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  • Samantha Tannous

Armchair Art & Travel is the antidote I needed

I didn’t realise what a great stash of travel ephemera I had collected until I joined in Heather’s Armchair Art & Travel creative challenge – now you can too

I am loving my time at home – it’s something I’ve craved for many years. The circumstances aren’t the greatest, but like many of you, after the initial shock I’ve been making the most of this rare opportunity.

Recently I participated in a very special 5-day creative challenge, Armchair Art & Travel, hosted by Heather Matthew. (She’s going to host another one soon, keep reading for the details!)

It’s similar to one of the workshops that Heather was offering at last month’s Arts Muster event – so for those of you who were keen on enrolling in that class, now is the time to experience it free, online, and in snack-sized portions over five days.

Right before the lockdown, I had visited South Australia for a girls’ weekend of wine, chocolate and cheese. Like many an artist, alongside the wines and odd artwork I brought home with me, there were also brochures, tickets, labels, maps and other paraphernalia of travel.


L to R: My fabulous results from Heather's free course, the folded map portfolio; its contents including collaged postcards and a folded pocketbook; details of the next Armchair Art & Travel online course

Coincidentally, Heather was preparing her Armchair Art & Travel series and voila! I now have a superb collection of artworks commemorating my last trip.

The folded pocketbook has to be one of my favourites. It’s got the right sized slots to hold other precious mementoes, and it’s made from a map.

The portfolio map is another special fave, and I folded mine so it was perfect to contain some postcard collages I made while in SA, and the pocketbook. I’m so thrilled with the results. It really makes me look forward to the day we can visit SA again, there was so much to see and do that a few days went by very quickly.

There’s one project among the five challenges that I still have on my work table – it’s so special that I am really taking my time over it (though Heather says not to over-think things!). It’s my “altered passport”, an out-of-date passport that I am turning into an homage of my trip to India with a friend around two years ago. As well as ticket stubs, maps and brochures, I’ve got wood block stamps, rubbings of coins, textile samples and even chocolate wrappers! I play with all these elements every day to find the right combination to memorialise this very special trip.

If you want to get onboard the next Armchair Art & Travel challenge, Heather is commencing another “tour” on 25 May. Sign up here.

I thoroughly recommend it.

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