Thursday, April 17, 2014

A good Friday walk

There is nothing like a long hard walk to get the endorphins pumping,
bringing on that feeling of well-being.

Today's walk started out perfectly. Still, sunny and warm
until it turned to light and misty rain. Lucky we are pre-shrunk!

 Blackmans Bay 9am Good Friday 2014 Beautiful! We headed for the far clifftop. A gentle stroll.

 Up and around the clifftop.

 Stunning views with every step!

An hour later, back down onto the beach ...
"what happened to the glorious weather?" asks the oboe player.  Oh well, that's Tasmania!

It really is a good Friday!

Thank you, Paper and Ink Arts

It is always so lovely when someone offers to write something about you
or to be given the opportunity to write about yourself.

Thank you, Paper and Ink Arts for putting me in Calligrapher's Corner!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Some things just take time ...

A few years ago I created a lovely little Christmas card using a painting to the line technique inspired by Adolf Bernd's work. I have not used the technique since then but was teaching this method at the recent summer school.  You may have seen a snippet of this before.

Lilium et Rosa

I started this little work as an in-class demonstration and now I have finally finished it.

Lilium et Rosa (detail)

Also a couple of weeks ago I finished this work to be sent to Europe for a competition.
The theme of the competition is The Great War 1914 - 1918. Understandably, I concentrated on the ANZACS.

I have decided not to send it for a couple of reasons. 
To send this framed piece to Europe is approximately $250.  So what with the framing costs,
the cost to send to Europe, possibly the cost to send the work back, plus the entry fee,
I have had to say to myself, enough, it just isn't going to happen.
I got a quote through Pack & Send and also checked with Australia Post insured to Europe.
The competition has a nice prize purse but you must be in attendance on the opening night
to actually claim it - a little difficult from Australia.
Not that I would expect to win mind you but the kudos of winning,
the organisers told me, was more than one would want, surely.  Ha!

 Lest We Forget

 Lest We Forget (detail)

 I just love the way the watercolour behaves on this Hahnemuehle paper.
It is a lovely work and I am glad I have done it and that for me is what counts.

Monday, March 24, 2014

From the drawing board ...

... a commission!

I took some time to read up on this poem and enjoyed the research. It helped me tremendously with the presentation. 
The work is for a very special client and he will have the choice.


Not ground-breaking stuff but safe, strong layouts nevertheless!

... with desert sands ...

I wonder which one he will choose.

Friday, March 21, 2014

SY Preana 1896

For Christmas we received a gift for a lunch & cruise aboard the SY Preana 1896.

A fully restored wooden hulled boat that now cruises the
river Derwent and it's estuaries as it did back in the 1890's and early 1900's.

The Preana runs on a wood-fueled hand-fed steam engine and is the last remaining boat afloat to have escorted Sir Douglas Mawson's boat, SY Aurora, as it departed Hobart for Antarctica in December 1911.

I am happy to be corrected but I think the SY stands for Steam Yacht.

It was a stunning little boat and the meal was excellent!


What an engine!

The brass work was incredible.

 The Skipper, Jim

Trademarked glasses,

and unbelievable food.

Great company,

with Brett ...

Marilyn, me, Janet, David, John

enjoying our mountain and the cityscape.

Beautiful instruments,

and finally a place to lounge around in!

Thank you to the gift givers, Graham & Tracey.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

The Illuminated Letter

Another successful day was enjoyed with thirteen participants in my illuminated letter class last Friday.
I was delighted to have been invited to teach for the Art Society of Tasmania yet again
and my thanks to the committee and the students for including me in their 2014 program.

I chose this letter "D" to build for demonstration purposes as the day progressed.
At all times I express strongly the need to work on a swatch
so you can be guaranteed the behaviour of all media you are working with.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Tracing the Threads ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

~~~~~~~~~~ Tracing the Threads ~~~~~~~~~~


Introducing a five-day calligraphy workshop I am teaching in Mittagong in the beautiful Southern Highlands of NSW at Sturt Australian Contemporary Craft & Design winter school- June 30 to July 4, 2014

In Tracing the Threads the participants will explore the importance of lineage through the works of five English 20th & 21st century calligraphers, Edward Johnston, Irene Wellington, Sheila Waters, Gaynor Goffe & Ewan Clayton. We will enjoy and examine their work and their philosophies, recreate samples of their work in an effort to understand the importance in sound lineage so we can move forward from formal roots to freedom of personal statement.

The calligraphy of each will be analysed and recreated to build a small, unbound portfolio to help in tracing the threads to sew our own evolving calligraphic tapestry. This class will be open to beginner, intermediate and advanced students. Give yourself some really good foundations upon which to build.

The venue is a 1.5 hour drive by car or train trip south of Sydney

For more information about this hands-on workshop please contact me or for enrollment please contact Sturt:

s u m m e r t i m e - p l a n t d y e i n g

Pamela came to visit Tas in early February.

Here she is at the Eklektikos exhibition.



We decided to do some plant dyeing papers for grounds while she was here, just for fun.

In a huge storm, one of the gum trees came down at the Bay
so we took the opportunity to secure some leaves and gum-nuts from the top of the tree. Normally out of reach!

Pot-boiling leaves at the ready!

Flowers and leaves at the ready! Aren't these colours a m a z i n g !

Pam preparing the pot!

We boiled up the dye-pot for two hours with a little iron sulphate and some copper sulphate
to act as mordants. And while we boiled up the plant material we got our papers and other plants prepared:

 Papers Prepared!

Fuchsias randomly laid ... with a little thought!

Rose petals randomly laid ...

Cousin Alex thought he would like to try his hand ...

And then we enjoyed a lovely dinner party!

Netta & Pam at the dining table ...

A new day dawns and we are ready to open the vat!

Hmmm yes ... we are wearing our gloves!

At all times when handling the dye pot, wear gloves!

Out came the next batch of rolled gems!

Pam's gum leaves

My rose petals

 Alex's crocosmia twig

Pamela & Alex studying the booty!

Alex with his masterpiece ... there were two of these of course!

Alex insisted on co-signing. We thought that a good word to use for a mathematician!

A great deal of fun was had by all, Netta, Alex, Pamela, David & me.
Plus we produced some pretty lovely works for grounds ... watch this space on that one!

Pam went back to Canberra armed with new methods of eco-dyeing techniques and lots of papers!

Visit my website too!

Visit my website too!
In-class illumination demonstration

Something about Gemma

My Photo
Blackmans Bay, Tasmania, Australia
I am an Australian calligrapher. I enjoy working with of letters and grounds.