to the everyday life chores like cooking dinner and feeding Jack the dog who doesn't like waiting for his food. Chore for today is the washing. No art till the washing is done! Off I go!!!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


Deb Brought Me Lilies
collage and acrylic paint on canvas
60.9 x 50.8cm (24"x20")

Back to the Easel

Delivered some work to Gallery M for the exhibition committee to assess. Julia (daughter) and Zoe (granddaughter) and I have put in an exhibition proposal to Gallery M for an exhibition next year. Three generations of women in one exhibition. Hope we are accepted. Zoe was determined to carry her own work in. It brought a tear to our eyes, she's not even 7 yet. She proudly stood it against the wall with such confidence. Ah, wish I has some of that.

Once home I went back to the easel. There's been a piece sitting on the easel for months now. I started it long before my exhibition in Naracoorte. The background was completed but the idea I had for it didn't work. I played around with it several times but nothing was right, nothing seemed to work so there it sat taunting me. In the early hours of the morning, some time last week, I had one of those revelation moments. You know the ones? Where everything becomes clear like when the sun pokes through the clouds. These moments occur as I'm waking up. The time in that half awake state where you aren't really sleeping but you aren't really awake either. I have the same state when I fall asleep too. Anyway it suddenly became clear what that piece needed and yesterday it all fell into place. Painting was so easy and natural yesterday and I really like the look of what's happening. Hopefully I can finish it today and post a pic of it soon. I must say it was such a pleasure to be back at the easel. It seems I haven't had a real serious session for some time now.

Off to do my morning chores and then hopefully its back to the easel once more.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Oh What Fun It Is To Dye

The weather has been so nice lately with the sun shining and the fragrance of spring in the air so I thought it would be nice to sit in the garden today, have a glass of wine, some cheese and other nibbles. However the weather took a turn for the worse and so the time in the garden was cut short.

Once inside I thought I would bundle up some cloth and have a go at dyeing. I has some recycled linen from a shirt bought in the op shop for $2.75 which I had unpicked. I wrapped some brown onion skins, sour sobs and dried rose petals in the linen and tied them up tightly. I then steamed the little bundles in an old aluminium pressure cooker also bought cheaply. After the steaming was complete there was coloured liquid in the bottom of the steamer - dye! I folded up another piece of linen and clamped it down with a bulldog clip and plonked it into the dye. I rushed out to take a photo in the failing light even before the cloth has a chance to dry. Haven't even rinsed them yet. Ok I think I'm truly hooked.

The second photo is a print I took of a violet flower and leaf by hitting it with a hammer. This dyeing and printing is just too much fun. It like opening prsents and its not even my birthday.

Happy Father's Day Dad.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Felting Fun

I know I've put way too many pics on here but how can you choose which ones to post when it was such a fabulous weekend? I must learn how to do that slide show thing.

There were 11 of us including the tutor, Val. It was just so great being with a group of women. We worked, we ate, we drank wine, we talked and above all we laughed. Women need to be with women from time to time I reckon. We stayed in Sylvania Park, a bed and breakfast and mohair farm just outside of Horsham, Victoria. The accommodation, food and wine was all included in the cost of the workshop and believe me there was so much food which Val had prepared for us. During the day when we worked Val had asked Pat to come and help with lunch. Pat was such a sweetheart. She would come around and make cups of coffee and tea for us and set up morning and afternoon tea so we didn't have to stop working. She would then come and whisk away any dirty dishes when we were finished. I could get used to that, I could get used to that very quickly.

Sylvania Park homesteads which is also home to the Mulgowrie Mohair Goat stud

500 acres only 15 minutes from the Grampians

Went for a walk and did some exploring when we arrived on the Friday

The Wimmera River is dry due to the drought with only stagnant pools here and there

Sunset and time to end my walk...

but not before finding this eagle's nest

I became a goat whisperer as I walked back through the paddock. I had to keep walking as stopping meant my clothes would get nibbled by the friendly goats.

In the kitchen having some pre dinner drinks

Dinner is nearly ready

My room, I loved it!

My work space in the back corner of the shearing shed

All the wool slivers laid out ready for felting my scarf

Val (in green) showing Glenn how to start felting her beret

Hard at work

I forgot what this technique is called but its felting onto silk chiffon. This was created by Wendy and it will be finished with some fresh water pearls being hand stitched here and there.
We made slippers and left them to dry near the fire. Mine are the blue ones.

Some hats.

We pinned folds into our berets and left them to dry on the on the fireplace

Here's Wendy creating another piece of beautiful silk chiffon with felt and fibre embellishments

Oops already uploaded this pic hehehe
The shearing shed was full of activity.
I had such a wonderful time it really recharged my batteries. I have put my name down for next year. I also bought a lot of wool slivers to take home. The first thing I want to make is a little bag for Zoe in her new favourite colour, pink.