Monday, 25 January 2016

My cover illustration for 'The Secrets We Keep' by Nova Weetman

My acrylic on wood illustrations for the cover of The Secrets We Keep by Nova Weetman, shortly to be published by The University of Queensland Press.  I am very happy that I can finally show this to you.  A fantastic read and -- AGAIN -- a wonderful team to work with.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

My illustrations for Iris and the Tiger





Happy New Year!  I am so pleased to finally be able to show you the illustrations that I worked on last year for the cover and chapter headings of Iris and the Tiger by Leanne Hall, published by Text.  (Design: Imogen Stubbs.)  The little portraits and other elements were painted separately, mostly on wood.  The designer then scanned and assembled them.

Monday, 7 December 2015

'In Your Dreams': my collaboration with Gorman

These pillowcases are sold as a pair.  Each one says 'Stay' on one side, and 'Go' on the other.  They are my contribution to fashion/ home wares label Gorman's 'In Your Dreams' design collaboration with five Australian designers/ illustrators/ artists.  You can see the entire range and actually buy them here.  25% of profits will go to Save the Children, which is brilliant.

Sorry about the rather mediocre photo, taken on my unmade bed the morning after I had actually tested them....!  

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

New in the shop: mirrors and a clock




 I have just put these brand new painted mirrors in the shop.  There is also a brand new clock, below. This arm belonged to a very wealthy entrepreneur named Ralph, who enjoyed wearing preppy fair isle sweaters and expensive time pieces.  (Acrylic on wood with a battery operated mechanism.)

Above: these two painted bats have already been sold (to two delightful ladies from Perth).  I thought that I would document them here anyway, because I quite like them.

Monday, 30 November 2015

New in the shop.

I had a lovely time at Markit yesterday.  Thank you to everyone who said hi, had a chat and even bought something!  Your support is very much appreciated.  However not everything that I made especially for the day was sold, so there are now some new things in my Etsy shop.  Above and below:  The Dress.  Painted patchwork on cut out wood.  Can be leant against a wall, or hung.  Inspired by the traditional clothing of Namibian women.

Above: there is ONE LAST Blue Apple Man in the shop too.  I was going to keep him for myself but decided that I would prefer to have his much larger sibling (see this post).
 Above: The Bad Behaviour Bat.  Salami, lollies, roulette, cigarettes, jam, fried chicken and gin.  That's all I could fit in.
 Above: a little stuffed monkey!  He is one of a kind.   Might make a nice stocking filler or pincushion.  He can also be hung on a wall.
 Above: a lovely lady wearing red lipstick, on a navy background.

Above: The Man Who Never Was.  A young man at a library in Oxford, pondering the dramas of adult life.  Thanks again to Miss Pen for her generous bat donation!  I do enjoy painting them.

Tomorrow I will update the shop with some new painted mirrors.

Monday, 9 November 2015

My show at Boom: "Cheap Pop"


Hello!  A couple of friends who were not able to make it to the opening of my show "Cheap Pop" (at Boom Gallery, 11 Rutland Street, Newtown) have asked if I could catalogue the work on my blog.  I also thought that it would be a good way to redress the fact that I am blogging less and less lately (damn that incredibly convenient and highly addictive Instagram.....!).  Above: Berliner Pho, a loving dedication to a fantastic soup that I ate a few months ago in Berlin, which seemed more tailored to the German palette than the Vietnamese.  A bit like those "Steak and Fried Rice" signs one used to see in front of Chinese restaurants here?  I love that sort of cross cultural adaptation.

Above: Geelong Player.  I wanted a really varied little family of wooden figures, and decided that it would be fun to revisit my footballers, as I still love them.

 Above: Kebab.
Above: Life.  A cross section of a worm (not in nature's colours, though) wearing a hoodie from Urban Outfitters.  I thought it would be an appropriate combination.
 Above: Marlboro Man, 2015. I always love documenting local pop cultural phenomena.  The boys in Melbourne are trading beards for moustaches and are still into the 'Normcore' look.  I decided to take his vest and shirt straight out of Seinfeld.  The cap is one that I observed a young Melbourne man wearing.
 Above: Olive as Kim Kardashian.  This one is dedicated to Gin, Chelsea and the young ladies at Trophy Wife.  SOLD.



Above: Tony.  This wasn't actually meant to be our former PM Tony Abbott, but after he was toppled recently, I decided that I would name my little man after him, mostly out of an unexpected pity.

 Above: No.1 Ideas Woman.  A double sided self portrait.
Above: Dalmatian Clock Hand.  (A functioning clock, part of a series of wooden 'severed arm' clocks that I have been making sporadically since 2010.) When I was in Croatia in August, I visited the Ethnographic Museum in Split for the first time.  This work is dedicated to the fantastic textiles there.  I hope to make more work early next year inspired by the museum and the brilliant book on fishing that I bought there.
 Above: Egg Woman! (I decided at the last minute to add sauce.)
 Above: Save Earth It's The Only Planet With Pizza.  SOLD.
Above: Split 1979, another work inspired by my visit to The Ethnographic Museum in Split.  
(My family spent the summer of 1979 in the former Yugoslavia, when to our delight the Mediterranean Games were held in Split, hence the souvenir beach towel, above.)
 Above: St Kilda Player.
The 'windows' series: scenes that I have witnessed while walking past windows in my neighbourhood, or rather, my memory of them.  Above and below:  Simpson Street, 6pm and Rotherwood Street, 5pm.  The scene above was one that I witnessed regularly, until recently.  Surrounded by piles of books, I had the feeling that this old couple needed to glean as much information as possible before their lives ended.  Now there's an unplugged fridge blocking the view, and last week that chintz couch was on the footpath.
Below: in contrast, a scene that I glimpsed for a moment.  Dressed in black in a modernist white room, I imagined that these were extended family members who had just returned from a funeral, and were playing out their usual roles, only with unusual exaggeration.



 Above and below: Attitude Sofa and Pain is Just a Skin You Can Shed.   Billboards that I have observed in my suburb.  I am endlessly fascinated by the ways in which masculinity is created and depicted.  The AFL footballer below is to me a fairly comical and extreme example; but I liked the contrast of the conceited man on his expensive couch above with the tiny worker setting his enormous image up.

(When I took the photo that I used as a reference for the painting, I noticed afterwards that the other workmen -- who should have been hoisting UP the poster -- were actually waving at me and making childish gestures with their hands.  Men!)
All of work shown here is acrylic on plywood.  The figures vary from approximately 25 - 70 cm in height.  The paintings are all 50 x 40 cm.
There are a few pieces which I have not shown here.  I am having some technical difficulty with Blogger today, and thought that I had better finish this post before all of the work I put into it disappears!  For the full catalogue, have a look at Boom's site.
No, this wouldn't happen on Instagram.  But then, the failing of Instagram is that it is much more difficult to tell a detailed story like this one.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

The last couple of weeks

Hello!  Recently I had the great pleasure of working on a book cover for Text Publishing: Iris and the Tiger by Leanne Hall.  The little portraits shown here are just a few of those which will be featured on the front and back covers.  I also worked on black and white chapter heading illustrations, which were lovely to do, too.  The book will be released in January, but can be pre-ordered here.
 HOORAY!  Calendar girl for November!  My illustration for the Frankie magazine calendar, 2015, above.
Above: Another wooden figure for my exhibition at Boom Gallery, Newtown (Geelong) starting this Friday November 5.  Egg Woman!
Painted bats for Modern Times, above and in progress, below.  Thanks again go to Miss Pen for being so thoughtful and finding these for me in Tasmania!)

Dark coloured backgrounds are so effective but such a pain in the butt to paint!  You always need at least two coats, sometimes three.

My wooden volcano on TV!!!!  Richard Corser and Sarah Snook in The Beautiful Lie, ABC1.  The couple stares into their sleeping child's room, their lives about to change forever....  (Boom!)
 Above: a very LARGE pile of dinosaurs for Modern Times.....
And more work for Boom Gallery, above and below: No.1 Ideas Woman (a double sided self portrait) and Berliner Pho, a dedication to a strange and wonderful bowl of the stuff that I had in Berlin: a Vietnamese-German hybrid.  I LIVE for that sort of cross cultural food.

Above: an illustration for Jean-Paul Gagnon, a political philosopher specialising in democratic theory, who has been writing about democratic social structures in the animal and plant kingdom.  This illustration will be on The Conversation soon.

Friday, 16 October 2015

The last couple of weeks....



Hello!  I have been busy working on a lovely illustration project that I can't show you yet, and preparing for my show at Boom Gallery which starts on November 5.  I will have a big strange family of wooden figures, and five conventionally rectangular shaped paintings in the show.  Above: a wooden figure in progress.

Details of two conventionally shaped paintings that I have been working on for the show.  Above: Attitude Sofa, based on a billboard that I saw recently going up on the corner of Bridge and Punt Roads in Richmond.  Below: Rotherwood Street, 5pm, part of a series based on scenes I have witnessed while peering through windows in my neighbourhood.

Above: Meet Sidney Nolan in the window of my favourite bookshop, Readings, in Carlton!!!  YAY!!!!  It's next to the Alice Oehr illustrated The Little Book of Australia's Big Things, which makes it even better.
Above: this month's artwork for Gardening Australia magazine, minus a little seed-strewing figure, which I painted separately but now cannot find......