Friday 10 November 2023

Studio Tours

With fellow World of WearableArt artist Vicky Robertson from New Zealand in Australia for a short time, she was keen to meet other wearable art  artists in the area. In September she met Sunshine Coast artist Denise Lamby at the WOW event in Wellington, whom I had met at the Wearable Art Creatives event in Townsville the month before, and after a flurry of messages, it came to be that we were to visit her studio on the Sunshine Coast and stay for lunch, after visiting Heather O’Flaherty on the way through.

After a very smooth drive to Heather, I for one was in awe of her very neatly ordered room, with images of my chaotic space in the back of mind for comparison! Her beautiful work ‘The Storyteller’s Muse’ from this year’s Australian Wearable Art Festival was there, and it was great to see it on display, and appreciate all the great detail. And how groovy is the walrus made from denim?!

Milk bottles at their finest

Vicky and Heather
I was also wildly impressed with her record keeping – she had a neatly ordered folder documenting the entire journey including processes, samples, and inspirations. She was also kind enough to open her current sketchbook for us, and I was captivated and inspired by her stunningly drawn designs. That, combined with the excited chat about wearable art got me a tingling….and missing the ride of the wearable art magic bus!

Onwards to Denise, with yet another sleek house and studio - on a canal, no less! The house was like a gallery, filled with her large works in aluminium can tabs, tea bags, and melted trophies. Her studio was incredibly well ordered, with colour coded jars and labelled drawers – and a large, clean work surface! ‘How do they do it?’, I wondered to myself. Her current works were on display, although I believe works in progress were moved to the bedroom to keep them out of sight, a completely understandable move.

Denise Lamby

Following the tour, the girls put together an amazing spread which moved outside where we nestled into the lounges, and were soon joined by photographer Barry Alsop and Larissa Salton, photographer and wearable artist. We all got on famously, and entertained each other with stories of our experiences in the arts, and there was much hooting and cackling! I left Vicky there for the night and headed home later than I had planned, with my mouth sore from grinning.

We’d had such a good day that when I found out Densie would be driving Vicky back to Brisbane the next day, and visiting Reverse Garbage, I offered for them to visit me. I no longer felt self-conscious about the contrast between our studios, mine is just – different. Again, there was much laughter as well as sharing of thoughts and ideas, failures and successes.

Vicky at Reverse Garbage

Denise wrestles with Trumptopussy!

There's always something fun to stick on your head around here!

For someone who spends most of their time alone, it can sometimes be daunting to spend long periods of time with people, but it turned out that this was the kind of interaction I had missed, the mad, ‘talking to your tribe’ kind of vibe I used to find with other designers at WOW. It made me realise how positive it can be, and how it would be nice to foster these creative relationships – I just wish they were a bit closer! Still, who doesn’t want an excuse to spend time up the coast! Thanks for bringing the sunshine to my week, ladies. See you soon.

1 comment:

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