I just love the beach landscape where we live. The banksias that seem to be happiest in sand, the pink Pig Face daisy that runs across the sand brightening up the dunes and best of all the beach grasses that shimmer silver grey. It amazes me that so many different plant varieties brave the harsh conditions of our coast.
The hill in the background is Picket Hill. It has special spiritual significance for the Gumbaynggir people.
This acrylic painting is about a meter square and painted from a combination of photos taken over time.
Miss Molly is a new addition to our garden. I love seeing her pottering about the yard looking for treats. She is frightfully timid and spend most of her time hiding from us. If we even look her way she struts cautiously away to cover, as if she is thinking to herself, “They can’t see me, they can’t see me.”
This is a small acrylic painting painted for a friend who gifted us her beloved chickens, when she could no longer keep them.
This Woodland Fairy costume was created for my friends daughter, who is a gorgeous dancer. We had such a lot of fun working on this one, hunting down fabric, trim and anything that might make this fairy costume a bit different. I tried to keep to a limited number of colours and fabrics and re used them in the props to give the whole set some continuity. Most of the flowers I made using the same fabrics, heat sealing the edges so they wouldn’t fray. The nest was made from a pot plant, coconut fibre insert decorated with feathers, wool and wool fibre. The egg posed an interesting design hurdle to overcome. This naughty woodland fairy was to steal an egg, drop it and break it. So..it could not roll, bounce or make a large thud when dropped. In the end I shaped a small bean bag into an egg shape and needle felted it to look like the others.
Last April we stayed at The Entrance with my mum. The sunsets were stunning over Long Jetty lake. On this particular evening the sun was transformed into a spectacular, giant red/crimson ball, like nothing I’ve ever seen before. The lake was alive with black swans, pelicans, herons and if you look closely fishermen. A truly beautiful place to watch the sun go down.
This glittery, translucent ballet skirt is a work in progress. It will be attached to a leotard also decorated with this gorgeous lace. These lace pieces, decorated with pearls and sequins, were saved for years by my friend (they belonged to her mum) in the hope that they would be used for something really pretty. I just love the way the yellow comes through the double layer of glittery net.
Before Christmas Chris from Coast Studios asked me if I could put together a set of icons for a client. I had a quick look at the millions of icon sets online. It was quite a challenge breaking everything down to its most simple form and also develop some kind of consistent style. After proofing Chris sent them back on this two tone background featuring client logo colours. It really gave them the consistency and style they needed to hang together as a set.
This year for my daughter’s birthday I made her a doll house. It is made from 5mm thick sheets of particle board. Not as sturdy as ply wood but when glued and painted thoroughly should last the distance. My only tools are a hand saw, electric drill and Dremel tool but they were adequate for the job. I like the challenge of working with what is at hand. The doors and door frames are reinforced with paddle pop sticks cut to length so the screws don’t pull through the particle board. We had an odd assortment of furniture, figures and animals that all needed to fit nicely in proportion inside her house. After looking at a few ideas I decided to make my own plans so it would be reasonable proportion. (Don’t you love youtube and being able to watch all those clever people out there who are happy to share their skill and knowledge. Thank you!) It is a work in progress. On the weekend I drilled through the back board and installed fairy lights so it looks beautiful at night. To finish it off she would like me to make a double opening front so it looks like a proper house. A holiday project for us.
Just now I have been enjoying practicing sketching portraits with my eldest. Sketching is something I did a lot when I was growing up. It is good to practice measuring proportions and looking at tones without being concerned about colour (though I do love colour). It was difficult to resisting putting in lines where the shapes are actually defined by subtle changes in tone instead.
This year our local primary School turns 100.We thought it was fitting that it’s hand draw logo should have a makeover. The school colours are maroon and blue. The elements of the original hand drawn logo were the river, mountains and dolphin. All important elements to keep because they are not only part of our landscape but also because these were the elements the kids loved in the original logo. The children have a magnificent view of the Dorrigo Mountain Range from the playground. They also see the Bellingen River winding past their school and from time to time the dolphins that travel up the tidal part of the river. Many of the children belong to the Surf Lifesaving Club and the beach is very much a part of the local culture. The abstract mountain shape is meant to symbolise not just the mountains but the dolphin fin and the fin of the surf boards & rescue boards the kids use at the beach each Summer. It also resembles the landmark Picket Hill we can see at the South end of North Beach. After many different versions we settled on this one because it was the most versatile. The logo needed to be able to be reduced in size so that it would fit on a small badge and still be readable. It also needed to be used on banners, hats & shirts. It also needed to be able to work on both maroon & blue backgrounds as well as black and white.
Last year I had some fun putting together this map for our local Urunga-Mylestom Chamber of Commerce for their annual food fair called TOAST. It happens every year on Father’s Day at Morgo Park, Urunga. It’s a beautiful spot where the Bellinger & Kalang Rivers meet before they reach the sea. The idea was for the map to be functional but attractive enough to be used as a poster or an advertisement. The background is created in Illustrator and then dropped into Indesign so that year to year changes are easy to make.