This time last year I met with fellow Melbourne artist, Ted McKinlay. He had with him a large manilla folder of all types of different paper. On each of these pieces of paper were these extraordinary sketches - some quick, frantic snapshots, others more refined and finished. Drawn with ink, black pen, red pen, blue pen. As solo pieces or a combination of ideas scribbled on a lined piece of paper. This series was Ted's ode to the city and the people living in it. On each page was a story to tell. Ted could recall where he had drawn it, what was going on around him and why it captured his imagination.
As I looked through piece after piece after piece, I kept exclaiming "Ted, we need to put these on t shirts!!!". So the collaboration between High Tees and Ted McKinlay began.
Despite having to collaborate mainly via facetime and texts, we were able to pick out some fabulous designs and get them on our High Tees tees. When we could catch up in person, it was always a flurry of sketches and ideas, laughter and lots of inspiration.
I must admit, one of my most favourite days in High Tees was going to Myer with Ted and seeing our T shirts stocked in the menswear department. It was so exciting and lovely to share this moment with someone else.
And so this got me thinking... how can I bring in more artists into High Tees? How can I create something that is supportive, helpful and meaningful? How can I have more of these amazing moments? And ultimately how can I build High Tees?
So I have spent the past 6 months planning, strategising, creating, writing, rewriting, building and have a program that I am so excited to get going.
Now is the time to open the doors at High Tees and invite 4 amazing emerging artist into the halls.
Before we start talking about all the opportunities this program holds, right now I want to say a big THANK YOU to Ted for sparking the idea in the first place, for having an endless energy and verve for the practice of art, for trusting me with his art.