Tuesday, November 30, 2010

All in a day's work

from w
Up at 6 - coffee for two and checking emails and Fiji news. Help yourself breakfast at 8 for five people. At 9 take the two boys to Donation in Kind to sort books for sending overseas (they did such a good job yesterday, and they wanted to go back). On the way I thought it was snowing - white things floating across the road, then realised two huge truckloads of chickens in cages were in the right lane. Isa, poor little chookies! Hard work for a while keeping up with the boys who just knew how to choose books and box books, ten times faster than adults.Morning tea with the volunteers and a discussion with the boys about the difference between volunteering and working for pocket money! Home and painting on the verandah some Christmas pictures. After 11.30 going to a Fellowship Christmas lunch so took the eldest boy. Before the meal some of the ladies did a Nativity Drama in the church. A friend there - an artist - showed me her engagement ring and her latest shopping - box of watercolour pencils and sketch book from Aldis so I tried it out, nearly dipping a brush into the lemon drink. Lovely lunch but I think my grandson doesn't like Christmas pudding - like his Grandad he is suspicious of sultanas. A 25 minute walk home to get fit then shopping for chicken legs/wings for tea and the art stuff at Aldis. Kids have now gone to play tennis nearby and a coach will be there. Grandpa trying to keep up with them. My daughter-in-law can cook the dinner next!

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Monday, November 29, 2010

What are you doing with the seaweed?

from w
'Grandma, why are you picking up that seaweed?'
'Wait and see.'
'Grandma, are you going to cook it?'
'No, it looks like lumi but no.' (Lumi is a Fijian delicacy of cooked seaweed.)
'For medicine?'
The seaweed was brought back from our sojourn at Barwon Heads estuary and I laid it out on a bench outside to dry out. Next morning I found it floating in a tank of water, The boys thought it belonged there! I took it out and then it rained. Anyway eventually I did some scanning of the seaweed to make pictures!


Friday, November 26, 2010

Eagle Rock at Airey's

from w
There's a huge rock below the cliffs at Airey's Inlet that they call Eagle Rock. Part of the Great Ocean Road. Here are sketches of it - using pastels and some paint, and then some ghosting kind of pictures.

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When all the rabbits come out of their burrows

from w
It's voting today for the Victorian elections - main choice is between Lsbour (sitting member Lisa) Liberal (who might edge in) and Greens (small but significant). We went down to Newcomb Park Primary (where we once taught Religious Education) and did the right (or wrong) thing, bought some sausages and bread from the school fundraising stall for the two boys at home, and now forget about the scalliwags who are politicians who think promising millions of dollars is going to change our thinking. Certainly all the rabbits come out of their burrows today for the compulsory voting. Well, at least we do have a vote. Places like Fiji still don't have an election with the regime wanting to hang on and the Fiji budget today tells all about priorities. Nothing for athletics or even rugby this time. Tourism gets a bit of a kick forward but other things cast a pall on being a hospitable country for tourists. Enough said.

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Story behind a property for sale

from w
In the property section of the Geelong Advertiser I was surprised to see a property I recognised up for sale - the Seamist flats which overlook Corio Bay and are close to the Deakin University city campus. Several years ago the owner, a lovely lady, willed this property to our church parish (then St Andrews plus Ormond Rd before we divided into two churches) and told Peceli that it was to be used to fund mission projects and partly to house people in need. Well, it mainly was used for rental accommodation for visitors to Geelong, etc. Now it's up for sale as the land is very very valuable, but it's sad too that the church couldn't find a way to make it part of their mission to the community. I'm glad that Peceli had the forsight at the time the Shenton buildings (church, halls, manse) were available to be sold, to allow the nearby Geelong High School to purchase the property at a reasonable price. Macdonalds and others were interested though in the end it was given over for the educational needs of our community. Way to go. Now I wonder what will happen to the Seamist flats - maybe they'll be pulled down to put up apartments or a hotel!

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A bad taste cake

from w
I blinked a bit when I saw a photo of this cake in a story from Saturday's Age Extra - a group of Melbourne artists who focus on making food, entered this in the Royal Melbourne Show but it was disqualified (because the board was too big). Miss Havesham's cake of course from the Dicken's novel, one of the most famous cakes in history. Here the mice are probably made from icing sugar. Of course to exhibit this in the show competition would really have taken the mickey out of the whole contest! So do you think it is a 'great' cake idea? Or is it too subversive?

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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Me and Magritte and a cup of tea

from w
There are still seven in the household but oh it's so good to have two young women to take over the kitchen and to tidy up! They cooked a beautiful fish lunch for us all. Our eldest son has flown back to Fiji today to work, and a young relative from Sydney has arrived for a few days. The boys, our grandsons, went to church with me this morning and I played the music. It was a full church with the baptism of a baby from a very large family - our good friends and Peceli had baptised about seven of their kids over the years so figured in their family photo albums! This afternoon the boys swam in the heated pool at Splashdown and I had time to do some image-making based on four pictures I made during my Deakin Uni study days. These pictures were based on a postcard of 'La Grande Famille' by Rene Magritte, an artist I really admire. He was born on November 21st- so today is his birthday. A strange painter, a surrealist but not into fantasy in the way dreams and nightmares are. Magritte was born on November 21, 1898, in the town of Lessines, Belgium. He was a Surrealist who used out of place and out of proportion imagery to provoke thought, used titles that seem to have little to do with the subject matter. Someone wrote this about Magritte:
More often than not, Magritte chose ordinary things from which to construct his works - trees, chairs, tables, doors, windows, shoes, shelves, landscapes, people. He wanted to be understood via these ordinary things. Those who find him obscure should not forget that he had turned his back on the fantastic and on the immediate world of dreams. He did not seek to be obscure. On the contrary, he sought through a therapy of shock and surprise to liberate our conventional vision from its obscurity.


Friday, November 19, 2010

At a party last night

from w
We have a group here we call the Fiji Geelong Friendship Club - been going about twenty years now, and we meet mainly on Friday nights, once a fortnight or sometimes for a barbecue in a park.Generally there is a bowl of Fiji kava to drink, and plenty of food and story-telling. We have several newcomers to our region from Fiji, mainly young people, so instead of being a group of 'older people' as it once was, now our group is livelier with small children around. Last night we met in the home of a Levuka young woman and it was a good night. Here are some photos. (Next task is to update our Fiji Geelong Friendship Club website after Billy from Bombay interfered with the password before departing!)


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Someone with some common sense

from w
Okay, this has nothing to do with Geelong specifically, but here's one man in Melbourne who speaks out from the heart and says something that I totally agree with. As a member of the Uniting Church I strongly feel that men and women both can be excellent pastors in the various churches. We have had women as church leaders for generations. Why on earth do these men (in frocks) continue with their medieval thinking about women. Good on you Greg.
The Age today.
Catholic priest risks his future by calling for women clergy
Barney Zwartz
November 19, 2010

GREG Reynolds is grateful that heretics are no longer burnt at the stake. But the Catholic parish priest at Western Port knows that he will be dismissed after this article because Melbourne Archbishop Denis Hart has told him so.

Father Reynolds, 57, delivered a homily in his three parish churches two months ago saying it was God's will for the church to have women priests and that, by refusing them, the church was obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit.

So none of his congregation would feel the need to report him, he sent his homily to Archbishop Hart.

''I am convinced in my heart that it is God's will that we should have women priests … I feel prompted by the Holy Spirit to share my position publicly, and yet very reluctantly,'' the sermon said.

''I believe certain women are being called by God to the ministerial priesthood, and our official church is obstructing the work of the Holy Spirit. I feel I can no longer sit back and remain silent.''

He conceded that as ''an insignificant little parish priest'' he lacked the profound theological training to contradict papal teaching, ''but some things you just know in your heart, in the core of your being''.

Father Reynolds has since had amicable discussions with auxiliary bishop Tim Costelloe, then the archbishop himself, who warned the priest that if he went public the archbishop would be forced to dismiss him. Father Reynolds re-examined the arguments but remained convinced he was both right and had to speak out.

He said as many as 80 per cent of Catholics agreed with him, including many priests who confirm it privately, even though Pope Benedict earlier this year placed advocating women's ordination alongside paedophilia as a ''grave crime''.

He said he was a loyal Catholic but believed in loyal dissent: the church needs people who speak the truth.

Archbishop Hart said yesterday that Pope John Paul II had stated with his authority that the Catholic Church did not have the power to ordain women priests. ''That's the church's position, and that's my position.''

Asked what would happen next, he said: ''I'm not going to speculate. What might happen is between any individual and church authorities.''

Father Reynolds said he expected to be dismissed. His faculties to act as a priest would probably be revoked and, in the worst-case scenario, he might be excommunicated.

He said he believed he was a loyal Catholic. ''I've always felt the concept of loyal dissent is very valid. This is what the church needs - people who speak the truth as they see it.''

Nevertheless, Father Reynolds had a thought to spare for his archbishop, saying ''I wouldn't be a Catholic if I didn't feel guilty''. He feels guilt for burdening his already overworked brother priests and the archbishop. ''He's got the toughest church job in the country, and I'll be creating another little headache for him. But generally I feel at peace and right about what I am doing.''


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Anglesea beach

from w
There's not much time for picture making with a household of seven and appointments etc. but it is an interesting life. Something new this morning - a half an hour with a 'foot doctor' as part of a care program. Using ultrasound the podiatrist checked the blood flowing in my feet and the sound was awesome. Right foot - 'Werewolf' shouted out, and left foot- 'Wow'. Quite strange. Anyway results were fairly good - I just have to walk solidly 30 minutes at least 3 times a week, cut sugar in diet even more, wear shoes in the garden and even the house. Come on, come on, we never wear shoes inside a house! I don't even wear shoes in a wild garden. I guess it's minimize chance of cuts etc. Not that there's junk all over the floor.Anyway back to picture-making. Here are some pictures of the beach at Anglesea where there is a distinctive change in colour in the cliffs.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Urquhart's Bluff

from w
It's full on here with computers as my smart eldest son has put a wireless connection so two computers are connected. In the mornings it's fast, but by the afternoon, it slows down. Today we might buy another second-hand computer to add another one on-line for the grandchildren. What a difference experts can make in a household!An interesting part of the coastline of the Great Ocean Road is a place called Urquhart's Bluff, in the vicinity of Anglesea - Airey's Inlet. We went for a drive down there a couple of weeks ago. One time a bushfire destroyed the trees and bushes all the way down to the sea. A few week's after the fire I did a sketch there. I recently found it again and added a little more line. Here are the results. The Great Ocean Road is one of Australia's most interesting landscapes, a winding road above rocky cliffs for a couple of hundred kilometres.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

The way the world ought to be

frm w
Way to go. Have some fun. Order the world with Rock, Scissors, Paper! Rock on!


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Time after time

from w
A sketch I once made on a quiet beach on Malolo Island was not of driftwood but of the change in the roots of trees over time with the washing of the waves. Here the sketch has been transfigured a bit (not in the biblical sense!)after I added more black using a Fineliner. The other repetition was of a sketch based on a postage stamp with banksia seeds. I just made collages from some variations. Some of the results work better than others.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Still Life photographs

from w
We used to make arrangements of flowers, kitchen objects, shells, and so on and make paintings that we called 'still life'. The shapes are organised rather than arranging the shapes on the paper/canvas. I took photos this time of the lilies - about to wilt - and shells and stones in a glass bowl, then made extra pictures using Picasa and Photo-edit. This is a lazy way of making pictures instead of the slow careful use of paint and brushes but life is very busy at present, juggling in Rotary meetings, going to the tip, and so on.

One story - we were throwing out lots of junk including some old paintings - some framed - and when the guy at the tip face was moving the rubbish, eyed a bluish acrylic painting and set it side to take home. A find, he decided. It was of fish and one of Peceli's paintings so I am kind of glad it's being recycled into someone's home! The guy didn't pick up any of my rejected paintings though!

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