All posts by The Edge News

Residency Journal: Linda Clark

Guest post by, Linda Clark

As the winner of the Gray Puksand Digital Art Award in the 2015 Queensland Regional Art Awards, Linda Clark received a fully funded two week residency at The Edge. Here she talks about her experiences at The Edge, where she developed the conceptual basis of a new body of work.


Initially I was impressed by the range of art making resources that hide within The Edge! My goal during the residency was to learn as many new processes as possible. Within The Edge, the instructors helped me to learn 3D printing and laser cutting techniques, and I completed inductions on those machines so that I can access them in the future.  I also chatted to Edge staff about sound recording, and about what technology I would actually need for installation work. My approach to digital recording is quite basic, which suits my work, and the staff helped me with tips to improve sound recording in everyday settings.

The venue is in a perfect location for artists, because of its proximity to GOMA, QAG, the Museum, State Library and QPAC, and enables immersion in culture. The Edge is a great venue whether you are ready to make work (because there is plenty of room and facilities to do so), or whether you are researching and experimenting because of the space to work that is available, and the facilities that surround The Edge.

After many learning experiences, I took advantage of the cultural precinct that surrounds The Edge. During the residency, I was developing the conceptual basis of a new body of work, and was able to spend time within visual research and exhibitions within the State Library, GOMA and Queensland Art Gallery.

Laser Cutting Induction at The Edge

Laser Cutting Induction at The Edge

This residency impacted my arts practice in a positive way. I was able to document my artistic process/development with intention, and recognized patterns within my practice that I can build upon in the future.

The residency helped me to recognize that I have a specific way of working that begins with a question, and is developed through visual research of images, artworks and concepts, as well as a lot of journal writing and sketching. It is only after this process that I can begin to make the work through focused experimentation with materials.

Collage Experiment,  Linda Clark

Collage Experiment, Linda Clark

Before the residency, I had tried to force myself to make work without going through this process of conceptual development, for example, I tried to collect materials and just make a work. This residency helped me to recognize that I need the conceptual development phase first!

While I definitely produced new work in the form of laser cutting, 3D printing knowledge, and sound recording, which I’m sure I will utilize in future projects, I think the most significant new work was the development of my creative process.

The Edge residency, offered within its surrounding precinct, afforded me the space and time to develop this artistic process, and intentionally work within it. This has led to a more focused way of art making for me.

Over the Boundary Exhibition Architecture Forum State Library

Over the Boundary Exhibition Architecture Forum, State Library

The residency created a space for me to be alone with my own thoughts, and to focus solely on my practice. I am rarely alone because I have a family, so the week of the residency was challenging in terms of being solitary. However, this solitude led to personal growth, not only in terms of my recognition of my specific art making process, but I now recognize the value of having a period of time in which to focus solely on a conceptual premise, with no distractions. While this experience was intense for me, it was invaluable because it forced me outside of my comfort zone and into real practice.

Over the Boundary Exhibition

Over the Boundary Exhibition

Since the residency, I have been conducting further research and development of the concept that I was working on during the residency, as part of the first semester of my Doctor of Creative Arts research project. This research has included thinking, reading, writing, sketching, video documentation and journal reflection. I am now beginning to make a new video and textile installation work that is based on the concept of exploring cultural identifiers for young/teenage Australian women.  I now have a more refined direction of my arts practice, so in this way it has changed the direction to a practice based research model. This is definitely helpful because I will be conducting practice based research for the next three years.

Flying Arts Logo Colour - jpg


ArtizDIGITAL – program for high school students

It’s not often that high school aged artists get to engage with cutting edge technology to produce their art – especially if they come from regional and remote Queensland. Flying Arts is excited to extend that opportunity to students for the third year running in partnership with The Edge.


ArtizDIGITAL will provide students from near and far with an immersive and innovative arts program over the June/July school holidays. They’ll explore new areas of critical artistic practice, learn new skills and experiment with fresh approaches to art making.

Have you ever wondered how new media sculptures can tell if somebody has entered a room, or when to play a sound? Daniel Flood, The Edge’s own Creative Manager will introduce students to interactive media, and teach them how to create artworks that interact with the world around them.

Practicing artists, designers and scientists will take students through how to create textiles grown from microorganisms, design fashion with a technological twist, and how to hone their observational skills and focus their creativity.

Feedback from previous participants of Flying Arts’ programs at The Edge have been overwhelmingly positive, with many students excited about the new skills learned. “The workshops were amazing. I have learned so many new things regarding the application of technology and art.”

The program will run from 29 June – 1 July with options to register as either a day or residential participant. A number of travel subsidies are available to remote and regional students to attend as residential participants, with fully supervised accommodations available.

Places are limited. Registrations close 5pm, June 10.

KEEP READING ABOUT THE PROGRAM

 


AUXILIARY: call for applicants

Guest post by, Leon Fitzpatrick, Co-founder of AUXILIARY Design School

 

Auxiliary Co-Founder Leon Fitzpatrick

Auxiliary Co-founder, Leon Fitzpatrick

After returning home to Australia from studying and working the U.S., I met Neil Davidson, Carolyn Yip and Leo Yip through Brisbane’s larger-than-expected design community…


…It wasn’t long before our mutual passion for design education became regular conversations, which turned into meetings, and then into action…a design process in and of itself to address a big design problem: the growing gap between education and practical industry experience. As owners and operators of small businesses and consultancies, and as independent designers and design advocates with experience in everything from automotive, product and electronics design, starting an Industrial Design school from scratch seemed both completely crazy and totally logical at the same time. So naturally we didn’t hesitate.

As I write this, three students from our first AUXILIARY X programme, sponsored by Sunbeam Australia, have been selected as finalists in Good Design Australia’s Young Australian Design Awards, a national design competition with entries from the country’s top universities and colleges. It’s a huge honour for us and a fantastic achievement on their part to achieve this level of recognition.

Auxiliary Design School, in The Edge Innovation Lab

AUXILIARY Design School, in The Edge Innovation Lab

Auxiliary Design School, in The Edge Timber Fabrication Lab

AUXILIARY Design School, in The Edge Timber Fabrication Lab

We’re excited for what’s coming next, as today we officially announce a call for applicants for two upcoming programmes that will run at The Edge: AUXILIARY ONE and AUXILIARY PLUS.

AUXILIARY ONE will run from 28 June through 2 July. Open to high school students, AUXILIARY ONE is an introduction to Industrial Design that will have you experiencing what being an Industrial Designer is really like, covering all the tools and processes from concept to engineered reality.

AUXILIARY PLUS will run from 5 July to 13 August, and is open to creatives from all disciplines; current students, graduates and professionals. AUXILIARY PLUS teaches the fundamental foundations of Industrial Design: sketching, lo-fi prototyping and CAD. It will give you a great foundation or sharpen your existing skills.

Because AUXILIARY is about quality over quantity, we keep our class numbers small ensuring a great ratio between educator and student, which means spaces will fill up fast. Get in touch with us for expressions of interest and applications here: contact@auxdesignschool.com.au and visit auxdesignschool.com.au for more information about our programmes past and present.

 

Would you like to know more about Leon? Check out his story on the APDL blog.
 


Welcome to Podcasting

A guest post by Steph Dower 

January 2015, I received a phone call from a good friend who runs her own website asking if I’d like to produce a podcast with her. That began a roller coaster year of learning all about the wonderful world of podcasting. Until then, I hadn’t had much experience with podcasts, let alone producing one. Despite that, I thought it could be an interesting new project for me so I accepted her proposal and we soon got to work on nailing down what we wanted the podcast to be and what listeners would take away from it. This is most definitely step number one when creating a podcast because without a strong concept, you have nothing. In the end, our concept was discovering how every day people define success in their lives, whether it be running a million dollar company or living a healthier lifestyle. The podcast would be called Our Definition of Success.

Our definition of success logo

As said by creator of The 5am Miracle Podcast, Jeff Sanders, “There are two ways to learn how to podcast: (1) launch a show before you’re ready and figure out everything on the fly or (2) watch the professionals and learn as much from them as possible.”

Which method did we adopt? The first. While I wouldn’t recommend going this way, producing Our Definition of Success was an amazing learning experience and we managed to produce a decent show with some truly inspirational guests. Take a listen on iTunes! 

Our definition of success

That aside, I know if we had taken the time to map out the project, the podcast could’ve been even greater and become sustainable in the long run.

Where did we struggle most? Finding other local podcast producers who could show us how to create a professional sounding podcast and get the most out of it. The podcasting scene in Brisbane is, as I’m sure you can imagine, relatively small. While podcasts have exploded across the United States, Australian audiences and producers are yet to grasp what an efficient and accessible tool podcasting can be.

Why create a podcast you ask?

How about sharing your thoughts on a certain topic like the ‘Stuff You Should Know Podcast’?

Or maybe to promote your business? Check out a few successful examples here.

These are just a couple of reasons podcasts can be a great tool. People across the world are turning to podcasts to reach out because not only can they be inexpensive to create – pick up your phone’s audio recorder and you’re good to go; but with today’s social media outlets you have a pre-made audience ready to listen to whatever you want to say. Never before in history has that been possible.

Think you’re ready to get started on your own? Aaron Dowd, a.k.a The Podcast Dude has some great tips on everything you need to know when creating your Podcast from equipment to content to mixing. If you’d like a more hands on approach when developing your podcast, you should check out the workshop series I’ll be facilitating at The Edge, starting May 17! Not only does The Edge have the best facilities for recording in Brisbane but they are accessible to everyone. Throughout the workshops you’ll develop your podcast from an initial concept, learn the best method for recording them and finally, discover the most effective distribution methods available to you.

Find out more about the facilitator i.e. Me, Steph Dower at dowerproductions.com

In the words of ‘The Podcast Dude’, “Don’t just make a podcast – make an awesome podcast!”


Fashion Fix-Up

A guest post by Jane Milburn

Are you holding garments in your wardrobe that survived the last cull yet are not being worn because something’s not quite right? Does your favourite item of clothing have a hole, a pull, or a stain? Is a hemline or sleeve too long or too short?
Fashion Fix Up Graphic

Bring your clothing tragics along to our inaugural Fashion Fix-Up at The Edge, on April 21 as part of Fashion Revolution Week. We’ll chat about refash options and help you enact simple changes to extend their working life. You can check out Sass Brown’s books Eco Fashion and Refashioned for inspiration.

As part of the fix-up, you’ll be inducted on sewing machines at The Edge’s fabrication lab which you can use for free in future to continue reinventing your wardrobe.

Apart from the palpable satisfaction of repairing and restyling garments already in circulation (the hard work’s already been done) there is an environmental benefit too. Extending the life of clothes by just nine extra months of active use reduces their carbon, water and waste footprints by around 20-30 percent each.

Through Textile Beat, I’ve been playing with rescued clothing for years and spent every day of 2014 refashioning and blogging with the Sew it Again project. This year, I’m involving others in curating a creative handmade collection with The Slow Clothing Project – and we’ll have garments from the project on display at The Edge for you to see and touch.

This is a chance to explore your creativity and develop personal style through grown-up play with wardrobe wallflowers. Please leave highly valuable garments at home – or take them to a dressmaker for professional alternation.

If you have any questions about what to bring, just give me a call on 0408 787 964, otherwise book your ticket now as places are limited to 20. Meet you at The Edge!


New AUXILIARY programmes launching soon

AUXILIARY Design School is proud to announce two forthcoming programmes; AUXILIARY ONE and AUXILIARY PLUS.

Are you a high school student that’s interested in design, technology and innovation? Do you like to draw and build things? Then AUXILIARY ONE might be for you. A week long programme, AUXILIARY ONE, will give you an opportunity to explore what being an Industrial Designer is really like. You will experience the tools and processes of Industrial Design from sketching, model making, and CAD, all the way through to a functional product that you get to take home.

AUXILIARY Programme

AUXILIARY Programme

Are you a student or graduate of design who wants to strengthen their foundations, or are you a creative who has an interest in design? A six week programme, AUXILIARY PLUS teaches you the three pillars of Industrial Design; sketching, lo-fidelity model making and CAD. With site visits to local manufacturers, informative presentations, live demonstrations, sketching drills, and informal pin-up reviews, it’s a condensed and intensive dive into Industrial Design.

AUXILIARY PLUS from Auxiliary on Vimeo.

AUXILIARY ONE and AUXILIARY PLUS will be delivered in The Edge’s Innovation and Fabrication Labs, which provides students with all the tools and state-of-the-art equipment they needed to experience the world of Industrial Design first-hand.

AUXILIARY Programme

AUXILIARY Programme

Exact dates for both programmes will be announced soon.

If you have questions or you would like to register your interest please e-mail: contact@auxdesignschool.com.au

auxdesignschool.com.au


Positive Failure – The Road to Failure (lab)

You read correctly: positive failure.

Can failure be positive? Can success exist without failure? Or is failure simply part of doing and learning along the way?

This is something that I’ve recently put a lot of thought into as I’ve been invited to be a storyteller at the inaugural event FailureLab Sydney: The Highs & Lows of the Creative Journey, to be held at the Vivid Ideas festival in Sydney next month.

Future Lab

 

What’s Failure:Lab, I hear you say? It’s no big surprise that you don’t know, as this is the first ever Failure:Lab event to be held in Australia. Think TEDx talks but with all the guests on the mission to eliminate the fear of failure and encourage intelligent risk taking. It’s taking place on May 28, as part of Vivid’s launch weekend at Giant Dwarf Theatre, Redfern.

After confirming my involvement with the host, Simone Sheridan, I realised that this year was already booked solidly and an opportunity for a holiday wasn’t looking good. I’m busy touring a huge group exhibition of 17 artists titled Copier Jam! around Australia, and building an off-grid container home, all the while juggling a number of community projects along the way. And all of this is unfolding while I live out of a campervan on an island.

Jeremy Staples - Positive Failures photo Sabrina Lauriston

Cycle adventure touring might not be everyone’s idea of a holiday but after riding 2,500km around the North Island of New Zealand I wouldn’t have it any other way. As the name suggests, it’s basically going on adventures on your bicycle.

I made the suggestion to Simone that I could ride to Sydney from Brisbane. After sleeping on the idea I suggested that I could share my positive failure experiences with other creative communities along the ride and create a work on my findings to be showcased at Failure:Lab. Simone jumped on it and the Positive Failure – The Road to Failure (lab) journey was born.

Jeremy Staples - Road to failure

Jeremy Staples with his bike

Why discuss failure? I think it’s important we acknowledge failure as part of everyone’s creative journey. Failure is something that generally isn’t spoken about … and we need to! Nobody is perfect, and neither is the first attempt with any project or art form. I aim open up discussion and highlight that everyone has failed, with the aim to get back up and try again.

I’m hosting the launch for my Positive Failure – The Road to Failure (lab) at The Edge on Sunday, 1 May, from 2pm, alongside of number of Brisbane’s finest creatives, who will share their own positive failures. Come learn more about the project and see me ride off into the sunset. Who knows, it could a massive failure! Everybody loves watching a train crash right?


Isabelle de Kleine: The beauty of psychological mis-interpretation

By Ben Carr, The Edge’s Events and Technical Office (and filmmaker, producer, editor and Director)

Isabelle de Kleine: The beauty of psychological mis-interpretation from The Edge, SLQ on Vimeo.

 

Since The Edge opened in 2010 I have been able to work across a number of roles within the organisation, and one of the standout experiences from my time here has been meeting the different artists and practitioners that have come through the doors. Each one has left their mark and interpreted what happens here in their own unique way.

Isabelle de Kleine is no exception to that. She arrived at The Edge in February from Melbourne after winning a 6 week arts residency from the National Portrait Gallery for her digital portrait Untitled. Once I heard about this I jumped online and had a look at her work. I was instantly immersed with the atmosphere Isabelle had created; the sound design and visuals adding to an overall feeling of dread.

Coming from a filmmaking background myself I have always been interested in how others can use the form in a way I never would or could, while still achieving that sole purpose, reaching and affecting an audience.

Isabelle's interview

From making the short documentary piece on Isabelle’s time here I was able to chat to her quite regularly. What I did notice was her laid back nature and a strong sense of purpose and commitment to what she was doing. I know while some of us, given a residency in a different city might find their diligence wane, Isabelle kept a strong focus throughout and the work she displayed at the end of her time here spoke for itself.

Isabelle filming her projects

I would describe Isabelle as a quiet and unassuming person, but as an artist she has an essential talent, the ability to see what others don’t. When I was filming her practice, I did notice a common theme; she was usually asked what her work was trying to say. As a documentary filmmaker I am unaccustomed to this type of question, and if it is asked then I need to ask some serious questions of myself. On the other end of the spectrum I felt like I didn’t want Isabelle to explain too much about her work, the visuals and sound of her portraits meant so much more than any verbal explanation.


#MADETODAY – Turning ideas into a business

From testing and prototyping to developing a product for sale, Kat Johnston, the owner of Fractured Lace shares how she’s transformed her ideas into a business with the help of the Fabrication Lab.

Kat Johnston is now a regular in The Edge’s basement, know by name by the staff and a few of the other regulars, she’s taken to the equipment in the Fabricaiton Lab, (as the saying goes) like a duck to water.

When we spoke with Kat earlier this year, she shared some of her inspiration for her jewellery and accessories collection, and how she got started in the Lab:

When I first started using the laser cutter at the Edge, I did a lot of experimentation on black acrylic, learning about the best ways to set up the files and work with the materials. As I become more confident, I branched out into colours, and they are what provided a bouncing-off point for the collection. Influenced by sweet lolita, hime and otome fashion styles, the finished pieces were inspired by the gorgeous colours of my materials – strawberries and cream with a splash of mint and a brush of gold. They were also influenced by delicious sweet treats!

I’ve also been building up my brand, Fractured Lace. I’ve just gotten around to uploading some of the collection to my online store, but there is still a bit left to go. It’s definitely quite a process to get everything sorted, from design files to the finished product, to photography to promote my work… but it’s been incredible to see my ideas go from random thoughts to incredible reality. I definitely couldn’t have done it without the resources the Edge provides.

The resources available at the Edge are incredible. Seriously! I’m not just talking about the equipment either. The staff have a wealth of knowledge; and I still have to have a further chat to Daniel about how to utilize additional RGB paths with custom cut settings to reduce cutting/etching time. It’s always great to chat to Peter about what projects he’s up to; and I’ve only just met Holly, the new fab lab supervisor. Everyone has been beyond helpful, every step of the way.

Needless to say, the equipment is an important factor in why I use the Edge too. Being able to do short production runs and prototyping myself has meant that I have had the opportunity to learn so much more about how to get the most out of the materials, and the machine. It’s enabled me to move forward with my business so much easier. Before, I’d have to send my files away to be turned into the finished product – which is not an inexpensive or speedy process, especially when it comes to prototyping, where I may have to try the same design with minor differences several times over. Having the machine right there in front of me to test things out on, and being able to see the laser move around the sheet, has meant that I can identify more quickly what I can improve upon and where I’m making mistakes – something I could never do if I only ever sent my files away to be cut elsewhere.

I’m not sure what else to share, except to say this: thank you to everyone at The Edge for making these resources available. Not only have you allowed me to create things that literally make me smile whenever I see them, but you’ve been an instrumental part in me building the skills I need to take my designs, turn them into reality, and share them with the world.

Thank you.

If you’re interested to check out Kat’s designs, jump onto her Facebook Page, Website, or follow her on Instagram.
 


#MADETODAY – Bringing a vintage synthesizer back to life

Two of The Edge’s front of house team (and professional musicians), Andy Balzat and Sunny Verma, share how they brought their vintage synthesizers back to life with the help of some youtube videos, tools and soldering.

Testing a ROLAND Juno 106 synthesizer
 
To start with, we had two vintage ROLAND Juno 106 synthesizers – one for studio and one for live use. Both had a ‘dead’ chip. We knew this because when playing, each 6th note either sounded crackly, or had no sound at all.  After some research (like this) it showed we could ‘bring them back to life’ with some solder skills and acetone. Enter, the Fabrication Lab.

What we did:

We opened up the synths to isolate the main circuit board. There are 6 voice chips there.  We removed the circuit board and de-soldered the faulty chips. We were able to identify which chips were faulty by following a “Test Procedure” – built into the synth program.

Fixing a ROLAND Juno 106 synthesizer
 
Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106
 
Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106
 
I had two faulty chips, Sunny had 1 faulty chip. So we de-soldered them and soaked the chips in acetone for a few days.  The ceramic coating fell away, and we installed them back into the circuit board. To make things easier, we soldered header pins so we can quickly exchange the chips in different locations. This saves us time and effort!

With testing done so far, it looks like 3 of 3 chips were brought back to life. We also successfully repaired some ‘dead keys’ on the keyboard. We did this using a Circuit Pen, basically like a white-out pen, to repair faulty tracks on the circuit board.

Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106
 
Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106
 
Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106

 
What tools we used:

Overall we used the following materials in the Fabrication Lab:

  • Solder Kit
  • Oscilloscope
  • Voltmeter
  • Clamps
  • Screwdrivers and hand tools

Using the oscilloscope was great! It enabled us to visualise the sounds that a Vintage Synth makes. You can really see the difference between a Square, Saw and Pulse Wave Modulation.

PS. If the Voice Chips didn’t come back to life, we weren’t completely doomed. You can buy a CLONE chip from overseas http://www.analoguerenaissance.com/D80017/ – this was our back up option had the Voice chips not worked after soaking.

You will see in the pics that chips 4 & 5 are larger than the rest – as these are CLONE chips I replaced 3 years ago.

In the end, a few hours spent in the Fabrication Lab meant two reborn synths!

Fixing a faulty voice chip in a Juno 106