In Among The Wool
August 9, 2017

This collage is inspired by the Australian Sheep and Wool Show which is held annually in Bendigo in July.

The Sheep Show has been running since 1877 to showcase Australia’s top wool growers and prime lamb producers.

The promoters of the three day event in its modern form, bill the show as ‘the largest event of its type in the world.’ Whatever the truth of that claim is, it is undeniable that at the show, wool is king and merino rams are lords.

In addition to sheep bred for wool, there was a large area devoted to prime lamb breeds. Dorper lambs are so appealing especially when they are wearing small coats to keep warm.

It is possible to attend the Australian Sheep and Wool Show and not look at a sheep. The many wool craft sheds are thronged with people who have a passion for fashion and the fibre crafts – spinning, weaving, dying, knitting, crocheting and felting.

This year’s show had the added bonus of being the venue for the National Yard Dog Championships so it was kelpie heaven. I found it exciting to watch the kelpies herding sheep through a course of enclosures, gates and ramps under the direction of their handlers.

I spent most of my time in the sheep sheds where I was easily entertained. I was amused watching the rams being taken to their appointed spots for judging as some had no intention of going quietly. Some roared as their owners held them firmly under their chins as they awaited the judges. Young owners lining up roughly 20 lambs for judging was a hoot. It was heartening to see so many young people training to be farmers.

I especially admired the coloured sheep with their long ringlets. Some were tame and were happy to accept pats from admirers.

 

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Dog in Still Life
July 16, 2017

I recently visited an art exhibition held as part of the Maldon in winter 2017 festival held from the 1st to the 16th of  July.

I found myself contemplating still life paintings of objects with shiny surfaces, fruit and drapery.

The paintings inspired me to create my own collaged still life. I couldn’t resist including the image of the cheeky dog sitting up to its breakfast tray.

Quick Hide, Kitty!
July 7, 2017

It is mid winter and Castlemaine has been frosty, foggy, misty and rainy – a good time to be indoors playing around with collage.

The inspiration for this collage was the picture of the young girl holding the leaves to cover her face. It prompted the idea of wanting to hide. What would the girl and her cat need to hide from?

Another Collage Inspired by Minna
March 31, 2017

This is my second collage inspired by the work of the artist, Minna Gilligan.

I wanted to create a picture which is playful and fun. I used acrylic paint, magazine pictures and stickers.

As you can see, I had some difficulty photographing the picture. I didn’t want the flash to go off because of the reflection from the shiny surface so I went outside where I needed to weigh the picture down because of the breeze.

Collage inspired by Minna
February 19, 2017

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The Castlemaine Art Museum is currently holding an exhibition of the work of the young artist, Minna Gilligan.

Minna creates her work using mixed media including collage. She likes painting a background of bright colours then applying images cut from magazines from the 60s and 70s. The originals can be the size of an A4 page. Some are then supersized by being digitally printed onto much larger pieces of fabric.

Her work was exhibited in a room where the walls had been painted bright pink, red and orange. The effect was eye popping.

Minna’s exhibition inspired me to create two small collages. This is the first one I finished. I have added stickers and images cut from magazines to a printed background which was the front cover of a magazine.

I have yet to complete the other collage.

Gold Coast Souvenir
December 4, 2016

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In early August, I visited the Gold Coast in Southern Queensland to see family members and take in some of the sights. After returning from my holiday, I decided to create a collage using tourist maps and images from tourist brochures. This is the result.

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Intuitive Collage
October 18, 2016

In late August, I attended an Intuitive Collage workshop being offered by Ann Bidstrup of Heart Art . The purpose of the workshop was to gain a greater appreciation of what is significant to us at this time through a process of inquiry leading to the creation of a series of collages. From time to time, Ann offers workshops based on art therapy practices where the process of creating takes precedence over the finished work. Another similar workshop was Inspirational Beads which I attended in 2011.

The process of creating the collages was simple, but intense. The first stage of the process was collecting images from magazines. Putting the logical part of our brains to one side, we cut out images which attracted our attention. No over thinking here, just collecting images which said ‘Pick me, pick me.’

The next stage was sorting through the images and selecting a few which had the strongest attraction. Choosing one image to work with, we began the process of internal inquiry, imagining ourselves within the image and exploring how it had meaning or significance for us. We wrote down our thoughts until we could give a name to the image which signified its connection to us at this time.

The final stage was assembling the collage using other images which complemented the theme of the dominant image. The images were glued to card 13cm x 20cm.

During the full day workshop, I created three collaged cards.

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This first card is titled ‘Phoenix’.

As my role of aunt has diminished, I am undergoing a period of transition, letting go of the old and creating new roles for myself here in Castlemaine.

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This card is ‘Joy’.

The cheeky frog represents the joyful aspects of my life at present. I chose the hot, happy colours to complement this theme.

 

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The title of the final card is ‘Survival’.

I am reminded to pay attention to those things in life which assist with my survival – which keep me functional in this world.

Down The Calder
January 11, 2016

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Each month, Katie and I travel from Castlemaine down the Calder Highway to Melbourne where I stay for 2 to 3 nights. I visit my father who is 91 years old, other family and friends. Katie gets to hang out with Kliff and Lucy, the canines who reside with my brother, Malcolm and sister, Beverley.

In the collage, I am passing Mt. Macedon with its Memorial Cross and low hanging cloud – quite often mist, fog or rain.

Whilst I am glad to catch up with family and friends, I am also glad when it is time to return home.

When I first moved to Castlemaine, I was told the longer I lived here, the harder it would become to return to Melbourne. The people who said this were right! If I knew nobody in Melbourne, there would be no reason for this monthly trip.

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Here are Lucy, the Golden Retriever, and Kliff, the Bull Arab X, sunning themselves.

My niece, Lily, took the photograph.

 

 

Longing for Lunch
August 27, 2015

 

I recently acquired pieces of white card measuring approximately 20cm square. They will provide the format for a series of simple collages.

This is the first. Hunger inspired the subject.

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Hollyhocks
August 9, 2015

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Cheerfully assembled,

Silken petals glimmering in the early morning sun,

At home on waste ground

Sustained only by meagre offerings from summer’s skies

and Roo Poo.

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This group of hollyhocks growing on a hillside near the old Castlemaine tip are a surprising sight. Perhaps they are the remnants of an old garden. I took these photographs in early 2015.

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