Friday, February 03, 2012

February: Celebrating 300 posts and 6 years of blogging

 Above: This was the image that went out with that first post!
Probably lucky I didn’t scare everybody off permanently.

It was a Saturday afternoon in late February 2006 when my first blog post was published.
My friend Claire (who just over 12 months ago finally launched her own blog, Doing What Matters) convinced me that perhaps I had something of interest to say.
Claire and I share a love of art and art-making, and we both believe firmly in the power of art to heal and to nourish us as human beings. Claire works as an art therapist and there was a time, before the existence of this blog, when I hoped to make that my life’s work too. When I moved to Melbourne in 2003, my plan was to study Art Therapy at La Trobe University. Although I had ME/CFS, at that time I was much improved, and it seemed a possibility.

livable 1 (detail)
 Installation view from the exhibition I had in Brisbane just before moving to Melbourne.

The gains I had made were only temporary, and it was soon obvious that I wasn’t energetic enough to undertake such a demanding full-time course of study. So, being in a new and exciting city which offered a range of institutions, I looked into the possibility of studying art in a university environment. And the rest is history, as they say. (In case you don’t know, I eventually completed my MFA from RMIT University).
Those first steps into the blogosphere were rather tentative, at times erratic and mis-directed, but my impulse to equate art and health remains strong.
I re-read that first post today with interest. Personally, I have a need to create regularly or I can feel the tension building inside me. I become ungrounded, irritable, anxious and eventually depressed. It’s not pretty! I guess these all sound like mental health symptoms in the jargon of the day, but I also see it as a question of the heart (not to be confused with cardiac), soul or dare I say “spirit”.
Whatever term you prefer, the bottom line is that creativity and art are essential in a healthy life. With the help of this little blog I hope to spread a little of the joy of art around.

A Give-Away
 Tokyo 081
 Yes, this pic is *somehow* related to the Give-Away
So to celebrate 300 posts and 6 years of blogging, I’m offering a give-away to everyone who comments here before my next post (make sure I can find an email to ask for your address). When will the next post be? Well, who knows? I certainly don’t! That’s one of the rules I have for myself about blogging. No pressure! There are very few areas of my life where I allow myself a little leeway, but blogging is one.
As my friend Cusp likes to describe it:

So, leave a comment if you’d like to receive a little something from me in the mail. What will it be? Well that would be telling, wouldn’t it?


  1. I'm not quite sure when I first read your blog, but I know it was before we became acquainted through BAO.
    You've done very well over these 6 years, especially when CFS is taken into consideration!
    Perhaps you could save the postage and give me whatever prize you have in person.In ... say, London?

  2. i love the generosity of bloggers - and I've been a lucky recipient of your generous spirit in the past - here's to another 300 posts (in however manner years that may take) congrats on the milestones xx

  3. Thanks you two! You are both v.v. kind. And I've got both your addresses, I know.

    Hmm, London. Sounds good Di! What are the chances we'll coordinate?

  4. 6 years of! My blog-anniversery was yesterday: one year. I've decided to do a give-away too.
    Please throw my name in the hat for yours!
    best, Annie

  5. Ooooh thanks for the mention my dear :O)

    As I've said before I always enjoy your blog because the CFS is an aside (no matter how you're feeling) and because you are able to get about more than me I SO appreciate the reviews of exhibitions etc and other artist's work no matter where it is geographically..Oz, Paris, etc.

    I've neglected my blog for way too long and really need to get back to it.

    Looking forward to the next six years and your continuing progress and development as an artist x

  6. Anonymous7:47 PM

    Greetings from Norwich,and congratulations on your anniversary. What a generous spirit you have.
    I would love to have something arrive in the post - just think, something coming through the letter box that is not a bill!
    I have been reading your blog for a while now and look forward to many more posts.

  7. That's amazing to have been blogging for six years! I just made my first post on my first blog today! I'm a newcomer, but I have enjoyed reading your posts about the making of your books.

  8. I just started following you this past year, via Book Art Object and I have been inspired by your work. Thank you for sharing it :)


  9. I've been reading your blog as well as following BAO for the past couple of years. I finally took the pluge and started my own blog this Christmas (and signed up for edition 4). Hope I can keep it up as long as you!

  10. Wow, that is an acheivement! Congratulations. I, like Helen, have only recently started blogging and find it both exciting and scary. I guess the posts I enjoy most are the ones about (printmaking, bookmaking) process and experimentation. It's amazing what you can learn from other boggers. Generosity, indeed!

  11. Wow 6 years ago I didn't even know blogging existed, although I am very glad that I have discovered it now and found wonderful, arty blogs like yours where I can discover and converse with generous and knowledgeable bloggers. Hope you continue to find great discoveries and mutual connections too.

  12. Congratulations Amanda on 6 years and 300 posts, that is an average of a post a week isn't it? Very impressive.

    I am grateful for the link to my blog, not sure I deserve the credit for getting you started - how come it took me so long to follow my own advice I wonder?

    Your blogs are always inspiring, here's to the next 6 years!

    And this art therapist is going to become a social worker, funny how things turn out...


  13. Hello Amanda, that is certainly an achievement! I love your posts because they are usually thoughtful and thought-provoking, and I love it when you give us insights into how you work and how your projects develop. It was really lovely meeting you and Ronnie and Duck at Impact 7, and I'm looking forward to catching up with you in person again in Brisbane sometime soon! You've achieved so much and I do love your work... I hope you continue to have lots of fun with your blog, Sara x

  14. And no pressure over the giveaway either! Mostly, I want to say congratulations on your genuinely wonderful blog. I'm glad you've kept at it, and look forward to many more years of reading your posts!

  15. Wow! Six years - congratulations. I think you've achieved wonders with your blog. Always interesting and informative, but at the same time incredibly warm and generous. Like Di, I found you before BAO, and it has been a great joy. I look forward to the next 300 posts.

  16. Hello Amanda, sorry I missed your historic blog in real time but have caught up now. Your blogs are so informative and must consume an incredible amount of your time. Keep it up if you can they are just so inspirational. So much so that I made a visit to The State library yesterday to see your beautiful Jacaranda book. So much more beautiful seeing and touching the real thing. Congratulations!