I am a cis white woman who is mostly straight. Lets just get that out of the way.
I have been privileged with a middle class upbringing and my secondary schooling was at a private girls school. Lets get that out of the way too. I lived a lot of years feeling ashamed of my privilege, like I wasn’t ever going to be as gritty or cool or worldly as those of my friends who grew up without it. Like I was somehow soft and a bit of a princess because of it. Perhaps that is why I have spent my whole adult life writing a fantasy epic (five books and counting – all unpublished) about a gritty, shadow princess – trying to find a compromise.
I spent a year in Texas on exchange after high school and resided in an elite college while I finished my degree at Melbourne University… all sounds pretty sweet right?!?! So it’s weird that I struggled with depression and anxiety, had no sense of life purpose and was overwhelmed with bleakness. (I mean, I know why, but on a surface reading of a life story it doesn’t make sense)
Money can’t buy you happiness they say. Also, it is worth noting that the money that paid for all of that was never mine. Parents, other family, governments all paid for that, and with that comes some obligation, whether it is implicit or explicit – there is expectation and often some kind of debt with that. But yes. I was fucking lucky. I knew it. I also knew that I had no way to feel it or the sense of ease that is supposed to accompany it. I have never felt easy or breesy, or like life will provide. I have never taken what I had for granted, it seemed always to come at some much greater cost.
Anyway. I own a house now (sort of) and I do feel happy. Yes, I could never have bought the place with out some timely inheritances and sizable cash gifts from my parents. Not everyone gets that kind of boost.
But, you know, the years and years of therapy I paid for myself. That is something. And it helped. So if you are thinking about it, I highly recommend it.
Also art. If you are miserable, try making some marks on a page. Don’t show anyone. That is not what it is for. It is for your soul. When you make a mark on a page you act as a god. You have created something that was not there before simply because you willed it. Give it a go. Scribble. It’s great.
I have a little note on the wall of my studio, because my utilitarian, busy, busy mind needs to be reminded constantly. It says: ‘Stop trying to be an artist. Just make art.’
If you are wanting to know less personal stuff here are some events ordered chronologically.
2020 Produce Seasons 2 and 3 of Saltgrass Podcast
2019 Me, My Selfie and I at Lot 19
2018 Take on position of Communications Officer and Office Manager at MASG (Mount Alexander Sustainability Group)
2017 Take position of Development Officer at MASG (Mount Alexander Sustainability Group)
2016 MAINfm won the 2016 Community Broadcasting Association of Australia’s award for Most Outstanding Small Station.
2016 Wordmills and Baboons solo show at Lot 19
2016 Art Swank special series The Bigger Picture goes to air as Allie and Robyn retire from the show after three years and hand over to new presenters.
2015-16 Content Producer and Office Manager for MAINfm
2015-16 Dja Dja Wurrung Radio series – produced by Rick Nelson and Alison Hanly and aired on MAINfm. This series was selected as a finaist in the Reconciliation Victoria Awards 2016.
2014 Anchor of the Breakfast Club, MAINfm’s breakfast show
2014 Radio series on the Prevention of Violence Against Women
2013 Winner of the Off the Cliff award for short film Hairy Women
2012 Not a Canary a collection of paintings on frogs
2008 Now She Remembers solo show at fortyfive downstairs, Melbourne.
2006/2007 Artist Residency at St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne
Before all of that I did an undergraduate degree in Art History and Philosophy and then did a post graduate diploma in visual art.