Saturday, October 30, 2010

Meeting Audrey Kawasaki

Following on from this blogpost where I mused about meeting artistic legend Audrey Kawasaki, I had the intense pleasure of getting to personally chat with her on the night of her solo Exhibition Opening hosted at Outre Gallery in Sydney, Australia.

Within minutes the gallery was packed, I am so grateful I got their early enough to get the chance of chatting with this lovely young woman. Friendly, down to earth, and incredibly sweet, I think I admire her all the more now :-)

Whilst I won't write a word for word transcript (you know I could ^_^) I was thrilled when she noticed my art-pendant and commented on how much she liked it.

What a precious piece of feedback to receive, I was honoured and delighted.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Sterling Silver and Glass Pendants

Darlings! I have been introducing a few different 'products' recently, and whilst all are beautiful and equally exciting to me... perhaps I harbor a little bias in favour of what I am unveiling today....

Made from precious Sterling Silver and Glass, I have a very small range of Illustration Pendants available!

Like a boastful, proud, vain mother I feel that they are breathtaking! Perhaps because I have been anticipating them for a long time, and now that they are complete... I am delighted they look so nice :-)

They make me think of so many things at once.... Victorian - Steampunk discovery, antique curiosity cabinets, looking glasses, whimsical feminism, tiny captured worlds, magic, caught spirits....

Tell me, what do they make you think of?

Available (but highly limited) in my bountiful Etsy Store!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Officially: Giclee Print Edition!!

I am most pleased, most excited, most thrilled to finally be able to announce: they are for sale!

I contacted the lovely gentleman who printed my first proof prints; picked out my ten most favourite, most beautiful artworks; and put in my order for one thousand prints!

So I can now officially announce: I have ten of my watercolour arworks available in a strictly limited edition of 10 copies each, up for purchase in my Etsy Shop!

Printing out such a vast number at one time meant two things.
First... it has sent me completely broke! I saved for a long time to be able to make such an investment!
Secondly.... this is where you little lovelies benefit - it allows me to offer them at a much lower price than I had originally calculated! (Cheer, hurray, yay!)

Also.... The first ten people to purchase a Giclee print from me will each recieve a bonus print!

A little incentive to try and get the ball rolling :-) All ten prints can be viewed in my etsy shop filed under Prints.

The information is the same, purchasing a Giclee Print VS a normal digital photo print assures archival professional quality, a beautiful lustre and immaculate mimicry of the original texture and watercolour subtleties.

Professionally printed on luxurious 310 g/m2 ARCHES cotton rag paper: 100% cotton, completely natural with no chemical additives. Printed with Archival Giclee, acid free Inks.

How many kinds of beautiful?

I ask you... how many kinds of beautiful is this?

An artist whom I greatly admire (and whose work I have the pleasure of feverishly collecting) has just opened up a line of enchanting fascinators and wearable pieces.

Lisa Falzon is all kinds of amazing. Her new adventure "Moth and Bay Leaf" has set my imagination frolicking in the woods. I want to embody everything these haunting pictures capture....

I urge you.... go take a look! Moth and BayLeaf Shop

Monday, October 25, 2010

PYD Design Markets

I will be here! At a lovely little table alongside some incredibly talented jewellers and object designers.

For this Design Market I will be focusing on my brooches and pendants, pocket mirrors and a range of snow domes!! All products will feature my illustrations....

I can't wait to show you the new pendants... proper glass and sterling silver pendants!! :-)

Cameo Brooches - Now Available!

I'm delighted to finally be able to show these off!!

I have made a small selection of unique wearable brooches, feauturing my illustrations, and am so pleased with how they turned out. I wear my one all the time, and have been floored and delighted by all the compliments I get... it's nice to hear such feedback!

I adore the vintage Victorian feel to them.... I like to pin my one through a lace scarf of velvet wrap around my neck... it makes me feel very elegant, haha! ^_^

They're available in my etsy shop, but I'll also be taking them with me to the Art & Design Markets I have lined up this summer. If they sell, well I might make more, otherwise these are the only ones that will be made
(ie: guarantee of a unique, individual one-off piece!)

I think they're utterly delightful... I hope you do too!!!

Available NOW in my Etsy Shop!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Persephone - 2010 Plate

FONAS contacted me with a preview shot of my plate after being fired and clear glazed... and I am delighted with the result!!

I haven't seen it in person, and won't for another couple of weeks, but I can't wait!
For anyone in Sydney, if you are free on Thursday, November the 4th, make your way to the FONAS/ National Art School annual Artist-Plate auction 6-9pm!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Mars Hill Exhibition

Leading up to the Chalk Urban Art Festival I took part in the week before last, the competing artists were given an extended exhibition at the Mars Hill Café exhibition space.
This was a very nice gesture indeed, as renting exhibition space in Australian galleries can often cost hundreds to thousands of dollars for a couple of weeks.

Here’s a peek at my work on the wall.

Another highlight of taking part in the festival was meeting and chatting to Sadami Konchi, a watercolour portrait artist.

Sadami was not technically one of the competing artists, but would come around and paint the artists at work.
Sadami is amazingly quick when she works, and manages to catch a unique likeness in all her subjects. I had fun flipping through her sketchpad identifying all the artists, not only by their appearance, but also by their body gestures and the way they were posed whilst working on their own artworks.

You can see I got into the spirit of my work, and came dressed up every day as a pirate myself. I was happy when Sadami agreed to sell me my little portrait; it will be a lovely memento of the festival.

You can see Sadami's watercolour impressions from this year's festival here: Chalk 2010
It gives a really good overview of her impressions of how we worked, I lvoed reading it as much as I love looking at the artworks themselves... a really touching and lively insight.

As an afterthought, if anyone is interested in acquiring a 2.2 m long canvas depicting a shipwrecked pirate, let me know – I’m willing to take any offers!! (I don’t have space for it in my tiny flat)

So long as you’re happy to pay for shipping in a long tube (or pick up personally in Sydney) I am willing to sell it for any price if anyone is interested.

Thanks ^_^

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Nana Sakata – The beauty of an Original

I haven’t been able to introduce many of the recent artworks I have acquired, as I am in the process of moving house so many of them have been packed up in boxes. I only just picked this one up from the gallery, so I quickly snapped a photo before it goes into storage.

The moment I laid eyes upon Nana Sakata’s delightful work, I was smitten.

Using a fine pen she builds up her pieces with tiny stippling dot marks. A childlike nostalgia mingles with a dark fairytale foreboding… will this creature eat me, or will he be my friend?

When I purchased this piece I commented, “I think this one will give me nightmares…. and I’ll love them, they’ll be really interesting!”

You can see more of Nana’s wonderful work on her art-blog:

Chalk Urban Art Festival

Last week I took part in the Chalk Urban Art Festival, a four-day outdoor event.

32 artists were selected to each create a 2.24 m by 2 m artwork on the pavement, reacting to the theme “The blues”.
With any outdoor event, you are at the mercy of the elements, and we were all hoping the rain would hold off. In past years the festival and the artworks have been washed away all too soon. We were very lucky this year, with only a few threatening sprinkles during the early mornings (as we were working on canvas taped to the ground, we were able to roll them up at the end of each day, as it usually rained throughout the night).

In past years I’ve been a volunteer for the festival, friend to many of the artists, and general supporter, but this year I was bullied into entering (I’m holding fast to that excuse!) As my work is usually very small-scale, and I work in a very neat and meticulous way, the thought of working with crumbly pastels on the ground on such a huge scale was definitely daunting!!
Yet I was assigned a spot next to a good friend of mine (Luke Marcatili, who created an awesome piece) so it was nice to be able to chat to him and have a friendly face around.
Most of the time, though, we had our heads down chalking away, furiously trying to complete our pieces for the deadline. Many artists ended up having their fingertips worn down from smoothing the pastels (including me, resulting in a stinging numbness for a few days), all our backs were aching, our legs were killing from squatting and standing and squatting all day, we were grubby and filthy and covered in chalk, but we had a good time, there was a nice vibe, and it was great to see the artworks emerging over the four days.
Okay! Enough blabbering, let me show you how my piece progressed over the festival.

I deliberately decided to steer clear of the more stereotypical depression or emotional depictions, and I don’t know much about Blues music. For my chalk artwork I drew “Blue-Beard the Pirate, Shipwrecked at Blue Lagoon”.
Day One
The first thing I did was to cover my entire canvas in the base colours.

Then I blocked in the major areas of where the characters would be.

Day Two
This was the hardest day. The sun was blaring down on us and we were sapped of energy. I feel like I barely progressed at all, added some details.
As Blue-Beard himself was the main focus of the piece, I worked on him the most.

Day Three
Thankfully it was an overcast day, the sun never peeped out. This is the ideal weather for outdoor work! Got a lot more done. Basically day three is the day to “finish” your piece, so I aimed at getting everything major done.

Day Four
We only had a few hours before judging started at 1pm. This was the day for final finishing touches: highlights, feathers, claws, sea foam.

Here are some close-ups.

By the way, people were getting confused by the two female characters, thinking Blue-Beard was going to be mighty jolly when he woke up to find pretty ladies surrounding him.

They’re harpies.

To meet an inspirer.....

I would like to start a series of blog posts about the talented and hard working artists whom I admire. The sort of creative individuals who have encouraged me by their persistance, inspired me with their flare and dedication, and kept my hopes strong with their success. Some of them I have the intense pleasure of knowing personally, and some of them I have only dreamt of meeting....

Today's post is about such a young woman. I am sure her name is no surprise. Audrey Kawasaki is the obvious choice to start this series with.

When I heard Audrey Kawasaki was coming to Australia for a solo exhibition, I was thrilled and excstatic. A childish exuberance took over, and I have been looking forward to it for well over a year, since she first made the announcement. I began tentative plans to make the 13 hour drive to Melbourne, or book a flight... so you can imagine my increased excitement when the Gallery she is being represented by, (Outre Gallery) announced the exhibition will travel up to Sydney, with Audrey attending in person.

I was initially drawn to Audrey’s feminine style and sensuous imagery. Girls with smouldering eyes and scowling lips, boudoir gazes and flowing hair. I think her unabashed penchant for depicting sensuous and even erotic moments is fantastic. She is not afraid to shy away from a part of life, that others might be scared to depict for fear of what it will be labelled.
The wood grain showing through her work is a nod at her Japanese heritage, and always reminds me of the beautiful Ukio-e woodblocks of masters like Hiroshige and Hokusai.

What I am most thrilled at though, is her success and the worldwide acclaim for her pieces. As a young female artist, struggling to find acceptance amongst the Fine Art Galleries for my “type” of imagery and artwork, it is encouraging to see the growing interest in more “illustrative” work, and such strong feminine imagery.

Too often I feel galleries are quick to label such work as girly and not serious, as lowbrow pop art, as passé.
So for this I am also indebted and thankful to her, for paving the way. It gives aspiring artists hope to see such grounds being made.

Outre Gallery that will be hosting her show in Sydney is a mere block away from where I live. Trendy Crown Street is abuzz with quaint little café’s and quirky retro boutiques. Wandering up Oxford Street into Paddington she will get to see my neighbourhood and why I love it so much. Beautiful boutiques, the flagship stores of many Australian Designers (Like Alannah Hill, Akira, High Tea with Mrs Woo) and the stylish denizen themselves.

I know she’s a shy little thing, but I hope I can have a chat with her on the opening night - it would be very nice!!

Additional info

"Tangled", Audrey's Solo show in Sydney, Australia opens on Friday 29th October.

Audrey Kawasaki’s website

Outre Galleries website

Monday, October 4, 2010

Ink and Water - Sketches from Life

I do wish I could just wake up and spend my days drawing. Drawing in the morning, painting in the afternoon, sketching in the evening... ahhh, I would be in paradise.

As it is, that inconveient condition called "everday life" has been getting in the way of my dreams. But, I do stay in the habit of carrying a little sketchpad with me if I can. Re-fillable ink-brush pens are a saviour.

At a dear friends Engagement party

A fellow cafe patron