Gail Dell and Valentina Harper

I’ve just finished my uni holidays where I had a lot more time to look at beautiful things, and hopefully try my own hand.

Gail Dell lives in Perth, Western Australia and paints with much colour and vibrancy. I love the chooks! The layers (no pun intended) of colour are what impress me and fortunately Gail also posts pics of her work in progress on her Facebook page so we can see how she goes about creating the finished work.


Valentina Harper

Valentina Harper (nee Ramos) lives in Miami, Florida USA, originally hailing from Venezuela. Valentina uses paint and Rapidograph pens. She works with different materials, but black ink is one of the mediums you will always find in her original prints, paintings and drawings. Her love for artworks with little intricate details are a signature of her own drawing style. I’ve been playing around with this style of drawing lately and find it very relaxing. Much like cross stitch used to make me feel. Time passes without realising it when I’m doing this sort of thing. Have a look at Valentina’s site, she has a lot of beautiful artwork.


Mary Shackman – colour queen

I just came across this page from an old Belle magazine that I had filed away. I’m still struck by the vibrancy of the colours. This piece is entitled “A sound like someone trying not to make a sound“. Very inspiring. Mary Shackman is a Sydney artist and textile designer. She was well known in the 80s for her t-shirt and clothing designs. You can find out more about her here.¬†

Mary Shackman

Dard Hunter

I first saw the work of¬† Dard Hunter¬† in the art gallery of Vancouver, Canada. His work comprises the elements of symmetry, line, balance and harmony, just as you’ll find in most Arts and Crafts pieces.

I love how these guys were all-round artists and crafts folk – illustrators, typeface creators, typesetters, printers, book binders.

Dard Hunter Ex Libris

I have these at home and they're far too nice to actually send to anyone!
I have these at home and they’re far too nice to actually send to anyone!

Dard Hunter typeface Arts and Crafts

Tobias Hall

Tobias Hall’s lettering seems so playful, and his murals which are in restaurants, hotels and offices are executed so confidently. They’re so bold and bright. Check him out here¬†

Tobias Hall5 Tobias Hall mural1 Tobias Hall 4 Tobias Hall 3 Tobias Hall 2

Beci Orpin

Here is another artist/designer I find inspiring. I heard Beci speak at Semi Permanent in 2012 and found her very down-to-earth, just get on and be productive attitude stuck with me. I am in awe of these people who can raise a family whilst being creatively productive. It’s taken me till my children are young adults to find my creativity. Expressing it takes a dedication and discipline I’m training myself in…


Seb Lester

I find Seb Lester’s control so inspiring. I’ve been watching his work for some time now and can’t imagine how much time he has spent practising to become so skilled. It’s poetry in motion. Keep an eye out for his Break Bad News Gently (with calligraphy) series!

Tales of Mood and Memory #2

I really liked the idea of the brain as representative of or repository for memory, and there seemed a natural link between this and the life journey. The¬†concept of a¬†tree of life¬†seemed relevant given its place in science, religion, philosophy and mythology. The tree of life alludes to the interconnection of all life on our planet, and the tree of knowledge connects us to heaven, and the underworld. Brain scans reveal tree-like structures which I see as reaching up to the stars. The spherical nature of the skull provide suspended, circling planetary objects. We’re all really just dangling in space.

The finished artwork is an Ilustrator file at 300dpi, it’s a pretty big file due to the effects on the images. I took some photos of brain MRIs I happened to have in the cupboard!










I also wanted to explore this typographically as the seven movements in Holst’s The Planets each revealed such distinctive personalities (see earlier post).