Shirtheads - featuring purelydecorative

This week’s strip is inspired by


and this fantastic design…

but also partly inspired by the multitude of journal entries that pop up on the bubble from disillusioned artists who can’t make a sale and are thusly calling it quits. They seem to be a regular weekly (or more) occurence. Here’s to you!

Why do you take photos?

I’ve always done this memory thing all my life, even when I was a little girl, of forcing myself to stop and really impress the moment on my memory when I’m doing something, or am somewhere that is really significant to me. These significant moments aren’t always beautiful ones either, but I guess I feel like I’m trying to store them up to help my future self remember something significant. So taking photographs is a way to do that in solid form, and a lot more reliable than my memory too.

Plus, sometimes things are just so heart-breakingly beautiful to me I just want to keep them forever…hence the photo. My partner Ben is a musician and he once wrote a song that described it this way : “taking pictures of the things that you love to have in two dimensions in your hand, so you can remember…”

What has inspired you throughout your life that has brought you to this creative existence? Why do you do what you do?

Wow, these are big questions and to be honest I’m not even sure I know the answers. Can I get away with putting on a goofy face, shrugging and saying “ I dunno”?

My love of nature has to be a big part of it. I was drawn to textile design, which is the first paid creative work I did, partly through a love of clothes and fabrics, and partly through a love of pattern…inspired by Nature. I was always mesmerized by the amazing patterns in Nature- the tiny stripes on a flower petal or the random splattering of clouds in the sky, it’s all so perfect.

That’s also why I call myself “Purely Decorative” because it’s a kind of statement in favour of allowing art to be just decorative and beautiful and joyful, without necessarily having to be deeply conceptual and/or minimalist. Not that I am against those things but I am against the current tyranny of those things in art.

I guess I do what I do- not really sure what that is right now- but anyway, I do that because while I’m drawing, painting, photographing or whatever, I lose a sense of myself and time and just drift along happily in a little creative bubble…hmm, is that where Red Bubble comes from? Now I get it.

I like that feeling of being so absorbed in creating that everything else fades away. It’s probably similar to the effect of meditating I guess. Of course when things aren’t going so well it’s just plain frustrating, but that just spurs you on .

How did you find the bubble, and what made you stick around and create?

I was lying in bed one morning- something I’m very good at, and listening to Melbourne’s Triple R community radio station, when one of the announcers did a spiel on Red Bubble and made it sound irresistible. She’s the person behind Clemformation, and her tshirt designs are very simple and clever. So, that day I checked it out, loved it and off I went. Kitsmumma was one of the first people to comment on my work, and she is such a lovely supportive and inspiring artist that I’d have to say she really made me keen to stick around. Then of course other people also came along like Tambatoys , Sparklehen and Jemimalovesbigted to name but a few, and the community aspect of Red Bubble has been just so lovely for someone like me who works alone most of the time.

What do people overlook?

How incredibly, microscopically short our lives are, and how our time is our only true wealth. Honesty. And of course, the benefits of full-cream milk and real butter. Yum.

What’s your favouritest tshirt you’ve ever worn?

This is tough because even though I have some favourite tshirts that I’ve actually worn, I have many more that I don’t own….yet.
To be strictly correct in answering this question (rare for me) I’ll stick with ones I have actually worn; this one Eat Money? from the New Internationalist organization, the back says:
Only when the last tree has died
and the last river been poisoned
and the last fish been caught
will we realise we cannot eat money.

and this one from Tambatoys and this one from Jesus and Pablo Diablo.

What did you want to be when you were six?

An air-hostess with a pale blue 1960’s style suit with matching pumps and flight case, or an archaeologist- no, maybe that came later, around 12-ish I’d say….or an artist.

When did you last laugh til you cried? Why?

Looking at a silly email someone sent me of one of those poor cats with the “lion cut”-it just looked so incredibly embarrassed to be made to look like that, and the cut is ridiculous. I love silliness.

If you could give everyone in this world one thing, what would it be? Why?

The chance to experience someone else’s life for just a day- might help make us all a bit more tolerant of each other. Or the ability to see the Earth in 50 years time- might make us all stop being so blasé about the oxygen we breathe. A block of Lindt chocolate may not hurt either.

Where would you like to go? Why?

Kyoto in Japan, because it’s a repository of all that is magnificent in Japanese design and craft and I think Japanese design is the best I’ve ever seen.

New York- for the art museums and zeitgeist and because it’s New York.

New Zealand to just walk and walk and walk in stunning wilderness. Canada for the same reason.

Great Barrier Reef- because it’s incredible and won’t be here too much longer.
There are many, many other places- these just popped into my head first.

Got dreams?

I dream of one day building my own stone and wood house on a bit of land by the sea, with the mountains behind it and a stream and a huge orchard and vege garden…and a little separate studio where I create my world renown masterpieces just for the sheer joy of it. Down the road -not too close, but within walking distance is a lovely little village full of creative and compasionate people, and a fabulous pub with a beer garden-that’s about it.

You did say “dream” right?

I certainly did

Thanks Rebecca!

And don’t forget to come back next week, folks! for more shirty goodness. ;o)

Memory lane…

The Original Strip BigFatRobot Chris Richards Paul McClintock David J Cunning Johdie Tambatoys Simon Sherry Ross Robinson Natalie Tyler thickblackoutline rubyred Liesl Yvette Wilson Chris Wahl Jaywalker sparklehen jemimalovesbigted purelydecorative nofrillsart Superteam: Non-Stop animo Tabita LilyM bahgoesthesheep LuckyVegetable o0OdemocrazyO0o MuscularTeeth

Journal Comments

  • purelydecorative
  • © Karin Taylor
  • jemimalovesbigted
  • BigFatRobot
  • sparklehen
  • yanmos
  • Anne van Alkemade
  • Natalie Tyler
  • Chris Richards
  • Ryan McElderry