Thursday, 25 July 2013

The Hey Maker! creative collective says farewell.

It is with some sadness but mostly celebration that Hey Maker! says farewell.

Our heartfelt thanks to the vibrant creative folk of Murwillumbah and our ever supportive online community for contributing to the success of Hey Maker! events. Although the season of the Hey Maker! collective has come to an end the positive impact made on our community will continue.
The Hey Maker! Story

At the start of 2012 five creative women came together with a shared vision to revitalise our town and create meaningful connections within our community. We were concerned with the increasing number shops in Murwillumbah town center closing down. As a creative collective we saw an opportunity to invigorate our town with pop up events.

Tuesday mornings at Belinda's was the regular weekly gathering, sipping coffee, brainstorming creative concepts and dreaming big for our little town. Baby slept, toddlers snacked and kids played as creative ideas were developed. The power of collaboration can be thrilling.

This is what Hey Maker! did with the support of our community:
Our first event April 2012 - the Potato Print Pop Up at Verge Landscape Architects in Muwillumbah. Over 200 people came through the door over a weekend to participate in cutting their own designs into sweet spuds and vegies. The stamped upcycled cardboard was stuck on the studio wall to create a collective work of art.

At the Hosanna ANZAC family fun day Hey Maker! popped up a Mothers Day make'n take
papercraft activity. Buntings were made with love from recycled paper and decorated with precut shapes.

World Environment Day in Knox Park - A nature installation was a lot of fun, in a grassy open space a collection of colourful plant offcuts were available to create organic sculpture. Pinwheels were also made from recycled paper and sticks.

Workshops for the Ukitopia Festival - kids had a choice of creating a woven book or Artist's cards that they could then swap with each other.

With thanks to the generosity of our creative community Hey Maker’s! Pozible fundraising campaign we were able to bring you ten weeks of pre Christmas workshops and creative events during “Pop Up Murwillumbah.” Hosted in a beautiful retail space in the Austral Building.

The Pozible campain gave Hey Maker! an opportunity to see if this creative space could sustain itself. We broke even with $400.27 to spare which we have now donated to Valley Life, an upcoming community project involving local artists. For Hey Maker! to continue in this space what we really needed was government funding for a coordinator as there is only so much time a family can have their mumma volunteer her time outside the home. We approached the Tweed Council and discussed the prospect of funding for a fulltime paid position + a little extra to see the business through during the quieter times. They were very supportive of what we achieved but unfortunately not able to help in this capacity.

In early 2013 local artist Sauce took over the premises. Our Pop Up project deemed successful for not only engaging the community in creative workshops and events but activating an empty shop that now continues to host an artist.

The Natural Dying Talk and Demonstration at the Autumn Club in April 2013 was an inspiring night of textile creativity with our guest speaker from Thailand Lamorna Cheeseman of "Studio Naenna"who talked us through the process of Ikat weaving and natural dyeing. This was followed by a natural dyeing demonstration with local textile artist Anne Leon.

As a new year starts family needs change too. We delight in watching our small children grow. Sleeping babies now walk, toddlers become preschoolers, preschoolers start big school. The dream business takes off, homes are built, kitchens renovated and all the while the mother remains the centre of family life. What an honour it is to have this role.
We were enchanted with the potential of what Hey Maker! could be and surprised at how hard it was to let it go as our time returned to the demands of family life with children.
As much as we want to be able to do it all, sadly something has to give. 

It is with deepest gratitude we say thank you to our community both local and online that supported us to make all these wonderful things happen. You dug deep into your pockets and donated to our Pozible campaign, you volunteered your precious time, you became a Hey Maker! member, you came along to our events and workshops and you shopped in our Pop Up giftshop.

We'd like to thank Anouk Beck, and all the staff at the Tweed River Art Gallery, as well as the Friends of TRAG, for their advice, assistance and continual support in many ways. Thank you to Susi Muddiman who brought us together in the first place!

A huge thankyou to our husbands Dan, Sam, Ed, Andy and Alex for supporting us in this journey.

Although the the Hey Maker! collective has come to its end the co founders will continue with creative pursuits that benefit our town:

Belinda Smith

Artist and designer, Belinda Smith and her landscape architect partner Dan Plummer started Plummer & Smith in mid 2012. It is a design studio with a focus on landscape architecture and public art. This year they have completed two public artworks commissioned by Gold Coast City Council and have various local and international projects on the drawing board. They share workspace in Murwillumbah at Studio 85 with Buro Two and Helle Jorgenson.

Ellie Beck

Ellie is a creative who works primarily with natural textiles and materials. Screen printing, crochet, sewing and natural plant dye are her current areas of exploration and passion. She runs a handcrafted business with her husband, Sam Messina, making jewellery and (soon to be) furniture out of broken skateboards Ellie runs workshops in screen printing, and gatherings inspiring people to find their own creative voice. Ellie and her husband are currently building their forest house and studio, which they share with two crafty children, one sleepy cat and a whole lot of wildlife. You can read her blog about living a creative life, visit her website for workshop details or follow her on Instagram @petalplum.

Kathy Egan

Kathy's new venture Craftschool invites artists to share their skills with our community through workshops held in the Tweed Valley. Kathy has also been running regular Craftplay sessions at the Stokers Siding Primary School art studio. Artists lead the Craftplay sessions giving children and their carers an opportunity to explore a variety of mediums in a beautiful sunlit space. For more details on upcoming workshops follow the Craftschool Facebook page and visit the Craftschool Blog.

Jo Olive

Jo, along with her husband Andy, have established the letterpress print studio "Olive and the Volcano Letterpress" in the Doon Doon Valley. In addition to producing a range of hand-crafted letterpress paper-goods for the retail market, they offer a custom print service for everything from business cards to wedding suites. They are proud to be continuing the craft and tradition of letterpress and aim to spread " letterpress love" by holding workshops, open studio days and demonstrations in the future.

Christy Mcleod

Christy continues with Creative Village, a website dedicated to local creatives where they can promote their portfolios, exhibitions, workshops and collaborations and follow other local artists. The site has over 250 members including designers, painters, jewelers, weavers and musicians from Brisbane to Hobart with a concentration of members in her home of the Northern Rivers. or watch the video. Christy has also just launched a side project fot the vintage, food and art industry