my year in reviewTuesday 30 December, 2008

A year on the blog has come to an end,
so i write to you now in hope that i send,
This message of thanks which i type from the heart,
to help me prepare for the New Year which starts.

A great year it was, as i cast my eye back.
I can absolutely say that i gave it a crack.
Oils, acrylics and a landscape or two,
a brand new series called Le Donne in Blu.
January passed with not much of any art,
just goals that were written to ensure a good start.
Frightened, scared, limited computer skills too,
0 8 and my thoughts made their official debut.

Protestations voiced, no names will i mention,
his words of support, no doubt of good intention.
Motivated, inspired and ready to show,
perugina was prepared to give it a go.

The year slow to start kicked off with a nude,
acrylic in brown ‘bodacious’ the review.
My first work in progress a vase that was black.Some florals, gums, and a lady sitting back.

Now March was exciting a series anew,
eight watercolour ballerinas made their debut.
Prima, Brava and Curtain Call made,
Encore, Stanca and Si Riposa now stayed.

Pink tulle gowns and points, performed pirouettes,
for the people who watched them, they’d never forget.
As they danced on Arches which served as their stage,
in various poses their audience engaged.

A holiday was had in the midst of all this,
Soldiers Point where i stayed made painting such bliss.
My passions indulged here were indeed smart,
a crab meant for pasta was turned into art.

Blue Swimmer for Dinner,a painting unknown,
of seagulls on sand,
and thongs left unowned.
This holiday a creative person’s delight,
painting and drawing from morning till night.

April and May were the busiest by far,
there were pumpkins, watercolour ladies
and miniature jars.A day spent with David,
obsessions with vintage themes.
The people on forums,
no doubt did they scream,
‘No more perugina for we’ve seen enough!’
Of vases and miniatures, we need some new stuff.
So off i did go to do my own thing,
to see what new thoughts
i would have now to bring.

What to do with my ballet girls dancing in pink.
A book for little girls was what I did think.
Le Belle Ballerine is now a nice book,
for those who not know, i ask you to look.

June saw the start of the gums without trunks,
leaves painted yellow and green missing chunks.
Concerned that they looked like sardines from afar,
asking all those i knew to view how bizarre.

July had me enter my first major comp,
i knew i should try and give it a shot.
A Sculptor called Alan he wondered around,
and thought that my crab looked quite safe and sound.
To my utter surprise was given a commended,
all in all i thought it quite splendid.

July was a month meeting artists of note,
see Workshop in Oil with John Wilson unquote.
There was Alan at the Annual and Artist’s Palette magazine,
where my Watercolour Ladies featured for me was a dream.

Coco Kiss in August wins another award,
my gorgeous girl i’m sure in Heaven applauds.
i miss her still for she was my mate,
here at home as i painted her company great.

August sees other surprises in store,
a commission of sorts too hard to ignore.
Announced later on and to work i must tend,
for extensions aren’t granted and time i must spend.
There are series known and ones that debuted,
Watercolour Ladies and Instruments that continue.
Suggestions for some to feature on mugs,
To those all i say is, i smile and i shrug.

My blogs there are many and some are now private,
To view these my mates are only invited.
My works there were many created this year,
Last count i think 50 perhaps more it's feared.
i would like to see these together in one go,
i hope you like the above slideshow.

A lover of Norman sees me painting a God!Two graphites, an oil and then art comes to a halt.
My furry boy Buffy not well he does fair,
with everyone helping with thoughts and their prayers.
Thank you

With the year closing fast i’ll have to be quick,
with the clacking of keys and mouse that i click.
To upload this poem which reviews this past year,
i thank those that helped me along you’re so dear.

It’s now i make mention the support i have known,
thus far on my travels in art that has grown.
Sandra and Nick and those on AAF,
you know who you are
i’m really quite blessed.
Wayne, Sweetmango to V and to L,
Helm i still apologise for i thought you weren’t a girl.

My new friends from bubble,
Rose, Philip and Peter,
Renate and Rory who couldn’t be sweeter.
There’s Jared who helped me with blogging and stuff,
Freda, Anni and Marion i thank you so much.

Cheryl, Joel, David who pop by now and then,
Mimi, Ayie, and Mauro my Italian friend.
Wendi, Srishti, Amy and Noel you’re so kind,
i hope i haven’t left anyone behind.

There are many to thank behind the scenes,
who offer support and that go unseen.
Their comments and support are equally valued,
And to them i simply say...

Thank you.
i’ve had a great year and goals i’ve fulfilled,
some were surprises and on skills I did build.
In prep for my next adventures to have,
on this path that I follow with the Gregory’s i’ll nav.

My eyes open wide i’ll be ready to learn,
more excitement no doubt with each and every turn.
With paper horded and brushes in hand,
i look forward to 0 9 with what it has planned.

Who knows what's in store,
just hope i don’t bore.
i thank you all for being here,
and i look forward to seeing you all next year!

(((HUGS & LOVE)))

i would like to thank and mention those here,
in no particular order but dear.
Each in their own giving support in some way,
be it love, friendship, in my thoughts they will stay.

Thanks for making my year great.
Maria Gavass, Cliff, Giulia Raggiunti, Graeme Banks, Cheryl Newman,
Peter Zentjens, Miriam Arnaboldi, Mario La Rossa, Susan Moss,
Wendi S, Maria Kellner, Freda Surgenor, Sandra Wilson,
Marcella Vaccarelli, Patrizia Magarini, Soheir & Rudi Ehinger,
Bob Abrahams, Johannes Wessmark, Nicholas Simmons, John Marsh,
Mimi Torchia Boothby, Carmen & Phillip Bonnici, Joe Vannucci, Fiona Tiplady,
Amy Stevens, Vince & Bina Vannucci, Rory Stapleton, David Brayshaw,
Philip Johnson, Loretta & Nazz Diomedi, Renate Dartois, Maria & Antonio La Rossa,
Wayne Roberts, Jared Ravell, Guanita & Brendon Weston,
Jilly, Rose Moxon, Monique Sartor, Frederick Gonnet, Reina Francis,
Corinne Pouzet, Sonia & Piero Maestri, Marion Chapman, Rubina Iachini,
Ingrid Russell, David Burge, Steph Granshaw, Anni Morris,
Noel Elliot, Nora Sallows, Paolo Marchiori, John Wilson, Michelle Armstrong,
Ron Richmond, Craig Shillington, Sarah, Giuseppina Gerrometta,
June Brown, Norma Jones, Trevor Lang, Vesna Maksimovic,
James Mackie, Jade E Henderson, CateTownsend, Angela De Angelis,
Ron, Gwen Jones, Olga, Barbara, Denise, Amy, Evelyn, J-C Saint Po,
Joel Spencer, Ana C B, Joyce Williams, Dave Edwards, Dorino Ragnioli,
Panny Katsaros, Carlo & Diana Fontanelli, Michelle Giacobello, Mike (Stirling),
Judy, Adriana Glackin, Holley, Kim Grace, Suzie (Sooz), Roberto Santarelli,
Alessandra Magarini, Antonietta Palumbi, Lillian Tiplady, Ada Raggiunti,
Panny Katsaros, Corrado & Diana Ardizzi, Sam & Antonella Biasi, Anni Maree Gill,
Mel (Nadia's), Srishti Wilhelm, Mauro Baglieri, Helen Kosenko, Jack Wanza, Jackie & Zamira.
lunch with redbubblers
Photography by Juilee Pryor

Shot with her pint-sized fisheye lomo using 35 mm film, Juilee was able to keep in with the Bubble theme capturing key moments at a casual gathering graciously hosted by Rose Moxon.

Thank you Rose for thinking of me and inviting me along to your home for what was a great afternoon mingling and meeting with some of the people that make redbubble such a wonderful place! It was suggested we try and have a bubblemeet as often as we can!

The luncheon was held for Martin - 'head honcho' who was here in Sydney to attend the Open Universities Fast Thinking Inaugural Innovation Awards - redbubble was awarded the runner-up prize in the Digital Innovation category. It was fantastic to meet with you Martin and along with our congratulations… most were impressed and totally floored especially when you demonstrated to all, your skills in that domestic activity 'shirked by most,' women in particular - ironing... and we have the photographic evidence to prove that 'a man' can indeed iron! In fact Rose was surprised she even owned an ironing board! LOL

Martin and Suzie sitting in the background

Bill Fonesca and me - la Perugina

Bill, me and Noel Elliot

Dubbed 'Iron Man Martin' ironing his shirt for the awards night.
We all thought the wearing of a 'redbubble T-Shirt' would be the proper endorsement
to show he truly believes and lives in
'the bubble!'

Tania Rose with her little boy. Tania was very generous giving us each a copy of her latest CD 'Feather's Breath - Music of the Air' which was a pleasure to listen to on my 1 hr drive home. Thank you Tania (((HUGS))) Wishing you all the very best.

Martin, Rosalie and Adriana

concentrate the mind

acrylic on stretched canvas

61×91 cm

Painted with brushes, a sponge & fingers.
text overlay

Blocking in colour at first had me utilizing brushes and as I started to contour the facial features used my fingers rubbing in colour as well as wiping it away with a sponge.
He looks a little rustic as a result, which I don’t mind.

I may add to this in the future... however for the 'present moment' am quite happy to live with him as he is.


You are always using those famous two words and thoughts immediately turned to you
as they were read, written and painted.
Love to you.



for the love of flowers

watercolour on montval
185 gsm
17 x 73 cm

Have gone back to my old habits of tearing my paper into thin strips.

i may save on paper, unfortunately framing can be costly when ordered custom made.

It also seems that with the official arrival of summer and all the beautiful blooms available and flourishing in the garden sees me very much inspired, returning to painting flowers big time.

I am hoping that during the holiday break I can spare a little more time devoting myself to these and adding to my

It feels like i have been away from them for ages.

i feel an agapanthus coming on!

Gardenias are also on the list.

in loving memory of

(1993 - 2008)

Tara sleeping on her favourite chair.


You were taken too soon from those who loved you,
You were part of our ‘fur family’
Much loved by Fiona
She will miss you always.

This is for you sweet Tara,
We now fight for you
When you weren’t able to fight for yourself.
We will never forget you.

May you forever walk and play in lavender fields
free and safe.

Tonight i have spent a contemplative hour painting this watercolour which i will give Fiona, my sister-in-law, who has been left traumatised and distraught by her loss of her much beloved Tara of 15 years and the tragic way it occurred.

Last Monday 24th November, 2008 while Tara was sitting on the veranda of her home catching the last rays of the sun, sitting by her favourite lavender bush, two Bull Mastiffs ran into the property and savagely mauled her between them.

Fiona watched and tried in vain to save Tara sustaining injuries herself in this attack.
When the dogs were finished, Fiona was left holding Tara who died in her arms.

Poor little Tara was just too little to save herself despite the fight she put up.

This incident has angered all of us.

These marauding dogs were left to roam the streets unleashed and unsupervised!

I have spent most of the last week emailing the Council, Local Paper (who are now writing a story about it) State & Federal Members in the area, making sure these people are made accountable for all that occurred, as well as checking on Fiona most days.

Fiona's injuries are on the mend, however she has been left devastated and is traumatised, suffering from constant 'flash backs'.

I cannot begin to imagine what this was like for her in that moment and those in the street that witnessed it.
_____________ . _____________

Fiona, you are very much in my prayers and my thoughts at this time.

Thanking you for your kind thoughts and your comments if you have left them here.
They are much appreciated will pass them onto Fiona.
Letting her know there are others that feel as we all do,
will go a long way towards helping her process this terrible event.

View Work In Progress Slideshow

blue Angel of Peace
Christmas card 2008

Deciding to continue this 'blue Angel of Peace' theme each year making it my signature Christmas Card sees me exploring a stained glass effect this year, as opposed to last year where my Angel bore a close resemblance to my ‘Ladies and the Musical Instruments They Play’

intricate in design and time consuming, it was very relaxing to paint and i truly felt a sense of peace and calm working on it with my 'O' round brush - yes the same one utilised on 'the Garden God II' ...could have another painting in it if i am lucky!

38 x 67 cm
watercolour on arches
300 gsm cp fine

View Work In Progress Slideshow

the Garden God II
a tribute To Norman

Just couldn't help myself with the slideshow...

Also... all going well, this will feature as a Work In Progress in the
Artist's Palette magazine Issue 71
Which will be out early 2009.
the Garden God II
a tribute to Norman

67 x 38 cm

watercolour on arches
300gsm cp fine


This has taken forever and there are still some minor adjustments to make.

Also I would like to extend a big thank to Rory Stapleton on RB
(after discovering our mutal love of the works of Australian Artist Norman Lindsay)
for his help and encouragement during the last couple of weeks as i worked on this furiously.

His supportive emails, as he followed its progress and imparting his technical expertise in illustration and painting especially with regard to tone as it pertains to colour was much appreciated.
Thank you so much Rory.


My Inspiration

Here at my home, in my

'Upstairs Garden'
I have a large stone plaque with a face cast into it, which hangs on the western wall of the house, catching the last rays of sun each day.

He is the protector of my Upstairs Garden
Although there is no beautiful young naked maiden standing there in front of his gargoyle-like face, safely flaunting herself before his lifeless eyes…
I have nevertheless called him my “Garden God” in homage to Lindsay and his work.
The Garden God
Norman Lindsay

perugina's tips for the Melbourne Cup 2008
Straight From The Horse's Mouth

Tonight has been spent preparing for
'the race that stops a nation'

That once a year event which has all the fillies excited.

Where hours are spent vetoing every item of clothing in the wardrobe and has every partner horrified at the prospect of having to answer 'that question' dreaded by all partners…
"Does My B** Look Big In This?"
Also deliberating on which shoes to wear with …and of course there's the all important decision about that accessory which can make or break the entire ensemble…THE HAT!

Whether to try for that Audrey Hepburn –ridiculously oversized 'My Fair Lady' look!
(Assuring your derrière will not rival that of the horses - a sure bet on the day!)
or just go the fascinator 'chook look!'
All important decisions…

All that remained this evening was studying the Form Guide.
The barriers drawn… the jockeys...the trainers… track conditions...dead weight vs. top weight...
bloodlines... and the poor animals form to be able to make the 3200 metre distance.

Tipping a science unto itself…so...with that said...
the numbers I drew out of the hat...
(insert wink)

18 Profound Beauty ridden by Glen Boss

8 Mad Rush ridden by Damien Oliver
21 Prize Lady ridden by Mark Sweeney
(which incidentally will start in barrier 18 which has never produced a Cup winner!)

Bon Chance to all!
Most importantly have fun!

work in progress
latest updates
This is where i am currently with

the Garden God II
a tribute to Norman

Perhaps the photo above will give some indication as to the size of this work.

My size 'O' round TAKLON brush has served me well and up until now and it has seen me through many of my works since starting watercolours in 2007 and remains one of my favourites still.

Ron in my watercolour group is always astounded that i utilise such a small brush and has taken to asking, "Why don't you use a bigger brush?!" whenever he sees me, regardless of whether i am painting or not.

I like to use small brushes, so i shrug and laugh. Perhaps i feel comfortable with it because like a pencil, i feel i have some control.

I am in a panic about it (the brush) making it through this piece as its bristles are wearing thin, it will be a sad day when it finally gives up.

This last picture above is the closest representing the true colour of the piece as utilising the flash mode on the camera tends to bleach out the colour.

With all the leaves completed now, all that remains is touching up various areas putting in some darks behind the foliage.

This morning sees me a little further down the road.

With more to come later this afternoon.


Finally I have settled into my latest WIP and its moving along. Looking back when updating its progress i can't believe this was started back in August.

Having no recollection of colours used had me playing the guessing game, “What colour am I?”

Some colours are obvious, others gave me some grief. This will teach me to record this in future.

Normally i don't like to drop a project as i have done in this case, and prefer to work day after day until its completion.

In Italian (as I often find myself thinking in these terms) if i break from a project, i lose “la mano”- my hand i.e. the flow of what i am doing and like handwriting on a page, the slope of it changes, therefore breaking the visual rhythm of it. So in picking this up again today, it is hoped that i will find my rhythm once more so the next few weeks can be dedicated to completing it.

To view progress shots from the start


To view slideshow


series le donne blu
lei dorme
she sleeps
no 1

oil on stretched canvas
titanium white, ultramarine blue

29 x 42 cm

My need to return to familiar territory in subject matter at least, after what seems a long break was necessary to ease back into getting creative again.

Perhaps the relaxed Donna Blu - Blue Lady – serene in her slumber, is a manifestation of the inner peace i am lacking presently and so desperately crave.

Instead of watercolour, with its unpredictability and capriciousness adding to my frustration , i chose to get out those beautiful smooth oil paints purchased a few months back helping me to unwind.

Pushing the lush paint around on the canvas with a large round soft brush, the swirling movements of the ultramarine blue and titanium white paint as it mixed forming her curls, giving them a delicate textural quality, (not evident here in the photo) was almost hypnotic, the rhythmic movements mesmerising… and now when I look back…
“Me thinks i got a little high on the fumes!”

My art work has come to a sudden halt over the last month.

Moving my art space, and with all that transpired this last week with Buffy and although i have still uploaded the latest news into my blog, it still feels like i have been away for an eternity.

It would be remiss if i didn't thank all who have supported me during this time with your messages, thoughts and prayers for Buffy - from my heart, it helped tremendously!

Hopefully, with the worst behind us, with Buffy on the improve everyday, i can settle into my regular routine here at home, getting back to the painting, and finishing those WIPs started a few months ago.

November will be an extremely busy month starting with the Rhododendron Festival Annual Art Exhibition, Blackheath, Blue Mountains, as well as being an invited artist in the Oatley 101 Society of Artists, November Gallery Exhibition.

November also sees me working on a submission and commissioned project which needs to be completed by months end, more news on this later.

With so much crammed into these last months of 2008, and with some personal health issues as well, it had me having to make some hard decisions last couple of months.

For one, having to pull out of the Northern Expressions Annual Christmas Exhibition in Fairlight, Manly.
However I am looking forward to my involvement next year and wish the participating artists all the very best for a successful show - hope to see everyone on opening night!

Also, not being able to uphold my commitment to creating the Christmas Card this year for Retina Australia - this probably saddened me the most. Graeme, President of Retina Australia, was very understanding and we have reset this goal for 2009 simply offering me words of comfort, "Things will happen in their own good time and it wasn't meant to be for 2008"

Thank you Graeme, for your understanding and patience and I hope 2009 is a better year for us both!
Catch up soon!

So with the Christmas decs, cards and paper already making their appearance in the retail industry signalling to all that the chaos has officially started, and with the summer break looming near, the need to tie up these loose ends so 2009 can start afresh is imperative.

Now, hopefully it’s back to the art!

first major sale

beneath blue mountain gums
for the love of the mountains

no 1

77 x 67cm

This is currently being exhibited in the Blackheath Art Society Spring Open Exhibition, 2008 which runs each October Long Weekend in the Blue Mountains NSW

Since starting watercolour and art full time in 2007, it is my first major sale in an exhibition. John Marsh, President of the Blackheath Art Society called with this wonderful news this morning!
Thank you to the person who purchased this original watercolour piece, i'm thrilled.

just a man
thoughts can overwhelm, a powerful force humbling the resolute.

graphite drawing on paper

27 x 42 cm


Having a break from watercolour and enjoying my brief return to graphite, much to my father's delight. He loves my work in this medium and was taken with this latest piece. I have always loved him for the support he has given me with my art.

work in progress

latest update

I have two WIP that i am trying to complete at the moment.
This one i am working on in my weekly watercolour group session, which has been going for a while now.
It has been slow but enjoyable and this is where i am currently at.
To view the other progress shots CLICK HERE
The Garden God below has not seen any progress as i am also currently moving my art space.
Work In Progress

Latest Update

This is where I am currently at with

The Garden God II

A Tribute to Norman

Those of you who thought the first
‘Garden God’
was scary and ugly and told me so, and those too scared to leave a comment perhaps because there was nothing good to say...

Check this out!

My first painting was truly a ‘muck about’ and it was too much fun and had me totally engaged over the two days it took.

This is a serious second attempt at it this time.
With the colours chosen and drawing properly set out,
this does not provide any guarantee of success as there is still a long way to go before its completion.

However, I am pleased with how it is progressing.

Each painting is a learning exercise in any case, with skills built upon, aiding the next project.

His eyes are intense and his gaze fierce!
Now this is nightmare material and makes the first one look tame!

I still see the beauty within...
perhaps it is in his strength of stare which engages me!

Photographs below are a record of its progress.
To view Work In Progress as a Slideshow