I'm an Australian regional artsworker with a background in Commercial and Community Arts Practice, Contemporary Arts Administration, Diversional Therapy and Arts Education. Relocating to the New England Region in the late 1990s, I taught Arts, Media and History at TAFE Tamworth and established a community arts practice in the small town of Manilla, filling a void in photography and graphic design, with many community projects being completed over the following 2 decades. I worked as a freelance commercial artist throughout, whilst keeping up landscape and documentary photography, and traditional portrait & landscape painting.
As a volunteer, I researched history, designed and edited a local history website, produced museum display signage, visitor info items and provided graphic services to non-profit organisations. In 2015, after 15 years of community work, I called a halt to active volunteering to spend more time in the workshop. I haven't looked back.
I began my arts career as a freelance documentary and sports photographer, commercial illustrator and screen-printer in Western Sydney during the 1970s.
In the late 1980s I worked for a short time as one of the facilitating Artists at Garage Graphix Community Arts Workshop in Mount Druitt. Founded in 1981, the Garage arts workers gave a political voice to community issues through training and guidance of community groups in a variety of arts activities and the production of silk-screen prints for poster and fabric.
In 1988, I joined fellow artists in the establishment of STREET LEVEL, outer Western Sydney's first Artist Run Initiative, in Penrith N.S.W., which showcased the work of 1,500 artists and performers in its first two years of operation. The A.R.I.'s relocation to Blacktown in 1990 resulted in direct interaction with local schools and the broader community and under the guidance of its capable administrators STREET LEVEL in the 1990s provided the rarity of a progressive contemporary arts facility in one of western Sydney's most populated cities. With its final move to Casula Powerhouse Arts Center in the late 1990s, STREET LEVEL continued working to further contemporary arts - both offsite and online.
ARTS TRAINING 1960s-1980s
Early training in those essential art practices provided me with job opportunities which have kept me in work for decades since. That firm foundation was followed up by a Visual & Performing Arts course at Nepean CAE - later UWS Nepean - where I found a passion for research and writing; then came a Degree course with majors in history, drawing & painting, followed up by teacher training. Thereafter...ongoing learning & up-skilling is key in my line of work and I continue to undertake courses to master new... and old, techniques.
Learning Showcard & Ticketwriting in the 1960s at Wollongong Tech. College, afforded me just a year or so of happy brushwork at Coles in the city, before the printed price ticket changed my job description and I became a sticker-down of...stickers.
In the 1970s I signed up for the Art Certificate Course of the NSW Tech. Ed. system at Meadowbank, completing this at Penrith Campus, This broad-based course was standard for NSW art education up to the late 20th century, a comprehensive program consisting of full-time hands-on skilling in the diversity of practical methods an artist may call upon throughout a lifetime of creativity.