About Studio 13 Paper

I am an artist living on the Far North Coast of NSW in Byron Shire and for the last thirty years I have been working my way through a spectrum of techniques and materials for exhibition and teaching. As an art educator I have had a ball introducing others to the joy of "if it works use it" and I certainly follow that mantra in my own work.

I often use paper, my own plant fibre product as well as commercial, but I will stitch, print, draw, paint, dye, glue, rivet or construct anything that will fit the idea I am playing with.

The process of making paper from plant fibre is labour intensive and can include exciting adventures in harvesting (braving spiders, snakes and curious council workers), washing using the patented gum boot stomping method then into my trusty twin tub, beating (a baseball bat is useful when the Hollander Beater is acting up) and finally forming sheets. It can be immensely rewarding and is one of the many things I love to teach.

Paper makers often become book binders and I am no exception. My books fit into the Artists Book category as I pursue an idea, usually relentlessly and with much research, but I also make books just for the joy of the materials I can mix and for fun with the form. Altered books are also part of the repertoire as I like laughing, working with the story lines and genres usually found in old B-grade movies. Jungle adventures, Enid Blyton and Science Fiction spring to mind. Pop ups and tunnel books can really take off here.

Creative books brings me to 3D constructions which I combine with my papers but also with mixed media so I push the idea of container as far as it will go. The ‘boxes’ may unfold into segments, expand or collapse, have drawers doors and compartments, contain other books; modelling and casting elements combined with found objects and fibre, and be all sorts of shapes.

I also work with silk and wool, which I dye using plants and indigo, rust holes into and tear up, and combine with paper and found objects amongst other things. If this sounds a little bit too much like I enjoy 'deconstructing materials' you're right! But it is often the way I work towards wall hangings, using traditional stitching, applique and quilting techniques in various twisted ways depending on the concept and whatever else may be called for.

All this adds up to a wide experience in mixed media forms. Coupled with my extensive experience as an art educator I am able to offer workshops for beginners and the more experienced in a variety of techniques:

Plant Fibre Paper Making; Relief and Lino Printing; Zinc Plate and Dry Point Etching; Creative Book Binding, Artists Books and Altered Books; Keeping an Artists Diary, Collage and Drawing; Mould Making and Casting in Laytex, Paper and Clay; 3D Construction and Boxes; and Mixed Media applied to just about anything.

I also design workshops with organisers combining a number of these areas and have a lot of fun.