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    Peak Canberra

    Posted in blogjune
    June 8th, 2015

    I had a #PeakCanberra long weekend – Mad Max movie, lyra at circus class, OBD markets, Sweet Bones brunch, Urban Sketchers sketch-up, Ethiopian restaurant, vegan caramel slice from our charming guests, and the Medieval Fest at Old Parliament House. I even patted 2 cats today on a walk. I also got a 92 combo in Pokemon Shuffle.

    It was pretty good but of course that’s prettified to not include a fire evacuation, cooking, driving, gym and errands (returning library books etc.). I’ve just realised that prettified is so much like petrified. I don’t mind scaring or ossifying the beige tape of life into stone. The beige tape sculptures could be made into a Vigeland park for the damned.

    Horse from Canberra Beijing Garden


    For Sunday morning’s sketch-up (Canberra Sketchers Group – Urban Sketchers Australia), the weather was not the best. As Sharon said, “I think people will get the idea, as a group, we are as tough as old boots, but the next meeting place has an indoors option which I am sure will be warmer.” …even if the group is as tough as old boots, my toes were freezing! So I drew a little bit in the Canberra Beijing Garden, then piked and went inside the Hyatt, listened to the piano-man, drew a few roses and then left early. I have sternly told my feet to “think like boots, become boots”. Leonie had a bit more focus and anti-freeze!

    Lax as I was, I was pleased to attend because I came up against so many psychological barriers to actually going – it was cold, it was morning, I couldn’t find a proper bit of drawing paper, my pencils sucked, all my Winter clothes were in the wash, and I was late. However, I remembered advice from Alicia, Having Cake transformational coach, about the importance of imperfect action. She has written a bit about perfectionism on her site. So, I turned up and I coped, wearing Mr S’ heavy winter coat, unsuitable shoes, dreadful lined paper and the only pencils I could find (I pulverised the tip of my pastel pencil while I was trying to find the Chinese gardens).

    Despite all these things, I had a pleasant time, found the gardens themselves, met some nice people (including another new person – thank the goddess!), thought about my focus on “the perfect drawing materials”, saw some waterbirds, made up a murder story about a boat (it has a cover on it that looks mummified), focused on the sculptures and saw details that I wouldn’t have otherwise, and admired the Hyatt’s carpets (the patterns in the large rug areas look a lot like stylised tyre skid patterns). It was worth the imperfection.

    Flora tosh

    Posted in blogjune
    June 9th, 2014


    A relaxed public holiday: walking, café drinks, Pictionary, tidying, bath and later on, a movie.

    It would’ve been appropriate to help with the lego mosaic at MoAD for the Queen’s Birthday public holiday, I quite liked City News’ Canberra Confidential suggestion that “They haven’t confirmed it, but CC imagines republicans will be invited to the break up session.”


    Bug net drawing in Nintendo Sketch program


    A garden theme for our Sketch/Pictionary game (and I actually mentioned this game in last year’s blogjune, too!).


    Turnip drawing in Nintendo sketch program


    After our garden drawings, we moved our neighbour’s dumped rubbish into the bin (they mustn’t realise that waste management is a thing). Mr. S has coined the “garbage water dance”, which is different to the famous Trash Dance (Allison’s comment in the trailer “There’s always a part in the process when I’m making something, when I’m terrified that it’s not going to work.” Ah, creative process!). When I hoisted some decayed carpet into the skip, chunks of grime splashed back at me and I shook my arms with an “urrrgh” noise and waggled my legs. I quite like bugs but when I’m being glittered with rotten green snails and carnivorous cockroaches (I’m almost certain!), it’s hard to love them without a recoil reflex. I’d rather admire their little ecosystem from a distance. I’m an avid dumpster diver but I somehow retain my aversion to germs.


    There is a dress-up blog celebrating rubbish collection day, but it looks a lot more wholesome than our disposal items, so easier to look fancy. This weekend the SBS screened Rhod Gilbert’s Work Experience program on Bin Men, which was a very challenging job – BBC also have a post on “What is the worst job in the world?” – I would say that the bin men featured in the program definitely rate. But nothing seems a worse fate than the toshers featured in the Smithsonian mag.


    Purple iris flower


    I washed my hands a million times and felt much better after a bath and shower. Not a great water-use day, but I just felt so unclean! I’ve included the Iris from our garden because I’d rather think about flowers than rotten floor coverings. Now I might see a movie that hopefully doesn’t involve germs.



    Lucky rabbit’s foot drawings

    Posted in Art process, blogjune
    June 29th, 2013


    Lots of drawing today, with the Sketch (like pictionary) in Mr. S’ new Game & Wario.

    You can see my rabbit below, which was guessed quite quickly – sometimes things look better when they’re a little unfinished and not overdone.


    Rabbit by Sonja Barfoed in Game and Wario Sketch Pictionary

    Rabbit by Sonja Barfoed


    I’m rather pleased with it, considering it’s a drawing that took a few seconds without any reference material. Normally I use a lot of photographs and preliminary sketches.


    Roxanna Vizcarra’s feature in curvy is about knowing that artists do research: “As a teenager I was under this false impression that in order to draw really well you needed to be able to do so without any references. I wish someone had taught me differently earlier.” (Curvy 6, 2009, Paper Tiger Media Group, p. 6).

    Her drawing in Curvy is of Jack Rabbit in Year of the Rabbit, one of hordes of scrawny men dressed as bunnies working in an elderly lady’s mansion. Tighty whities!


    I also did some sketches of feet, hands and legs, here is a gratuitous podophilist drawing:


    Foot sketch by Sonja Barfoed

    Feet by Sonja Barfoed


    Interesting to compare the feeling of drawing on a screen and paper in the same day.

    …the pristine nature of the screen, sounds of the materials and the beautiful feathered deckle edge of the paper.



    Liedekijn cat

    Posted in Art process
    December 31st, 2012


    I’m excited to be part of the liedekijn group exhibition which will be held at the Front Gallery, Canberra, from 26 March – 8 April 2013. Each artwork will tell a different part of The Song of Heer Halewijn, so you’ll get to move around the gallery and read the story.


    Liedekijn cat

    Cat sitting on liedekijn drawing.

    The part of the story that I’m drawing is when Machteld first sees Halewijn in the forest, she has been lured by the music of Halewijn’s lute. Enchanted by the spell, she embraces him – despite being surrounded by hanging bodies in the trees, his previous hapless victims.


    As you can see, my Miss Cat is unimpressed by my efforts thus far, below her you can see a large lute which I’m thinking about floating somewhere in the air (as Machteld and Halewijn are embracing, it is tricky to incorporate this instrument). You can also see Halewijn’s muscular legs (surrounded by cape and resplendent with pointy cuffed shoes), it almost looks like Miss Cat has squashed him like in Lady Cottington’s pressed fairy book.


    The liedekijn artworks from the exhibition are also being made into a full colour artbook – the fairytale has been translated from the olde Dutch so this will accompany the artworks.

    You can preorder this limited edition book via the liedekijn bigcartel site. Today is the last day for discounted preorders!


    Some of the works in progress are on the bigcartel site, plus the images are being updated on the artists page of the liedekijn site. There’s additional information about the artbook and exhibition on the general liedekijn site.


    The story has a dark beauty but it might make you hesitant to venture into the woods!