Bali Escape Artist Retreat

bali-2014-2 I love Bali. We have our retreat perched about a world-class surf break, so Angus has a wonderful time “getting shacked off his tits” – it sounds awful – but its surfer lingo for AWESOME. So while Angus is paddling for 6 hours a day, I am relaxing as much as humanly possible, and then some.

bali 2104 5Well that is until all my Escape Artists arrive! Is this the best classroom in the Universe? Well, that’s hard to answer because this year I have had Tam Laporte’s apple-tree strewn garden in Brighton, Donna Downey’s Inspired Studios, my own Verandah at The Nest, the whole of Paris and Claude Monet’s Garden as classrooms this year.  So there is some fierce competition for that title! (But a temple and the occassional monkey in the classroom is pretty unique.)

bali-2014and the lessons commence!bali 2104 138bali 2104 139 and the artwork starts pouring forth from the group… it’s magic!


bali 2104 130 bali 2104 128 bali 2104 122  bali 2104 119 bali 2104 112 bali 2104 109 bali 2104 110 bali 2104 111 bali 2104 104 bali 2104 105 bali 2104 107

bali 2104 115 bali 2104 106 bali 2104 117 bali 2104 118 bali 2104 120 bali 2104 126 bali 2104 135 bali 2104 134Mid retreat we always have a free day. On this trip some off us venture into town and go to ‘Motel Mexicola’.  Three of the girls are coming to Mexico City with me next year too, so we treated this as a little taste of what may be to come! I can recommend the ‘Unidentified’ Mocktail – look at the ingredient list – the surprise addition gave that drink a little kick – deeeeeeelicious!bali 2104 4

Art flows every day from magic fingers.

bali 2104 131 bali 2104 124 bali 2104 120 bali 2104 114 bali 2104 113 bali 2104 116 bali 2104 123And after many epiphanies, laughs, stories and swims later, we are sharing our artwork from a magic week that seems to be adrift from the ‘real world’.  bali 2104 3

bali-2014-finale I can’t wait to get back to Bali next year for more magic making in Paradise with fantastic women from around the world.




A positive influence.

Christy Tomlinson is a Mixed Media super-star. I met her in April when I was lucky enough to go to a She Matters retreat at her house in Idaho. I had such a wonderful time and we really bonded. So having her come to my house a few months later was like a dream.  Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 057

We organised two retreats at my place and they sold out within 20 minutes! ( The funny thing is, Christy and I decided all of this when I was in the States. We casually announced the workshop on Facebook, and my Angus, sleeping away in Australia woke up to a million emails from people wanting to get on the wait list. He had no idea what was going on lol!)

This adorable, talented girl doesn’t wait around – she’s like me, if something feels right, then off we go!

So for the last week and a bit, I have had not just Christy, but her hubby Ben and two of her 6 kiddos staying with me. It’s been full of art, laughs, shopping and the occasional snake!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 082

Christy and I are both at home with a ‘Selfie’! These are some of my faves from the last week ( there were many!).Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 068Unfortunately we both have the same ‘ good side’, so there was always a little tussling on who got to stand where lol! Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 056

After a day to acclimatise, Christy started the first workshop. It was full of lovely ladies. I had a ball creating this ‘Quilt girl.’Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 061Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 060  and here is our first She Matters at the Nest group! Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 062 Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 063

And with the first workshop wrapped up, our week long art fest commenced! We went down to my Studio and collected up a bunch of lovely papers and made journals. I was rocking my jumbo-sized Gelli plate and  Christy made some giant foam stamps!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 069( that feather is made from paper – I bought it at the Bangalow markets and painted it)
Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 071We worked in our journals all week in amongst outings to markets, Byron Bay and the best Nachos in the Universe ( Miss Margaritas in Byron Bay – wow!).Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 084I applied some of the techniques from Christy’s class into my journal , pushed the boundaries this way and that. Sometimes we talked each others ears off. Sometimes we sang to music, sometimes we just created quietly in each others company. It was MAGIC!!!! Real food for the soul.

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 087Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 075

We had an unwelcome visitor! Ben named him ‘Pete the Python’. He was around 2m long, and quite beautiful as far as snakes go. I was so impressed when Christy kept on creating, while the big python slept above our heads. Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 066We also had welcome visitors! Allie and Preston Tomlinson joined  the art tables from time to time – in between trips to trapeze lessons and water parks! (Here is Miss Allie looking super cool – love this girl!):Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 067Sometimes Ben would even paint with us – in between golf and mowing lawns with Angus. When Christy calls him a ‘goofball’, believe her. You should have seen him trying to herd the snake away from us when it woke up in the evening… hilarious!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 083  And my dear little Miss Sophie dropped in to visit her Aunty Jane. What a joy she is! Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 072Of course the doglettes were never far away. Tinsel made friends with Christy, but Moo was a favourite with the kids. Moo is going to miss them!Christy-and-Tinsel

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 074The week flew past so quickly! And before I knew it, our guests were arriving for the next workshop. This one was 2 days and most of the girls have become wonderful art friends with each other and with me. So I knew Christy was in for a treat!

Heidy, Mons and Anne all came to my first Escape Artist Retreat in Bali and have remained friends. I love seeing their faces!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 081Monika and I hamming it up in between talking about our weird doll collections!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 093 Robyn and Di photo-bombing my sunshine selfies! lol! Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 079The ever-adorable Christy enthralling us with her story and accent. Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 085

Works in progress drying in the sun…Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 077

Beauties were everywhere!Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 090

I created my Flower Girl straight into my journal… I love her!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 076

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 096

And on to day 2! Quilt girls!Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 091Look at my cute friend! Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 092

I was so lucky to sit in on all the classes. Angus and Fiona did all the work in the kitchen and hospitality areas, and I just got to be the Hostess with the Mostess! And make art, art, art…plus talk everyone’s ears off… and sneak away with their spare pretty papers….Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 088

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 089 This girl went home with Christy!Jane Davenport quilt girl

And Christy’s girls stayed with me:

Christy art

Yes, I am a lucky, lucky girl!

And I just know all of these girls feel the same way. Having Christy with us was just a total joy.

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 095

And the best news? She had such a great time, she is already committed to coming back next year.  AWESOME!

OK one more Selfie just to show you how I felt about the whole experience!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 078

Thank goodness, I am back in Idaho with Christy in April. I’ll be teaching an that retreat sold out in 10 minutes!

Life is wonderful and I’m sending all my spare sunshine to you!



p.s how flaming CUTE is my hat!

Christy Tomlinson at Jane Davenport 073pp.s ok – one more SELFIE… heh it’s my blog and I’ll Selfie if I want to lol!!!!


Too Much Awesome

Mermalicious-janedavenport-aiy2Ever experienced too much awesome? (If not, well I hope it happens to you some time soon!
And if you do,  well tell me about it in the comments area below – I would love to hear about your awesome!).

‘Too Much Awesome’ (TMA) has me feeling a little edgie, a little manic…
TMA feels a bit like  overwhelm… but I’m not stressed out. I’m feeling exhilarated, but not exhausted.
I have put too much on my plate, but it’s all the good, juicy, healthy stuff that a growing artist needs!

Last week I finished filming my part of ‘Radiant Faces’ and then tumbled headlong into researching Frida Kahlo for ‘Studying Under the Masters’ ( see the side bar for details). I’ll be filming Frida all week. Yep, TMA.

I am just back from two Escape Artist Retreats in Paris, and the Arty Party workshop with Tam Laporte in Brighton and have already  taught two weekend workshops since my return. Bali is next! TMA.


The TMA Weekend

The Art-is-you Aussie Roadshow is over. The highlight was spending time with some of my favourite people in the world . We meet as student and teacher and become friends. This happens in my world a lot! I may have mentioned that I have several superpowers and one of them is attracting awesome people. So it’s little wonder that I feel like I’m at a party with wonderful friends when I teach.  Look at our happy faces!

Mermalicious 001and this is how we spent the weekend:

mermalicious aiy 3 mermalicious aiy 4


I took a little time out on Friday just to play with some new markers I got in America ( yikes! it took me 3 months to get around too unpacking my bags – TMA!).

My mermaids are going through a transformation at the moment… looking a bit saucy!

mermalicious-aiy-3-jane-davenport This sultry siren is enjoying a SEAgar on the seabed… I started her during the mermaid workshop yesterday. Mermalicious-janedavenport-aiy2It also shows a technique I concocted for ‘Mermaid Circus’.

So as soon as I finish filming Frida paintings this week, I put on my Top Hat and get to play Ringmaster for 8 glorious weeks of the workshop I created with Teesha Moore. (You can join us here)

mc logo 3mc logo 4Seriously.

Too. Much. Awesome.



What a woman!

I currently have no power in my house. After a big storm front hit, the whole area is out. This is bad timing because I have been researching one of my favourite artists for the past week and I am Super inspired to get filming my part of the Studying Under the Masters workshop!  I had a fair bit of Frida knowledge already, but I am discovering new elements of her and her artwork all the time. What a woman! What an artist!

Workshops---350x100px-Rect-fridaClick here to register now.

I have quite a few workshops all being prepared at the moment. There’s a lot of artwork going on! They are all at different stages of production. They each have a different feel. But they all have that essential element of me. And I’m pleased with that, because that brings me closer to the character and essence of ‘my’ Frida Kahlo than any amount of hero worship and research will. I can stand firmly in my creativity and still stretch and grow, but not lose sight of what I love. It shines through in all I do.

So I need the ‘flippin power back on so I can get filming my painting process for the class! I want to paint Frida. I want to tackle a self portrait… take a breath Jane!

This is some of the info about my part of ‘Studying under the Masters’ .

(Early Bird pricing finishes on Sept 1st)

The artist I have chosen is Frida Kahlo.

As a person Frida inspires and fascinates me. But I feel she has so much in store for me as Artist, and what better way to feel closer to this amazing person than as her ‘Apprentice’?

Frida pics-jane-2

Frida Kahlo was a Mexican painter who created arresting self portraits. I first discovered her for myself  when Madonna started collecting her paintings. She was the first female painter I had ever really heard of. Her life seemed full of calamity and physical difficulty, but she lived a unique life with passion, colour and created whenever she could.

Her work is confronting. It is not traditionally beautiful. But it speaks to me. Her use of colour and nature and ways of incorporating herself in her own work are something I would like to try. I think it will be a liberating experience, and I hope you will join me as we discover more about Frida Kahlo together!

Frida pics-jane-6

I adore and am so fascinated with her that I am going on a pilgrimage to her house in Mexico City next year. A long held dream is to stand in the spaces she moved through. To see where she painted. I bet the air feels different there.

For those that have followed my Blog for a while, you know that I even named one of the koalas that visited my garden after her ( Frida Koahlo). The Selma Hayek movie of Frida Kahlo’s life is a good starting point if you wanted to discover a little more about  her. It is called simply ‘Frida’.

Frida pics-jane-42

More info about the workshop is here:

‘Studying Under The Masters Registration’ open now!
Regular registration price: $62

Click here to register now.

After you have paid from this link please go to and register on the site where the course is held.  Once you have registered and your account is approved you will be added to the course before the class begins on September 30. Thank you.  }

Workshops---350x100px-Rect-fridaClick here to register now.