This is where I share a mix of my illustration and a touch of pretty things and places I've discovered in my day.

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Friday, February 1, 2013

Howzit Hong Kong

We only had a short time to spend in Hong Kong - but it was wonderful! The one thing that struck me about Hong Kong was the charm, it felt like a sigh of welcome relief. Traveling with a ferry to view the skyline from Kowloon the boat's old wooden benches with old school buoys and machinery makes you feel at ease and slightly nostalgic about times gone by. I looooved going round on the old trams too - creaking round the city, so full of retro colours, wooden finishes and signs.

The skyskrapers are impressive - mostly apartment buildings scattered all around. Our lovely friend who accomodated us in her tiny apartment told us that if all the people living in Hong Kong would go down to the ground level there won't be space for everyone. Quite a strange concept coming from the vast open spaces in South Africa. One thing you can most defintely get great excercise in is perspective drawing! There are plenty of vanishing points for you to figure out. I have decided to focus more on travel illustration and this Hong Kong drawing is a kick off for some more to come. Any travel editors out there - watch this space!

If you are a tea lover - this is definitely the place to be! I was super excited to discover teashops with a vast selction of tea and teaware. I hope to go back sometime soon with loads of tea money in my pocket...



Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A little bit crooked

I'm currently exhibiting some work as part of a group exhibition in Tainan. We're exhibiting in an old Japanese heritage building - a beautiful place. You have to remove your shoes before you go upstairs and the floorboards are all creaky. All the work looked great - I was happy to be part of the team, with artists from Australia, Japan and Taiwan.
Apart from my known pen and ink work I also explored with some collage - lots of  textures and little bits of weird paper and scraps to build a multi layered image representing a mere glimpse of life in Taiwan.
We had a great time hanging out in Tainan afterwards. So nice to spend some time with fellow artists. Thanks to everybody for all the effort involved. Thanks to De Waal for dealing with me when under pressure.. and thanks to my friends who specially travelled with me down to Tainan for the opening :)



Monday, December 10, 2012

Here comes the bride.

It was with great expectation that we got up early on one of our very few public holidays to attend the wedding of a lovely girl called Sandra who was my boyfriends previous manager at his school.
We have heard many mixed opinions about Chinese weddings as they differ greatly from our Western ones and we were keen to experience it.
The couple are Christian so the church seremony was not that different from what we are use to - although it was more informal with less of a church atmosphere. Some people came dressed in hoodies, and there was amusingly a little lap dog being held in the choir.

The bride looked lovely - as brides do - in a big white dress with a long train. After the cermony we were lucky to be driven with the wedding  procession of red mitsubishis to the reception.
Arriving at the recpetion you have to hand over you hong bao (red envelope) first, this is your payment for the wedding. The amount is optional but anything under R300 per person will be frowned upon. The money is unceremoniously taken out of the envelope - counted and the amount is written down in a book. You can then write well wishes and your name on a long red paper wishing the couple a bright future.

After a long wait for the arrival of the couple, the first course of many were served. It arrived with a lighting and music show and electrical torches with quite a fanfare. The wine was opened - there isn't much of a drinking culture with weddings - it's mostly for toasting and after living in Cape Town the quality of the wine makes your toes curl in your shoes. So toast we did - with the bride as they go around to every table for good wishes. My boyfriend was treated to a taste of the bride's glass - fruit juice! Not a chance for a tipsy bride then. With a few dress changes ahead I quess the bride still had quite a day ahead of her.

The next 13 or so courses came in one after the other - it is very different to the usual Taiwanese food - which I really enjoy. There is a lot of Chinese traditional herbs in and it's just not really palatable - Sorry...When the last course - the fruit - hit the table, people start leaving - it's the usual end of the reception. We are greeted by the door by the couple with some candy and a generous gift and off we go home. (Craving a cheese sandwich)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Ons praat Afrikaans op die R62

Ons vertrek die oggend uit Franschoek na 'n wonderlike aand met volstruis fillet, 'n paar bottels Wolftrap,'n klein koue Jägermeister en uitsonderlike geselskap na die R62 via die Theewaterskloofpas. Eers getreat met die uitsig van bo-op die pas oor die hele Franschoek valei, voor mens verdwyn - effe karsiek - om die volgende draai van die kronkelpad.

Ons ry eerste deur Villiersdorp waar 'n paar herinneringe deurskemer van 'n vorige kuier. Dis koud buite maar die dag is pragtig. Sonnig en met lekker tunes in die kar voel dit hemels. Dis landskap slaan keer op keer ons asems weg. Dis OOP en skoon en blou, geel en bruin met highlights van oranje-rooi aalwyne wat vol in blom staan. In ons omgewing waar ons bly in Taiwan bly daar 24000 mense per vierkante km. Hier is jy gelukkig as jy een sien!

Ons eerste stop is by Affieplaas 'n padstal net duskant Robertson. Ons koop geskenkies, padkos en geniet 'n heerlike middagete. Volgende Barrydale - ons ry op en af in die opdraand afdraand strate en gaan krap rond in 'n bric-'n-brac winkeltjie. De Waal koop koeksitsers vir sy pottery master in Danshui en ek 'n ou protea poskaart.
Volgende stop Mcgregor. Ons gaan loer in by Millstone pottery - die potter daar is een van die enigste pottebakkers wat sy ware in houtgevuurde kilns bak in Suid Afrika (nes in Taiwan). Ons besluit om te oornag op Montagu - ek bel 'n paar nommers wat beskikbaar is by die toeriste opsteekbord en besluit op die vriendelikste Afrikaanse tannie. "Kom kyk gerus" sê sy. Ek is oorweldig! Wat 'n pragtige cottage en kamer - die cottage is groter as ons woonstel in Taiwan so "dankie tannie ons sal die kamer vat". "So julle is oorspronklik van Pretoria?" Jô tannie, "op Tukkies geswot?" "Jô Tannie". In ons woongebied is jy bly as iemand 'n woordjie Engels kan uitkry. Hier, praat almal Afrikaans. Ongelooflik hoe jy jou taal waardeer as jy dit vir so lank nie gehoor het nie.

Na 'n Wimpy ontbyt val ons weer in die pad - Montagu was lieflik! Ek sou met graagte langer bly! Ons ry deur Ladismith sien towerkop sy kop uitsteek en stop oor in Calitzdorp vir pannekoek en 'n verrasing geselsie met die chef wat vir 8 jaar in Taiwan gebly het. Interessant hoe vinnig hy opgesom het al die dinge wat mens die meeste grief en meeste plesier gee. Dit laat mens gerus voel! Ons ry vlugtig deur Oudshoorn en tot in Glentana waar ons met ope arms en groot borde kos verwelkom word na die laaste strek van ons wonderlike vakansie.


Friday, July 27, 2012

How I love South Africa!

The good part of being away from home for so long is when coming back you see everything you know so well through new eyes. I have never appreciated things so very much - things we usually take for granted. The space, the silence, the incredibly friendly openhearted people always ready for a chat or a joke, the wonderful produce, the wine, oh the wine, the gardens, the winter sun, the wildlife and then to top it all the loved ones. Dearly missed family and friends.

Thanks for everybody's hospitality and everyone who made an effort to meet up. Wish we could spend more time! Much love xx

Friday, June 8, 2012

Scootering and sketching in and around Taipei.

One of the wonderful things about Tapei is getting out of Taipei! Not far from where we live - between Tucheng and Sanxia - there are wonderful mountains covered in jungle that's a joy too explore by scooter. So of we went with Alex (my awesome new cartoonist friend from snotm). It was great to explore little windy roads, old cemetries, new leaves coming to life and just generally hanging out in the cool darkness of the jungle. We treated ourselves on the way back with a delicious meal at an old school Japanese restaurant in Sanxia. Yum! Salad with lobster and apsaragus, tempura taro and aubergine, barbequed fish, salmon fried rice and plenty more!

Later in the week Alex and I hung out at Taipei Main Station - practising quick gestural drawing and also at Revolver for a life drawing session which I haven't done in ages. All of it was pretty awesome.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Fanzine for sale!



For purchases click here


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Backpacking sketchbook 8: Final stop - Tong Sai

We were so thankful that our last destination ticked all the boxes after a lot of unexpected turns in our holiday. Tong Sai is mainly a rock climber hangout - with its surrounding cliffs it's paradise for those who climb them. We don't, but we enjoyed the vibe. There was a great community atmosphere as well as the spirit of people caring for their surrounding environment. The local people seemed happy too - which was the first time we felt that in Thailand.

We got a lovely wooden bungalow surrounded by beautiful nature and we chilled out. Swimming and reading on the beach, picking up really pretty shells, hanging out on the deck/restaurant/bar with fellow travelers and I was super happy to find a restaurant that stocked some English comics - some good ol' Calvin and Hobbs and others - they lend them to me like a library and I was super happy to disappear inside them for a few days.

We left Ton Sai with a good feeling, rested and happy to return to our little place in Taiwan, looking forward to the efficiency, safety and the routine in our lives as well as new projects and old friends.

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