Adding Gold to Our Rainbow

Archive for the category “drawing”

We need help getting to a health conference so we are having a sale.

Photos are of things we have made. They are not all for sale in our Etsy shop but something similar can be commissioned from us. Scroll down for a coupon code to get 5% of everything in our Etsy Shop

(me out with the dogs on one of my better days)

My health has always been bad but these days I really am struggling to keep functioning.
Many years ago I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I deal with pain every day. Sometimes it is much worse than others. Changing air pressure causes a really bad day. Some days I have enough energy to make food and work on art and craft stuff and catch up with friends and family online, some days I can barely make it out of bed and moving to the toilet and back is really difficult. These conditions are managed as much as I can. It became obvious though that they were not my only problems.

(Handspun merino/silk blend yarn in blues)

This last year I was diagnosed with Ehlers–Danlos Syndrome. It is a connective tissue disorder, it affects collagen proteins in the body. Collagen is a building block that strengthens and supports various body tissues. It is found in tendons, ligaments, cartilage, skin, bone, blood vessels, the gut and the spine.
EDS is caused by alterations in certain genes, which make collagen weaker. Sometimes the amount of collagen in the body is reduced. The faulty genes can be passed from parents to their children.
Wiki’s page on EDSIn depth article on hypermobility type EDS

(needle felted pod baby)

I have frequent dislocations and sublaxes, usually fingers and toes and my jaw but also small bones in my feet, my left shoulder and my ankles. This causes a great amount of pain and instability. My muscles and tendons are over worked trying to stabilize joints and reduce movement. I have a herniated disc in both my neck and my lower spine, trapping nerves because my spine also moves too far and I have carpel tunnel in my wrists.
I have chronic migraines (many times a week) because the blood vessels in my brain expand to easily because of the collagen problem.
My skin is fairly fragile and my scalp will tear if I just rub at my head. My other biggest problem at the moment, with all the stupid heat, is Orthostatic Intolerance. My blood pressure drops causing me to faint when I stand for more than a minute and in hot weather it drops even when I’m sitting up. I also have huge troubles controlling my body temperature. If it is hot I get hotter and hotter until I throw up if I can’t cool myself down with an ice pack or cold shower. It makes these nearly 40c days unbearable.

(Teeny sheep earrings)

My doctor and physiotherapist are trying to help but neither of them knows much about EDS. I go to hydrotherapy once a week and am getting splints made for my wrists to help with the carpel tunnel. For the rest, right now, I just deal with best I can.

(Hand knit purple cable hoodie for a child)

This July there is a conference on in Parramatta focusing on EDS and Connective Tissue Disorders.
This is a massive chance for me to find out other ways I can cope with the symptoms and find medical practitioners who can help. This is one of the only chances I will have to access all this information in one place.

(hand knit toy elephant)

I live about 7 hours drive from Sydney but have family I can stay with about an hour away. I can save up for the dog boarding we’ll need to get there but registration for the conference is open now and is limited to 300 places. For Ruth and I to go to the conference on Saturday and Sunday it will cost $316. We just don’t have this right now at all but I do not want to miss this chance.

(Hobbit hole from the tiny house embroidery series)

I know money is tight right now for everyone but if you can have a look at our Etsy Store and see if there is anything you need or want.
From now until the 1st March you can use the code EDSSALE receive 5% off everything in our shop.

We also take commissions for art, knitting, crochet, hand spun yarn, needle felted creations or anything else that we’ve done before. You can find more information about commissioning us at our Commission Page or Email me at wallflowerarts@gmail.com.
If you can’t afford to buy anything then if you could share this post with others who might like our stuff that would be fantastic.

(embroidered hoodie)

You can also find us at FacebookTwitter and Instagram follow us there to keep up to date with stuff we make.

(all 7 of the Creature Art Cards but number 7 is not finished here)
(Crochet Prince Arthur from BBC’s Merlin)

(hand knit Dalek)

(hand knit large ball)

(needle felted art dolls Steampunk)

(embroidered Ron Weasley)

(hand spun 2ply yarn in magenta and blues)

(hand knit child’s cabled jumper)

(hand knit hat)

(hand knit fingerless mitts)

(needle felted polar bear)

(Embroidered winter tree)

Art, my connection to where I live, the dissonance between that and my cultural heritage.

Widdershins – an exhibition of Moorland Mythic Art I so, so want to go to this gorgeous exhibition in Devon. Artist involved include Alan Lee and Brian Froud. So much gorgeous art that makes me cry. Oh god I wish I could see it in person.

“Dartmoor’s landscape is steeped in magic and mystery and it is home to many artists whose work is inspired by mythic themes. Widdershins showcases the work of those who live on Dartmoor (or have local connections) Widdershins explores local legends, world myth, folklore and faery tales in diverse, surprising ways… and although it all starts ‘Once Upon a Time’, it is definitely not for children only.”

This is the sort of stuff I’d love to draw and sculpt and bring in to my work but I am so far removed from the landscape that is linked with British Folk Law.
I feel a real connection with the land out here but the myths and legends out here are either still set in European landscapes or they are Aboriginal law and to create with those is appropriation.

How do I work with Myth, Legend and the spirit of the land I live in without being disrespectful to the people that were here long before? How do I work with my cultural heritage when living and connecting with a land that is so vastly removed?


I can make up new stuff on my own, I know, but there is something about working with legends and myth that goes back thousands of years, that other people connect with and have connected with.

I sit here in this ghost town of a gold village and I spin yarn from wool straight off a sheep. I embroider artworks with needle and cloth. I light my fire and sit by it’s warmth. These things were done by women in this spot since the 1850s. These slow ways of being, of creating, of living are something that connects me to the history of this place but I want to create art based on the spirits of this place, on the mix of landscape and imagination that brings the place to life.


Water here is precious. Sun is plentiful and in summer it is dangerous. Summer is not the warm, pleasant, plentiful time of joy that it often is in England where I was born. Winter isn’t ice and snow and a baron land.
This village, at 850m above sea level and the other side of the Great Dividing Range from the coast is the closest I come to the weather and plant life I was born in to in Easbourne, Sussex, England.

We have milder summers and much colder winters than the coast. We have lots of European trees planted in the village. We actually get a proper Autumn here where all the leaves change.

Autum in Hill End

Within a short walking distance though it’s back to Gum trees and Wattle, which I love, but it is green all year round, or at least our version of green witch is really fairly grey. Summer is drought and heat and storms. It’s fire and floods and sun that burns everything brown and grey and brittle. It’s full of flies and mosquitoes, snakes and spiders. It’s certainly not a green and plentiful time.


We get a few days a year of 40c. Much less than we did on the coast but still awful. We get some winter nights at -6c. Much colder than the coast but we’ve only had one decent snow fall where it stuck. And even that was gone by morning.

snow in Hill End

We get less water and more floods. This land is a harsh and dangerous paradise. It’s hard work and red dust and wide open spaces. It’s coal and steel and gold. It’s sheep and cattle and kangaroos that well outnumber the people. It is beautiful and harsh and so very, very old but at the same time it’s brand new.

High Water in the Turon

Road to town

I want to make art to reflect that, to connect to this land that lives and breaths with me. To show others the savage beauty and the things you can’t always see. The things that were and the things that weren’t and the things that are.


I have been considering paintings that show European myths and legends in an Australian landscape and how out of place they look.
I want to go and sit out in the bush and take photos and draw the things I don’t see. I want to needle felt creatures that fit within our landscape but don’t exist and the ones that do.
In a less literal sense I want to spin wool dyed with the plants and ochres of where I live.

Now to find the time, space and money to make a start on this. Not sure I have enough of any of those to get much done any time soon though. I have only the space of my arm chair and the small amount of time when my health lets me think and do at the same time. Money is even more scarce at the moment.

Hill End Markets

Hill End markets open tomorrow at the Royal Hall. Once again we have a stall selling hand made stuff.
You will have to excuse some rather dodgy photos here because I can’t find my card reader so I can’t get anything off my camera. I’m left with just my phone camera.
I hope to get photos of everything with the camera anyway so I can share them later.

Our stall at the market. We’ve actually got a table covering this year. I sewed letters on to a sheet we got from the Op Shop. I can’t believe how perfectly it fits the table. Some of the letters are a little dark though so I’ll embroider around them before the next market.
The gap over on the right is for the adult hats that we’re still pricing and sorting out labels for. They will be there by the time the market opens tomorrow.

It’s coming in to Autumn now so we have plenty of hand knitted hats and fingerless mitts. It was really warm today but tomorrow isn’t meant to get above 20c and it’s getting down to 5c tonight and tomorrow night so hopefully that will have people thinking about winter woolens.
Last market was in October but it was in the middle of the cold snap and we sold out of adult hats pretty early on.

We also got prints of my photography done. We got them printed through moo.com and weren’t sure if they would get here in time but they have and they look fantastic. They have the printfinity option so you can get many designs in the same pack. I have around 60 different images but only one of each design so if they sell out that’s it until I re-order. I will definitely be re-ordering because I want some of these on my wall.
What doesn’t sell at the markets will make it’s way in to our Etsy Shop soon after.
I’ll take proper product photos of what’s left before putting them up on Etsy.
Excuse the dog hair covered carpet the vacuum doesn’t get it up and when you have so little energy there are better things to use it on than scraping the carpet with your shoes (the only thing we’ve found to get rid of it)

Some photos taken around Hill End in Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.

More photos of foliage from around the village and the tree and windmill photos were taken on the Turondale road in to Bathurst.

Sky and foliage taken in the village, two black and white shots from a trip to Sydney and two ocean shots taken in Taree.

A couple of shots of Old Man Roo from across the road, a few shots of our dogs and a couple of Elvis the King Parrot who comes to visit. He’s really friendly and will even eat out of your hand if you stand still long enough.

We borrowed a badge maker from a friend a while ago and in a bid to make some cheaper items to sell at the market I busted it out last week. It’s a bit hit and miss and you waste a lot of components when it doesn’t work but I ended up with a bunch of badges I liked.

Here’s where the phone camera starts to fall down. These are hand drawn badges I made. I drew the pictures and coloured them in with coloured pencil. Then came the hard part of cutting them out. Unfortunately the cutter that came with the badge machine is rather blunt now. It made it rather difficult to get the circles right.

Because I’m drawing them all by hand they’re all one of a kind artworks. I will get around to making some repeatable ones on the computer at some point but we don’t have a working printer at home right now so there wasn’t much point this time.

These are made from some Origami Paper a friend brought us back from Japan. I was really happy with the way these came out. Once again the cutting was difficult and there’s a fair bit of work involved in making the badges but I think the result works well. They look a lot better in real life. I was having a lot of trouble taking a photo without glare on the plastic.

I also made up a set of note cards before I knew if the photography prints would get here in time.
These are all hand drawn in graphite on a cream card stock. Quite thick and sturdy.

You get some idea of the scale here.

These are Hill End cards. The first is the Presbyterian Church, the second is a stamper battery, then a mining poppet head and lastly Northey’s Store.

I like drawing trees and mushrooms

More mushrooms and an Australian Magpie

Galahs on a branch, lavender and a bee, a house on a hill and a tree with owls.

Hill End markets are on Saturday and Sunday of the Easter Long Weekend and the October Long Weekend.
They are open from 10am to 3pm and held at the Royal Hall on Beyers Avenue, Hill End. Right next door to the pub and opposite the general store and take away shop.
Hill End is about an hours drive from either Bathurst or Mudgee and it’s a beautiful, scenic drive. If you come from Bathurst through Turondale it is now sealed the whole way and so is the road from Mudgee. They haven’t changed the sign yet so it still says there’s dirt road but it’s been tarred.
If you are okay with driving on a gravel road then you can come from Bathurst through Sofala. Sofala is another gorgeous old Gold Town.

The pub and the General Store do food and so does Hosie’s Cafe. Hosie’s even has gluten free stuff available. We wont have gluten free cakes at our stall this time, we just didn’t have time. The museum at the Visitor’s Centre is great and there is an audio/visual display at the old Great Western Store that shows a lot of the Beufoy Merlin photos (taken in the 1870s) that are part of the Holterman collection.You can also pan for gold and there are tours running from the Discovery Centre (next to the General Store) including a Ghost Tour at night and an Easter Egg hunt for the kids.
If you have a mobile with either Optus or Telstra you’ll be able to get some signal in the village.
Accessibility isn’t great for people in wheelchairs. Most buildings have steps because they were built in the 1870s. The Visitor’s Centre has a sign on the door saying they have a ramp available but to get to the front desk to ask about it you need to get down 3 steps in the path and up the step in to the front desk.

Come out for a visit. There are a bunch of trash and treasure stalls as well. I’ll have my spinning wheel and will be spinning most of the weekend. 


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