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Monthly Archives: July 2013

Hundreds of tiny exploding blooms of the wattle in bloom

Wattle in bloom. All photography by Christina Waterson.

Sometimes it takes a perfect (inspired) stranger to bring one’s mind back to the present. This morning one such stranger reminded me that it is that time of year when the wattle blooms in all of its glory. I have been so engrossed with projects I had not taken the time to appreciate our floral emblem’s beauty up close. This stranger rode past me on a bicycle. Bursting forth from their backpack was a joyous stash of wattle blooms.

The blooming of the wattle marks the time when University of Queensland students should start studying for their final examines – as opposed to when the Jacaranda blooms (which is way too late in the semester). It also marks a terrible time for hay-fever sufferers. Condolences!

New buds wait to bloom

New buds wait to bloom alongside others fully formed.

The wattle’s floral clusters of small concentrated yellow fluffy explosions punctuate the landscape; bushland comes alive with hypa-colour; streets are lined with a yellow haze; and bees and birds are intoxicated by the pollen and scent that ensues.

Thank you kind stranger for reminding me to be in the glorious present!

An engulfing intoxicating experience

Lost within the engulfing microcosm of exploding wattle inflorescences.

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Yes that's me drawing birds on a school art excursion circa 1987.

Yes, that’s me drawing birds at age 12, during a school art excursion. Circa 1987.

When I was growing up I loved to draw. As a child I was often still awake in the wee hours of the morning always drawing, painting and sketching. I would draw all kinds of things; flowers; birds; imaginary experiences from dreams, and still life compositions. I used charcoal, pastel and lead pencil with a free fluid approach.

I fell out of love with drawing in my early 20’s; mainly as a result of formal architectural training and practice. During an office day I would draw orthogonal lines day in and day out. I was drawing architecture. I was not drawing drawings.

Recently I have picked up the pencil (and paint brush) again and am drawing just for pleasure. Here I nervously share with you some of my first marks on paper…

First Marks: Untitled Composition. What is it a drawing of? It doesn't really matter... just a family of objects living in my studio.

First Marks: Untitled Composition 2013. What is it a drawing of? It doesn’t really matter… just a family of objects living in my studio. I realised through drawing this arrangement that I often make assemblages around my home without a conscious thought.

Bond Uni Guest Critic

Architectural Design Studio 5 critiques kick off at Bond University, Gold Coast, Australia. Photography Courtesy of Bond University.

In late June I had the pleasure of being invited to be a guest critic for Design Studio 5 Interim Critiques at the Institute of Sustainable Development and Architecture, within the Soheil Abedian School of Architecture, at Bond University.

The guest critics came together from a range of fields. Critics included Belinda Smith (Artist/Designer, Plummer + Smith), Brant Harris (Architect, PHAB Architects), and Japser Brown (Architect, Jasper Brown Architects) overseen by International Adjunct Teaching Fellow Christopher Hill (Architect, Linedota London) and Jonathan Nelson (Teaching Fellow/Fabrication Research Lab Manager, Bond University; Architect).

Bond Uni Guest Critic

Diversity in approach. Students transform their found wood through a series of exercises and material explorations. Photography Courtesy of Bond University.

The design studio entitled 3+9 Steps – A Thriller led by Christopher HIll, guided the Students through a series of exercises or transformations. They were encouraged to think deeply about each act and introduction of a new material to their salvaged wood, as well as the resultant effect their actions would have on its reading or experience.

Bond Uni Guest Critic

Guest Critic Jasper Brown reviews a student’s work. Glass transformation in foreground. Photography Courtesy of Bond University.

Bond Uni Guest Critic

Copper drawn through Student’s found wood. Photography Courtesy of Bond University.

Bond Uni Guest Critic

Brant and Belinda review a student’s work in the Workshop. Photography Courtesy of Bond University.

Their actions emphasised, contrasted or sometimes subverted the nature of the wood and importantly revealed the Students’ own strengths and potentials in their design thinking and methodology. Often small and considered actions imparted the most meaningful gestures within the projects.

I am looking forward to seeing how the Student’s work has developed (with the addition of programme and brief) at next week’s Final Critique Sessions!

A BIG thank you the Soheil Abedian School of Architecture, at Bond University for the wonderful invitation and welcoming me into the fold; especially Raymond Quek (Professor of Architecture and Head of  Discipline: Architecture, Bond University), Christopher Hill (Adjunct Teaching Fellow, Bond University; Architect, Linedota London) and Jonathan Nelson (Teaching Fellow/Fabrication Research Lab Manager, Bond University; Architect).

Hightide - Queensland Design Now a Book by Jason Bird.

Hightide – Queensland Design Now a Book by Jason Bird. Photography and Styling Darcy Clarke.

An exciting new book, Hightide – Queensland Design Now, by Jason Bird, was recently launched at Dwell on Design, LA through the wearethetastemakers event by Quench and will be launched in Queensland in early August.

The book features twenty-two prominent Queensland Designers and their work produced between 2002 – 2012. A brief summary by the editors of Hightide follows:

Once best known for its beaches and idyllic, tropical climate, over the past decade Queensland has emerged as a wellspring of design innovation. High Tide is the first book to capture the output of this vibrant centre of contemporary Australian design. Sumptuously presented, it features furniture, object and industrial design by some of Australia’s most highly regarded creative talents, including Alexander Lotersztain, Christina Waterson, Marc Harrison and many others.

My Work - The Bloom Series 2009. Komodo Series 2008 and Tracelet 2012 featured along with the work of 21 other Queensland Designers

My Work in the Mix – The Bloom Series 2009. Komodo Series 2008 and Tracelet 2012 featured along with the work of 21 other Queensland Designers. Photography and Styling Darcy Clarke.

For a great Hightide flick through video by Bjorn Rust visit Bjorn’s blog. (Bjorn was the Creative Director and Designer behind the book’s look and feel). To get your hands on your very own copy of Hightide you can buy it online through Uromedia.

Thank you again to the Hightide team and congratulations to all of the designers featured.

Churchill_Presentation_sq

Her Excellency Ms Penelope Wensley AC, the 25th Governor of Queensland (Australia) presenting Christina Waterson with a Winston Churchill Fellowship in July 2010 at Government House.

It’s that special time in the calendar when the new Churchill Fellows are announced by The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust.

The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust was founded in 1965 to assist Australians in their search for excellence overseas. It aims to encourage them to gain experience; foster international relationships and cultural exchange; and share this knowledge within Australia as well as the wider global community. The research supported by The Winston Churchill Trust is independent. One hundred talented Australians are awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship annually.

In 2010 I received a Churchill Fellowship. My fellowship took me to Japan, China and Turkey to research the origins or (as I put it) the space within the ancient patterns of these cultures. My experience through the Fellowship propelled me creatively and professionally to another level and continues to inform my practice every day. It was a life changing experience!

This year we welcome 19 new Queensland Churchill Fellows, each following research as diverse as their experience and backgrounds. Their areas of study include research to improve the treatment of head and neck lymphoedema; the economic integration of refugee women at risk; experience of the craftsmanship of men’s costume tailoring; plaster conservation in significant buildings; and the study of unmanned aerial vehicles. Pretty diverse don’t you agree and that is but a snap shot!

Each extremely talented and passionate new Churchill Fellow will undertake their unique overseas research in the coming year.

Salutations to the 2013 Churchill Fellows. Read the list of Fellows and the details of their research here.

Tracelet (Limited 777) Editions 1 (Salmon - Lemon Aqua) and 2 (Scarlet - Vanilla - Baby Blue) released in 2012.

Tracelet (Limited 777) Editions 1 (Salmon – Lemon – Aqua) and 2 (Scarlet – Vanilla – Baby Blue) released in 2012.

It’s been just over a year since the Tracelet Project (777 Limited) was launched at Brisbane’s Saturday in Design 2012 (SID). Over that time two colour editions have been released and I have personally given more than 700 Tracelet sets to people in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Hong Kong and Singapore.

That’s a lot when you think each time I give a set I also share the story behind the inspiration, the maker and the process. Tracelet can only be given in this way.

Sharing the story of the Tracelet Project at SID Melbourne 2012.

Sharing the story of the Tracelet Project at SID Melbourne 2012. Photo James Braund.

Something quite magical happens each time. Tracelet ceases to be a bracelet made of Injection moulded food grade plastic and instead becomes a talisman about the gift of sharing knowledge.

Tracelet has travelled all across the globe and found homes with inspired individuals. Sometimes they run into each other while wearing Tracelet and say ‘You must have met Christina!’. Such beautiful stories keep flowing in from all over the world.

Beautiful messages, images and thank yous continue to keep me inspired!

Beautiful messages, images and thank yous continue to keep me inspired!

I have received hundreds of thank you emails accompanied by images of people loving their Tracelets; wearing them for special events or in their everyday, or finding new ways to use them (drawing patterns or playing with them as earrings and crowns).

Over the next few weeks tracepattern will be announcing some beautiful news! Until then a massive THANK YOU to all of you for sharing your love, thoughts and belief in the Tracelet Project.

Keep it flowing!