Friday, 17 October 2014

That's me -- on The Design Files!

I could barely get out of bed this morning, then when I did, I felt too scared to turn on the computer.  Eventually I did, and there I was.  My name up in Design Files lights and my bad-hair-dayed self smiling from Sean Fennessy's photo.  Thank you SO MUCH to Sean, Lucy and Lisa for welcoming me to your blog (for the second time actually, how lucky am I??!!) and for being so very very kind.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Markit at Fed Square

I will be taking part in Markit for the second time on Sunday November 23.  I am very excited that my Burning House has been included in the poster.  (Yes it has been flipped but it was clearly necessary for compositional purposes. The house doesn't really mind.)

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Gardening Australia magazine, illustration for November

I enjoyed doing this illustration for Gardening Australia magazine's November issue.  In this article, Michael contemplates how useful it is to plant certain vegetables over others, especially those that are only edible for a short amount of time during their growth period.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Design Files Open House 2014!

Very very honoured to be included AGAIN in this year's Design Files Open House, which will be open for the temptation of all at the end of the first week of December.  Teaser shot above by Sean Fennessy, showing Mrs Lucy Feagins contemplating a beautiful little piece by Madeline Kidd, with my own little work to her left!  All of the pieces that I have been commissioned to make for this year's House are word based, so it's a very different exercise to the portraits last year.  The lady is evolving, and so must I......

Monday, 13 October 2014

You're invited: Hut 13 exhibition starting this Saturday

Better late than never?  It was remiss of me not to post this a bit earlier; my little exhibition of new paintings at Hut 13 in Richmond is kicking off with wine and cake this Saturday October 18 at 3pm.  It will be a nice and sunny afternoon in the shop!

Some of the work that will be in the exhibition, above.  A mix of small and large pieces, all acrylic on wood.
For those of you who are familiar with Hut 13, please note that it has moved to Richmond:

Hut 13
79 Swan Street (corner of Lennox Street)
A five minute walk from Richmond Railway Station; or Tram No.70, Lennox Street stop.

Opening Saturday October 18, starting 3pm
See you there for wine and cake!

Exhibition runs until November 12.

Monday, 6 October 2014

New things in the shop

My Under the Couch quilt which was part of my window show at Craft Victoria last winter, is now in my Etsy shop.  I have been able to offer it at a somewhat reduced price.  Please click here for more details.
The large central panel is a digital print of a series of my illustrations, based on what I imagine might have been hidden under the couch in my household when I was a kid.  The rest of the patchwork is vintage, and each square is different.  The wadding is made from pure wool.
Above: the quilt in progress, and below in the window of Craft Victoria (what a privileged quilt!).

Some new cushions, and a Blue Apple Man to boot.  Below: this is number two in an ongoing occasional series of patchwork cushions featuring digital prints of my artwork.  Each one will be unique (and relatively large).

Above: the Love Me As I Am cushion features hand embroidered spinach in two shades of green.

Sunday, 5 October 2014

Miss November in the Frankie Calendar for 2015, and a bit more

I'm REALLY proud (OK maybe even gobsmacked) to show you my page from the Frankie Calendar for 2015.  My November lady is in fantastic company, as the calendar has a beautiful selection of illustrations from around the world.

Above: a peek at a painting in progress, on a tried and true topic.  I aimed to vary my painting style this time, even attempting to channel the beautiful brushwork of abstract painter Merryn Lloyd.  The jury is out on whether I have succeeded, but it was quite fun (and surprisingly quick to do).

An R-rated fabric scrap (you can see a bit more of the actual print here).  I am being a bit annoyingly secretive with this post, but I will show you more soon.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

This week: at the studio and at home

Seedling tag and seed packet painting in progress.

Painting a cut out wooden life size head: like playing God, but also kind of like playing with one of those life size Barbie hairdressing heads that I really coveted when I was a kid.
 Wrapping for an Etsy customer: quite a nice way to use a page from the current issue of Broadsheet...
Studio table in a mess: working on Gardening Australia sketches, portrait sketches, book illustration sketches....
 Spam + Souleiado
Kicking goals while watching the Grand Final yesterday.

Thursday, 25 September 2014

I am a finalist in the Etsy Design Awards!

I am extremely happy to announce that my The Hungry Eye illustration has been chosen as a finalist in the Etsy Design Awards.  Whether I deserve to win a trip to New York is arguable, but I know for a fact that I really really really need a holiday!!  If you have a spare moment, please vote for me by clicking this link.  You will also have a pretty good chance of winning a $250 voucher to spend on Etsy yourself.  Thanks very much in advance!

Sunday, 21 September 2014

This week: Hut 13 and Gardening Australia

Hello!  This week I painted more table tennis racquets, including this one, which received a surprising number of likes on Instagram.

 Above and below: details of a painting I am working on for the Hut 13 show next month.

Above: I still enjoy looking at this childhood book, The Knowhow Book of Puppets (by Violet Philpott and Mary Jane McNeil, published by Rigby Osborne in 1975) mainly because I love these simple little heads.  The little girl's is actually a pink sponge.
This month's illustration for Gardening Australia magazine was so simple that I almost felt guilty charging for it.  Almost: times like these make up for those months when the work seems to take forever.

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Playing with words, snow domes, etc.

 Most of this week has been spent on making work for the Hut 13 show starting mid October.  Above: this one comes from a thought that struck me while I was swimming in the Richmond pool recently on a rather cold winter's night.  The fact that the pool in Richmond is indoors and I was swimming in the slow lane did not deter me from having such a thought.  I took it as a form of psychological progress (i.e. being kind to myself instead of harsh) but really I think it is symptomatic of our culture of self entitlement.
And I put it on a guy's t-shirt so I guess that makes it OK.
Above: I had lunch with the lovely Rob Snarski this week, who gave me this special gift and confirmed that he has never been inside a snow dome before.  I will confirm in turn that my artwork has never been inside a snow dome before either (for a better look at the actual artwork inside the snow dome, pop over here).

I finished a painting which has been sitting idly in my kitchen for over a year.  It is a portrait of my lounge room, and I have just shown a detail of it above.  Trouble is, half of the stuff in the picture wasn't actually there to refer to anymore.  Luckily the Lips Mirror was, so I painted a portrait of the artist reflected into it, kind of in Renaissance style.

And last but not least: I painted this in the kitchen yesterday too.  Spring 1883, the art exhibition held in suites of the Hotel Windsor last month, had many highlights.  Number one for me was hearing someone say "I'm still waiting to be blown away."  I thought it was a very 2014 thing to say, especially as the exhibition was actually pretty damned good.  Self entitlement, huh.

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

New things for Hut 13 show

Working on some new things for a little show that I will be having at Hut 13 in Richmond next month.  

Monday, 1 September 2014

Mirrors in the shop

Hello!  These hand painted mirrors are now in the shop.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Luerzer's Archive 200 Best Illustrators Worldwide 2014-5

Very, very excited (particularly after the slight ego bruise of this morning) to receive my copy of the Luerzer's Archive 200 Best Illustrators Worldwide 2014-5 book with a double page spread of MY work in it!!!  SO honoured to be included with such a variety of talented people from around the globe.


Lilla Rogers is a US based illustration agency which holds an annual global talent search competition.  After reading about it in Uppercase Magazine, I decided to enter.  There are three elimination rounds.  The theme of the first was 'terrarium'.  Despite my increasing enjoyment of plants and my monthly Gardening Australia illustration assignment, I groaned when I read 'terrarium', because choosing something so blatantly 'in' implied that what they were searching for was something extremely commercial.  'Mass market' even, if I may lapse back into fashion industry speak for a moment.
Feeling that I was probably doomed from the start, I tried to subvert the theme a little, without taking it too far.  But I had a lot of trouble with the sketches, and that's generally a bad sign (not always though, a world of pain at sketch time can occasionally turn around too -- I would love to hear some opinions on that one).
(Sorry, these photos are in the wrong order -- damned Blogger.)  I painted the background in first.  The dark acrylic paint that  I chose was an annoyingly translucent one, which didn't help my attempt at a professional finish.  

Overall, it took way too long to complete.  But I am actually kind of happy with how it turned out, although surprised at how kids-y it looks too.  I had imagined it as something that teens might like, but in retrospect it's definitely for the smaller ones.  I prefer the close-up above, and in retrospect it might have been more interesting to just show the interior of the terrarium (as some smart entrants did), rather than the entire object.

Needless to mention, I have not made it to round two.