My Happy Place

“My Happy Place” online workshop launching soon!

I’m SO excited to be launching my online mixed media art course called “My Happy Place – Perfectly Imperfect Landscape Painting.” All going well it will launch next month, so not long now!

Many of you have been witness to the evolution of this workshop, as seen in a very colourful body of work which was showcased at the ‘My Happy Place’ solo exhibition at The Art Bar Kiama last year. Each and every piece in this exhibition was lovingly created as I tested and refined all 20 lessons of this workshop content. This was soon followed by the first ‘My Happy Place’ face-to-face workshop here at my home-based studio in Kiama in 2019, and now finally to an online offering a whole year later. It’s been quite the journey!

This course will show you step-by-step how to create a multi-layered paint-and-collage based artwork. But it’s so much more than that… My Happy Place is about helping you to find you own creative confidence – in art making and beyond. By teaching my signature “perfectly imperfect” approach, I’ll show you how to unlock your creativity and share your artistic voice with the world. 

Join the mailing list here for more information on the courses launch date in next month’s newsletter, and experience this online course jam-packed with tips, techniques and tools needed to create your very own “My Happy Place” on canvas. 

Creative Workshops

with Stacy Burgess | Artist, Designer, Maker, Teacher

Creative Workshops are focused on learning creative skills in a fun and supportive space. The process of making ART is a personal and expressive experience. Connecting with your creative brain is a great way to take time out and relax.

Workshops are designed to cater for beginners and those with previous experience. It’s a great way to meet new people and also a perfect opportunity to make memories with family and friends.

Workshop dates: 

Adults only age 18+
Friday 27 November
Handmade paper workshop
10.00am – 1.00pm

Saturday 28 November
Up-cycled Hand-bound notebooks/art journals
10.00am – 1.00pm

Children age 8+
Tuesday 1 December 2020
Art School taster workshop: Mono/Block Printing
3.30pm – 5.00pm

WEdnesday 2 December
Art School taster workshop:  Expressive Drawing & Painting
3.30pm – 5.00pm

For information, dates and all bookings

Facebook: @SBCreativeCollections   
Instagram: sb_creative_collections

Don’t POP Over to My Place: art in isolation

On show now at the Art Bar until 29 November 2020

Originally called “POP over to my place” a fun Pop-art extravaganza that invited the viewer into quirky still-life reflections on our respective homes and lives, it all had to change when ‘rona had other plans… Instead we got bowled over by a pandemic, and suddenly our homes BECAME our lives, as Australia went into lockdown.

“2020 happened and no one was ‘popping’ anywhere!” artist Jamie Cole said.

So aptly renamed “Don’t POP Over to My Place: art in isolation” this dual exhibition by the Art Bar’s very own JAMIE COLE and local art-star KIM IRWIN, is a spunky, fun and deeply personal entree into their inner worlds.

‘Art in Isolation’ is a reflection of Jamie and Kim’s decorative interiors, thoughts and moods during the Covid-19 lock-down; that will forever change the world. What results for the viewer, is an exhibition documenting small joys in a time when COVID-19 became the wallpaper colouring everything in our lives.

Using digital paintings, mixed media, painting and reclaimed objects, “Don’t POP” is a colourful palate of joy, sadness, love and laughter that will hopefully shed some light on these uncertain times.

About the artists

‘Isolation Still Life – du vin’ by Jamie Cole 2020
Media: Acrylic on arches paper in Perspex isolation box

Jamie Cole is a full-time artist and co-owner of the Art Bar Kiama. Jamie’s love affair with art began in the mid 80’s when he gazed upon the electric & vibrant pop world of Lichtenstein and Warhol, and the submerged, saturated depths of Rothko’s canvases.

This romance continues today, but it is the influences of the social, political, and abstract work of Basquiat and Juan Davila, and his idol & soul-mate Keith Haring, that leap from his work today.

Jamie has an instantly recognizable style of acrylic & mixed media work. His beautiful vibrant works all contain his signature touch of collage. ‘Don’t POP’ explores where Jamie has been, his emotions, his surrounds and his support throughout the lockdown period. Overcoming a 6-month creative block, this exhibition celebrates his triumph over his demons.

Kim Irwin

‘One Fine Day’ by Kim Irwin 2020
Media: Digital drawing on matt art paper

Kim is a Kiama-local counsellor, artist and singer. Since opening her first solo exhibition here at the Art Bar in early 2018, Kim has exhibited in multiple group shows and as a guest artist with Libby Bloxham in 2019.

Her work draws on her passion for art and music as fundamental tools for emotional wellbeing, and her deep love for and connection to the people around her, her home, and the dramatic landscape of the Illawarra.

Kim lives with a chronic pain condition that can often make it difficult for her to paint, but she has found a basic digital app that allows her to paint from the ease and comfort of her armchair. Without this the majority of her more recent works would not have been possible.

Insta: @art_by_kimnoelle

fb: Art by kim noelle

Petal Power and a 2nd Birthday

Petal Power

21 October – 1 November 2020
Open Thursdays to Mondays
10am -4pm

Solo exhibition by Gay Emmerson
Gay moved here from Canberra a couple of years ago, and she was struck by the extraordinary differences in the lifestyle. ‘First of all, I couldn’t stop painting the sea and the waves, And then I noticed the brightness and boldness of the flowers here -even in winter’, says Gay. Whereas Canberra has pastel blossoms and english bulbs, the south coast is a riot of bright reds, purples, oranges and yellows. On her early morning walks Gay photographs all the hibiscus, azaleas, salvias and geraniums, and against the blue sea and sky they look all the more vivid. This is why this exhibition is named ‘Petal Power’ No shrinking violets here -these flowers, for the most part, are bright and brave.

Fern Street Gallery has celebrated its 2nd birthday

Fern Street Gallery opened its doors on 15 October 2018 and are extremely proud of the beautiful gallery that has been created in. Exhibitions are booked out well into 2021 and they are now looking for 2 new Resident Artists to join the team.

Since opening the team have:

  • Worked with Parkside Retirement living in Wollongong, fitting out the whole building with art in all common areas.
  • Won to 2019 Regional Tourism Award for new Business
  • Travelled to Melbourne with a selection of artists in 2019 to launch the gallery into the art world at The Affordable Art Fair.
  • Opened a second Fern Street Gallery in 2020, collaborating with Mantra in Wollongong

LAUNCHED: Steel City Strings 2020 Digital Season

Digital Subscriptions Now On Sale.

Across October, November and December 2020, Steel City Strings will perform its inaugural Digital Season of performances.

3 incredible 40-minute concerts over 3 incredible months.

The 2020 Digital Season will see a combination of complete orchestra works as well as movements from trios, quartets and various solo performances from our principal artists.

You can view the full program here.

NO DESK SHARING: Socially-distanced Steel City Strings musicians recording under the baton of Luke Spicer at Berry School of Arts over the weekend.

This recording project has financially re-engaged the orchestra as a whole ensemble, in smaller chamber settings and in a soloist capacity.

Recordings took place at local venues; Berry School of Arts, Wollongong Conservatorium of Music and musician’s homes.

IMPORTANT: To recognise your ongoing support, access is complimentary for all 2020 paid 2-3 program subscribers. (Paid subscribers will be contacted)

All subscriptions are $30 per person/household and available now via Trybooking here.

For this one time payment subscription, you’ll receive access to 3 brand new recorded concerts from October to December, as well as exclusive access to our extensive archive of past performances until December 31, 2020.

By purchasing a digital subscription, you are directly supporting the musicians involved in this project who have been restricted with low to no performance work for most of 2020.

You can also make an extra tax-deductible donation either via checkout on when you book or via our website here. You will be sent a tax receipt from Steel City Strings office afterwards.


Watch the Official Teaser Trailer:

COVID-19 Update

With the lifting of some restrictions by the NSW Government allowing 50% of attendance to occur in concert halls from Monday, 28th September. Ticket holders will be contacted.

More information on our return to concerts will be provided soon.

Can I Still Donate to Steel City Strings?

100% tax-deductible donations can still be made to Steel City Strings to support this project and future projects as the orchestra survives the COVID-19 pandemic.


Shooting Beyond the Square

In a world inundated with instant images, one local artist is keeping photography real and old-school through film and darkroom processing. For over a decade, Jamberoo resident Dominique Pierre-Nina has been perfecting his craft using classic film cameras. His most prized possession is his 1958 Leica M3.

Growing up on the island of Mauritius and residing in London during his formative years, Dominique became enamoured of high art photography, especially fashion, when he worked for Selfridges as a menswear buyer.

These days he cuts a noticeable figure around Jamberoo. With chocolate skin offset by salt and pepper hair, Dom can be seen walking his tiger-striped hounds, Phoenix and Gypsy, always with a camera flung over his shoulder on the hunt for the next great shot. He has even installed a darkroom on his farm where he spends countless hours perfecting his printed images.

In 2020, Dom launched his first major exhibition “Beyond the Square” at The Creative Space in Sydney and he received a Highly Commended place in the prestigious Mono Awards for his stunning work “The Faraway Tree”. He will now bring this collection to Kiama’s Old Fire Station from 30 October to 4 November 2020.

The evocative, dreamy and nostalgic quality of his collection are reminiscent of photography giants like Ansel Adams and Herb Ritts. Dominique has chosen to present all the photographs in a square format, inspired by his love of the famous Hasselblad camera, which shoots 6×6 square film. Hence the title “Beyond the Square”, a format that focuses the eye intensely on the subject without peripheral distraction and inviting deep contemplation. Dom’s works include portraits, architecture, nudes, and landscapes from his travels around the world, from the glaciers of the Arctic to the peaks of Japan and Switzerland.

Dom will be onsite throughout this free exhibition to guide visitors through the space. His works will be for sale and as Dom is an animal-lover, 10% of proceeds will be donated to WIRES in aid of wildlife that have suffered from the recent devastating bushfires.


Black & White Photography Exhibition
By Dominique Pierre-Nina
Curated by Alana Smith

Friday, 30 October to Wednesday, 4 November 2020
10am – 5pm (closed Thursday)

Corner of Terralong & Shoalhaven Street, Kiama

Free Entry and Tour with the Artist. Cards, photobooks and prints for sale.
Go to to view a selection of works.

Contact Information:

Photographer: Dominique Pierre-Nina
Phone: 0410 471 375
Instagram: @pierreninaphotography

Kiama Old Fire Station Exhibitions | December

Exhibtions at the Old Fire Station run from Friday to Wednesdays and are generally open between 10am and 4pm each day (some times may vary).

Annie Appleton

3 to 9 December 2020
This exhibition will feature original charcoal drawings by young Illawarra artist Annie Appleton. This is Annie second solo exhibition. The focus of this collection of work is on wild animals relationships. Family structures and behaviours.
Artist, Annie Appleton

Colour Your Life

10 to 16 December 2020
Original works of Art, cards and jewellery by local artists.
Artists, members of the Kiama Art Society

For the Love of Nature and the Natural World

17 to 23 December 2020
For the love of nature and the natural world, a celebration of nature through drawings. Paintings and direct botanical printing. Eco/botanical printing is a technique where plants, leaves and flowers leave their shapes, colour, and marks on fabric and papers. Plant material bundled inside of cloth/papers is steamed or boiled to release the dyes found naturally inside the plant, creating a contact print in the shape of the leaf or flower used. These contact prints are referred to as “eco-prints.” Wall hangings that are woven using wool, fibres and fabrics
Artist, Linda Brown

Visual Arts and Candles

24 to 30 December 2020
Original artworks including works in Acrylic, Oils, Resins and Textures. Hand poured soy wax candles utilising reusable containers and Australian made perfume grade fragrances
Artists, Kaye Flavell

Kiama Old Fire Station Exhibitions | November

Exhibtions at the Old Fire Station run from Friday to Wednesdays and are generally open between 10am and 4pm each day (some times may vary).

Beyond the Square

Black & White Photography
29 October to 4 November 2020
In a world inundated with instant images, this local artist is keeping photography real and old-school through film and darkroom processing. The evocative, elegant and nostalgic quality of this collection are reminiscent of photography giants like Ansel Adams and Herb Ritts. Dominique has chosen to present all the photographs in a square format, inspired by his love of the famous Hasselblad camera, which shoots 6×6 square film. Hence the title “Beyond the Square”, a format that focuses the eye intensely on the subject without peripheral distraction. Dom’s works include portraits, architecture, nudes, and landscapes from his travels around the world. elegantlele
Artist, Dominique Pierre-Nina

Kiama Arts Trail

5 to 11 November 2020
The Kiama Arts Trail is self-guided travel through some of the most picturesque countryside in Australia. This exhibition by our creative members includes painting, photography, jewellery and sculpture to give a taste of what you can see on the trail.
Artists, Bob Shaw, Liz Shaw, Phil Winterton and Robyn Sharp

Two Palettes

12 to 18 November 2020
Exhibition and Sale of original Artworks and Jewellery by two local artists
Artist, Robyn McMillan and Heather Netherclift

Fine Art and Photography

Shifting boundaries in the digital age

19-25 November
Jamberoo-based Nic van Oudtshoorn explores the boundaries between photography and fine art with an exhibition that ranges from classical black-and-white to multi-medium abstracts. An internationally published photo-journalist with more than 40 years’ experience, Nic’s work has earned him the distinction of Associate of the Royal Photographic Society. He now explores using digital technology to shift the boundaries between photography and fine art.
Artist, Nic van Oudsthoorn

Shellharbour Woodcarvers

26 November-2 December
We are a Group of people practicing the art of woodcarving. On display will be wood carvings and pyrography items, also for sale. We are a charity orientated group who over the years have donated large sums of money to Shellharbour Public Hospital, every year donating a carving for their Christmas Raffle.

Wood carving and pyrography will be demonstrated each day, with various members. The public is encouraged to discuss woodcarving or pyrography with members. We are situated at Albion Park Rail and have our own clubhouse. Admission is free.
Artists, Frank O’Connor, John Unwin, Ivan Boulton, John Hinks, Sandra Hamblen, Graham Tibbitts

2020 Challenge Art Competition

Do you have any clients who love to express themselves through art?

The 13th Annual Challenge Community Services Art Competition is open to people with disability of all ages, and young people in foster care throughout NSW.

The theme of 2020 is “Out of this World”.

Please pass on the flyer and entry form attached to your clients who may be interested.

For more information, or to enter online, please visit the Art Competition page on our website

Entries close Friday 13 November 2020.

Financial Literacy and Money Basics for Creatives

Join us for two free interactive workshops tailored specifically to creative freelancers, established practitioners and emerging arts organisations!  

Money is not a dirty word

Friday 23 October 1-3pm

Shellharbour Civic Centre or live stream

Topics include

  • The Famine and the Feast – weathering the ups and downs of creative income;
  • Making financial decisions more easily;
  • An introduction to working out what to charge;
  • The basics of budgets and cashflow projection;
  • More resources and places to go for help.

What’s it worth?

Saturday 24 October 1-3pm

Shellharbour Civic Centre or live stream

Topics include

  • Understanding budgets, including the value of time;
  • The psychology of pricing;
  • Where cost and price overlap and intersect;
  • Understanding the marketplace (and market research);
  • Creating loss leaders and more.

Presented by Creative + Business


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Arts Funding – September 2020

Arts and Cultural Funding Program 2020/21 open for applications

Create NSW is calling for applications from NSW individual artists, arts and cultural workers, and organisations for Round 1 of Create NSW’s 2020/2021 Arts and Cultural Funding Program, for Annual Organisation, Project and Creative Koori Project categories.

Applications close Wednesday 23 September 2020. Visit the Create NSW website to get more information and to apply.


What’s new
In response to feedback, Create NSW has revised the guidelines and application forms to make it easier to navigate with three sets of guidelines – NSW Individuals, Arts & Cultural Organisations, and Creative Koori.  

Make sure to visit for all the details. 

What support is available to me?
Create NSW have a range of resources to assist you with your funding application.
Contact a staff member if you need any advice between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday AEST.

$20M in Federal Grants up for grabs

1st round closes 13 September 2020

The Australian Government have just opened applications for $20 million for businesses and venues who want to host live music.

Called Live Music Australia the first round of funding for the first $2.5 million closes 13 September with other rounds to follow.

American Express Music Backers Fund

The $1 Million American Express Music Backers Fund is here to help Australian music business, artists and fans to keep the music playing – in whatever way possible. Whether you’re making it, mixing it, marketing it or just enjoying the tunes and moving to it, there is something for you.

Applications must be submitted by completing an online Grant application form at

Translation Fund for Literature – $5,000

International publishers may apply for a contribution towards the translation of Australian works of creative writing such as fiction, poetry, writing for children and young people, graphic novels, and narrative non-fiction (defined as autobiography, biography, essays, histories, literary criticism or analytical prose). 
Applications close: Tuesday 24 November (3pm AEST)
Read More

Cherish II – $5,000 – $50,000

The Cherish II Fund is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the disruption experienced by the First Nations arts and cultural sector and community.
Applications close:  6 October 2020
Read More

First Nations Contemporary Music Program

To provide grants to the First Nations Music Industry aimed at increasing development opportunities for musicians and bands.  
Applications close: 6 October 2020
Read More

Australia Council for the Arts 2020 Career Development Grants for Individuals & Groups

If you are an individual artist, arts worker or group of artists, an Australia Council for the Arts Career Development Grant can provide support to further develop your skills or improve your capacity to build an enduring career in the arts. Career Development grants are available from $5,000 to $25,000.

These grants can support a broad range of activities such as skills and professional development, mentorships, showcases, residencies and other projects directly related to your career development. Supported activities must last no longer than two years from the proposed start date.
Applications close: 6 October 2020
More information and application

Strategic Opportunities Program

The Strategic Opportunities Program supports individual initiatives and events that demonstrate long-term benefits to the NSW screen industry. Please note that Create NSW will not support conferences, panel discussions or similar events which have all male panel members. 
Closing date: Ongoing
Apply online –

Regional Filming Fund

The Regional Filming Fund (RFF) offsets costs associated with shooting in regional areas of NSW. Regional NSW is defined as all areas in NSW outside the Sydney Metro area (excluding the ACT). View the map of the NSW local government areas and the Sydney Metro area. Applicants may request up to 35% of the budgeted NSW Regional Spend. Support is provided as a grant. The maximum grant per production is $100,000.
Applications can be submitted at any time – more information is available here –

Screen Australia Funding opportunities

Screen Australia offers funding and resources to support the development, production and marketing of Australian screen content, as well as for the development of Australian talent and screen production businesses. Project funding is generally provided to professional practitioners with some level of industry experience, depending on the program.
More information about other programs here

Performers’ Trust Foundation

Established in 1975, the PPCA Performers’ Trust Foundation provides grants to promote and encourage music and the music-related performing arts. The grants provided are non-recurring (i.e. one-off grants rather than a periodical payment) and are determined by the four trustees of the trust. Applications can be submitted at any time
More information available here

Kiama Community Radio (KCR)

Kiama Community Radio is a brand new digital radio station for the Kiama local government area that aims to reconnect the community at a time when many are feeling disconnected.
As the area is so well known for its vibrant arts scene, KCR focuses on giving local artists a new platform to connect with their audiences; businesses an alternative way to connect with customers; and community groups a platform to talk about what they’re doing.

The show is available to download each week via the website, Spotify and Google Podcasts.
There are a number of ways that members of the local community can get involved, from sending in stories, kids’ jokes and local happenings to suggesting a local artist, business or community group to be featured.
As a not-for-profit organisation, KCR is always on the look out for volunteers, whether it’s for a couple of hours a month, as a regular broadcaster or just to help out at one-off events.
Volunteers come from all walks of life with a wide diversity of skills from programmers to broadcasters, administrators, marketing specialists and fundraisers. No formal experience is required and necessary training is provided.
To find out more about KCR, how to submit a story or become a volunteer visit, @kiamacommunityradio on Facebook or email

Eagles and Roses Workshop

An eagle flying to its aerie
A rose growing out of a crack in the concrete
A workshop to create imagery that uplifts in a dark time
An exhibition to send a First Nations person to art school

Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 November 2020
9.00am to 4.00pm at The Tempest Gallery/Studio, 21 Holden Avenue, Kiama

  • You will learn and develop skills in creating handcoloured, and chine collé  collagraphs .
  • You will produce up to 4 A4 sized prints and a small tester.
  • You will be able to be part of an exhibition to raise money to send a first nations person to art school .
  • You will be COVID safe in physical distancing etc.

Machteld Hali: M. Art COFA. Practising and Exhibiting Printmaker.

Cost $330 for the 2 day workshop.
All materials, vegetarian gourmet catering included.

For more information and application please contact me at 042242943 or

Kiama Old Fire Station Exhibitions

Exhibtions at the Old Fire Station run from Friday to Wednesdays and are generally open between 10am and 4pm each day (some times may vary).


24 to 30 September
A collection of acrylic paintings that celebrate our spectacular local coastline, beaches and rock pools. This exhibition will give the viewer the sense of being immersed in the oceans healing beauty.
Artist, Heather Philpott


1 to 7 October
An exhibition by multi-award winning pastellist, Jane Wray. She is an exhibiting member of the Royal Art Society and the Pastel Society of Australia. All exhibition pieces are soft pastel 2D works on paper in a contemporary realistic style. The subjects are quite diverse and include landscape, seascape and still life.

The Three Palettes of Kiama

8 to 21 OctoberThree well know, highly awarded Kiama Artists, each of whom each see the beauty of their local area in a very individual, unique and creative manner. All three artists enjoy demonstrating too, and immersing in the expereince of meeting with visitors that call in to their exhibition at the Old Fire Station, Kiama.
Artists, Ken and Leah Tucker and Helen Pain

Uta Ceramics

22 – 28 October
Tableware and other pratical and decorative pottery items – perfect for your home or as a beautiful gift. Locally handcrafted in my Uta’s ceramics studio.
Artist, Uta Hasenkrug-Cannon

COVID-19 Creative Economy Support Package

This package addresses urgent needs within the arts and cultural sector and comprises of two main funding streams:
Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund
Objective: To provide capital to help production and event businesses to put on new festivals, concerts, tours and events as social distancing restrictions ease.
Opens: 31 August 2020
Closes: 13 September 2020
Amount: $75,000 – $2,000,000
For further information read the grant guidelines.
COVID-19 Arts Sustainable Fund
Objective: To provide ‘last resort’ funding assistance to significant Australian Government-funded arts organisations that are assessed to be at imminent risk of insolvency as a direct result of COVID-19.
Opens: 31 August 2020
Closes: 31 May 2021
Amount: $100,000 and $5,000,000
For further information read the grant guidelines.
There are also grant opportunities available through other funding streams:
Live Music Australia –  Australian Music Industry Package
Objective: To bring more live music to Australian communities and will fund applications that support quality original Australian live music that is professionally staged, with a focus on small to medium venues.
Closes: September 13
Amount: Maximum $100,000
For further information visit the website.
Arts Projects for Individuals and Groups – Australia Council
Objective: To fund a range of activities that deliver benefits to the arts sector and wider public, including national and international audiences.
Closes: 13 September 2020
Amount: $10,000 to $50,000
For further information visit the website.
Arts Projects – Organisations – Australia Council
Objective: To fund a range of activities that deliver benefits to the arts sector and wider public, including national and international audiences.
Closes: 1 September 2020
Amount: $20,000 – $100,000
For further information visit the website.
Fellowships – Australia Council
Objective: To support outstanding, established artists’ or arts professionals’ creative activity and professional development for a period of up to two years.
Closes: 1 September 2020
Amount: $80,000
For further information visit the website.
Further support and loans are available through the COVID-19 Creative Economy Support Package, which can be found on the website.

The Australia Council also has a range of other support and information about external grant opportunities on the website.