Thursday, 31 January 2008

kicking back

Can you believe this little guy? Look at the way he is kicking back while napping in the tree! And that's the real slope of the tree - I'm not holding the camera on an angle so he really is lying back hammock style. He was in a tree above where we camped on the weekend. How cute is that? I think all those gum leaves he eats make him very woozy. And of course koalas sleep during the day and wake at night so of course he was napping when I took this photo.

It was perfect weather, 34 degrees and sunny every day. We swam and swam and swam to keep cool in that great big river.

This photo was taken early morning looking at the river from our campsite.

And one of those gorgeous big red gums.

Thursday, 24 January 2008

thunderstorms and camping

We have a long weekend ahead and the weather is playing crazy with us so we can't decide (a group of 4 of us) whether to risk it and go camping or not. I love going up to the Murray River (about 3 and half hours drive) to camp in Barmah State Park. The huge red river gums and the completely awesome river are just wonderful to camp near. The park is full of koalas too so it's very cute to see their furry selves sitting in the trees chewing on gum leaves. Last time we were there one climbed down from a tree and tried to make its way to the river but couldn't work out how to get around our little dome tent (koalas have really bad eyesight). Eventually he made it though (sigh!) and then climbed another tree in front of us to chew leaves with a gorgeous orange sunset as back lighting. It was just incredible to watch.

So we'll make a decision about what to do based on the weather report this afternoon. They're predicting thunderstorms on and off which isn't much fun to camp in.

The image above is a new one of mine: tea stack - original drawing with digital colour.

Saturday, 19 January 2008

magic cups and flying teapots

It's bit scary for me to put these images out there in the ether. They're such a departure from what I usually do in my prints (both woodblocks and mixed media prints) but in the name of personal and creative growth I'm throwing them out there, and will accept any constructive criticism. What I liked about doing this print was the colours (thanks darling M :) and the playful idea of magic flying cups and teapots. I loved the idea of them picking up their pretty wings and flying off into the night. He heeeeee!

So here it is with a close up too.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

paper madness

There's been a bit of madness going on here today. I got so excited about it being my first studio day in my new work routine for 08 that I gave my self a headache by about 11am and had to go and have a cuppa with friend to calm down! Funny huh? I'll have to do things in a more measured, sensible fashion or I'll never last the day out :)

The other madness I have to share is a big beautiful book about chiyogami I treated myself to buying just before I left Japan (in 2005). The photo above is of the cover and the ones below are some inside shots. Basically every page (and this is a big book!) has a different chiyogami pattern on it and then some tiny little story in Japanese about the pattern's origin and symbolism and then some cute little manga type figures. I LOVE this book.

Friday, 11 January 2008

new in the shop

I'm quite excited about a new line of prints I've developed for my shop. I've shown a few here recently but there will be more. The one above is now up in the shop and looking pretty bright against my other work. It's been great working on these new prints. I love working with a range of media and adore the pattern of chiyogami so much that I just had to find a way to work it in. And so I have!

All the new prints will have a very strong sense of what's known in Japan as wabi sabi. I love the idea of transient beauty and beauty found in the ordinary. Wallflowers was all about this: the crumbling clay wall of an old Kyoto house and the weeds growing up against it.

I'm also immersed in colour experimentation at the moment and finding it fascinating. I'm trying to push myself to go beyond using the colours that I'm comfortable with. It could get a wee bit crazy......

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

hot days and pots of tea

Our last visitor until later this month left today and I now have a little time to work. It's been great to play but I've drunk so much wine, champagne, many margaritas and pots and pots of Japanese tea over conversation in the last couple of weeks that it feels very much like time to go quiet and solo for a while. The next few days will be super hot again (41+ degrees or 106 F!!!) so I'm looking forward to being at home and trying to stay cool indoors. I still haven't taken photos of the new studio space. This might be possible now that we don't have a guest sleeping in it :) The little piece above is following on with my chiyogami design theme. I'm fiddling with some of these designs to help me plan out some new woodblock prints. The tea theme seems never ending. Maybe it says something about what I've been preoccupied with lately.

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

new work

I've been working with some more mixed media designs today. I still haven't settled on the background colours but here are two from the pile I've made. If you have any feedback or preferences in terms of colour I'd love to hear it. I've also put a few more up on my flickr page.