Thursday, April 30, 2009

Memories of Darwin days

In the early 1980's we lived in Darwin. After coming from the inland bush of the Northern Territory, it was a welcome change to be near the sea, although stingers & crocodiles kept us out of the water for most of the year. However our swimming pool gave us a chance to cool off. Because of the proximity of Darwin to our northern Asian neighbours we often holidayed in exotic locations.
Gone Troppo # 4 pays tribute to the riotous tropical colours found in these locations. The flower featured is a variety of heliconia. I'm drawn to colour & shape!
Thank you for adding your comment regarding my website. All the names are going in for a chance to win a 12 month free subscription to Get Creative magazine, an Australian publication covering children's craft projects & mixed media.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Mining- Dobbyn Headframe

One of the techniques which has been in my repertoire for the last 10 years or so is using oil sticks to take rubbings of "things" that give a sense of place. The Mining- Dobbyn Headframe quilt has calico fabric covered in rubbings of old things from the Mt Cuthbert copper mining area, near Mt Isa & Cloncurry in NW Queensland, Australia.
I have spent many happy hours walking slowly through the bush in search of these treasures to rub.
The detail above is from They Came For Copper & can be seen in the Portfolio section of my website.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

African Collection # 3- My tribe

During this week, to celebrate the launch of my new website, beautifully designed & executed by Brenda Gael Smith I'm sharing an image from 1 of the series in my portfolio. African Collection # 3- My tribe was made for the Quilters Guild of NSW Inc Challenge in 1996.
I have never been to Africa but have travelled there virtually through the National Geographic magazines of childhood & many wildlife programs seen on TV. When I was at the SAQA Conference in 2007 my roommate was Dena Crain who lives at Lake Baringo in Kenya, Africa. So I'm getting a little day...
If you would like to be in the draw for a free 12 month subscription to the Get Creative magazine please leave a comment. The lucky winner will be announced on Sunday May 3.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Crazee Kactus Quilt

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to look at my new website & for leaving a congratulatory comment. Feel free to comment today & you are in the draw for a free 12 month subscription to the Get Creative magazine which profiles Australian artists working in many fibre/mixed media fields.
One of my early original quilts Crazee Kactus Quilt from 1992 is still a favourite.I think of this as my Afro American asymmetrical phase. The design came to me while I was standing in a long bank queue & I scribbled it down on the back of a withdrawal slip. The cactus, lower border & sashing feature a curtain fabric from Desert Designs & was bought in Sydney at Darling Harbour.
While my memory for some things may be selectively dropping off, my fabric purchase memory is very sharp! Is it the same for you?

Sunday, April 26, 2009

My NEW website launched today!!

I'm very happy to announced the launch of my NEW website!! It has been a pleasure to work with Brenda Gael Smith on the design & fresh new look I was after. I hope you will visit the site which can be accessed easily now from this blog.
I'd love to get your comments on the new look, so please leave a message here & be in the running for a free 12 month subscription to
GET CREATIVE magazine. Thanks Jacquie Byron editor of Get Creative for that generous offer.
I'll announce the lucky reader next Sunday May 3.
The quilt above is Anthills- Study in Brown in a private collection.

Sam's Quilt

I have found the photo of my parent's in law Dot & Sam with Sam's quilt. This was made by the family to commemorate Sam's service in the RAAF, Australia based during World War 2. Bob scanned old photos & Sam's service documents & they are printed on the blue fabric of the central area. Family members contributed pieced blocks which tell the story of life before & after the war at Daisy Hill, Logan City where Sam grew up, farmed & raised his family.
This quilt was in the 2006/07 touring exhibition Peac-ed with Love which had many memorial quilts from families of service men & women from all conflicts.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

2QAQ meeting

Today is Anzac Day & we commemorate the sacrifice & service of the men & women of the armed forces past & present.
It is also 2QAQ meeting day & journal quilt reveal. The set topic was A Splash of Colour. My original idea changed completely & now I have "Pond Reflections" above. Some hand stitching with Perle cotton finished off the needle felted piece.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Red Centre

My quilt Red Centre is part of the touring My Place exhibition that will be coming to the Textile Art Festival. This collection of 90 quilts, 30 each from Australia, New Zealand & South Africa are currently on display in NZ at the Minerva Gallery Wellington. Dijanne Cevaal is the Australian curator.
Personally I'm looking forward to seeing the pieces in person because no matter how good the image is on a computer monitor it doesn't compare to the moment of coming face to face with the cloth!
And while you're at the Festival you may also want to acquaint yourself with the diverse & beautiful collection in the STATE of the ART quilt 09 touring exhibition of which I'm curator.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Textile Art Festival

If you're a stitcher, knitter, weaver, felter, surface designer or just curious the new & exciting Textile Art Festival will interest you. It's coming to Brisbane from May 29-31 at the Convention Centre Southbank.
Both of the workshops I'm presenting revolve around creating your own unique fabric with paint, printing & oil sticks. These images are some examples of decorative printing without the extra textural element of stitch. Hope you can join me.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

2Q Challenge & Inchies

I had the privilege of judging the Queensland Quilters Challenge yesterday with Lyn Barber. The theme of "25" was interpreted in a wide variety of styles & techniques. Congratulations to all who entered. The winners will be announced at 7.30pm on May 29 at the Circle Gallery 274 Montague Rd West End so my lips are sealed until then!
The delightful caramel tarts & poppy seed cake were part of our lunch & Jane had wonderful napkins reminiscent of Jane Sassaman designs.

The wonderfully encrusted Inchie above, was made by Joy Nelson & is a teaser for the Inchie making session at 2QAQ on Saturday. I'll be wearing it so you can see it first hand.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Regina Benson

This wonderful invitation arrived in the post last week. Regina Benson
dyes,discharges, rusts, stitches & manipulates fabric to create works that undulate on & off the wall. Her work above, Surround Sound was in Quilt National 2007 & received the Award of Excellence.
I saw it in Athens, Ohio at QN07 & it glowed with mystery, drawing you in to investigate further. If you are lucky enough to be in Birmingham at the Festival of Quilts in August, you will see Regina's work & be able to attend a lecture.
And unfortunately although I'll be in the States in May I'll miss her exhibition On the Curve at the Byron C Cohen Gallery of Contemporary Art in Kansas City.

Monday, April 20, 2009


Following on from the Wholly Holes workshop, I'd like to share my quilt "CAPTIV8ING" with you. It was made to celebrate the launch of the Bernina series 8 machines in Australia & will tour with Bernina at various Quilt & Craft shows in 2009 where you can also see more wonderful original entries from the 8 series competition.
My main design area is made from metallic & rayon thread created fabric- the silver, white & red section which has used more than 5 kilometers of thread. The black whole cloth background is a cotton/linen blend with subtle sheen.
Bernina has a free online magazine Sew Inspirational with projects, informative articles about sewing & travel, artist profiles etc.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Wholly Holes workshop- day 2

Day 2 of any workshop is always interesting. Students have settled into exploring, ideas are generated & acted upon & the creative interactions spark new activity round the "messy" paint & oil stick table. I love teaching Wholly Holes for all those reasons & more!
Not being a project class lets magic happen as you can see from the photos of pieces here- some are stitched, others wait for "more"!
Thanks Wendy, Meredith, Jeannie, Raewyn, Robyn, Suzi, Joy & Fay for sharing your pieces with us.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Wholly Holes workshop

The wonderful work here is from members of the Schoolhouse Quilters group who are painting, rubbing & stitching in the Wholly Holes workshop which runs for 2 days. Thanks for sharing Meredith, Suzi, Muffin, Jeannie, Joy & Wendy. This is just the start of their original creations.
In the meantime, the Taiwan International Quilt Exhibition 2009 has finished & my quilts are on their way home. Leni Wiener was one of the international tutors who attended & you can read more about her experiences on her blog, via her website.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Southbank arbour

There are so many interesting architectural features at Southbank, I wanted to share some more with you. The arbour walkway is like a backbone supporting the lush Bougainvillea growth. I love the organic nature of each piece making the whole.
I haven't experienced the mini "London Eye" yet.

And to end, another mosaic which reminds me of the work of Lorraine Carthew a Brisbane based textile artist.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Mosaic art

Mosaic art on the river promenade at Southbank is bright, colourful & eye catching if you can take your eyes off the river views & look down! Brisbane has developed this wonderful public space after Expo 88 was held in the same area. Complete with beach, BBQ areas, lawns & gardens for the enjoyment of our sub-tropical climate, Southbank attracts locals & visitors alike.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Free art lessons

Would you take the opportunity if a free art lesson was on offer? Dr Manny, above gives free introductory talks about various aspects of art & I went to his excellent talk on Abstract Painting last month. Hands on audience participation enhanced the experience.
Oil Painting- tips & techniques is the topic on Saturday April 18- 2pm at the Art Shed, 274 Montague Rd West End

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Colour of crab

I hope you've had a great Easter break. Don't these sand crabs have the most glorious patterning & colour? Accompanied by some vino bianco & the company of friends- life is good!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Face art

Face painting isn't just for kids, not when you have Ria Willering, Body Art World Champion 2003 wielding the brushes. A visual artist living in Brisbane, Ria [] worked her magic on the children & adults with dragons, a were wolf, butterflies, a leopard & various other fantasy creations appearing to surprise us with the unexpected.

Thanks Owen for taking the in-progress photos above.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Anthill Country #3

I donated this small 12"square quilt Anthill Country #3 to the Studio Art Quilt Associates [SAQA] reverse auction which will get underway later this year to raise money for SAQA programs. A selection of the donated quilts will be seen at the International Quilt Festival Chicago April 16-19 & Anthill Country #3 will be in there.
Isn't it ironic that our quilts get to travel to more exotic locations than we personally do? My 2 previous donations are in private collections in California.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Tourist in my own town

Have you ever been a tourist for a day in your own town? I did just that & went to the cliffs at Kangaroo Point on the Brisbane River opposite the city Botanical Gardens & the CBD. The swift moving City Cats were moving up & down the river transporting passengers & rock climbers were clambering over the cliffs. Wonderful rock colours & textures called out to be interpreted in cloth.

The late afternoon cloudy conditions added a different dynamic to the scene.
Earlier in the day the iconic seafood shop Morgan's of Scarborough had been the lunch destination. No oysters left here!