The Wild Colonial Company…
Posted in pia's photos, recent work, sydney September 9th, 2013 by pia

009_PJB_TWCC_paperbackbluefan_IMG_0648_blog

010_PJB_TWCC_fanjournal_detail_IMG_0668_blog

002_PJB_blueembossedjournals_IMG_0488_blog

I’ve admired the work of designer Florence Broadhurst  – whose body of work is today printed by the wonderful Signature Prints – for many, many years. I’ve mentioned both designer and print house  half a dozen times here in the (blog)house over the years, and I referenced them in My Heart Wanders as one of my all-time inspirations. So you can imagine how thrilled I was when the ever-admired Juliet Rogers contacted me this time last year to photograph her very first range of antipodean stationery for her new venture aptly called The Wild Colonial Company, which features none other than Florence Broadhurst’s breathtaking designs.

It was a dream job in every way – beautiful client, incredible product (fittingly described as ‘ground-breaking design and superb quality’)… I had an absolute blast shooting each and every notebook, journal and gift card, using my home as my studio, bringing in elements from my garden and finding little treasures around my home to compliment the collection…

006_PJB_TWCC_paperbackwhitefan_IMG_0599_blog

I’m currently using this beauty (pictured above) as my journal. It’s as lovely to write in as it was to photograph, and seeing it sit on my bedside table beckons thoughts and ideas to page. Back then I didn’t get a chance to show you some of the images from the shoot, but today I’m thrilled to have a moment to do just that…

014_1_PJB_TWCC_fullrange_IMG_0725_blog

I hope you’ve seen this gorgeous collection in bookstores and boutiques around the country but if you haven’t, take a look at The Wild Colonial Company’s website to peruse the full range – you can shop the collection directly on the website too, with shipping to the USA, UK and New Zealand as well as in Australia.

Thank you Juliet for calling me for this fab job! Although it’s a year overdue, I wanted to write this post to say congratulations for venturing out into the wild. I look forward to seeing more. xx

012_PJB_TWCC_fancard_IMG_0676_blog

013_PJB_TWCC_flowerdetail_IMG_0613_blog

Related Posts :
"today I am still finding home"...
Little Treasures is now available to...
Summer BBQ, bring it on!!
a new year brings new beginnings...
Laly's bedroom...
creative spirit for country style magazine...
juggling work and baby…
Posted in personal, recent work January 25th, 2013 by pia

PJB_stylingonshootjan2013portrait photograph by my awesome assistant, Julia Gordon

On Monday I was on a shoot for Country Style magazine, creating tabletop shots with my assistant Julia, and photographer Craig Wall for my upcoming magazine columns. It was a full day shoot – the first full day, 10 hour long shoot I have been on since being pregnant with Laly. It was the first time I’d been away from her for more than 5 hours. In the morning, in the hours before I left, my heart began to hurt. While driving to the studio in Alexandria with a car chock-a-block full of props, I told myself to ‘just get over it’. But the ache remained for the day although I did have fun playing with props and making things with Julia.

We finished shooting at 6pm, I think I’ve never packed my car so quickly. I gave Julia the fastest thanks-for-everything hug and backed out of the loading dock as fast as legally possible. I got home just in time to be able to give Laly her last feed of the day. We sat quietly in her room, curtains drawn, and just gazed into each others eyes as she fed.

It’s been a rough week since then. I know she’s picking up on my stress to meet story deadlines and book deadlines. I strive to find the balance.

xx

PS Thank you so much for your ongoing support with raising funds to help self-publish Little Treasures: Made by Hand. We’ve had some technical issues with pozible while they upgraded their website, and we are so thankful for your patience in pledging and signing in.  If you have any queries AT ALL, do not hesitate to contact me by email (click here), and either myself or Fran will get back to you pronto.

PPS It’s my 35th birthday tomorrow. I have nothing planned, should I? Ideas?

Related Posts :
my (visual) story building process...
update: the next "made by hand" book...
exclusive: photography & styling workshop...
creative spirit for country style magazine...
a new year brings new beginnings...
coming up for air...
wandering window displays in sydney…
Posted in my heart wanders, nature, recent work, stores May 24th, 2011 by pia

gathering my supplies for the window displays

It’s been a lot of fun gathering leaves and tree branches from parks and the side of the road, then installing all this found nature into shop windows. It’s incredibly satisfying, especially when I see people stop on the street and take a look – taking a moment out of their busy day to see something a little unusual, hopefully capturing their hearts and imaginations.

The first window in Sydney I installed was at the bustling Better Read Than Dead on King St, Newtown. This was one of my favourites to install, I think because I had the chance to incorporate some of Tracey Deep‘s incredible floral sculptures…

Tracey let me choose a number of pieces in her studio. I settled on these marvelous sphere sculptures, and some delightful dried banksia branches. I thought they might just work perfectly hanging from the ceiling next to my old chair, to create a kind of dream-like forest scene – a place to sit quietly and read a chapter or two from your favourite book. I used the packing paper flowers as well, and cut out some of my butterfly illustrations…

The cushion is something I’d made years ago with some left over sample fabric from Signature Prints. The backdrop comprises of linen strips that I’d used in the houseboat for curtains, and the leaves I found at Callan Park…

The next window I created was at sweet Oscar & Friends in Surry Hills. This window had quite different dimensions – it was tall and skinny, with only a small ledge for sitting props. So for this window I decided to focus on the glass itself and print then trace an entire passage from within the book…

Once I put the text up on the window to trace, I loved its roughness and was tempted to leave the strips of printed text as is…

Above is my little work station while creating the window.

It started to get dark rather quickly and I needed the outside light to be able to trace the text, so I had to stop taking photos of it and focus.  It was labour intensive, but once I finished and stripped the paper off, I loved the results. Then I wondered, what to do with the rest of the window? And how to draw the eye to the text? Well, I just happened to have found a huge eucalyptus branch the day before which had fallen from a tree in a car park. So I installed that up against the side of the window – I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was an ideal fit. Then to create an autumn tree effect, I attached branches of dried leaves along with some ribbon from the top of the window…

While I was searching for which passage of text to use a few days prior to installing the display, I opened the book and unexpectedly, it flopped open to one of the beginning pages that talks about how my trip to Paris came about. In it I mention that I was having an after-shoot drink with an art director friend – that after-shoot drink just happened to be around the corner from Oscar & Friends, at a neighbouring bar. So now here I was just around the corner but 4 years on, making a window display about the book that I wrote based on the journey I took that stemmed from that very conversation. I find that amazing. Anyway, back to the window display: It was pitch black outside by the time I finished the window, but I took a photo regardless of the lack of light…

And then before I headed off to Brisbane the next day, I took a quick detour back to Oscar & Friends to take a photo of it in the daylight…

The beauty of doing window displays is that they are so much about being there, in the moment – you have to be there to really see it, as windows are not easy to photograph with reflections and all. There are always lots of textures and layers which is what makes them wonderful, 3d forms of art.

Next up was the fabulous Shearers in Leichhardt… hello Norton St…

This time Ashlea and Romain were there to help (merci beaucoup mes amis!), so we got the window installed in next to no time. I love that all the props I’ve used in all these windows have been found, salvaged or handmade. For this window, I found a lovely branch the day before while driving through the residential streets of Bondi Beach. We attached it with fishing line, and then attached the paper flowers and scattered the leaves around the base, along with copies of the book…

Thank you Shearers, Oscar & Friends, and Better Read Than Dead for your continued support, and for letting me play in your beautiful windows. And a big hug and thank you to Tracey Deep for lending me some of her floral sculptures.

Last weekend Stef from Newspaper Taxi and I created a window display in her gorgeous store in Newtown (and had a party to celebrate it!), here is a sneak peek of the display…

…but more about that soon. For now, be sure to check out the window at Newspaper Taxi -  there is something you can add to it too (I’ll let Stef tell you about it when you go and visit).

This Saturday will be the very last window display event in Sydney to celebrate the launch of the book.  It will be at Little Paper Lane in Mona Vale. It’s exciting to wrap this month of events up on the Northern Beaches – my old stomping ground. On Thursday night I’ll be talking at Mona Vale Library – the very place I used to go to almost every afternoon after high school. And then Saturday we’ll have a party at Little Paper Lane- I’m so looking forward to being surrounded by family and locals, new friends and old – I hope you can come along! Check out the details right here. I wonder what I’ll create in Jayde’s window? I think since it’s my last, I’m going to go all out – Mona Vale, here I come!

a jumble of words, a jumble of thoughts and ideas…

PS a few people have asked what I use to write on the windows – I’m using posca pens in white, in different sizes, and I bought them at modern times on king st, newtown.You just need a bit of water and a rag to wipe them off glass. I find the pens are much easier to use than paint and a paint brush. Have fun!

Related Posts :
wandering window displays in sydney...
my heart wanders to newspaper taxi on...
the photos: wandering window displays...
the question I am asked the most...
a little gathering at empire vintage...
today's inspiration...
tomorrow night’s book launch + latest country style issue…
Posted in my heart wanders, recent work April 28th, 2011 by pia

wow, it’s really happening: Today My Heart Wanders is being delivered to bookstores across the country. And the official book launch here in Sydney is tomorrow night at Ariel Books in Paddington. Have you rsvp’d? If you plan to come, please make sure you email or call Ariel (02 9332 4581) to let them know as I’ve had word that they will be checking names at the door. Party on, people! This is going to be fun. (PS don’t sit at home and watch the royal wedding, come and hang out with us instead! It will be the place to be).

In more exciting news, the latest country style magazine is out on newsstand shelves today and features a very special article I wrote about Australian artist Greg Hyde (do you remember my post about him on the lovely bloesem some years ago?), and how a visit to his mud brick home five years back inspired me to listen to my heart which lead me to move to Paris, then Amsterdam, and then to write about the journey which is, My Heart Wanders. It seems magical when you look back and realise how certain events and occurrences lead you to where you are today, non? Back then, if someone had said to me that I would end up living on a houseboat in Amsterdam, with a French man, and be asked to write a book about it, I would have said “you’ve lost your marbles”.

I will tell you more about the article and the shoot next week, but for now, I hope you can locate a copy of the magazine to read it at your leisure. Victoria Carey, the editor of Country Style, will be coming along to the book launch tomorrow night to say a few words.

Meanwhile, I have to get on with the preparations for magnolia square for Saturday! Above is a sneak peek at what I’m making. And in my usual style, I’ve left the whole ‘what to wear’ to the last minute, and am dashing out the door to go and find myself a vintage dress.

Hope to see you tomorrow night at Ariel!

xx

PS musicians wanted! I’d LOVE some acoustic & instrumental music at the launch tomorrow night, but all efforts to locate a band free for the night have failed. If you and a friend play the guitar or violin, or the likes, and would be happy to play some lovely sweet music while people mingle tomorrow night, I’d be forever grateful.

PPS I took these photos with my iphone, using instagr.am with tilt shift and the new brannan filter.

 

Related Posts :
My Heart Wanders, the official book...
the photos: official book launch at...
the question I am asked the most...
my heart wanders to melbourne...
my heart wanders to newspaper taxi on...
artist nicola hensel's home in country...
Amsterdam: Made by Hand, official book launch… come one, come all!
Posted in amsterdam, amsterdam: made by hand, recent work May 5th, 2010 by pia

So here it is, the official invitation to the official book launch of Amsterdam: Made by Hand.

What do you think? I know I said I’d post it yesterday but I spent all night working on it, as with all my endeavours, they always take longer to create than I initially planned! Anyway, I am so very excited about the event for so many reasons, it’s going to be grand. Other than the above mentioned treats on the day (personally signed copies, enjoying some wine, nibbling on homemade nibbles and listening to some lovely music), I will also be making a special window display for the American Book Center, so by the time the 5th of June comes around, this awesome bookstore will, well, be even more awesome!! If that’s possible.

I am going to reveal more details of the event in the weeks to come but for now I just wanted to officially invite you all. Below is a little snippet from the press release, please help spread the word…


I will also be sharing some more Amsterdam: Made by Hand goodness with you soon including the announcement of some more very special events. I am excited to tell you that the book has already received some excellent press around the world, I will share these with you too! Mostly, I can’t wait for June to roll ’round so you guys can get your hands on them.

xx

Related Posts :
Amsterdam: Made by Hand is now available...
preparing for the book launch...
Amsterdam: Made by Hand in Vogue Living...
the month to be in Amsterdam...
Amsterdam: Made by Hand recent press...
urban arts festival, amsterdam, 2010:...