Request: If you recognise someone in one of the Convention sketches and I haven’t labelled them, would you please let me know? If you want to see more detail, clicking on a picture will take you through to its Flickr page, then you can click on “all sizes” above it.

On Wednesday last week I went to the Ekka (Brisbane Exhibition = Queensland Show = State Fair), and on Friday morning Aimee and I flew to Melbourne for Continuum 5 (had to get up incredibly early – I booked my tickets when I lived closer to the airport).

The loop train which runs to the exhibition grounds was a steam train! Also, I love the boat at top left – it is always moored near the city botanic gardens and looks like the wooden shoe from ‘Winkun, Blinkun & Nod’.

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They are redeveloping the RNA Showgrounds and this is the chairlift’s last year. I took it and it was a wonderful slow ride over the halls and the stalls and the rides.

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Sheepdogs are difficult to draw. If you blink, they are suddenly in the same pose but a different position.

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Lots of dogs! I almost lost my heart to a greyhound. The tiny little dog at the bottom right is from Pompeii. That is Aimee getting stuck into the icecream.

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The Pompeii exhibition at the Melbourne Museum had a number of the plaster casts. The most affecting part of the exhibition for me was looking at a display on the history of the archaeology, and seeing drawings of Victorian (era, not state) children looking at some of the same casts we had just seen. We also saw Phar Lap and the mechanical chicken, from Cole’s Book Arcade, which – according to the caption – “boasted 5 mechanical hens to enliven the shopping experience”. Cole seems to have been the Willy Wonka of bookstores.

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If you want to sketch fast, sketch fencers! These are mid-battle-between-airships. Chelsea Quinn Yarbro was the international guest of honour. Those backs at the bottom right belong to Marilyn Pride and Lewis Morley.

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Maskobalo! I am still twinging from dancing all night (except, obviously, for when I was sketching). I wore the dress I wore to the Regency banquet in Canberra a few years ago and will post photos when I track some down.

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Juggling. Too early. Too much chasing things across the floor. Lucy Sussex has edited a book of Australian travellers’ diaries which should be out later this year and sounds fascinating. Jack Dann set up the direction of the panel to allow Gillian Polack to lower the tone of the panel on history :) Later, Gillian, Aimee, Julia and I saw an exhibition of Regency dresses at the art gallery. Most were of their era, but Aimee swooned when Julia pointed out Colin Firth’s costume from the BBC P&P.

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Rachel Holkner was c0-chair of the convention. On Monday, Aimee went to see a Star Wars exhibition. I went to St Kilda by tram, then back to the city.

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There was a Dali exhibition at one of the galleries, but I didn’t go in. I looked at the collections and found the little Madonna Joan Lindsay wrote about her husband (who was director) acquiring under the Felton Bequest. There were some excellent exhibitions on at the State Library (also, a churros cafe nearby!) including Changing Faces of Victoria, where I saw Ned Kelly’s armour, and Independent Type which had an incredible array not only of Australian books and early editions and paintings of authors, but manuscripts: Peter Carey, Manning Clarke, Ned Kelly, dozens of others, and even one of the “original” Ern Malley poems with the telegram indicating it might be a hoax.

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