Print making – the first proofs

April 7, 2014 - 4 Responses



At the last session of my print making course, I made the first proofs from the plates I had made.

It was interesting to see my work ‘in the flesh‘. However, it was clear I need to practise my inking skills.


Not enough ink.


Too much ink.


I will remove the texture lines from the background of this one to provide more contrast with the lines in the central flower.

Next session, I will be practising my inking technique some more and experimenting with printing on different papers.

Mica Grange – Sutton Grange

March 30, 2014 - 2 Responses



I visited Mica Grange on Sunday, the 23rd of March.

The garden is situated on the slopes of Mt. Alexander giving panoramic views of  the Sutton Grange valley.

Mica Grange was the venue for a sculpture exhibition showcasing the talents of local sculptors.

The garden covers a rocky site littered with granite boulders.  It provides the setting for the garden art and sculptures which the owners have acquired over recent years.

The jams, chutneys and cordial for sale demonstrated the productiveness of the fruit trees and vegetables grown in raised beds and wine barrels.

The garden is thriving despite the dryness of the countryside after a long period without rain.

The horse’s head was one of the works on exhibit. Here are some more sculptures which were part of the exhibition:DSCN2785




Here are other views in and around the garden:









Rough Cuts – Print Making

March 23, 2014 - 2 Responses


I am attending a series of printmaking workshops, ‘rough cuts’.

So far we have been creating the plates for  the prints.

I have chosen to make  wood cuts of flowers based on my own drawings. Carving into wood is a new experience for me.


We are using laminated sheets of timber to make the wood cuts. The wood is given a wash of black ink so the carved design stands out.

Here are three designs, in various stages of completion, I have been working on:






I plan to create four  designs before we start printing.

The next stage will be the proof prints where we will make the first prints to see what refinements we might make to our designs.

Jardine’s – Harcourt North

March 13, 2014 - 2 Responses


Jardine’s is the third of this series of gardens I visited on the 4th of November 2013.

The granite house was built in 1994 and is surrounded by extensive grounds. Parts of the garden are Japanese inspired:



whilst other sections reflect European garden tradition.




There is a very Australian touch with a small carving of a magpie standing on a post welcoming visitors to the garden.


Lino Print: Desolation

March 7, 2014 - 2 Responses


Yesterday, Thursday, I began a series of 5 print making workshops ‘rough cuts’ at a local art supply shop in Castlemaine.

Betsy Forster, a local artist, will guide the group  through the process of making relief prints. We will be making lino and wood prints.

In the coming weeks, I will be sharing what I have made but nothing to show as yet.

I have made  lino prints in the past  and this workshop will help me  improve my technique.

For now, I have dug this lino print out of my archives and it will be interesting to see how my work develops over the next 4 weeks.

I gave the print the title  ‘Desolation’  as it illustrates my feelings about a career failure in my early twenties.

Bress – winery and cidery

February 26, 2014 - 6 Responses


Bress is the second of the properties I visited in Harcourt on the 4th of November 2013.

The two main reasons for being there were to admire the substantial granite home built in 1987 and to enjoy lunch.

Bress was the only property where the 120 people who were enjoying the day’s visits to the four Harcourt gardens were gathered at the same time.

Bress has a modest  ornamental and productive garden with most of the land devoted to grape vines and apple trees.

Bress has fine views of Mt. Alexander.

I photographed the garden and orchard which unfortunately give no hint of the merriment derived from the drinking of wine and cider and the eating of good food.

The day’s event had been organised by the Anglican Parish of Castlemaine to raise funds for the completion of the Meditation Garden Project on Agitation Hill, Castlemaine.




Monster Parsley

February 19, 2014 - 6 Responses

DSCN2724We don’t always get on with our neighbours.

I drew this picture after a recent skirmish with one of mine.

By making the drawing, I creatively expressed my emotions and was able to bring some humour into my experience of the situation.

The beauty of art therapy is we can freely express what we feel for a private audience – an audience of one.


Granite Lodge – Harcourt

February 9, 2014 - One Response

DSCN2610This is the first of a series of open gardens I visited on the 4th of November, 2013 in Harcourt.

The gardens had been established around houses built of granite quarried locally at Mt. Alexander.

Granite Lodge was the earliest of the houses built in the 1860s by a gold miner, Bryan McMahon, who used his earnings to build himself, and his children, fine solid houses.

I enjoyed the story about how a horse dragging a large log, would be led into the kitchen through one set of doors, the log unhitched and rolled into the fire place, and then the horse led out through another set of doors in the opposite wall of the kitchen.

The current owners have created a rose garden on the site of the old dairy and grow vines for wine.

In the garden is a building, formerly used as a cellar and smoke house, set below ground level.






Collage: I Choose Joy

February 1, 2014 - 9 Responses


I awake

A heavy, grey mist enveloping me.

Slowly, slowly my mother is fading away.

My father struggles with pain

He struggles to remember the events of the morning

His grandchildren are strangers to him.

My uncle rails against the bitterness of infirmity

‘Oh Death, where is thy sting?’

My cousin, her father’s full time carer,  bears it patiently.

I reflect on the line

‘Old age isn’t for wimps’

In the mean time,

I choose Joy.

I  wrote this a few weeks before my mother died on the 16th of December 2013.

My father’s health and memory have improved since he entered aged care accommodation.



Lavandula – Shepherds Flat

January 26, 2014 - 2 Responses

DSCN2691The region between Daylesford, Yandoit  and Guildford was settled by Italian speaking Swiss who established farms and built in a distinctive style.

The current owner of this former dairy farm restored the 1860s stone buildings and created a European style garden centred around lavender and olive growing.

Situated near Daylesford, Lavandula is a popular destination with its shady groves of trees and its scenic views up to Mt. Franklin.

I visited Lavandula today, the 26th of January, while it is the lavender harvesting season. My niece couldn’t resist buying a bunch of fresh lavender for her mother.

I hope you enjoy the photographs especially of the geese which wandered around the grounds near the cafe hoping for tidbits from the tables.










Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 135 other followers