Monday, 5 March 2018

Switzerland and Austria photobook

This is my latest photobook.  The software seems to have changed and one can no longer just click on the book cover too go straight to the whole book at Blurb.  But I have discovered that you can do so by clicking on the cover and clicking the link in the small print.  Look at the book in full screen mode.

The link with the "Check out my books" shows all 19 books I have made.  Enjoy looking at those you are interested in .

Check out my books

Friday, 22 December 2017

Four more paintings to end the year

Here are two acrylic paintings and two pastels that I have done this year - all different.

This first one in acrylic was in response to Michael's request to do a painting using two quite different themes or places.  I started with a painting of red sand dunes in Namibia with a dead tree.  On top of this I painted one of the waterfalls of Iguassu Falls in South America.  I added the little boat as I travelled in one just like this in 1973 at the mercy of the rower.

Acrylic Painting

This acrylic painting was my interpretation of rice terraces and mountains in Bhutan.   I decided to use a colour palette which was very unusual for me but I'm quite pleased with the lightness it conveys.  I always like to add some design elements.

Mixed Media Painting

I returned to pastels late in the year and these are the results.  Somewhat more realistic than others I have done recently.

This one is looking over the river from southern Tajikistan into Northern Afghanistan.  Very little water and lots of pebbles making it a braided river.  One of the main routes for drugs crossing so some people in Dushanbe can live like kings.  It was very wild country here and no one on the rough roads.

Pastel Painting

This was the last pastel painting I did this year.  It was based on Iguassu Falls in South America (on the border of Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina).  They are the best waterfalls in the world.

Pastel Painting

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Lino Prints and Collagraphs


I did a two day collagraph workshop recently with Jo Hollier.  This photograph shows my sample collagraph plate and two prints from it using a printing press.

The plate is at the bottom using a thin piece of plywood although heavy cardboard is OK too.  There are 18 different types of materials/objects that I might like to use to make a plate that can be printed many times.  They must be very low relief - maybe 5mm to work well.

The blue print is printed like linocuts in relief method with only the raised surface printing.
The red print is printed like etching using intaglio with the paper (which has been soaked) embossed as the lower parts of the plate are printed. The ink is wiped from the surface before printing.



This linocut printed in red ink by hand came from my doodling in a drawing book one day.  There is no particular meaning just fun designing.

Lino print

This lino print of chairs was more interesting and done as a reduction print cutting away each colour as it is printed.  Again it was done by hand rather than the press and I thought the blue paper was more effective than white.

Reduction lino print

These lino prints were again done by hand.  I like the purple one best. The coloured one I did some time ago and used a brush to add ink/paint to the print.  I like the colours but the technique was not great - designed more to save time!

Lino print

Linoprint of fruit

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Sri Lanka and Maldives 2017

This is a YouTube video I made from my photos from my recent trip.  Use fullscreen to see the captions

Monday, 21 August 2017

Scandinavian Journeys - another photo book

This is my latest photo book that I prepared before my recent holiday and have just  uploaded to Blurb.  My printed version will arrive in 2 weeks.  The PDF is available already.  I hope  you enjoy looking at my book as I don't expect anyone to actually buy a copy of my memories!

Scandinavia is my favourite region in Europe and Norway my favourite country.  In 1968 I bought a little Fiat 850 car with my friend Janice who I had met on the overland trip from India.  We spent over 4 months camping and Youth Hostelling in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark.  We loved crossing so many fjords on punts and ferries and visiting glaciers in the mountains.  We picked apples in Sweden so we could afford some time in Germany.  It paid more than teaching in England! I returned for a shorter trip in 1974 with another friend, Val. In 1995 I briefly visited Finland again before going to the Baltic countries.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Ethiopia - my latest photo book

I have just finished this book on my travels with Photoadventours in Ethiopia in 2011. I went with Gael, Donna and Vanessa and we all carried large bundles of knitted blankets for the Hamlyn Fistula Hospital in Addis Ababa,

I have set it up so you can look at all 266 pages by going to Blurb books.  Use full screen mode (arrows) to see it properly.  Here is the link.

By Ruth Lathlean
Photo book

Friday, 12 May 2017


This poster was inspired by my stay on a houseboat on Lake Nigeen in Kashmir many years ago.  Every morning the flower seller paddled quietly across the lake so we could purchase flowers.  They were stunning in colour and who could resist.  In fact we had many visitors such as the tailor and the jeweller.  And of course our housekeeper and cook who served all our meals in a very English environment.  One of my Blurb photobooks is on Kashmir and can be seen in the online Blurb bookstore.

The idea for a poster was given by Michael Winters whose course "Travellers Tales" I have been doing this semester.  The canvas was large 100x70 cm similar to the last painting in this blog.  We were to add one word only, not the name of the place.  It was fun designing a graphic appearance with striking colours.

Flower Seller in Kashmir

This is a much smaller painting designed to show travellers moving or waiting or ......

I chose the reclining chairs in Dubai airport for those who have a long wait.  They are very popular and there are never enough.

Dubai airport waiting

Thursday, 16 March 2017

New painting

I have just finished this painting in acrylic in Michael Winter's class  called Travellers Tales.  I chose a favourite place of mine - Preikestolen or Pulpit Rock, Norway where I walked in 1968 with my friend Janice and again in 1974 with Val.  It was a 4 hour hike mainly over big scree rocks but the fantastic view was worth it. The rock at the top is a big flat square and now seems to attract big crowds of people on it as a major tourist attraction.  No one was there when we went. The scree slope has also been made into a paved path.

This painting is made in acrylic on a canvas 100 x 70cm and it is stylised to give my interpretation of the photo and my experience. Hope you like it.  The original photo which inspired this is below.

I sold this painting soon after it was made to an artist friend of mine although I was keen to keep it because of the memories.  Maybe I can do another sometime!

Pulpit Rock acrylic painting

This is the original photo which was a scanned slide.   I bought a postcard of this view in Stavanger and took it to the tourist office to find out how to get there.  We had a car so crossed a fiord on a punt and drove on unsealed roads up into the mountains.  There was a log building for group accommodation in a meadow and a sign for the hike.  Slashes of red paint on the big scree slope showed us the way.  The second time I came we decided to free camp in the meadow but the midges drove us out very early in the morning.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Tapestry Weaving

It has been a long time since I posted any tapestry weaving on this blog.  I do very little weaving now but have been trying to at least do the 20 x 20cm AU/NZ Tapestry Challenges.  A theme is given each year and the completed tapestries are circulated for exhibition in New Zealand and Australia over several months.

I have just finished this first one I called "Fire" (for the theme 'Elements') and will mail it off tomorrow.  I know my skills have deteriorated over the years since I was studying the diploma at Warrnambool TAFE.  I have too many interests and not enough time. Retirement is too busy!

2017 Challenge

The theme for 2016 was "Flight" and this shows the Concorde from a photo I took in the Nairobi Game Park in 1974.

2016 Challenge

The theme for 2015 was "My Home"and this shows my back deck. Unfortunately this tapestry and two others were stolen from an exhibition space in Melbourne.

2015 Challenge

The 2014 theme was "Light and Shade"

2014  Challenge - Light and shade

The 2009 theme was "Is this me?" - not sure about the result!

2009 Tapestry Challenge

The first challenge I did in 2008 was titled "Tapestry Blues"

2008 Tapestry Blues

Monday, 16 January 2017

My abstract mixed media art

Early this month I went to the Summer Art Experience in Canberra.  It was a 5 day summer school run by the Artists Society of Canberra.  Tracey Creighton was the teacher of my class called "Organic Abstracts."  She was a great teacher and pushed us, so it was a challenging time and we were all exhausted by the end of each day - making gelli prints, using binder medium for collage, acrylic paint, string, cardboard - anything and everything to make our abstracts on canvases.  Between the layers we ran outside to dry layers!

We began with a series of exercises on three small canvases using one colour and black and white.  We kept turning them around to see how they went togther .  Here is my result

Abstract Mixed Media

Using a larger canvas 60 x 60cm  we had the theme "Circles and Lines".  We had to keep to the same colour we had used in the exercises but could add either a complementary colour or an analagous one.  And of course these could be mixed.  I added red-gold which I love as a contrast.  Some more gelli printing gave me plenty for collage and layering but I had trouble making it unified until I glued rice paper over much of the work, scratched some away and added details in pen/paint.  Here is the result

Abstract Mixed Media

Another 60 x 60cm canvas was used to paint several layers, scratching them back etc. We divided the canvas into 4 and could use similar colours to the last one.  I added red for the big circle as I always like bright colours!  We also learnt about the use of apps such as "Diana app" to contribute to our art.  But we didn't actually use them in the class as there was no wifi available and not everyone had a smart phone.  But the demo showed what could be done. and sure gave some inspiration.

Abstract Mixed Media