With Summer officially kicking in on Monday, it's high time I uploaded a few snaps of my springtime garden with its new residents - Daphne and Violet the guinea fowls (named after where I picked them up from, Daphne Street in Violet Town, North East Victoria) I'm not entirely convinced they are both females as they are yet to produce any eggs, although a loitering brown snake may have something to do with that....
I still have a few well-thumbed copies of Domino Magazine stashed away in my studio, saved from the time before the magazine sadly fell victim to the global financial crisis. Newly relaunched and with a strong on-line presence, Domino seems to have hit the right note again with their design savvy readers.
As a fan of the magazine, I leaped at the chance to enter the Minted x Domino art challenge, and am pleased that my artwork 'Indigo Leaves' was one of thirty pieces selected by the Domino editors to be sold at domino.com and featured in the magazine.
You can take a look at this painterly watercolour print here: domino.com
Perhaps my favourite thing about leaving the city and doing a 'tree change' has to be the continual inspiration of having a rambling country garden to plant and nurture (and paint of course...) I'm part of a committee organising an on-going series of Open Gardens in my local district - the first of which is taking place in November in Rushworth, North-Central Victoria. Our weekly meetings generally end up being entertaining discussions about plants and gardening rather than strictly following an agenda!
I took these photos at one of the local gardens that will be featured on the Saturday. I love the colour palette of reds, purples, yellows and whites, and those poppies were stunning in real life. I remember this house from my high school days - back then it was rented by a few young P.E and Maths teachers and featured waist height grass and a couple of scraggly pepper trees! Now the garden is planted with a great mix of drought tolerant native and exotic species, from cottage garden favourites through to native bird attracting grevilleas and wildflowers endemic to the area. I have included a couple of the local wildflowers on my poster design for the event - the yellow everlasting daisy and billy button.
Over the next few months the Box-Ironbark forest around Rushworth, Whroo and Gobarup puts on a wonderful and ever-changing display of wildflowers. The jet black, fluted trunks of ironbark, rising like columns from quartzy ground provide an attractive contrast to the many colourfully flowering shrubs such as Grevillea, Acacia and Hibbertia species - and a wealth of terrestrial orchids. Time to get the sketchbook out!
A section of a large textile repeat inspired by the native foliage collected from my garden and around the farm yard. Wattles, grevillea, hakea, eucalyptus, callistemon and lilly pillies all make an appearance in this watercolour design.