Showing posts from May, 2013


Musettes - the piccolo oboe
My hand-painted illumination loosely based on the medieval manuscript the Cantigas de Santa Maria (Canticles of the Holy Mary) created between 1221 - 1284
This sample was a demonstration for the medieval illumination workshop this weekend just past.

When something inspires ...

A walk into the Divine Trees forest Qilan (Cilan), Yilan County, Taiwan revealed an inner peace I had never felt before.
This photo is as I took it - in colour.
 David and I went on this trek as we were staying at the hostel at Mingchi (clear lake) higher up the mountainside.  After driving up the mountain that morning we were picked up by a small van and driven back down the mountain, turned inward then drove a different track back up and into the forest proper. This was where we met our teacher and trekked through the forest for about two hours. Our teacher was distraught that we could not speak Mandarin and he no English ... we got on very well though and managed to allay his fears that it would all come to naught.

Stairways in and out of the forest.

Rest area.

David and I were with this couple and our teacher. Even though we could not understand mandarin we certainly got a feel for the love our teacher had for the forest and the Divine Trees. The lass here knew a spattering of…

Medieval illumination workshop

Here are three images from the one-day medieval illumination workshop on the weekend at Artbeat of Tasmania. Even though these are incomplete I was thrilled the participants got as far as they did in just the one day considering this is a workshop that should be much much longer. This first one is mine ... which I hope to finish tomorrow.

 Musette (Oboe)  This is the sample I was working on as the participants moved through the stages in their medieval illuminations.

 Participant Leanne working on the chameleon.

Participant Sandy working on the magpie.

Participant Ali working on the Harz birds.

Beautiful things ... ink-sticks are

David, Jun-Tien Chen & me at Da-You the ink-stick making house in the Sanchong District of New Taipei City.

 This wooden ink-stick mould is one hundred years old. The wet ink lays in the mould until slightly hard then it is turned out to dry, turned every day until fully dry.

The two sides of the same stick.

Ink-sticks drying.

Hanging ink-sticks drying.

Some of the stick I purchased.

This stick bears the hand print of the maker Chen, Jai-De
The story:
While on holiday in Taiwan last week I visited the ink-stick house where a father and son team work to keep the ink-stick making business alive. Jun-Tien Chen the son, seen here with David and me operates the factory outlet while his father Jia-De Chen strives to keep up with the demand of their main clients on mainland China.
Taiwan is an island off the south east coast of China proper, an hour and a half by plane from Hong Kong.The island is half the size of Tasmania and holds a population equal to Australia, 24,000…

The road not taken ...

A little piece I did a couple of weeks ago.

Fitzwilliam piece in House & Garden UK

Available now in newsagents.

I have finally managed to lay my hands on the House & Garden UK January 2013 issue in which the editors have used my work as a promotion for the Fitzwilliam Museum Cambridge Exhibition. My work is a piece from 2007. I must say it is a pretty groovy feeling to see my work in this popular magazine.

Sturt Australian Contemporary Craft & Design

Sturt Winter School
Basketry with Adrienne Kneebone, Booking your Travel with Caren Florance, Botanical Masterclass with Leonie Norton, Calligraphy with Gemma Black, Clay- fast woodfiring with Ray Cavill, Clay - throwing with Janet DeBoos, Drawing the artists' engine room with Nikki Main, Etching with Tony Ameneiro, Wild Knitting with Loani Prior, Marquetry with Katalin Sallai, Metal Forging with Tracey Hopkirk, Painting with Victoria Peel,Weaving with Jenny Jackett & Woodwork with Phoebe Everill.