Friday, November 30, 2012

Sydney by night.

Sydney Opera House
This is where I have been for the past three days - and late into the night. The Sydney Opera House is a wonderful place to work, especially when you come out at night to a view like this.

The photos were taken on my Android mobile phone. It is amazing what sort of quality these small devices can produce but you have to  keep still or you just get lots of lines of lights.

Photographs of city lights usually make me feel a bit lonesome because that is how I view skyscraper cities but I know and love Sydney  so when I look at the photo below I get conflicting  messages. Weird.
Sydney at night .... view from the opera house

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Photographing Chickens

Photographing chickens is worse than painting cats .... they move faster thqn you can click the button.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Richard Wagner Greeting Card

Next year is Richard Wagner's 200th birthday and I have been working on some Wagner-related art for a 2013 exhibition. I also made some Wagner related greeting cards from etchings I made in Dunedin.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Maribor Musicians online

It took a little while but at last my paintings of the 2012 Maribor Music Festival are online.
See them at
Thomas Demenga plays Cello
in the Aloysius Church in Maribor
Painting in Maribor (Photo Dejan Bulut )

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Simon O'Neill sings Puccini's Nessun dorma

If you paint a portrait of someone they become part of your life. I have pictures of several of my portrait candidates hanging in my studio and view them with affection.

One is a portrait of the tenor Simon O'Neill.   He has a wonderful voice (see the video) and as you can see in the film about him understudying Placido Domingo at the Met in 2003, he is friendly, outgoing and humble . Just a really nice fellow.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Historic Clifton Gardens

Not many parts of historic Sydney have managed to save themselves from the wreckers ball but one small gem that remains is the historic wharf at Clifton Gardens. There is a cupboard sized cafe there and live music on Sundays. The perfect spot to relax away from the madding crowd.
Clifton Gardens Beach Cafe
Beach Cafe

Clifton GArdens Beach

Friday, November 09, 2012

Bottom of the rainbow

It is raining hard here but in bright sunshine, so we must be right at the bottom of the rainbow. Now where is that pot of gold?
Bright sun, rain

Thursday, November 08, 2012


Hooray, the Kookaburras are back!

They sit in the big gum tree next to my bedroom and laugh before the first rays of dawn peep over the horizon. Then after dusk but before it is completely dark, there they are again cackling away in their tree.

Kookaburras - watercolour
Kookaburras are a variety of Kingfisher and it is said that although they don't migrate but they do expand their range in winter to find food. I am happy to have them in my neighbourhood again.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Yachts on Brisbane Waters

Tuesday's Central Coast Art Group 'paint out' was at Empire Bay where the only shade was at the table fishers use to gut their catch. Even that shade was disappearing fast, so rather than start a new painting I decided to add some yachts to a painting I'd started around the bay at Wagstaff several months ago. The result is an amalgam of both places but very typical of all the bays on Brisbane Waters.

There were two fishers sharing the shade and they discovered a large turtle camouflaged among the water weeds near the shore.
I heard one of them say to the other, "Good bit of bush tucker eh?"

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Melbourne Cup, 2012

I went to a 'paint out' with a local art group this morning but instead of the usual 10-15 participants only one other person was there. Ah, the Melbourne Cup!

It reminded me of my first experience of Australia on the first Tuesday in November. I was in Sydney city and wondered why the streets were suddenly so bare. Could there have been a national emergency? Then I discovered that Australia grinds to a halt at 3pm once a year for a horse race. Today an outsider won the race so there was a good payout and no doubt its backers will be partying all night.

On the way to victory