Art for Dummies

Words fail me at the moment, so I’ve been doing a bit of postcard colouring instead, using the output as birthday and thank you cards.

Quite smudgy in places, but life is not lived by colouring between the lines.

Vale Cynthia Jobin


On my return to blogging in April, I was deeply saddened to discover that one of my favourite poets of all time had died in December 2016.

Cynthia Jobin was a blogging friend and a masterful poet, whose art was superior in form, structure and rhythm. But what I love most in her work is the way she infused it with mischief. Her intellect and humour shines through her poetry.

Sadly, Cynthia’s WordPress site is no longer up. I hope her unpublished work will not be lost.

I will miss you, Little Old Lady. You were a beautiful light in the darkness.

Evocation of Art

‘Anti-mimesis is a philosophical position that holds the direct opposite of mimesis. Its most notable proponent is Oscar Wilde, who opined in his 1889 essay The Decay of Lying that, “Life imitates Art far more than Art imitates Life”. In the essay, written as a Platonic dialogue, Wilde holds that anti-mimesis “results not merely from Life’s imitative instinct, but from the fact that the self-conscious aim of Life is to find expression, and that Art offers it certain beautiful forms through which it may realise that energy.”.

What is found in life and nature is not what is really there, but is that which artists have taught people to find there, through art. As in an example posited by Wilde, although there has been fog in London for centuries, one notices the beauty and wonder of the fog because “poets and painters have taught the loveliness of such effects…They did not exist till Art had invented them.” ‘                                 Wikipedia


bb - lia1

Nature creates art in the Dr Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, Vancouver

I don’t agree with Mr Wilde; surely the fact that artists painted the fog is because they saw its beauty in life, and thus art imitated life in this case (chicken vs egg). But I concede that art provides us ways of seeing and appreciating life from a number of different perspectives which we may not otherwise notice.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Gone, But Not Forgotten

My maternal grandfather had many interests and hobbies: he studied the stars (astronomically, as opposed to astrologically), played the violin and loved photography, carrying his camera wherever he went.

I don’t know if he kept a journal, but if he did, it’s long lost; however, his insatiable curiosity about so many things–from people to architecture, to history, to nature–is well documented through the many photos (in slide form) that he took over his lifetime.

He worked as a mosaic tradesman and sometimes travelled from his hometown, Durban, South Africa, by ship up the east coast of Africa to do mosaic work on buildings in exotic places, such as Lourenço Marques (now Maputo) and Beira.

On one of these trips, he took my mum and brother along, documenting the journey with his lens.

I particularly love this photo that he took on the ship of my mum making bubbles for my brother. And I love my mum’s reaction to it: “Oh, what a silly young thing I was then.”


Photo by RIP © beeblu


For more entries to this week’s photo challenge, see The Daily Post.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Work of Art

A Moon Mosaic

Moon Mosaic

I meet two girlfriends every few weeks in the city for a quick dinner and a movie. On Wednesday night, the weather was unseasonably warm, so it was wonderful out, and the big-faced moon took my breath away, hanging there in the sky, shining its magic over the water.


Five wonderful works of art from this week’s WPC:


WPC: Selfie

Selfie, Picasso-style

Selfie, Picasso-style

Self Portrait (a re-post)

They say

We know
who we are
in adulthood –

not brother
not mother  –

A prosaic mosaic,
fragments of a self

But don’t ask me
to complete the picture –

Time has lost
more than a few pieces.


For other selfies, see The Daily Post.

Five favourites from this week:

Jacquie Just Doing Life

Cee’s Photography

Midlife Crisis Crossover

The Syllabub Sea


WPC: Let There Be Light

Inspired in its use of paint and colour to depict light is my favourite painting in the Art Gallery of NSW: Elioth Gruner’s Spring Frost if you ever have the privilege of seeing this painting in its original form, look closely and you will see the light shining through the farmer’s earlobes – it’s quite remarkable.

And, one evening this year, came upon this pretty scene while walking through Hyde Park in Sydney.

bb-ltbl1For more entries to this week’s WPC, see The Daily Post

Below, my top 5:

Creativity Aroused

A Meditative Journey with Saldage

Wind Against Current

Ron Mayhew’s Blog

On Dragonfly Wings with Buttercup Tea

Weekly Photo Challenge: Unexpected

bb-un1Wild Conspiracies (a re-post)

I ask scribbly gum moths:
Why this graffiti on trees?
“Mind your own business,
they’re just doodles, if you please”

I ask a plodding snail:
Why the squiggles on the path?
“There ain’t nothing in it –
I just do it for a laugh”

I ask the sly hyena:
Why the tunnels ‘neath the trail?
“Well! Installation art’s
not only for the snail!”

I ask the bower bird:
Why that hoard of shining bling?
“Oh, poppet, it’s no mystery
objets d’art are my thing”

I ask the primping zebra:
What’s with the barcode?
“Poor darling, don’t you know?
Stripes are back in vogue”

But, you know, I don’t believe them –
It’s a vast conspiracy
It’s clear that they are sending
secret messages to me…

😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯 😯

For more entries to the WPC Unexpected theme, see The Daily Post.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Infinity

bb-inf2When riding the Domain Car Park’s travelator late last Thursday evening, I felt as if I was moving toward some secret portal from which I’d be puffed out into the deepest ocean, or some faraway galaxy. Add to this a lone skateboarder on the travelator hurtling towards us at great speed, giant snails in the park, and dirty laundry hanging in the streets and I began to think we’d fallen down the wormhole of infinite surrealism.

For more entries to this week’s photo challenge, see The Daily Post.

Weekly Photo Challenge: From Lines to Patterns

Macquarie University Train Station

Macquarie University Train Station

Macquarie University is the only university in Sydney that has its own train station. Under the stewardship of former vice-chancellor Professor Steven Schwartz, the university has undergone significant modernization and growth, particularly in the area of research in medicine and the hearing sciences. And we now have a fabulous new library, what is termed a sustainable building, which makes assignment research (something I’m meant to be doing right this minute :-D) a pleasure.

For more entries to last week’s photo challenge, see The Daily Post.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Sea

I’ve dived and snorkelled in different parts of the world and so, for me, the sea is about the many strange and wonderful things that live in it – I think of it as liquid

For more takes on the Sea theme, see The Daily Post.

My top five:

Ohm Sweet Ohm


Life through a Lens

What’s (In) the Picture?

In search of a thousand cafés

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fresh

bb-fp1I greatly admire people who reinvent ordinary everyday things as something revolutionary or breathtakingly wonderful. Parisian architect Jean Nouvel, French artist and botanist Patrick Blanc, and Australian landscape architect Keith Stead are three such people.Without their wonderful ideas and collaboration, One Central Park in Sydney might be just another (albeit luxury) residential apartment building.  However, when finished, OCP will don the world’s tallest vertical garden.

Now, that’s fresh!

(A bit of nominative determinism in the case of Mr Nouvel, perhaps? ;-))

For more entries to this week’s photo challenge, see The Daily Post.

My five favourites so far:


Chronicles of Illusions
(getting up early does have its rewards, Nancy ;-))


Lucid Gypsy

Stories of the Wandering Feet and Mind

When life gives you lemons…

This week’s photo challenge theme is one I’ve participated in previously, so I’m giving it a miss. Instead, in response to this question from Elizabeth over at Mirth and Motivation, I’m posting my Mondegreen poem, which I wrote for Gabrielle Bryden’s Citrus Fiesta some time ago.

naughty lemon by bb

naughty lemon by bb


I thought it really quite absurd
(and way too weird) when I heard
the 70s band Hot Chocolate sing
about the very strangest thing –
wild lemony love in Cadillacs,
the joys of lemons in the sack!

One day it dawned it wasn’t lemons
of which they sung, but rather ‘heaven’s
and so the song proved less obscene,
and my mishearing, a Mondegreen 😯

bb-nlmI’m taking a break from blogging for a while.
Happy blogging
And hope to see you on the other side.

Search Engine Art – Bénédicte Delachanal

Wonderfully talented artist Bénédicte Delachanal has posted this marvellously creative and witty response to my Search Engine Poetry challenge on her blog CARNET DE DESSINS/Bénédicte’s blog.

Hop over and have a look – it will brighten your day.

Thanks, Bénédicte – I love it 😀
(and would love to see your artistic interpretation of “non living things never alive”!)

I met Bénédicte through blogging (thanks Gabe) and have since done business with her, buying a number of her artworks as gifts for friends. She is an absolute pleasure to deal with.

Below are links to some of my favourite posts on Bénédicte‘s blog:

Bloomington Theater and Art Center

Drawing a City

Venezia in Digital Colours

Poisson Pas Content

Drawing the Mind

The Hours of the Day

Mood of Colours

Tintin Meets Spielberg

Hou Hou

Blogging is a never-ending treasure hunt!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Through

shadow and light
of life

another’s eyes

makes us see anew
the heart and mind


A tour through light and shadow

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the Art Gallery of NSW,  Sydney
the Metropolitan Museum of Art,  NYC