Hello beautiful freezing Canada! How I have missed your open prairies, your seeming abundance of adorable fuzzy wildlife, your pine tree mountains and your ever startling extreme weathers!
I have now settled back into life in Canada after a liberating year traversing the Australian outback! I have chosen to settle into a comfortable nest in charming Canmore, Alberta! Time to get back into the swing of things! For a couple promising job opportunities on the rise! Some Christmas Gift designs on the go! And a couple big projects sprouting from seeds of idea and soon to blossom into fruit!
October & November 2012
I attended a month long international residency program at The Parlour Production Studios in Preston, Victoria. Initially I was going to undertake a summery of my experience of the city of Melbourne, but naturally progressed into a series water color paintings that compared my experiences of Australian animals to that of Canadian animals.
(I was also employed for door-to-door energy sales for a short period, quite the experience!)
Finishing of the residency I made connections with local artists at The Parlour and started a collaborative project for The End of the Line Festival in Belgrave, Victoria. The project titled "Shrine" was to be an installation of collected donated items from the Belgrave residence, items which have met the end of their line would be altered and transformed into many small shrines as well as a larger interactive installation.
Merry Christmas Australia!
I was very fortunate to have family come to visit for the holidays! Taking my travels to Brisbane, Queensland for a period of time where I discovered the joys of working for accommodation and cheap hair removal!
My adventures took me to Cairns, Queensland which came out to be a home away from home!
January- June 2013
Happy New Year!
After my first real scuba diving experience with ProDive Cairns and meeting some amazing inspirational instructors, I was HOOKED! Saying goodbye to the sweet familiarity of family I set out to get a job on a boat! Something new and exciting!
I started a 90 day Dive Master Trainee program on Reef Experience and Compass Cruises where I made so many new friends, learned about the tourism industry in Cairns/ Australia, learned how to help operate a boat, scuba gear maintenance, do dive briefings, manage a group of divers, act as a dive guide, navigate through multiple reefs, identify wildlife, assist in stress and rescue situations, and work on an amazing tan! All while completing the courses to be an SSI Certified Dive Master!
This would continue for 6 months.
In this time I also developed a couple relationships with a couple AMAZING people as well as started working with acrylics on canvas, kept up a healthy party/ social life, and explored the surrounding area.
For two weeks I worked as a domestic volunteer on a magical Mike Ball! Owned by Mr. Mike Ball himself whom I had the esteemed pleasure to meet on my second week of being on the live-aboard boat! The position was work for dives and volunteers were guaranteed a certain number of dives a day. I was in a very rare and privileged position that a beautiful new chief/hosty was being trained so all my duties were completed quicker and I had more time to do move dives. And I can honestly say it was some of the best dive experiences I have ever had!
June - September2013
After completing my Dive Master program I started full time employment working on a farm for an absolutely delightful family and experiencing a whole new side of Australia! I've seen plenty of beaches! Plenty of rainforest! But this beautiful town of Dimbulah, Queenslad offered a whole new landscape of rock and outskirts of the outback! Wallabies and snakes and stupidly huge bugs and spiders! Absolutely loved it! And on top of it all, my first Australian WINTER!
(At -35 I'm laughing now!)
3 months of farm working ad not only do I qualify for a second year in Aus, but I've also make lifetime friends with an absolutely amazing family! Can't wait to go back!
This year has flown by so fast! It's almost time to go home!!! Nooooooooo! But not before I get some more traveling in!
After 2 months of art-tastic fun, 6 months of boat wonders and 3 months in the outback farm clothes, I realize I didn't get much 'traveling' in! So a couple close friends and I pick up and take off to Bali and Thailand where we ride elephants, kayak around majestic islands, get mugged by monkeys, enjoy sheesha and beers on the beach, dive exotic waters, cool off in beachside bungalows, scooter adventure through river tree hills, gorge on pad thai and vender fares, learn to squat, barter a bunch and have fun in the sun!
I thank more friends than I can count who made my trip an absolutely unforgettable adventure! I would do it all again in a heart beat and never change a thing! <3