Art for Christmas. Gold Coast, Lennox Head

Disclosure:  This post contains “affiliate links.” This means that if you click on a link and purchase an item, we will receive an affiliate commission/payment.  Links will open in a new tab or window.

Today, we feature three offerings from the RedBubble shop of Gold Coast artist and photographer, Virginia McGowan.

Gold Coast Broadwater, Queensland, Australia.”  Is it a photo or a painting?

There are many photos of the Gold Coast skyline, but I haven’t seen any others that are quite as unique as this view.  It’s the Gold Coast, but not as you usually see it.

I was immediately struck by this image when I first saw it, and looked carefully to see if it was a photo or a fine painting.

Then I doubled checked which product category Virginia had placed it in.  Turns out, it is a photograph.

I think this one is perfect for anyone looking for a Gold Coast image that’s not “typical”, but is still immediately recognisable as “the Gold Coast”, especially if you’re looking for a nautical theme and/or Gold Coast skyline.

I just love the subtle hues.  And I can imagine this image as a large or extra large feature wall art piece in the main entertaining area, especially if it’s in a GC high rise with views looking out over the Broadwater or the ocean.

In Virginia’s RedBubble shop wall art range, you can get it as a poster, canvas print, photographic print, art print, framed print or metal print.

It’s also available in a range of apparel including T-shirts, hoodies, leggings, mini skirt and sweatshirt, as well as computer cases & skins, and home decor – although I’m not sure that it works as a wall tapestry or duvet cover.

And you can get it as a tote bag and stationery items.

Virginia also has two other photographs I’m taken with.

Paperbark trees, Lennox Heads NSW

This photograph also gets a double take, and asks that “is it a photo or is it a painting?” question.

It’s almost impressionist in its composition and colours, and would make a fine pairing with “Broadwater Gold Coast misty day”, if you’re looking for local region framed prints to group together.

This beautiful image is available in the full range of products from Virginia’s shop.

And the third offering, “Sunrise this Morning 4.15am Nerang Qld.”

While it’s not distinctly identifiable as being of a particular place, it is an image that captures the mood of the Gold Coast hinterland for anyone who lives here.

If you’ve ever been up early enough (or getting back home from a great night out!) to see a Gold Coast sunrise, the vivid colours captured in this image are sure to evoke the memories.

This image is available in a limited wall art range only.

The three images together as framed prints, would also be suitable as a group feature collection.

Order today (Monday December 10th, 2018), and get delivery by the 18th of December.

Did you like this post?  Please let us know in comments.  And be sure to also check out our very first art recommendation last Saturday,  featuring Guntis Jansons Melbourne streetscenes.

See also other personally curated picks from our “Big Volcano Art Shop”.  We’ve looked for local artists and sought out other art with local themes, including Byron Bay and Tweed Heads.

In case you missed it. Disclosure:  This post contains “affiliate links.” This means that if you click on a link and purchase an item, we will receive an affiliate commission/payment.  (Links will open in a new tab or window.)


Villages of the Big Volcano

Northern Rivers, Gold Coast Hinterland and Scenic Rim


Chillingham General Store, photo © Big Volcano Tourism

Many rural villages in the Northern Rivers are experiencing a revival in popularity, as young families and retirees decide to “treechange”, and move from the cities to the more relaxed atmosphere that seems to epitomise “the country”.

As a result of the agricultural, farming and logging pioneer past, you’ll find a general store, usually with an Australia Post agency attached, and a garage or petrol station, which usually doubles as the local NRMA or RACQ (motorists association) depot, in most of the villages throughout the region.

In larger hamlets and villages there’s almost always a pub with a restaurant or bistro, which often also provides comfortable but basic accommodation.

Previously empty shops laying long vacant due to changing demands and the “drift to the city”, are being reopened as cafes, arts & craft outlets, and other boutique services, while country markets are springing up in far flung villages, giving local residents a chance to get together more often, and visitors to have a day trip opportunity to a more rural location.


Tyalgum street sign, photo © Big Volcano Tourism

Cafes offer menus with dishes using ingredients grown on-site, and farm restaurants hidden away in the hinterland, invite guests to experience a “paddock to plate” dining experience.

Local guest houses, B&Bs, homestay and farm stay accommodation provide an ideal location for those who really want to get away from it all, especially the never-ending demands of mobile phones.

Mobile reception can be patchy, and some villages may be in “black spots”, so it’s a wonderful chance enjoy a self imposed “digital detox”.

Many village destinations are popular for weekend getaways, especially the Gold Coast hinterland and Mount Tamborine in Queensland, and Uki near Mount Warning / Wollumbin, in New South Wales.

Beachside villages are usually more developed than their rural counterparts, with a wider range of shopping and professional services available,  including banking and medical services.

Beachside villages are also very popular with families during the QLD and NSW school holidays, with many caravan and holiday parks, and holiday apartments displying “no vacancy” throughout the holidays.

Check out the Big Volcano Visitor Guide – Volcano Villages for an index to the beachside and rural villages of the region, with more information, including accommodation options, local tours & attractions, and how to get there.

Villages include Bonalbo and Tabulum, Kunghur, Uki, Chillingham, Mount Tamborine, Pottsville Beach, Hastings Point and Cabarita, Tumbulgum, Tyalgum, and Woodenbong.

About Twin Towns, NSW-QLD border

Tweed Heads, NSW, 2485 and Coolangatta, QLD, 4225


Hangin’ ten at Coolangatta Beach, photo © Big Volcano Tourism

The Twin Towns can best be summed up by the three Esses: Sun, Sand, and Surf.

Located at the mouth of the Tweed River,  Tweed Heads in New South Wales, and Coolangatta in Queensland, share a main street that straddles the state border.

Some of the best sun bathing, swimming and surfing beaches in Australia are found here, with free barbeque and picnic facilities provided at adjacent beachside parks, by Tweed Shire and Gold Coast City councils.

Over the last decade, the area has re-established itself as a family resort destination, with modern luxury apartment and resort developments featuring sweeping ocean views, sitting alongside quaint single and two story Queenslander style lodgings converted to affordable backpacker hostels.

While the sporting clubs with their gambling and entertainment facilities cater to those who love the nightlife, the beach and ocean are still the primary natural attractions, with water based activities of all sorts easily accessible from here.

Fishing charters will take you on day trips “outside” for ocean fishing, or if your sea legs aren’t quite up to it, check out the local bird watching walks, with a number of accessible walks around the Tweed River and estuary.

Cook Island which is located just off the Fingal Head coast, is a popular diving and snorkelling spot, while Jack Evans Boat Harbour offers a safer “calm water” option, where you may even see the occasional dolphin or turtle swimming with the shoals of fishes.

Local institution – “Big Trev Watersports” has Stand Up Paddle, kayak and sailing equipment hire, and will include a lesson to get you started.


Into the Blue at Cook Island, photo © Tony Tunstall, with permission

Guided day tours to the hinterland and world heritage rainforests, are available.  And 45 minute drive to the north, the obligatory day trip to the Gold Coasts’ famous theme parks will thrill the kids.

And when you’re too pooped to make like a masterchef in the kitchen, there are more than enough cafes, restaurants and eateries to choose from, from a stroll along Marine Parade and Griffith Street.

It can truly be said that Tweed Heads and Coolangatta stand between civilisation and the wilderness.

Here you can enjoy a Gold Coast stay, indulging in the beaches and the nightclubs, the rainforests and the retail therapy, all in the same day if you’ve got the energy!

Check out the Big Volcano Visitor Guide – Tweed Heads / Coolangatta for more information, accommodation options, local tours & attractions, and how to get there.


Tweed Heads and Coolangatta, photo © Matthew Lewis Photography, with permission

About Byron Bay, NSW, 2481


Byron Bay surf style

Cape Byron and its famous lighthouse is as far east as you can walk in mainland Australia.

Your next step will see you swimming with the surfers 200 metres below, unless that is, you are indulging in a tandem hang gliding session!

The pinup poster child of the region, nonstop growth in tourism infrastructure has made it possible for Byron Bay accommodation and tour operators to provide “surf to rainforest” experiences to suit all budgets.

There are numerous types of lodgings to choose from including luxury resorts, luxury homes, family resorts, B&Bs, motels, hotels, backpacker hostels, guesthouses, holiday homes, and over a dozen caravan and camping parks.

Cafes, bistros and restaurants abound. The retail therapy is mind boggling, with many unique retail outlets supporting the artisans and crafts people of the district.

For shopaholics, a visit to the Byron Arts and Industrial Estate is a must, showcasing the creative, unique and stylish fashions, arts and crafts inspried by the natural environment.


Cape Byron State Conservation Area

Attractions include the popular Cape Byron State Conservation Area and Lighthouse precinct reserve on the headland, for a selfie at sunrise, and Julian Rocks Marine Reserve for scuba diving and snorkelling with dolphins and sharks.

The scenery here is awesome!  So are the waves.  But when you get water logged, sun burnt and bored with whales and dolphins, the cool shade of the “Big Scrub” remnant rainforests and nature reserves are waiting to be discovered.

Check out the Big Volcano Visitor Guide – Byron Bay for more information, accommodation options, local tours & attractions, and getting there.

Tweed Heads and Jack Evans Boat Harbour

A different aerial view of Tweed Heads and Jack Evans Boat Harbour.
A great photo, @Regran_ed with permission from @matthewlewis_photography – Tweed river inlet on the boarder of NSW & QLD from above on high tide has spectacular colours….

via Instagram

Birds-eye view in Brisbane.

Instagram repost @Regran_ed from @ameriaus – Exploring the Botanical Gardens at Mt Coot-tha from a different perspective… 🦅🌿✨ The tropical dome looks pretty fancy from above 💎
[…] regrann via Instagram