Tuesday, March 27, 2012

shadowplay radio show

Shadowplay is a mix of trad goth rock, dark ambient, deathrock, coldwave and electro-goth. We don't play EBM, and usually post-punk is saved for my solo show, Cannibal Roses.

It's certainly a lot of work programming a weekly radio show, but I love it! I remember listening to Blood & Black Dahlias when I was in my early 20s (and learning a lot about goth music as a consequence), never imagining I would be carrying the batten in my late 30s ;) I remember being amazed and astounded when I first listened to Christian Death's 'Only Theatre Of Pain' in the late 1980s ... this is still one of my favourite albums!

Shadowplay is, as far as we know, the longest-running goth radio show in the world. It started in 1996 as Blood & Black Dahlias on Three D Radio, a community station in Adelaide, South Australia. In 2004 the name was changed to Shadowplay. My partner Anita has been co-hosting on and off since 1999, and I joined her in 2008.

In 2011 we decided to move from Three D to the 24 hour goth radio station Cathedral 13 - our audience has grown substantially, and we are now able to podcast our shows on our blog.

If you're interested in 'real' goth music, go and have a listen!

Monday, March 26, 2012

skeletal family

Another classic ... Skeletal Family's 'She Cries Alone' ;)

Friday, March 23, 2012

creative musings

Blogging can sometimes be quite challenging ... sometimes you are inspired to write a million things, and sometimes you just have random thoughts that you'd like to jot down publicly.

So ... sorry if sometimes my posts don't really hang together all that well - I'm a quick-thinker, and usually have lots of things I'm excited about in my head at the same time ;)

Firstly, here's a short video about the brilliant artist Tim Moore - his embroidery work is so fantastic, and I love his attitude about his creativity - it's all about having a laugh, having fun, stuffing around. I found that letting go of the whole ART thing makes ideas come much more easily ;) (Disclaimer: don't watch if you're offended by embroidered dicks :P)


(Tim Moore - 'Hoopy Shoots', embroidery on linen)

I've been thinking about the 'visual language' of my creative work. I feel my cross stitch designs do work together well, and all look like they were created by the same artist. But with tapestry, I haven't been certain what I actually want to do. I think of ideas, then I think 'oh, I can do those in cross stitch'!

While chatting on Facebook, tapestry artist Anton Veenstra encouraged me to combine my cross stitch with tapestry. This has pushed my thinking even further ... suppose I combine cross stitch, tapestry - AND my love of goth music??!

My final assignment for this year is a large 3600cm square tapestry - designing and sampling is due in May, then I have until November to complete the tapestry (as well as the rest of my homework). I've been playing with goth imagery, and anonymous stylised portraits - sort of like a collage. I'd like to use some of my cross stitched leopard print, as well as weaving in bits of ripped fishnet, and attaching badges. I can envisage a whole series of these tapestries, since there are so many ideas and inspiration. Band tshirts could be recycled to be included in the works, patches ... the list is endless!

Anyway ... I still have a couple of other assignments due before I can start with this one - but it's so exciting when a suggestion is made, and it takes you off into a whole other tangent.

Mercury Retrograde has been very positive for me in this way - I have to write down ideas so they don't fly away from me! Through seeing a few 'ghosts' from my past, I have realised that I am the complete opposite of them ... I enjoy change, I enjoy creativity, I enjoy new energy and new points of view. And THAT'S what this blog is about ;)

Has anyone else had any amazing revelations in the past couple of weeks?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

land of passion

I found this band randomly - I think I was trolling through Discogs (where I buy a lot of my music, I confess!). They're from France, and they're still around under the name of Popoi Sdioh. I played the latter on Shadowplay last week, and will play Land Of Passion this week - Land Of Passion is far more goth, whereas Popoi Sdioh sound more electro/post-punk.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

frankie + soy yoghurt ... pretty random ;)

Yep, that *is* random ... but they are the 2 things in my head right now.

Frankie really loves my work bag, and must sit in the handle every time I get home from work:

She's also been scratching her claws on it ... but here's her 'I'm innocent!' face:

Frankie's getting along a *bit* better with Charlie - there has been some nose-kissing, but there's also been some hissing and chasing :S Hopefully it will be sorted out soon - but Charlie's not as angry now about them both being in the same room ;)

Now, for the soy yoghurt! I have been having soy yoghurt as part of my SureSlim programme - I'm lactose intolerant, so have soy alternatives as much as I can. Problem is, soy yoghurt is expensive, and the unflavoured variety is hard to come by. So I googled making my own, since Anita has an EasiYo yoghurt maker. And I found the perfect tutorial!

It turned out quite runny (which is the proper consistency of yoghurt), and it actually tastes better than the store-bought (expensive) variety - so excited! Here's the yoghurt over a chopped-up apple:

And here's a less-appetising pic of what it looks like after all my seeds are mixed in:

Absolutely delicious!

first tapestry finished!

OK, so I've literally just finished my first tapestry assignment for Year 3 ... gawd, the finishing-off bit is SO BORING!! Though I don't know one tapestry artist who hasn't said the same thing, so I'm not alone ;)

Here's the last panel done - it was based on a painting by Bruno Leti called 'Ewaninga Remnants'. The edges went in on the left hand side of this piece - probably because I was concentrating so hard getting the colours right. So, I didn't check the edge, and it just crept in on me! I must have taken the pic at a good angle, because it doesn't seem so bad here ;)

And here's the whole piece:

I just have to do the accompanying write-up, then it can be posted tomorrow. Of course, it's then onto the next assignment ;) I found the embroidery on the bottom panel more difficult than I expected ... but that's the reason for doing samplers - TO LEARN!!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

mercury retrograde - march 12 to april 4

I studied Astrology for 10 years, and now only use it for myself and my immediate (trusted) friends. I've learnt that knowing Astrology is a double-edged sword ... people tend to like it when it tells them what they want to hear, but attack the Astrologer when it doesn't ;)

With that disclaimer in mind, I am going to talk about Mercury Retrograde. Mercury Retrograde (or Mercury Rx) gets a bad rap amongst non-Astrologers who dabble. They see it as a time when everything goes wrong - and sometimes that's true. But really, it's just a time for looking at things from a different perspective.

A planet is described as 'retrograde' when it appears to be moving backwards through the zodiac ... as Astrologer Rob Tillett describes, "it's a bit like travelling on the road watching another car beside you: when the other car slows down, or you speed up, it looks as though the other car is moving backwards."

Traditionally, this is a great time for computers to crash, car accidents, losing your phone, and you should never get on a plane during Mercury Retrograde (Mercury rules communications, internet, travel, etc.). But this is also a time for standing up for what you believe in, and facing challenges with confidence (since Mercury is in Aries). Since Uranus is also in Aries, these challenges will be sudden and sometimes explosive.

So what does this mean??

These are the main pointers for Mercury Retrograde in Aries:
- We may be faced with revelations that we don't want to hear ... but that you suspected all along.
- We may come across people from our past - ask yourself why they have appeared? It is to teach you a lesson, or is it something they need to learn?
- Deep-seated fears may be triggered - have the confidence to stand up for yourself, stand up for what you believe in.
- Addictions and abusive tendencies may be exacerbated - try not to use escapism such as drugs, food, alcohol etc. to avoid action.
- There may be an increase in riots and other forms of aggression.
- Aries is very 'ME' oriented ... you may come across these sort of people, who are ego-centric, though this is usually out of fear.
- One blog I was reading suggested thinking about 'what you wanted to 'BE' when you were a young teen?'
- Show initiative.
- Be assertive, but not in an aggressive way.
- Be true to yourself, even if it upsets other people ... that's their problem, not yours.

I always keep an eye on Mercury Rx (which usually happens a few times a year), but this one has been very interesting already! I have seen some very nasty people from my past (all of them Aries-style aggressors/bullies/controllers, though seemingly unaware of the fact), but I have also had some wonderful successes (selling 4 bookmark kits in 3 days!). I'm taking this as a sign that I'm on the right track in my life right now. Sometimes you need to see how far you've come though ;)

Astrology is not black and white - there are always a few definitions for any one planetary placement. It all depends on all the other things in your life. For a bully, this Mercury Retrograde may be telling them to look within themselves and ask why they are bullying others? Usually it's a deep-seated lack of confidence and self-worth. For the timid 'victim', it's telling them to be more assertive and stand up for themselves. Makes sense, doesn't it?

Anyway, during the next couple of weeks, I encourage you to look at unusual situations as they arise, and try to understand what life is trying to tell you. You'll find that the more positive aspects you see in a situation, the more positivity you'll attract. Notice how people who are always complaining tend to have negative things happen to them to cause *more* complaining?

Mercury Retrograde is a great time to relax and recharge your batteries. Clean up your rooms, throw out old junk, review your dreams for the future. It can be introspective, but that's a good thing if it's done in a positive frame of mind.

Little Astrology lesson over for the moment ;)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

blog award nomination?

Well, thank you to Meaghan from Coffin Kitsch for nominating me for the One Lovely Blog Award! :O

I started this blog about a million years ago (well, in July 2009), and it was meant to be for my Threefold Designs stuff. Since I now have a 'blog' function on my new website, I'm using this as a more personal diary, especially since starting the Diploma Of Woven Tapestry in 2010.

I've always been an extremist, and absolutely LOVE meeting other extremists! Since opening up my blog to all the facets of my life, I've met some amazing people (like Meaghan!), and have been inspired reading their blogs.

I grew up as an isolated weirdo - internet (while having its own problems sometimes) may have made growing up easier ...

Anyhoo, I thought I'd use this blog post to list a few Blogspots I look forward to reading when they're updated:

Coffin Kitsch: I thought I'd list Meaghan first, since she inspired me to post this in the first place! I've only just recently discovered this blog, and already I like this woman's style! And yes, she has great taste in music ;)

Kaite Yarngarden: Kaite is fantastic - she is a creative textile artist, and uses her extensive skills to create pieces for those less fortunate. I first met Kaite when she gave me advice as a beginner learning tapestry - I'm so grateful for her help!

Return To The East: This is a brilliant music blog, with Michael posting mp3 downloads of impossible-to-buy music, mainly from vinyl and cassettes. I have discovered so many brilliant bands through Michael ;)

The Shiny Bubble: Yaga has a real zest for life, and I love reading her eclectic and energetic posts!

Tapestry Share: As an isolated tapestry student, this blog is invaluable for learning new techniques, and for the clear and concise photos - thanks!

Bethezda's Preoccupations: I love her style, her attitude, and her make-up skillz!

Sparky Jones: Jemima from Sparky Jones is one incredibly talented woman! She makes gorgeous accessories from upcycled fabrics, and is definitely a business inspiration :)

Marymac: Another inspirational textile artist, who seems to have tried EVERYTHING! Well done Mary, you're awesome :)

Of course, that is by no means an exhaustive list - I have a long list of blogs I love to follow ... but those ones were just off the top of my head ;)

Does anyone have any blog recommendations for me?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

tapestry progress ... and some gelati!

OK, I took a pic of my tapestry as it is right now ... excuse the beginnings of the third panel ;)

Lucky this sampler is a learning exercise ... my interpretations are a little on the dodgy side ;) The last one (from a Bruno Leti painting) is even more difficult - eeek!! We have a long weekend in Adelaide, so I'm hoping to finish it off.

Anyway, I decided to visit the gorgeous and inspirational Bella of Bellatextiles for some more wool for my next lot of dreads (to be installed in April) - check out the gelati colours I chose!

Rubella Ballet may have coined the term 'Day-Glo Punk' ... but I think I qualify as a 'Day-Glo Goth' ;)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

stand off ...

This is what it's like now ... Charlie vs Frankie - this usually ends up with Frankie chasing Charlie, and Charlie freaking out and hiding ;) Poor Charlie is now even grumpier than usual - she's probably plotting her revenge on Anita and I right now ...

We're not sure whether Frankie is deliberately trying to annoy her, or innocently wanting to play - probably a bit of both ;)

Sunday, March 4, 2012

sopor aeternus

Of course I have to post a Sopor track! This is a fantastic goth song to dance to ... especially the first 'AAAAAAARRRRRRRRGGGHHHH' at 1:28, where you have to do the Sopor hand movements and dramatic gesturing :P

Saturday, March 3, 2012


This is the new addition to our family, Frankie!

We now have two little girl cats with boy names ... Charlie and Frankie ;) Both cats were rescue cats, and were named previously - but luckily they're cute names ;)

Frankie is very small, and about 4 years old. She'd just had a litter of kittens, all of which were taken pretty quickly ... leaving poor little Frankie at the RSPCA since November. She'd also been treated pretty badly, and still has stitches after a series of operations :( That's actually a pretty similar story to Charlie too, whom Anita rescued about 5 years ago ... so how could we resist?

Frankie is very chatty, confident and is currently strutting around the house! She's very smoochy, and loves a good face-scratch.

We thought Charlie - being bigger, fatter and older - would be the dominant cat. But weirdly, Frankie is being a bit of a bully - she's busting for a confrontation, and after a bit of weird 'howling', Charlie has run off into the wool room, and we're trying to keep Frankie from chasing after her! I'm hoping they have their first 'show down' soon, just so we can get it out of the way! :S

Anyone reading this have any advice for trying to socialise 2 adult cats?

PS - I couldn't go with Anita to the RSPCA, because my weakness is that I cannot see abandoned animals, and don't like to hear stories, I just get so upset and have nightmares for ages ... just an FYI, in case anyone wants to share horror stories - I DON'T WANT TO HEAR THEM!!

second panel ...

I'm actually really bad at updating when there are pictures on my camera ... for some reason, uploading them is too much effort! So here's the pic I was going to post:

But as of today, this is actually how much I have done!

The second one is going well ... not sure that it looks all that much like the Picasso painting it was supposed to represent ... but ah well :P

Little Miro man still needs some embroidery to finish him off, but I'll do that after I have finished the rest.

This morning I taught a few kids cross stitch at the Kids Stitching Workshop at Glenelg Library as part of the Adelaide Fringe Festival ... a pretty busy day, as we also bought another kitty! But that's a separate post ;)

Hopefully tomorrow I'll get a chance to make up my Bats Clutch, as well as finally finishing off Anita's Peacock Clutch. I had a hiccup with the latter - note to self: craft glue is NOT strong enough to stick a metal clasp purse frame to a needlepoint ;) I now have some kick-arse glue, and it's working out much better.

Of course, all that hasn't stopped me from starting a new clutch - this one will be a lot smaller ... like a large coin purse with a pretty chain:

I'm not sure whether I'll do more work on the hand ... I don't want to do too much over-stitching, but I want it to actually look like a skeleton hand!

Oh, and as a PS - lost another 0.8kg (1.76 lbs), so my total weight loss is 6.3kg (13.8 lbs)! Woo hoo! Hopefully next week I'll be under 60kg ;)