Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted in Archives

Summer Solstice 2015

Summer Solstice 2015

Cover-VIC-Summer-Solstice_15COVER ARTIST: Michelle Toohey 

Title: Forever Young

Medium: Acrylics on canvas


A lifetime dream has finally become a reality for me with the opening of my gallery/studio “Chelles Artworks” in Yorkeys Knob. After years of trying to find the perfect medium for my creative works I have found the brilliant colours of Acrylic paint and its immediacy has freed up my style allowing for a more fluid expression of painting. My style is based on using basic red, yellow and blue which has been an amazing way for me to explore colours outside of my comfort zone.

Originally from Greensbourgh, Victoria Chelle has since moved to Far North Queensland for the diverse beauty of the tropics, it is here that  Chelle is able to indulge in her love for colour.

With a wide range of art to choose from, you are sure to find that special piece that touches your soul. If you have a special look in mind for your décor, commission work is welcome you just need ask.


Friendship; the word alone sounds a bit ‘airy-fairy’. Friendship bracelets, 2-piece silver heart necklaces and pretty childhood things come to mind. Flashbacks to ring-a-ring-a-rosy, school buddies holding hands and sharing lunches in the court-yard follow.

Throughout early high school friendship was dictated by break-ups and make-ups, he-said she-said, and some of the funniest and life-shaping times in teenage-hood. ‘Mate’, ‘buddy’, ‘babe’, ‘Mum’, ‘Dad’, ‘brother’, ‘sister’… call it what you will. Whether nine or 90, friendship is a necessity one cannot go without.

For me, friendship has never shown such genuine worth until today. In fact friendship was responsible for one of the darkest moments of my late teens. Yet this gloomy tunnel of despair led to quite the opposite.

I’ll take you back to that chapter.

Throughout early high school I was a part of a big circle of friends, which some would call ‘the popular group’. It was a circle packed full of laughs, partying, boyfriends and break-ups, and plenty of back-stabbing: pretty normal for high school. Come Year 12, my happiness was drowned like a tsunami destroying a perfect day at the beach.

It started with a ‘little birdy’; the story of an implication I had been caught in. Without opening old-wounds that have since healed, I will say this – that implication found me in the wrong place at the wrong time. It was an implication that, like the birdy’s story, was true and something I wasn’t proud of.

It came to D-day of confessing to the friend I had hurt, following initial profuse denial. I knew this wasn’t good. But in that time I had my best-friends’ support ensuring me it would all blow over. I knew this time would be stormy for a few months but I thought the storm would pass soon and we could all forgive and move on. After-all, situations alike were not unheard of in female high school circles.

Friendship-day-2013-Wishes-Wallpapers-Images-Pictures-1But the following day at school was the beginning of my high-school hell. My confession had been twisted like a melted iron rod, and very soon my ‘friends’ were following suit. They were believing the stories or at least siding with the betrayed. “How can they think I would make up an embarrassing confession like this’.  “Are they actually believing this,” I racked my brain every day.

Now, when it should have been a prime time of my life, friendship was turning into the greatest test of my self-control.

Before I knew it my friends were dropping off. It got ugly. Rumours too good to be in a fiction book spread like wildfire. I was even brutally assaulted by a woman I barely knew, while my ‘friends’ stood by and watched.

I couldn’t go to school without leaving by lunch time in a mess with tears because I’d been taunted with accusations of something I didn’t do. But soon I was putting myself in every wrong position. I was making terrible choices and giving into the character I had originally despised to be. I was no longer innocent by a long shot. The word ‘friends’ soon became the bane of my existence. Something I no longer barely had; something I became so infuriated with that I wouldn’t even allow it, yet became deeply jealous of those who possessed it. Something that drove me into such a dark moment that I almost no longer wanted to live that moment any longer.

But dare I know it yet, this was the germination of a shrivelled seed about to sprout and grow into something of great magnificence. What would seem like friendship being the root of all evil, this shit-storm of a time was in fact the pure essence needed to enable this new seedling to flourish.

Here is how the seed grew:

The germination phase

My unimpressive amount of school absence meant my chances of going to university to study journalism were looking grim. But when Dad one day encouraged me to apply for an upcoming position for a cadetship at the local paper I couldn’t have been more driven. I was so adamant to get it that I had already checked out of school in my mind. I didn’t just want this job – I needed it. And off the back of this jumbled emotional state – it drove me all the way to landing the job. Something I wouldn’t have done without the recent circumstances.

The sprouting phase

 Save PlantFriends took on new meanings in this professional setting. I quickly found out what it was like to be immersed amongst like-minded people and the absence of high-school commotions – all at the fragile age of 17 going on 18. I was able to prematurely shed the old layer that most wouldn’t until a couple of years on. With the motivation of new friends around me, I was sprouting into a new individual. Of course working in the cut-throat world of media didn’t come without its own catty debacles. But all of it went part in parcel for the new shaping of me.

The plant phase

 Because of the position that friendship, or the lack-thereof, had put me in some years ago, I was now completing a 3-year cadetship at barely 21-years-old and gained skills that see my right through to today. This ‘bad’ friendship experience had paved the way to something good. It also left ample space for new friends to fill their place.

The pruning phase

 Of course life didn’t just become perfect and friends did not remain that way either. I still had many lessons to learn. So the leaves of the growing stem often died and grew back again. But every time they did, they grew a little stronger and greener.

The blossoming phase

Fast forward almost eight years to today, and that dark friendship experience is a time I praise with gratitude. A time I never used to be able to recite without streaming tears, is now a time I attribute to the reason why I have found the most genuine friendly souls that share in a new life that I was able to grow.

It is now, that friendship fulfils my life with abundance.

The art of friendship is not just a word to explain two people who hug, greet, trust and like or love one another. It is a life necessity that travels with us from birth to death, evoking life lessons with every interaction.

Friendship can challenge us to the core – like the best friend who turned into a condescending b-word, or the one who fabricated rumours behind your back. Friendship can comfort you in the darkest hour when your heart is broken, you lose a loved one, or when life is just “Really shit right now” – “It’s okay Babe; I’ll bring round the chocolate”. It can bring you gifts, opportunities, and life development. And most of all, it brings life abundant in a sense of wholeness, and the shaping of wisdom.

The lesson here in light of friendship is that the act of this meaning is a daily giving gift. Even when a friendship may come to a terrible end, it can always result in the opening of a completely new journey… if you let it.

By Jade Walker. Balanced health foodie and natural health enthusiast. Recipe writer and blogger at
Currently studying a Bachelor of Health Science in Naturopathy.