my new Christmas Chocolate box for Koko Black!

Koko Black have realeased their Christmas Boxes and I can finally show you my painting! Hooray! I am so proud :-)

It came up beautifully on the boxes and they are available for a limited time this Christmas. They are full of hand made BEAUTIFUL chocolates. And Oh so delicious. And did I mention, delicious? Yes. I like chocolate.

The oil painting itself is in their Royal Arcade salon, I believe. I will have to go and visit it soon. Let me know if you have spotted it! I will be putting the pine-lapse movie of the painting up on YouTube soon. I’ll pop it on here too when it happens.


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Tiger. Hare. Girl. Bear. continues

The exhibition is going wonderfully well. We had a great opening with lots of people and pictures and champagne and red dots. Huzzah!


And then I saw my pictures and time-lapse drawings on the big screen…

And now…



Because, why not? I’ll be manning it for 3 days next week so I might see you if you are cruising by :-)

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Opening tonight!!

The day has come! 6-9pm No Vacancy Project Space, the Atrium, Fed Square.


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No email!

Oh dear. It looks like the last mail out if the invitation has broken my email! If you are trying to contact me, please use until we are back from whatever bottomless pit I’ve been cast into.

You can also find me on Facebook – click the Facebook link to your right :-)

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All work for the show is new and for sale. The opening night is on Thursday 7th November, but the exhibition will be open for preview on Tuesday and Wednesday. Works will be gradually added to the exhibition website this week.

Please come along and join us! Feel free to pass this along to others who might enjoy something a little different…

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the Month of Markets

There has been too much happening in the last couple of weeks. A good portion of the house and my studio are being torn apart so that we can finally have functional windows and I can more easily work through the hot summer days and nights. Interesting timing, I know! It’s looking great though – we now have windows… the rest is a bit of a work in progress.

Through all of that I am hard at work on my exhibition and have started the Month of Markets (commonly known as October). On Saturday I hoofed it to Ballarat for the absolutely splendid Design Exchange. That is one beautiful space. We were treated to live music all day and I got to meet a lovely crowd of locals and travellers. I will most certainly be back.

This Saturday it is the Sisters’ Market in Coburg, followed by the Maker’s Market on Sunday 20th, and the set is completed by a first-time appearance at the Kensington Arts and Craft Market on Sunday 27th.



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New cards

I’m working on some new cards today. This is a favourite of mine and I’m thinking of turning it into a print too. I think the rabbit has just hopped out of the wallpaper…

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Today’s thought about Charlie Brown, drawing and the glory of the epic fail

Pete was reading something about an old Charlie Brown movie this morning and we got talking about how no one would make that movie now. In it, Charlie Brown suffers dissapointment after disappointment only to lose in the end and feel utterly miserable. It is all true to form for poor old Chuck, and it is Linus that sums it up when he reminds Charlie Brown that even though he didn’t win and he feels like he let everyone down – the world didn’t end. It’s small consolation but it is one of the most realistic accounts of childhood that I have ever heard.

So, here’s the problem. Are we doing kids a favour telling them they can do everything they want? That all they have to do is dream big? The problem is, it just isn’t how the world works. Society can work to ensure that there is a basic level playing field so that everyone is free to try something. But just wanting it isn’t enough. Sometimes dedicating your life to something won’t even get you there. And the weird phenomenon of fame for ,well, no reason that I can see, is probably the most destructive thing ever because it suggests that you can have fortune, influence and celebrity just for existing. Which you could argue rather belittles the achievements of the millions of everyday people who actually DO something in life.

I’m writing about this because it reminded me of a conversation I had at a market a while back with someone who mused (as people often do) that they had always wanted to be an illustrator, and asked if it is hard. Of course, there are a lot of hard things about being an illustrator which are easy enough to list. But realistically  there are two major impediments.

The first is natural talent. Now I’m not being a bastard – I genuinely believe that anyone can learn to draw. Just as anyone can learn to play music or dance. There are rules you can learn, tricks and shortcuts, set routines and patterns to use that will help someone who has no natural ability whatsoever. What you can’t expect though is that you will be amazing at it. I will never be amazing at design. I am competent but not talented and have no natural flair for it. For some people, having a go at something new will lead them to discover a latent natural ability. But most people will discover that it will take long, hard, tedious work before you get anywhere that is satisfying.

So here’s the second thing. Obsession. Drawing isn’t magical and artists aren’t magicians. Artists are obsessive. They think about the theory and they practise all the time. They see art everywhere – not in galleries but in shapes and colours. They are artists for their entire lives because, even before they recognise that they are doing it as a job, they are practising. And they are continually working out how to be better. They start at the beginning and they just keep on doing it.

I reckon you can get by with one out of two of these things. Obsession without talent will give you the drive to do the hours to get better. Talent without obsession will give you the satisfaction of doing some good work but you will probably never be as good as you could be if you just practised more.

So. Where does that leave us? I say have a go, learn some tricks and get drawing if you want to. Only don’t be discouraged that it is hard and that you don’t get anywhere fast, because it doesn’t work that way and that’s probably what we should be telling kids. It’s a journey – enjoy the small accomplishments, set small immediate goals and bigger long term ones if you want. Take your time and find ways to enjoy it. And if you’re not obsessed with it, don’t expect to turn it into a career. An obsessive compulsion to draw (or do anything in life) will see you through the hard times, a gentle inclination, won’t.

You don’t have to be the best, everything doesn’t have to be easy and fun, you won’t win them all, you may not win anything. But luckily life is about more than that. Just participating is worth something. Maybe not to everyone else, but to you. Charlie Brown needs to remember that before he failed the final test in his movie, he succeeded at a dozen smaller things.

And, call me crazy, I actually like the term epic fail because it has greatness to it. The greatness was trying in the first place.


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New girl

Here’s a new girl in honour of all if this rain :-)

She is part of a new little series… More details to come…

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markets ahoy

It’s Makers Market time this weekend so I’ll be happily ensconced in the dry and warm at the Abbotsford Convent tomorrow.

And good news! The Sister’s Market is back up and running with two dates booked for the Coburg Town Hall.

Saturday 24th August 10 – 4 pm
Saturday 12th October 10 – 4 pm

I have updated the Markets Page with all of the dates for this year and I promise to keep things updated from now on!

See you tomorrow I hope  :-)

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