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Showing posts from 2014

Hanji update .....

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Just to update you all, I really haven't fallen off the edge of the planet !! I think this has been the longest break I've taken over the last 4 years, from writing my Hanji blog but, my Hanji interests are very much still alive and well.

Since my return to Adelaide I've realized that I needed to take a step back from Hanji for a few months to decide exactly what direction I'd like my business to take during 2015 and beyond. Sometimes it's good to take time to reflect on what is important to us and certainly having  time back here in Australia with my family and friends, is one of them and setting up my Hanji business is another. 
If it's of any help to those in similar situations, here are just a few of the lessons I've learnt over the last few months:
1) I've found that I can't just continue  where I left off in the UAE but instead, I need time to build local networks. (As I'm sure you're aware, doing Hanji outside of Korea means you'…

Patience, patience, patience ....

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In the last few weeks I've finally found the time to concentrate on setting up my Hanji business. 
Unrealistically I want everything to happen at once. I'd like to find a place to conduct classes and to be instantly organised so that I can get started. My mind knew that it wasn't going to happen but my heart was really hoping otherwise.
Despite my slight despondency I've had an interesting and very enjoyable week of networking with some of the local artists including painters, ceramicist and print-makers  as well as meeting up with a few of my neighbors. 
One of them took me to look through a local warehouse that's currently being fitted out for an Aboriginal artist to hold exhibitions in and it'll also be occupied by a print-maker who wants a part of it as her studio but unfortunately, the rest of the space is already fully taken.
This area of Brompton and Bowden has so many lovely old shopfronts that are not being used so I've knocked on some doors  to i…

Hanji Business....

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Well here I am sitting at my computer in my Hanji room in Adelaide.

 Joy for joy!

I'm surrounded by all my lovely Hanji papers, cardboard, books, tools, worktables and, with a project underway I couldn't be happier. My computer and printer are now working so it's time to do a blog post after what seems like such a long break.


It's been a while since I've had my Hanji things around me and have had a daily routine of creativity in my life. Its been 4 months and in that time Ron and I've packed up our 2 storey house in the UAE, including my studio full of all things Hanji, moved across the other side of the world back to Australia, organised and overseen the workmen to get our house in Adelaide renovated, unpacked around 280 boxes and had to find places for everything in a smaller, but very lovely townhouse. 

We keep saying that we need to downsize as we get older and we've certainly achieved that with our new dwelling but it's all the things that don'…

Life is colourful ....

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Over the last 15 years I've been fortunate enough to have traveled to many different countries with a wide variety of cultures, history and traditions.  I've lived in 3 of those countries for reasonable lengths of time and many people have asked the question, "Which is your favourite?" I ask, "How am I expected to answer that when each has had it's own unique attractions and influences on my life?" 
Let me first define attractions, 'the action or power of evoking interest in or liking for someone or something'. These aren't necessarily only on the outside, which  most tourists get a glimpse of,  but when you're fortunate enough to live in a country for any length of time you soon find out that they each have many depths of character (colours) which include the geographical, architectural, cultural, societal, and religious aspects as well. This depth of character is what the country is really all about.

Firstly we went to Korea to live…

Hanji Exhibition ...... Creativity is contagious

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Sadly I'll be leaving the UAE in a few weeks time to settle back in Australia. It's going to be a huge move for my husband and I after an absence of nearly 15 years from our homeland but one that I'm looking forward to as I'm reunited with my family and I start a new chapter of teaching and learning Hanji back in Adelaide, Australia. Over the last few months here in RAK, and with the last of the Hanji classes  winding down, the students  had been thinking of what to do to as a final farewell before I leave.  Diana piped up with, 'Why don't we have a Hanji Exhibition?'. I thought about it  and very quickly decided that there couldn't be any better  way to celebrate the classes than by getting everyone together and showcasing the students' amazing achievements.    I ran it past a few people and they were excited at the idea so preparations began.                       
 There were lots of last minute 'finishing off of projects' that they w…

Hanji books ...............

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As I've often mentioned, it's almost impossible to get books in English or in Korean on Hanji crafts  therefore, on my recent trip to South Korea it was one of my goals to source as many books as I could from the home of Hanji.  
Over the years I've been looking both online and in book stores all over the world for any Hanji books I can find in English  and unfortunately, I've only come up with a very small selection thus far. During my trip to Seoul earlier this month it was important for me to go and check out the largest book store in Seoul, Kyobo, to see what they might have. 
Finding the shop after so many years was quite easy  and the taxi driver knew exactly where to take me so once in the store I rushed up to the English counter and after some communication problems it was finally decided that there was nothing on Hanji in English. Plan A had failed but it really wasn't a total let down as I suspected this is what might happen but I guess I was hoping for …

Hanji exhibition .....

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For those of you living the UAE, there's going to be a Hanji exhibition on at the RAKSA Sailing Club on Tuesday, May 6th from 5 pm onwards. Would love to see as many of you as can make it so bring along your Hanji pieces to display.

Fabric and Hanji ........

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For an interesting textured effect and to create something that's quite unique you can use fabric under your Hanji paper. I found this set of drawers being made in the Hanji Doori store in Insadong, Seoul. I've never seen this effect before so was fascinated to have it explained to me by Catherine.

Here you can see that strips of a very course burlap  or hessian have been glued on to the top of this set of drawers to give it an interesting  texture, as well as a unique look. It was then covered with a thick black paper and lightly bleached to accentuate the weave.

On the drawer fronts a finer fabric, possibly a finer burlap but I'm sure you could use anything that has texture, has been glued onto the cardboard before applying two coats of paper. The fabric has been placed in different directions on each drawer to give them all an individual look.  
Although I'm not a great lover of the colour purple I do love the graded colours of these purple papers which contrast ve…

Hanji Doori Shop in Insadong ...

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Hanji Doori is a shop and it also has a great online web page(in Korean) where you can order all of their supplies.  The shop displays a large range of Hanji craft supplies and on this trip to Seoul I found it tucked away on the 3rd floor of a building in Insadong. You can  buy, papers, cutouts, molds, hardware, kits with paper, kits without paper, brushes, glues and electrical fittings for lamps.

As is often the case, these shops are discovered by word of mouth amongst the expat community and I became aware of its location through the networking I was able to do at the presentation 'Hanji - After Korea' in Seoul, last week. 

It was great to walk into the shop and find a lovely lady, Catherine, who spoke very good English because she had spent some time in New Zealand, and she was able to answer all my questions about Hanji. 

The shop has a great range of neatly set out products and a workroom where students can take 3 months courses which range from Beginner up to Advanced. …

Hanji - After Korea .......

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I've just returned from a very successful trip to South Korea where I was asked to give a talk titled, 'Hanji - After Korea' which was a presentation on how to continue doing Hanji once you've left and moved overseas.  At first I was quite apprehensive but I felt that I'd learnt so much myself over the last 12 years since leaving Korea that my journey was worth sharing if it was going to help others who wanted to follow in the same path.

People are creative in different ways and expats in Korea are no exception therefore some decide to try   Hanji crafts during their stay in the country. Why? Because its different to anything they've ever done before. It looks beautiful, it's practical and it's a part of the traditional Korean experience. That can be difficult in itself as getting a Hanji teacher even in Korea, that they can communicate easily with and ask questions about the work, is a challenge. 
The experience is enjoyable for the majority of people…