Skip to content

Care verse Control



Gouache on cartridge paper. 2013.
Tried something new! Trying to be less controlling in general including to my paint. At uni I am learning about care versus control under an anti-oppressive framework. In regards to social work this will be very important. I always want to ‘fix’ an issue but this often leads to trying to take control. This is oppressive and dominating and suggests that I have power over the service user. Who am I to say I know best. The service user needs to be empowered enough to exercise their own expertise over what’s best for them in managing their circumstances.
In terms of art I oppress myself daily with my control. I need to stop questioning my art work. Care for myself by letting go and making a happy, colourful mess that expresses whatever is going on in the moment rather than some contrived and over thought version.




Gouache on handmade paper. 2012.


Gouache on handmade paper. 2013.


Gouache on handmade paper. 2013.


Not making art

I lost all my visual inspiration for about a month. I didn’t feel like painting or drawing and I felt like I was having an identity crisis. When I was a child I painted to pass the time and console my loneliness. I was devastatingly quiet and shy. I had problems with my hearing so I didn’t pronounce some sounds properly and most of the time I couldn’t hear what people were saying to me so I guess I didn’t say much back. In the absence of loud noise and distraction I was immersed into a visual world. I became an observer which I actually quite liked. I have memories of sitting in cars or in houses just observing whilst the people around me had these muffled conversations. I was totally in my head. So painting was my way of communicating. I guess this is why I love art therapy? Sometimes words won’t do. My childhood relationship with painting has given me this adult love/hate relationship to art. In one way it became a huge party of my identity early on. In another way making art reminds me of sad feelings like childhood loneliness and an inability to express myself and what is happening to me.

A few days ago I was walking my dog with a friend and we were discussing my loss of inspiration and I decided to not put any more pressure on myself to make art. As soon as I gave myself permission to be okay with not making art I made a painting. Weird hey? I hope you like it.





Experimented with a different colour combination with gouache this week. It was very satisfying. 



It’s a spotty kind of day today! 

Paper making

I LOVE paper making. The process is very therapeutic and there is instant gratification when you look at the lovely piece of paper you have produced. You never quite know how each one is going to turn out! Am I sounding like a crazy paper lady? I have always been a big fan of creative expression that is instant and captures that particular moment or feeling or memory or whatever it is you are throwing into what you produce. I can achieve this with paper making in the sense that I can very quickly decide on the ingredients, blend them into a pulp and turn them into a sheet of paper.  I posted earlier about how I made paper for friends and family for Christmas presents. I scanned some of them with the intention of posting them. Some of the earlier pieces are a bit crinkly because I got over excited and didn’t let them dry properly. I scanned LOTS because it’s hard to pick favourites. I used materials like flowers I have collected on cheeky walks around my neighbourhood, paper bark from the tree near my house, envelopes, garlic peels (I will obsessively scan each garlic in the supermarket for the one with the prettiest purple markings. Yes, I’m THAT girl exclaiming “look at the beautiful garlic!” to my partner), left over wool from pom pom making, paper bags and glitter. 

My partner bought me some flowers recently and I always get really sad when they die but this time I was able to turn them into this green piece of paper!

This blue one was the first piece I ever made and actually one of my favourites! It is made purely from 2 and a half envelopes. Australian envelopes have the loveliest patterns on the inside of them.

I think my favourites are the first one and they grey one with yellow flecks. Which one is your favourite?


Practising collage today.



I made these today.

I like combining handmade techniques with digital. Which one is your favourite? I think mine is the first bean one.