A meet-up at the NGV

Good morning fair blog readers. 

Yesterday I went on a little adventure and so, good blogger that I am. I shall now regale you with the tale. 

It was a freezing cold morning in Melbourne town, the temperature had dipped below zero, and yet, when my alarm went off, I gladly threw back the covers and readied myself for an outing. 

What force could draw me from my cosy, cosy bed, out into the frosty morning light? 

A meet-up! I was off to meet some of the people I’d done an online course with precisely one year ago. 

You won’t be shocked to hear that the course was facilitated by author, blogger, maker, doer and be-er (may not be an actual word) of all things crafty and ace, Pip Lincolne.  This course was called Inspiration Information and it was a month long adventure into unlocking your creativity. 

We created collages, we painted, we used pastels and pencils, we read books and watched documentaries and discovered old crochet projects. We created little studios on our dining room tables or in the living room. We talked about loads of creative people, from Patti Smith to Sister Mary Corita. 

It really was inspiring and informative, every single time I logged in to the course, I was encouraged to try something new, and to disregard my inner critic’s sly words about things being childlike or wrong or not very good. Creativity is good, in and of itself. That’s what sticks with me. 

We chose the NGV for our meeting place, which turned out to be absolutely perfect. Where better for a group of people who met exploring creativity, than the National Gallery of Victoria? 

Tables were snagged, hugs were exchanged and we spent a couple of hours getting to know each other, face to face. Deanna organised the day, and she, Carolyn, Emily, Karen and I had a ball. 

We talked about creativity, about books, about Pip (the general consensus being, we are PRO-PIP!), we talked about our families, kids, parents and parenting. 

We talked about literary speed dating (who knew that was a thing?) and making space for creative pursuits. 

We talked about drawing and dealing with cranky people, the tyranny of housework and being consumed by the mundane. I believe I uttered this decree: “Fuck skirting boards!”. 

We talked about how creativity is part of our everyday lives. 

The BEST part of the morning was how easy it was. We already knew each other from the online classroom and our Facebook group, but it was wonderful to translate that to chatting over coffees and chai teas. 

As we sat chatting, I looked around at the interesting, diversely experienced women I was with, and thought about how enriched I am by the time I spend tap-tap-tapping on Facebook or here on the blog. To sign up to an online course about creativity may seem strange, but I think the old adage is true – you get out what you put in. 

I am certain that each of us would say that Inspiration Information gave us amazing gifts. I wish I’d asked everyone that question now. Oh, why don’t I? Hey, if you read this girls, tell us what II meant to you in the comments please. 

Inspiration Information Gals – Deanna, Carolyn, Emily, moi, Karen. 

As we hugged and planned our next catch up, I decided to explore the gallery, as I hadn’t visited for a few years. 


If you’re in Victoria, or visiting, you must come. There’s so much inspiration and beauty, and diversity in the NGV collection. 

Here are some of the works that caught my eye. 

The Swamp (no. 2) by Brent Harris


Ste Sebastienne by Louise Bourgeois


I call this one Felt UFO

Queen Victoria

Light play

NGV lines and light

18th & 19th century paintings

I lingered for a while in this space, it really is something to sit in front of a wall if works painted hundreds of years ago. 

The victory of faith – st George Hare c 1890

Oh, these ladies are exquisite. 

Falls of Schaffhausen – J.W.M. Turner

This Turner stopped me in my tracks, I actually turned around and came back to it… so, so beautiful. The photo does it very little justice. So much happening in the colours and brush strokes.   

This was painted in 1845. Yesterday, 170 years later, it caught my eye as I passed it and drew me in.  

That’s nothing sort of incredible.  

The moral of the story here… create, you never know where it might lead you, or who will be drawn in by it 170 years from now. 

Oh, and make friends on the web, it’s great! 


Annette x  



21 thoughts on “A meet-up at the NGV

  1. I love this post Annette and it was great to finally meet you and chat. You are right, it was so easy and so lovely chatting .The conversation flowed and left me with filled with happiness. So in answer to your question ,out of all the wonderful things that have come out of doing Inspiration Information I have to say the friendships I have made are what I treasure the most! Finding a creative tribe is awesome ! Emily xo


  2. Isn’t making friends on the web great? I’ve meet so many amazing people! Sounds like such a wonderful day.I haven’t been to the NGV in years; adding it to my ‘must visit’ list right now.
    P.S- Is there anyone in the world who is anti-Pip? I’d be shocked to hear it!


  3. It was such a great morning Annette! And I love seeing what you did after we went our separate ways. I went home and baked cookies! It has been so great for me meeting you all – online to start with and now for ‘real’. Feel the same as Karen – I’ve found my ‘creative tribe’.


    • Couldn’t agree more, a fantastic morning. I really enjoyed wandering around and immersing myself in all the amazing art. I’ll be doing that more often, so inspiring.


  4. Learning to muffle the inner critic, learning to catch myself when I compare me with the world, and just freaking give it a go are a few important things I learnt from Pip’s course. Can’t say I’ve mastered any of them, but I’m still working on it 🙂 Happily I can also say that the class has given me lovely inspiring thoughtful new friends… can’t ask for more than that!


  5. Oh, you have all made me want to jump on the train and go to the St Louis Art Museum with my sketchbook and camera!
    How lovely to meet up with everyone. x


  6. great for you Annette!
    yes! nothing like a like minded group, going to a top gallery and looking and learning!
    and soaking it in! … I love to let it wash over me!
    I love VNG! … whilst I was still in college, our head of art, who was our teacher, organized a private visit to the print room!
    WOW factor! … with the expert showing us the works! blown away! plus an exhibition of albrecht durer’s work was on at the time!
    we had 4 days in Melbourne and we visited many artists and print studios! … a really worthwhile trip!
    pip sounds like she has some great ideas to share!
    enjoy your creative tribe! love m:)X


  7. This is a really heart warming post, Annette. I’ve recently started a blog, inspired by Pip, and yesterday started a collaboration project with Jacquie over at birdandfox…who I’ve never even met! The internet is an amazing place for creativity to blossom, I reckon, and to meet like-minded souls. Good on you all for making the time to meet up and do something fun like going to the NGV 🙂 Isabel


    • Hi Isabel, I have had the great pleasure of spending a little time with Jacqui, she’s tops! Good on you for taking the leap into blogging, it’s so wonderful, thinking about who you’ll meet and where it might take you. Thanks for taking the time to comment. I’d love to read your blog.


  8. This group is one of the nicest I’ve met anywhere – online or IRL. I’m just sorry I don’t live in Melbourne and get to do all of these great things with you gals. The most valuable lesson I’ve taken from Inspiration Information is to make time EVERY day to do something creative. It’s amazing what a difference it makes to your creative life – as a matter of fact it’s amazing what a difference it makes to your life full stop.


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