We are of the belief that there’s an artist inside all of us, just waiting to be let loose on the world. As it turns out, there are plenty of Gold Coasters who feel the same way and have actually done something about it.
If you’re keen to try your hand at life drawing, weave a little macramé magic or maybe learn a thing or two about the art of photography, you’re in luck. We’ve compiled a list of places on the Coast where you can try your hand at something creative. You might discover your inner Picasso or, at the very least, have a laugh-filled time giving it a go with the girls.
The HIVE Art Gallery
The newest creative space on the Coast can be found in Burleigh Heads and not only are they showing stunning pieces you can take home with you, but fun classes you can take part in. For example, Fresco painting of seashells, flowers and succulents and good times like Sips, Records and Fresco Painting so you can enjoy wine, listen to music and make some art.
Where: Shop 5/3 Park Avenue, Burleigh Heads
The beautiful building at the back of Currumbin is home to many an artistic endeavor and lately they’ve been hosting Life Drawing workshops for those keen to put pencil to paper and try their hand at capturing the human form. It’s two and a half hours of untutored drawing with a life model and live music, the perfect combo. The workshop is $25 and includes basic materials.
Where: 54 Currumbin Creek Road, Currumbin
The Craft Parlour
Found on the Gold Coast Highway in Palm Beach, The Craft Parlour is one of the most stunning spaces around AND home to more creative workshops than you can poke a knitting needle at. From watercolour painting to resin art, macramé and ceramics, you will certainly find a delightful way to spend some time. Prices vary and you also get to hang out amongst the greenery with some of the best local makers around.
Where: 27 Lemana Lane, Miami
Brush and Barrel
Painting a masterpiece while drinking wine is an idea we wish we had but we’re also happy to simply be involved. The clever kids at Brush and Barrel have it sorted with their Sip and Paint classes where, you guessed it, you get to drink all the wine while also attempting to paint a masterpiece. Last time they painted a cute little cactus. Fun. Classes are $60 and run for three hours. Also BYO.
Where: Shop 1, 3290 Surfers Paradise Boulevard, Surfers Paradise
Clean Beauty Market
Learn how to apply your makeup from the best in the biz, the gals at Clean Beauty Market. They are also a great way to discover natural products and makeup application techniques based on your skin type, needs and concerns. How good.
Where: 1/53 James Street, Burleigh Heads
The Sweet Fine Artist Studio
Another newish creative space on the Gold Coast, The Sweet Fine Artist Studio is many lovely things including a space for hire and home to many a creative workshop. Think Paint and Sip, Life Drawing and Make your own Ginger Beer style situations, it’s the perfect place for a mid-week burst of creativity or why not plan an event around one of their offerings? Hens party life drawing anyone? Always a good time.
Where: 2/3 Karen Avenue, Mermaid Beach
A bit of a newbie on the local ceramics scene, POT Studios was created by Cindy Hamrey, who simply wanted a space to create. Offering everything from a four week hand building course to Sunday Pottery workshops, you’re absolutely going to love learning from someone as knowledgeable as Cindy (and you’ll make something super pretty too). Suitable for beginners (yay). Prices vary.
Where: 30 Kaleena Street, Tugun
Andrew Thurtell is the man behind one of the Coast’s most successful photography businesses and lucky for us, he’s willing to teach anyone who’s interested the tricks of the trade. From beginners classes to travel photography and landscape to portraiture, there’s nothing you can’t learn about taking the perfect snap. Classes are usually around $195 per person and all you need to do is have a basic understanding of how a camera works.
Where: 45 Nerang Street, Southport
These guys have all your artistic needs covered with various styles of classes held all across the Coast. From Impressionist Landscapes to Floral Painting in Acrylic, you’re sure to find something that tickles your fancy. Classes are held in the loveliest of spaces, from The Borrowed Nursery to Burleigh Brewing and no doubt you’ll make a new friend or two amongst all the paint and good vibes. Classes are upwards of $49.50.
Where: Various Gold Coast locations
The Jewellery Studio
The little girl in all of us is begging to be taken along to a local jewellery making workshop and it’s about time we indulge her don’t you think? At The Jewellery Studio you get to make everything from jewelled rings to DIY wedding bands in silver or gold and absolutely wow yourself with your new skills while you’re at it. The workshops really are a beautiful thing to do and we highly recommend taking along a girlfriend or two.
Where: 5/26 James Street, Burleigh Heads
Everyone’s fave cultural centre, Home of the Arts (HOTA), of course has plenty of creative classes to take part in. From making your own comic with a local artist to even more life drawing, your inner muse is sure to be inspired. There are classes for both adults and kids and new ones added all the time so why not get the whole fam involved in something new and different. Keep up to date on what’s happening via their website.
Where: 135 Bundall Rd, Bundall
Words by Kirra Smith
If you’ve done any travelling overseas — or taken a casual stroll through the back lanes of Melbourne — you might have noticed a culture of street art and murals that simply leave you in awe. Not one to be far behind, the Gold Coast has been creating urban-based pieces of art at an impressive pace for the last several years, further confirming our slow burn and steady rise as a hub of culture in the land down under.
You may pass by these pieces without noticing them, or worse, not even know of their existence. And for the sake of the hard work and talent that has gone into them, we think that would be an utter travesty. And as our art scene is only going in one direction (up), we thought it fitting to give you the lowdown on the city’s most notable and impressive pieces of outside/mural art! (listed from north to south).
Water Walls Project — Hope Island
As part of an installation for the Commonwealth Games, Creative Road commissioned local favourite Kiel Tillman (and others) to create some street art on bare spots across the Coast as a legacy to the games, with exceptional results. This piece is an impressive bird painted on the side of an unassuming little building facing the road — therefore, it’s unlikely you’ll miss it.
Where: Oxenford Southport Road & Pendraat Parade, Hope Island
Abbott Park, Parkwood
The Gold Coast City Council commissioned local artist Fiona Hutchinson-Mackenzie to create a community art mural in Abbott Park. Unfortunately, the drive behind it was mostly to deter vandalism. However, good things can come from bad. The beautiful, brightly coloured piece depicts the Surfers Paradise skyline and a little basketball action to boot.
Where: Abbott Park, Parkwood
Golden Walls — Ichiban Lane + Davison Lane Southport
You may have ventured past these dreamlike alleys in the Southport CBD and wondered how on earth it’s possible to paint something so good. Well, get this, some of the work was completed in one day and completely improvised — yes, you read that correctly. The artists behind the alley art are world-renowned Brisbane artist SOFLES and Lachlan Hansen – an artist of 40/40 Creative on the Coast. If you’re in the area, we say treat your eyeballs to some clever artwork hinged on depicting Asian cultures within the community.
Where: Off Scarborough Street, and Davison Lane, Southport
Created by Melbourne-based artist Mike Makatron, the pieces were commissioned to brighten up the cultural precinct, and what a great job he did of it! When you go to check out the newly opened Gallery — as if that isn’t enough — be sure to seek out these two outbuildings. They are a feast for the eyes with so many colourful aspects that you can expect to lose some serious time gazing up at them.
Where: HOTA, 135 Bundall Road, Bundall
Mexicali, Nobby Beach
No doubt you’ve spied this pretty piece on your travels to Nobby Beach on a margarita fuelled odyssey of fun. Designed and painted by local legend Luke Day, the colourful creation has quickly become a favourite Instagram opportunity for, well, pretty much everyone with a phone. In enchanting hues of pink and blue, it’s so Gold Coast, it hurts!
Where:1/2223 Gold Coast Highway, Nobby Beach
AWOL Brewery, Burleigh Heads
The innovative crew behind Black Hops are right back at it again with their sister project, AWOL Brewery. With inventive work taking place inside, there was a call to ensure their space looked the goods inside and out. Kiel Tillman was naturally brought in to create some funky and unprecedented illustrative work — be sure to check it out, and don’t forget to grab a beer!
Where: AWOL, 4 Hibiscus Haven, Burleigh Heads
Tugun Fruit Market, Tugun
Does this man ever stop? He’s created countless cool projects over the years, but this one we feel is the jewel in the crown of Kiel Tillman’s talents. The Welcome to the Gold Coast mural painted onto the side of Tugun Super Market is nearly impossible to miss, and for those who have just touched down in the sunshine state: what an entrance!
Where: 499 Gold Coast Highway, Tugun
Feros Care “Grow Bold” Mural, Tugun
The story behind this huge 40m long wall will leave you speechless. The pop-art creation was enlisted by Feros Care and designed and painted by a young boy with autism, Jet, and his hero, renowned Bondi street artist Teazer. Before Jet met Teazer, he hadn’t left the house for more than 18 months. With the help of Teazer, Jet was able to work on something that empowered him to “Grow Bold.”
Where: Corner of Coolangatta Road and Boyd Street (adjacent to the Tugun Community Village Hall), Tugun
Southern Cross University, Bilinga
Involving over 50 litres of paint and taking over a month to create this incredible ten storey high artwork is quite an artistic achievement. Created by Guido van Helten, a Brisbane-raised artist, the piece depicts an ultra-realistic-looking man and a woman looking back toward the campus. Taking it in makes you wonder how somebody could paint something so realistic, while at the same time not being able to see the bigger picture (literally).
Where: Gold Coast Airport, Terminal Drive, Bilinga
The Pink Hotel, Coolangatta
The bracing sight of The Pink Hotel in Coolangatta is a somewhat (welcome) sensory overload by anyone’s standard. Like many, we were excited when the dilapidated corner building was given an entirely new lease of life nearly three years back. Part of that is the ever-changing mural wall on the north-facing side closet to the beach. The artwork has recently undergone a new design in conjunction with Stone & Wood and artist Jamie Peters (AKA @poongoat) – but keep your eyes peeled because it won’t take too long for it to change again!
Where: 171 Griffith Street, Coolangatta
Words by Alex Mitcheson.
Is there anything better than making pretty art with your very own hands with like-minded ladies in an absolutely stunning space with a cup of tea and some organic treats to nibble on?
Don’t think so. Did you know that is an exact time you can have at Gold Coast gem The Craft Parlour, which has indeed been around for a few good time packed years now, but has recently moved to a new home at Lemana Lane in Miami.
Which is perfect because, as you may have noticed, there is A LOT of incredible things happening on Lemana Lane (Hotel Miami, Granddad Jacks and Heartfill) in Miami and The Craft Parlour is right at home there.
In case you’ve never had the pleasure, The Craft Parlour is the work of one Rachael Valentine who, not coincidentally, is one of the most love-filled (and loved) lasses on the Coast.
So much so, that she wanted to create a place where creatives could share their passion and skills and in turn, inspire others to awaken theirs.
Built on the premise of creating a community, connection and stepping outside your comfort zone, the space has become one of the Coast’s most adored spots for everything from macramé workshops to pottery and paint and sip classes to paper making.
So all of the things you love.
But back to the space itself (sorry got carried away).
As you’d expect from a gal who encourages creativity for a living, The Craft Parlour is a naturally-lit wonderland of woven wall hangings, shelves packed with coloured yarn, abundant greenery, vintage rugs and timber flooring that all comes together as the 70s beach shack of your dreams. But also probably better than anything you or I could dream up.
It’s a labour of love by Rachel and her partner Seb, jam-packed with soul and a place you will absolutely never want to leave.
If there’s ever been a place to encourage your inner creative to come out and play, it’s this one.
So, if you’re interested in sewing yourself a new frock, painting a resin art piece for your wall or even hosting a baby shower or hens do in a perfectly put together space, look no further than The Craft Parlour.
You might find yourself a new hobby, a new gal pal or simply just some time to kick back and create something pretty.
We’re in love and we think you will be too.
Yeah the Gold Coast.
LOCATION: 27 Lemana Lane, Miami
HOURS: Various, depending on workshops
Words and photos by Kirra Smith