Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Well, this week I've been printing calico bags.  I'm working on 2,000 of them.  One print on the front and another on the back.  Keeps me busy.  I'm very grateful for the iPod and radio to keep me entertained while I do robot work.  Here's a little pile of them.  I think there's only about 100 here:

So far I've printed one side of about 600 of them.  Golly it's an interesting job.  I'm going back to it again tomorrow.  Only 1400 more of one side to do, followed by 2,000 of the other side.  It's funny doing this work and knowing how much money I'm making for the boss and realising that I'm being paid a tiny fraction of the amount he is charging.  I think I am more than covering his overheads.

Today I went kayaking with my marvellous mate, Walter.  He also came over last night to console me after I'd had a barney with the next door neighbour.  The neighbour's dog has been going off its nut at me every time I walk out the back door for months now.  I finally snapped and asked him to do something about it.  He yelled at me for quite some time until I decided to walk away, at which point he continued to yell, but I could no longer hear him.   I'm just really surprised that he hasn't noticed his dog going nuts for months.

Walter should've been a diplomat.  Today, when we came back from kayaking, we went to sit in the back yard.  The dog, of course, went spacko.  Walter went over and tried to talk to it.  It continued to go spacko.  The owner came out and Walter had a nice chat with him, dog continued to go spacko.   I tried to talk to the owner, too, but am now persona non grata.

Anyway, the wash up is that the neighbours now seem to be doing something about the dog making a racket.  It's probably the best I can hope for.

The funniest part of the whole exchange was when the dog owner berated me for being a 'Mainlander'.  Yes, I come from the mainland.  He'd probably be surprised if he knew I was from Darwin.  Darwin is even more frontiersville than Tasmania.

Ah well.  I'll give it another year and see what happens.  It was a bit of a leap to come here and hasn't worked out quite as I expected, but I love the garden and the house and cats are very happy, as am I in general.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Some things I has done

Have been working at the sweatshop and have produced some not bad prints.  This is especially impressive given the equipment.  I'm working with supercover inks and 70T mesh.  This does not actually compute.  It's a bit like pushing peas through a tea towel.  Should be 43T to get a good print.  However, I'm a little pleased with the way these worked out.  Here they are:

I'm probably breaching copyright by posting this, but it's about the quality of the print, not the design (which I also had to do lots with, not that I'm being paid as a designer!)

Think I found this design in a Mountain Designs catalogue with a slightly different outcome.  Lets not talk about copyright here.  I hope you are impressed by the precision with which I managed to line up the banana and the rope.

Have also been looking at some of my old paintings.  Here's one being interfered with by Peter Rabbit:
This was done on MDF with some bits of frayed canvas attached and then painted over.  It's part of a series of nine and looks a bit shiny.  Must learn how to take proper photos of artwork at some stage.

I'm being interviewed again tomorrow.  It's for a job as a 'Program Support Officer' for a general practice up the road in Ulverstone.  Sounds really interesting.  The selection criteria actually asked for ability to work as part of a team.  I'd love that.  I really miss my team mates from CIT and would like to work in a collaborative environment.  It's strange where I am at the moment in that the management makes deliberate moves to isolate everyone and set up a 'dog eat dog' atmosphere.

On the union front, I think I'll ask them tomorrow for a copy of the 'award'.  It's supposed to be provided to everyone by the employer, but I haven't seen any copies around.  I have one, but want to stir the possum by asking the boss to do what is legally required.

Can't help being a bit of shit stirrer.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Favourite Things

Here's one of my favourite snaps from the place I used to live:

It was a gorgeous place, although a bit leaky.  Can't imagine how it's going now with flooding rains happening around Canberra.

Have just heard that one of the landlords is ill with cancer.  So much of that about.  An ex-boyfriend died of it just a few weeks ago.  I miss him.

Am spending the weekend reading the Textile, Clothing, Footwear and Associated Industries Award 2010.  I'm sure I can find somewhere that my employers are ripping us off.  I already know that they aren't recognising skill levels of the workers in their pay rates.  I'm not sure what I'll do when I find the inequities.  I need the job, so I'm nervous about raising a ruckus.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Still factorying.

Still working in the factory.  Other jobs have failed to appear.  Got some good news from someone the other day about other jobs I've applied for, but still nothing solid to hold on to.

I'm now a member of the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Union of Australia (TCFUA)  For $7.95 a week, I theoretically have protection from the extremes of capitalism.  It's all a lesson.  I'm expected to produce perfect prints with sloppy screens, crappy inks and in a filthy room.  Of course I get complaints about the results! but one will get what one pays for.  It's one of those 'pig's ear silk purse' situations.  Frankly I'm not that much of an alchemist.

I'm wearing my TCFUA badge at work and waiting for it to be noticed.  Would love to be sacked for being a unionist. 

In the mean time, here's an old thing:

This was made for a friend who was going through a bit of rubbish at the time.  I wanted it to be a happy heart for her.

Must start playing with the sewing machine again.  The old free hand machine embroidery is such fun.