After a three-year hiatus from studying (thanks, Covid!), I've decided to return to art school at RMIT to finally pursue my Honours in Fine Art. It appears as though this is the only space where I ever wrote a blog (during my studies), so I thought, hmm, why not start it up again and see where it goes? Perhaps it can at least be a place where I practice my writing and organise my ideas, so, here it goes...
A lot has changed since the end of 2019, from when I finished my Bachelor's to now. After a bumpy ride with Covid disruptions, I completed my scholarship journey with the Australian Print Workshop, I had a wonderful residency with Baldessin Studio and Press, I spent a year as an art technician and my partner and I bought our first house out near the Dandenong Ranges (which we have been doing a ton of work on). The most memorable, and notable, experience, however, was finally being able to fly home to visit my family, after four years. After what felt like an eternity being away, the time slipped away all too quickly. Throughout my entire visit, all I kept thinking was, 'this is a future memory, and this is a future memory, and now this is a future memory....'. And now these are all quickly becoming distant and disjointed memories that are undulating in an endless longing for those moments I can never return to.
I have been quite anxious to finally be back around other artists and an active arts community. Where we live is pretty quiet and, more than having grown accustomed to being an hour outside the city, we have actually grown to love it here. I don't miss the city as much as I thought I would, and, to my surprise, I have found myself overwhelmed by the noise and the traffic when I am there. On any average day when the trains are operating normally, the commute to the city is generally not that bad. However, Metroworks is currently removing level-crossing on our train line, which is doubling the commute time to the city. I can tolerate a one-hour commute, on a train that travels directly to and from the city, but cramped bus transfers and rush-hour traffic is making it rather unbearable at the moment; a four-hour round-trip with numerous transfers from train-bus-train is no fun indeed! So, I decided that, if I cannot bring my home studio to the university studio, I could, perhaps create a virtual studio space on my blog where anyone with this link can view my research- and works-in-progress, including classmates, lecturers and my supervisor (hello, Laura!).
Since establishing a home studio, I have accumulated a LOT of stuff (books, art materials, equipment, an etching press, etc.). Actually, I had a lot of stuff before we moved house, I just finally have it better organised in both my studio and office spaces. The thought of transporting these things to-and-from home - where I do most of my work - is causing me a bit of anxiety, and so I've decided to be pretty selective about what work I'll be doing from home and what work I'll be doing at the university studio. In short, any task that requires a heavy degree of material to carry will be done from home (eg, preparing copper, etching, printing, etc) and any task that can fit in my bag (smallscale painting, drawing, digital work, research) will be done at uni (although, I will still be doing a lot of this from home - as I am right now)!
Here are a few photos to give you an idea of what my spaces look like (and I promise, I am using them to the best of my advantage:
Garage studio - playing with collage and preparing some mini plates:
And here's a bit of what it looks like when I'm editioning:
Every now and then, the dining room doubles as my studio space:
Desktop space -playing with digital collage and Mind Map on Mindomo:
And my 'portable' uni studio set-up:
And a bit of experimenting with materials - testing different Japanese papers with watercolours and gouache, and repurposing parts of old etchings for collage:
And here's some work that I started over the summer that will need to be postponed for the next little while - a bead-embroidered firebird on black suede, stitched with found feathers. I wanted to brush up on beadwork to see if I could include it in my project this year:
I'd like to use this online space to share what I'm working on, whether they be assignments, trials, research or works-in-progress. I thought it might help to document what I'm doing and where I'm going, and at least help me gain a bit of clarity; perhaps this could be a place where I could receive some feedback about what my project could become. Any thoughts, impressions or insights would be absolutely most welcome - there's a comment section below, you can send a PM or if I see you IRL, let me know your thoughts!