Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The world is a strange place

Friday, September 9, 2011

opening exihbition of Eating Strawberries Gallery!

FINALLY, the gallery is now offically up and running with digital artist, Prelandra being given the honour to open the gallery with her exhibition, “Seduced by the sent of Nightshade”
head over and check it out, I dare you….
and, you may have read a few moths ago, i was to have my first solo show in october called “Mental Monsters.” that has now been postponed till January/ Febuary. HOWEVER, I will still be having my first solo show in late october, at the Riverstone Cafe/Gallery in Briagolong, Victoria, Australia, called “Animal Kingdom.” exact date is still to be decided, but its exciting nonetheless!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Black and White and all shades of Grey

Usually my photos are colour, its how i see the world, its how i dream, so usually its a no brainer when deciding to colour or not.
But recently, black and white has seemed the way to go. i feels wierd, but it seems to work for my photographs.
so heres a few for your enjoyment

Friday, May 27, 2011

The Taming of the Shrew

The Taming of the Shrew
It is a very western notion that the landscape must be shaped to suit us, and not us shaped to the environment. We clear land for livestock and crops. We clear rainforests and build cities. This idea that we must “tame the Australian landscape” is a very colonialist idea. The idea that development means identity is something that white settlers brought to Australia, but it is clear that the future of this harsh environment was never really thought of. Over time, this sunburnt country has slowly taken its revenge by collapsing roads, washing buildings away, drying up water supplies and overgrowing cleared areas. We find ourselves searching for an Australian identity, but forever being influenced by mass media and American pop culture (the housewife, the exaggerated importance of television), as well as our own family backgrounds (searching for an English garden, bringing a foreign religion into every answer), but through influence, we often miss what is directly in front of our faces. We have treated our environment in the same harsh manner in which it survives and in turn we have become strong, hardy people, and in this way it becomes evident how the landscape has shaped people and our identities.
The landscape shapes how we view ourselves, and influences our opinions on the world. This theme was similarly explored by artist Fredrick McCubbin, and was most evident in his work, “The Pioneers”, and showed the progression of early settlers exploring and taming their environment, and as a result, becoming tough, self sufficient people. Whilst Australia may be heavily influenced by the wider world around us by culture, education and religion, we also know where we belong, and how to survive, and it is our landscape that has helped make us so.
However, the Western idea that we must conquer the worlds around us does make Austrians seem a little out of place, and our identity is still trying to form itself as we are still searching for a balance between man and environment. There is still this notion that our environment must suit us, and not we must suit and adapt to it. Artist Rosemary Laing explored a similar idea when she took the environment and carpeted it like one would a house. In a bizarre way, it almost seemed to improve the appearance of the landscape, and give it a much more tameable and accessible look to it, which to some extent is what man tries to do to the dense and ferocious environments of Australia.
As such, I wanted to explore what it meant to me to be Australian. Through stylised photographic portraits, I wanted to explore that feeling of being out of place, but belonging at the same time. By taking indoor living environments and placing them outside, I was trying to explore how ridiculous the notion is of trying to tame something that is beyond our control that many white settlers still try to attempt. The various locations that were photographed were all affected by man at some point in its history; old gravel mines filled up with water, pine plantations ripped apart, a kola reserve, with no koalas. All the places in the photographs are in the Gippsland area, a place I call home, and a place I knew well, so it made sense to photograph it. The costumes and poses were influenced by classical paintings from the renaissance to impressionist, drawing inspiration like photographer David LaChapelle from various elements like poses, colours and/or lighting. The overall sandy colour of the images is related to an international view of Australia, how when mentioned, the beach is the mental picture everyone sees, even those who live here, so I felt it was a necessary component so that it was clear where the photos were set. These images reflect an idea of how landscape effects and Australian identity and how a search for identity can shape the world around us.
this as been my work fo my final photography class EVER at monsh university, and ifelt it was only fair to share with you some of my success.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Of Rubbish and Fairytales

its been two months since i last filled you lot in on my inner artistic turmoil lol.
many things, many ideas float around in my head, and most have a lot to do with the body of work i have been working on for uni which i have yet to name.
the basis of the photographic works is to create costumes out of recyled matarials-not recycable like cardboard and plastic bottles; but things that no-one remembers or has thrown away thinking it cant be used again like ripped curtains or rusty wire. making these costumes to the model i am photographing at the time also helps bring out as sense of indiituality that flows on a differnet tanget to repetitive fashion photography, i encourage them almost to play dress-ups an create a theatrical-like character based on themeselves. in this sneaky way, i am talking about how environment (environment being anything from place to clothes) influences the human pysche. the works, while definantly about the costume, are mainly about how internal feelings and thoughts are often expressed in a visual way through what one wares.

"ever feel like a plastic bag, drifting through the wind wanting to start again "
made from plastic sheeting, pastic bags, rubber gloves, cardboard, wire, wool, stickytape

"a moment when fear and dreams must collide "
made from cardboard, black plastic bags, wool, stickytape, wire, feathers

"fight for the chance to be lied to again"
made from newspaper and stickytape 
"where angels fear to tread"
made from curtain lace, black doona cover, back garbage bags, plastic bags
fake blood made from cornflower, honey, red food dye, green food dye and water

so far, so good

Thursday, February 10, 2011

What will I die for... the idea of Australian Gothic

What will I die for. What will you die for? Will you be sleeping peacfully, old and wrinkled? Will you be caught in an horrific accident, or be diagnosed with cancer? Will you take your own life? Or might you die saving someone you love?
I've always felt death has a bad reputation, lol. But it is a conflicting feeling as i love the knowledge of  life is fleeting, embrace it and enjoy it. But, i am not scared to die, i am curious to know what exsists after we leave this world. I wonder if  I will make enough of a difference before i pass. I love knowing that the photo above is it, all that remains of a fleeting moment, that i will never again stand in that same spot and see that same thing, that the beauty that is present in the picture has already begun to fade, begun to decay and wither away.
the editing for  this peice consisted of me changing the colour tone, making it more sepia, adding darkness around the eyes, bluring the background more and adding an old photo texture, giving it an "unloved" feel.
the original looked like this

the works i have been doing over the last couple of weeks have begun to once again reflect my obsession for Australin Gothic. It is and idea that i had, where I ant to explore gothic culture and make it Australian, create my own language, so to speak. I love gothic, the iade that everything fades, but somethig remains; that decay only creates a new kind of beauty.
But gothic images are heavily influenced but English and American ideas, usually our influences being some derelect castle, bombed ruin or oak forest. Those things dont exsist here, we have gum trees and creeping ivy. we have ragged mountain ranges and harsh, bright light. So where do we fit, where do we come in? and then I began to think, what if i used this to my advantage? what if i took our bright light, vibrant colours and amazing scenery and combined it with what i know.
My sudden use of flowers in "Sweet Surrender" was a simple solution to my idea. Bright and vibrant, but doomed to die and fade in a matter of days- a personal symbol for my take on the idea of gothic. the skull was the idea of deacy making a new kind of beautiful, and thus the thinking pattern begain. and then i began to think about larger scenery, the food crops tha exsist in my world, that appear and dissapear quickly during the summer, with is the backdrop for "What will I die for". i think subconsiously i struck on the idea long ago, but untill now did not understand what i was trying to do.
thats my train of thought, for now anyway.


Priestess of the Ridiculous

So, this photograph, "Priestess of the Ridiculous" is commenting on religion. thats probably obvious to you arty nuts =)
this peice has come out of years of watching religion destroy people. Now, I am not against religion, i think it is a wonderful thing. the kindess and goodness that faith can inspire is a beautiful thing. What I am trying to comment on is when it is used as an excuse to do horible things, like bomb people, go to war ect. I have my own personal experiance, where and ex-boyfriend spent 4 years trying to win my heart and when he finally succeded, he broke it off, saying that "I have found God, and made my peace with him, and your conficting ideas, morals and sacriligious ways are a bad influence on the peace I have found."  You can then guess he hooked up with someone else.
But the main point of this piece is that, while faith and belief are good, not everything should be taken seriously, that there are some things that are probably not meant to be taken seriously, but are. which is Ridiculous.
Editing this piece was simple; slight darkening of the image, adding a blue tinge to the lighting, and creating an eerie eye, by making it bright blue, the using a brush in Photoshop Elements 7, using a transparent white to create an eerie lighting in the eye.
the original image looked like this


Sunday, February 6, 2011

No even a whisper...

so, today i did a jane austen inspired shoot, with my friend, know as J. she wore a dress that she must wear in an upcoming play.
this finished photo I named, "not even a whisper..."
I named it thus as I was concering the rural inhabitants ability to continue life as per usuall wihtout hinderance of gossip or news they dont want to hear, which simillaly reminded me of the Austen era novels, in which the charcters displayed similar charcteristcs.
Rural mindsets and behaviors are something that heavily influence my work, even if that is not clear, as it is something i must deal with ever day.
this at the moment is a major concernof mine, as i am watching people around me observe the disaster of Cyclone Yasi in Queensland, and behind closed doors are being nasty, comparing their own insignificant woes and troubles to those who are suffering. one issue that keeps re-apearing is a comparison to this and the Black Saturday bushfires.
i only changed some mino things using Photoshop Elements 7; but those tings make al the difference.
i blured the background to bring J further into the focal point, and changed the colour slightly, adding more of a red tone, and decreasing the amount of blue.
this is what the raw photo looks like.
so hope you've been satisfied with this explination.
now,i must love you and leave you, and go back to the real world

Monday, January 31, 2011

First Post

Hello there my strawberry friends,
yes, here we are, with yet another eating strawberries  page. with this blog i hope to bring about a deeper understanding of my work, and show you some of my editing process.

in case you are unaware, you can also find me on Redbubble, Twitter(@artstrawberries), Myspace, Facebook, Deviant art, and JPG
Let the madness begin