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My name is
Joanne Mackellar

Web Designer & Illustrator

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Illustrated playing cards designs

Posted on 22 Jun 2016 in Artist, Illustrators, Inspiration | 0 comments

I still haven’t got the hang of this blogging thing have I? I’m sure I will one of these days!

A few weeks ago there was a mega toy fair in my sleepy little town. I normally head to these in hopes of finding a rare doll or something nostalgic from childhood something I expect fellow collectors will understand. One day I will find a rare doll worth $700 on ebay for $1 in a sale.

By chance I came across a stall selling vintage playing cards. What attracted me to these cards was the design on the back. All the designs are done by some talented artist and remind me of my childhood. I think this has taught me to be more thorough when looking through stalls because you never what you might find!

I have to admit I have no idea who the artist are on the back of these cards, so if you have any information I would appreciate it. Below are the images of the cards I found, aren’t they great?

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Playing Cards

Helpful links

Posted on 27 Jan 2016 in Illustrators, Links | Comments Off

I promised myself that I would get back to proper blogging after I’ve recovered from some big life changes. Turns out blogging can be a lot harder if you feel like you’ve got nothing to say. While I’m trying to find my voice here are a few useful links -

5 Fears that Keep Artists from Posting Online – Kelley Mcmorris (why you shouldn’t be scared to post work online, I do know of the irony here)

Pikaland – Amy (useful resource for aspiring illustrators)

A new squad of super heroes – because I just think it’s great!

Just make it already! How to boost your sewing confidence – Heather Lou (While it’s about sewing, the same can be said for any type of personal project, too many times at school I didn’t hand something up or start something because I felt it wasn’t good enough. I think we all need to get past that.)

Walking through the witches - Mica Angela Hendricks (Going through her process of creating a new illustration. ‘Like Just make it already” she goes into just creating)

That’s all the links I have for this week. Hopefully the next time I blog, I’ll have some something to say.

The sign writing of Quorn

Posted on 22 Sep 2015 in Travel, Type | Comments Off

A few weeks ago I took off on a road trip across Australia. I intended to go up the Oonandatta track and then spend a few weeks in the Northern Territory.

One of the first stops of my road trip was a tiny town outside of Port Augusta called Quorn. The main attraction of Quorn (and why I was there) is the Pichi Richi railway. The Pichi Richi Railway is a heritage railway located in Quorn. It runs regular train journeys on the oldest remaining section of the old Ghan railway. This particular day I rode on the Pichi Richi explorer

After riding the Pichi Richi explorer and having a walk through the town I began to notice the lovely sign writing that was around the township. It was nice to see the history of the township and the pride of the town, through typography on the buildings. A lot of the signs looks like it was kept up and restored over years.

Sign writing of Quorn

The old sign for the tourist emporium, which no longer exist in this location. It has moved over to the Quorn railway station, across the road from this building.

Sign writing of Quorn

Sadly this tailor and outfitter is no longer here, but it’s nice the owner of the building has kept the sign writing. 

Sign writing of Quorn

A lot of these places, no longer exist in the township but the typography still remains today.

Sign writing of Quorn

Sign writing of Quorn

Billards sign on the wall of a bookshop. I’m unsure if this place is still open.

Sign writing of Quorn

 Emily’s bistro is still open in Quorn and makes some lovely food.

Sign writing of Quorn 

Other building such as the Bank SA building have now been re purposed into accommodation, which is great to see. 

 

How one tweet can go so wrong

Posted on 24 Jul 2015 in Social Media, Technology, Uncategorized | Comments Off

A great TED talk by Jon Ronson. It’s something to think about before getting involved into any “torches and pitchforks” mindset.

 

Taiwan Travel – what I should have done

Posted on 11 Oct 2014 in Travel | 0 comments

Street

Early last year I decided to go on a massive South East Asian holiday, I traveled to Philippines – Taiwan – Japan. Being half Asian (and unable to speak any other language than English) I could write a book on how awkward it is.

One country I definitely enjoyed during my trip is Taiwan, although most of my holidays overseas or interstate end up having a Griswold Vibe to them, it makes the holidays more memorable. However I would like people to avoid the mistakes I made with these helpful tips and I made HUGE mistakes which I’m not willing to admit on a blog yet…..

Public transport:

Taipei offers a 1, 2 ,3 or 5 day travel pass for all subway (MRT) and buses within the metropolitan area of Taipei.  I found this service to be invaluable while in Taipei. While the subway system is quite easy to navigate and buy tokens, the buses were a different story. The bus system is more dependent on the passengers having a travel pass. Tickets on the buses need to purchases after the trip and I found change is not given.  These cards can be purchased from subway stations. They also come with a handy booklet with places to visit (if you haven’t already planned) and vouchers for goods and services. I would only recommend if you’re in Taipei for longer than a week and want to travel to quite a few places. For me, the convenience of having a travel pass far outweighed the cost.

Mobile coverage:

It’s hard to believe but I found navigating my way round Taipei was almost impossible without mobile internet coverage. A smartphone was a must for me, since I had access to google maps, email (for accommodation confirmations) and google translate (which turned out to be quite useful in rural towns where english was not used on menus). Going to a Taiwan mobile  store when you first arrive to gain a prepaid 3G sim can make the difference between an uncomfortable travel experience to a freaking scary one! To gain access to a mobile sim all you need is an unlocked smartphone (one that works with Taiwan’s frequency) and your passport to sign up.

However if your like me and forgot to look this up before you went, Taipei’s main station has free wifi to find the address of a Taiwan mobile.

I hope you found this somewhat useful.
 

Small Business Management Course

Posted on 29 Jul 2014 in Business | Comments Off

I took a leap of faith in education again and started a Certificate IV in Small Business Management. I haven’t really studied at a tertiary level since I gained my current employment status.

I decided on the Certificate IV in Small Business Management  due to my lack of knowledge on business. Eventually I would like to start my own business in  illustration and web design.

I decided to go with Open Colleges which offered me the freedom to study for up to two years and at home while I work. A lot of what I need to do will require self discipline. Better get that calendar out and set myself some deadlines!

 

Online Schools

Posted on 13 Jul 2014 in Links | Comments Off

Some online schools/tutorials that may be of interest:

Schoolism - http://www.schoolism.com/ 

Skillshare - http://www.skillshare.com/

Gnomon Workshop - http://www.thegnomonworkshop.com/

Pencil Kings - http://www.pencilkings.com/

Quotes

Posted on 11 Jul 2014 in Quotes | Comments Off

YOU

You are the sum of your choices. Your job then is to make sure that your ideas about what to paint are not wholly based upon either the acceptable or the taboo, but arise instead from what honestly fascinates and stirs you. You may feel vulnerable, but I see no way around that. I assure you it is OK to feel vulnerable – it is, after all, the human condition. In any case, your thoughts (and mine) are just as valid as anyone elses. Even though you share countless similarities with others, you are unique. No one has your mind or your feelings. They do not notice what you notice, and do not have precisely the same sensitivities or fears. No on has the same idea of God as you. No on longs to embrace life or ponders death and beyond as you do. No one is human in the same exact way as you are. Once you understand this, your task is to get in touch with yourself. Find out what moves you, what you believe in, what you truly understand about life, who you are, and what this great experience of being alive means to you. Then put it in your paintings.

Somewhere within all of us there is a wordless center, a part of us that hopes to be immortal in some way, a part that has remained unchanged since we were children, the source of our strength and compassion. This faint confluence of the tangible and the spiritual is where Art comes from. It has no known limits, and once you tap into it you will realize what truly rich choices you have. May each painting you do from that sacred place include an expression of gratitude for the extraordinary privilege of being an artist.

Richard Schmid – Alla Prima.

 

Link Roundup – life drawing

Posted on 04 Jul 2014 in Links | Comments Off

Edi Udo - http://ediudo.tumblr.com/ and http://ediudo.com/

Rosie Coleman - http://ro-zee.tumblr.com/

Kakukaku Shikajika an autobiographical manga worth reading

Posted on 16 Apr 2014 in Artist | Comments Off

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I read a lot of comics, it’s almost obscene. I can remember reading them as a kid, rushing to newsagent looking for the latest issue of whatever I was reading at the time. I read all genres that perk my interest: Superhero, romance, action, indie.

Manga is a form of comic common in Japan. It covers a broad range of genres, but there are specific demographic markets that appeal to women 20 – 30 (Josei), girls 10 – 18 (Shoujo) , men 17 – 40 (Seinen) and boys 10 – 17 (Shonen). Of course this is just a generalisation, josei might appeal to young boys or shonen to women, etc

Of course I have multiple favourite manga authors but one that really has my attention at the moment is Kakukaku Shikajika by Akiko Higashimura. Currently 16 chapters have been unofficially translated.

Unfortunately this manga isn’t officially translated yet, I hope one day it is along with Kuraghime. The story of Kakukaku Shikajika is one, I can relate to and would be incredibly personal to Akiko Higashimura. She illustrates her hopes and dreams as a highschool student to draw manga full time, like most people though she’s a bit delusion on how to get to her goal. Until meeting a teacher who encourages her to draw everyday to gain entry into an arts college.

Kakukaku Shikajika is a fantastic manga to read if you ever felt some sort of loss or uneasiness in your life. It asks the question what happens after you’ve achieved your goal? What happens once you find yourself at a long loss (one that can last for years). Do you march on or lose faith in your ability to do anything? I think everyone has gone through a period like this in their life.

 

SkyWhale

Posted on 31 Mar 2014 in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Dark Heart is the title of the 2014 Adelaide Biennial exhibition currently taking place at the Adelaide Art Gallery from March 1st to 11th May. The exhibition features 28 of the leading contemporary artist in Australia today.

Some exhibitions were held off site, while others are scattered around the Art Gallery of South Australia. One of the off site events was the Sky Whale.

Sky Whale was commissioned to celebrate the centenary of the city of Canberra. The intention was to created a balloon that looked like it belong to the Sky. A statement from the Sky Whale Wikipedia page:

“My question is what if evolution went a different way and instead of going back into the sea, from which they came originally, they went into the air and we evolved a nature that could fly instead of swim. “

I was fortunate enough to catch the SkyWhale in the botanic gardens at a viewing on the 1st March.

SkyWhale

SkyWhale by Patricia Piccinini

SkyWhale

Deflating SkyWhale by Patricia Piccinini

I wasn’t surprised by the comments I received on flickr and instagram about the Sky Whale. Most people either loved it or hated it. One person told me the Sky Whale is an embarrassing abomination. Another said it was a spectacular sight. Under Donald Norman’s aspects of Visual Design, the Sky Whale comes under visceral (concerns with appearances) and reflective (rationalization).

People either love or hate the Sky Whale when it is first gazed upon. However they may or may not come to understand and like the Sky Whale once the deeper meaning is understood.

Full exhibition list can be found on the Adelaide Biennial website.

Naoshima, Japan

Posted on 23 Sep 2013 in Photo | Comments Off

Naoshima Art Island

Naoshima Art Island

Naoshima Art Island

Bike Riding – Urban landscapes

Posted on 15 Sep 2013 in Inspiration | Comments Off

Lately I’ve been riding my bike to work, the weather has been lovely. Taking in the sights on the way to work, I’ve noticed how different some of the houses are. I took photos of some of the houses that really stand out to me. I used a google nexus 4 phone, since carrying a camera can be a pain!

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Houses around this area seem like they are out of a David Hockney or Jeffery Smart painting. The colours don’t blend in with the surroundings but are subtle enough they don’t stand out.

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These houses, I think would make a lovely painting.

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I love the yellow of wattle at this time of year.

Naoshima, Japan

Posted on 22 Aug 2013 in Photo, Uncategorized | Comments Off

Pumpkin

Benesse Oval House

Houtong Taiwan

Posted on 20 Aug 2013 in Photo | Comments Off

It’s cat town! Meow!

Houtong, Taiwan


Houtong, Taiwan


Houtong, Taiwan


Houtong, Taiwan


Houtong, Taiwan