Monday, December 24, 2012

Who took CHRISTmas away?

Madonna And Child - Raphael 1516

It appears that someone is phasing out the word 'Christmas' and replacing it with 'holiday'.  Now I ask you folks, what are we celebrating here if not for the birth of Jesus Christ, without that there would be no 'Christ'mas.  Don't get me wrong, I am more 'evolution' than 'ark', but I do accept that (in a historical context) Jesus Christ existed...AND that millions of people want to celebrate his birth.

There are a few people who like to celebrate my birth too, but no one is saying 'Happy Holiday' on my birthday. (I don't get a holiday...but that's another story).

Why is this happening?  We allow all sorts of people to have their own 'special' celebrations (Hanukkah, Ramadan, etc.) PLEASE can we keep Christmas.

What is the next step?  Should we destroy all the wonderful paintings in the world, dating back centuries, simply because they illustrate the birth of Jesus Christ.

I TOTALLY REFUSE this concept, and in this spirit I give you the following:

Madonna and Child With Saints - Titian, 16th Century
Madonna With Child - Bellini, 15th Century
Nativity - Gerard David, 16th Century
Christ's Birth - Jacques Darat, 15th Century
The last image by the most famous of all, Leonardo Da Vinci, illustrates the amount of beauty in the world that would be lessened by removing 'Christ' from our vocabulary.  DON'T let it happen.

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!...and to all, good night.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Where does time go?

We all know, particularly at this time of year.  For those of us who make cards, gifts, etc., there're hardly enough hours in the day.

I make lots of cards each year and waft between collaged bits of cards I've received, original paintings, and abstract designs.  Whatever mood takes me.

It's all time-consuming...but oh, what fun to immerse yourself in such task.  Thoughts of distant friends running through your pressure to perform.  Just creative play!!!

I wish you all a Happy Christmas, and fun-filled, creative, 2013.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

We have a winner!...and another!

I diligently cut the list of names, then folded and put them in a hat.  Of course it's a Santa hat, indicative of the Season.

Richard obliged by choosing....

Congratulations will find this in the mail...IF you send me your snail mail address....


'Mint Chocolate' - original ATC

And Sue will receive ephemera, tho', as you are in Australia, perhaps you'd prefer a mix of painted papers and foreign ephemera, etc.  Let me know, AND send me your postal address.

Congratulations girls.  I appreciate your comments and support of my blog.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Mail Art - for me, and YOU

A RAK postcard from the talented Terrie Purkey
Mail Art has become a part of my life this year.  There are several bloggers out there who host various art swaps, some of which I can't resist....AND there are the thoughtful and kind blogging friends who just send me stuff, like the above.

La Wendula often hosts 'Paper' swaps.  This requires you to register with her for each swap, she selects a partner for you, and you exchange various themed papers useful for collages and other art works.  This month's swap is called 'Yummy Papers" wraps, recipes, menus etc.  I'm collecting all sorts of stuff.

Papers I received in a 'painted papers swap.

Karen Isaacson is also a serial mail art swapper.  She hosts swaps every month from her blog "Mail Me Some Art'  Bookmarks, ATCs, name it she'll organise a trade.

Bookmarks received from  Chris Miser, Rita Bellanca, and Lorna Sommer

I've taken to ATCs with a vengeance, and belong to several online groups that not only trade but also have challenges, two of which I've won recently.  YAY!...this meant a letterbox FULL of of course.

ATCs For All sent me some fab stuff as a prize...Sakura micron pens, ATC blanks etc.

My fondness for ATCs led to an an amazingly coincidental trade last week.  I had my neighbours over for drinks and brought out my ATC album to show them.  It turns out that Kamali, from across the road, has just begun to trade also. We traded a couple of cards, and I was knocked out by her 'Oriental' ATC.

...lucky me.

All that said, this is my 200th post.  Who'd have thought. Sooooo... it's GIVEAWAY time.  This time I'll get R to choose from a hat or something.  Last time he chose on merit he was far too anxious about it.

I will have two prizes, and you can nominate which you'd prefer, as some people don't use ephemera in their work.  First out of the hat will win....

'Mint Chocolate' ATC
The next will win an envelope of Australian epemera for use in collages etc.

Just comment for a chance.  We'll draw the winnner in a week.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Exhibition Opening

The opening of the Rosebed St Gallery's Xmas exhibition was, as usual, packed!  The doors opened just after 7 pm and it was like the post-Christmas sales. 

Here I am with my small display of works
Amy, Maya, and Noela Mills
Kym Barrett, Guess Who, and Kim Schoenberger
Kim Schoenberger with her small sculptures (and my addition of words)
Kim, Annie, and Kari
It was great to catch up with so many artists/friends and to see the wonderful variety of creativity.

I expect that there will be many sales before this show is over.

This is my 199th one will mean a giveaway. Hmmmmm...what will I part with?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Exhibition Invitation

The Annual Xmas show is on soon at Rosebed Street Gallery.  It's always packed, and great fun, with art disappearing out the door in a constant stream.

The other side of the above is divided into tiny snippets of the various artists works.  I've split it into two so you can 'get' the picture.

Not brilliant resolution, but at least you can see the variety of work that will be available for sale.

This is my favourite show of the year, and I wish you all could come but hey, I know you'll be there in spirit.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Bless me followers.....

...for I have sinned.  It's been three weeks since my last post and I have only one excuse. I'm over-committed. 

SOMETHING will have to go.

Have been madly organising small paintings for the Rosebed St Gallery's Xmas show.

The three top paintings are 10" x 10" and titled, l to r, Patchwork, Splash, and Eight. The small works are 4" x 4" and incorporate pieces of a huge jigsaw puzzle I found in an Op shop.  They are therefore aptly named 'Puzzle Pieces' 1-10.

This show is a 'takeaway' show.  You pay, you take... perfect for Xmas gifts.

In between I've been working on a piece for Dale Copeland's January exhibition online at her Virtual Tart site.

The exhibition is titled 'Exhibit No Fear' and I have done a collage.

And there's more...... am working on my 13 collages for the 15th Annual International Collage Exchange, AND an online exhibition on Virtual Tart in February.  Not to mention organising three paintings for Studio 4 Gallery's Xmas show.

It's all go. Everyone's in the same boat, and we'd better all keep paddling or we'll come to grief. 

My friend Seth Apter is the most over-committed bloke I know.  As well as his assorted art commitments, and there are many, he's organised an art auction of many yummy bundles of arty stuff to assist the people affected by the huge storm, 'Sandy'.  PLEASE visit his site might see something you really must have.  You only have until Monday (Australia time).

Apart from all that I've recently won a Second Prize for...

...and in the same exhibition bought a painting of Jenni Kelly's....

Oops, I've cut a bit off the top...but you can see how beautiful it is.  I'm sure she's been painting in my garden.

Think I've covered most of the recent events, other than all the fabulous O/S mail I've received lately, but I'll save that for another day.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Collages Success!

At last the collages for To The Power Of N have been published on Joel Lambeth's site. What a wonderful collection!  You must visit and see them all. I have two favourites....Allegra Newman (USA), and James Agnes Arlow(USA).  They are totally opposite in construction... one is lush and complex, the other simply sophisticated in design.  I'm honoured to be in such company.

...but there's more.....


The above collages were produced for Joel's individual challenge,  'Carry The One'.  Check the link for information.

The materials I had to work with were:

From these I had to produce a 5" x 7" collage on black mat board.  As always I did two...and still only used a fraction of the images provided. 

Fun, fun, fun!..and it's nearly my time to make collages for the annual International Collage Exchange.  Check out this link and perhaps you'll join in for the coming year.

Thursday, October 11, 2012


On March 1st I posted about the 'rust'  trend in art-making. I featured the work of other artists and my first rust-dyeing efforts.  Now 'Paper Traders' is having a 'rust' challenge.  I LOVE a challenge and have used some rusty, and rust-dyed, bits to produce a mixed media painting.

The painting is 30 x 30 cm on gallery-wrapped, wide edge, canvas.  I'm saving it for an exhibition as it is one of the few works that I'm actually quite satisfied with.  Perhaps that is because it is sooooo out of my usual comfort zone.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

To The Power Of N - Collages


As you can see, I've been collaging again.  Most of you have heard about the Joel Lambeth annual collage challenge called To The Power of N.  I was chosen among twelve international collagists to participate.  We each received identical pieces of paper, with both text and images, and a piece of A4 black mat board.  Our brief is to produce a collage on the board from only the pieces provided.

The twelve pieces we were given are here, back and front:

Looks easy you say?  Not so....that is until I began. I moved papers around for ages looking for something that sparked an idea. Then I found two faces of similar size and thought...'Haha, these could each be part of the other'.  That made me think of the title "Metamorphosis"  which in turn made me think of caterpillars and butterflies.  Some of the other pieces of paper were then turned into origami butterflies.  Hooray... problem solved.

That wasn't enough for I was having all sorts of ideas...and there were so many bits of paper left!...all I needed was a piece of mat board (my stash provided this). True to form I just HAD to do another (as if one wasn't enough).

I Come In Peace
Fun, fun, fun.....thanks Joel.... and I still have bits left.

He's having another challenge called "Carry The One" in which anyone can participate.  If you want to challenge your imagination, try it.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

In The Picture

It's been over a week since I posted but I can truly say I've been spending most of it in the studio.  However it's time to play 'self-portraits' with Urban Muser.

The theme was 'New Perspective'...we were to try something new.  Well, I've taken photos of my hands, feet, reflections, about if I'm not quite there at all?

A Ghost Of My Former Self
Flattering to say the least.

Perhaps I could be watching myself in the mirror...two for the price of one...AND Photoshopped as well.

I've Got My Eye On ..... ME
The whole thing is a little narcissistic I agree, but also challenging.

Everyone has a different take on this theme.  To see them all go to the Urban Muser linky party.  Talk about creative!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Photo Scavenger...the Aussie version

Here I am again, unable to resist doing Rinda's photo scavenger hunt  AGAIN.  My previous scavenger post (17th August) was on holidays in Europe and Singapore.  Now I'm determined to show more of Australia. Some of the photos were a little dreary so  just had to do a little 'tweaking' in Photoshop.

In order of Rinda's list, here goes....

1.  A pier:  This extraordinary pier is at Mandorah Island in Darwin.  We spent a lovely few hours lunching at the pub here.

2. A clothesline:  Of course, my very own clothesline, complete with washing, as viewed through a flannelette's been winter here.

3. A border:  Will a lace border do?


4. A roadside stand selling something:  Well, this is more of a roadside 'sit' (hope it counts).  This guy is turning out spray paintings for sale in Brisbane.

5. A train:  Our friend, Bill, who is driving this train, built it himself in his 'shed' just around the corner from our house. He is part of a model train group that has fun days for children and various charities.

6. A historical Landmark:  The Endeavour River in Cooktown, where Captain James Cook first landed.  It is a great place to spend a few days of R & R, but a long way from anywhere.

7. A person playing a musical instrument:  My clever hubby playing the didgeridoo...or trying to.

8. A person dressed as an angel or a statue of an angel:  I made heaps of these angels, but only kept a few.  They come out each Christmas.

9.  A fountain:  This gorgeous fountain is the centrepiece of the memorial park in my hometown in NSW.

10.  A horse:  There is an abundance of horses in this area, and the local show (or 'fair' for those in the USA) is the place to see them.

11. A shadow:  Me again, in a local park.

12. A maze, labyrith, or trail:  This is the track through our local bush park.  We walk this way almost every morning.

13.  A library:  My front room is called, alternatively, the library or the gallery.  Take your pick.  It is the repository for my paintings on their way to or from exhibitions.

14.  A person playing with a ball:  I took this at a basketball game in my hometown. You can barely see the ball so I just had to show you where it is.

15. Someone dancing:  Friends Di and Jude really getting into 'Nutbush City Limits'.  You rock girls!

16.  A bride:  I just loved this wedding. Vicki and Brenden had a perfect day.

17. A church, chapel, cathedral, or mosque.  Outback churches are just soooo quaint.  That's Richard appearing on the right-hand side.

18.  A movie poster:  The Sapphires is an Aussie film showing everywhere now.  It's about an aboriginal group of girls who sang for the troops in Vietnam.

19. An outdoor stairway:  Does a stairway from the beach fit this one?

20. A swing, or hammock, hanging from a tree: A new neighbour conveniently just put one up.

21. A picture of you standing with something that symbolises your nation:  The flag fits the bill perfectly.

I guess that's a summary of my life.  Well, some of it anyway.

Many thanks to Rinda for the's been fun.