Like most mixed-media artists, I'm a mildly obsessional collector of all sorts of bits and pieces and have spent a bit of time playing with different kinds of glue and resins and various ways of doing things. So this page is the result of my ferretting and fiddling. I have to warn you that I have a penchant for kitsch, so if that's not your speed, some of my tips may not suit you. My advice is to always keep your eyes open, no matter how unlikely the place you are in, and if you see something that makes you get all excited, get it now - it won't be there when you come back.
If you too collect 'stuff' for your art, I can heartily recommend this book:
Along with hints, tips and methodologies, the featured artists discuss their various obsessions and collections. It's great to find other artists that you can relate to.
The best places to get odd, weird stuff with a former life and a story to tell are, of course, 2nd hand shops and flea markets so look around your area. Most capital cities in Australia also have an outlet for used or excess industrial, scientific and commercial goods or waste. Some of the best ones are:
Try homeware and gift shops for glass containers, sphagnum, artificial vegetation and other interesting bits:
House and Garden Stores
Tarlo and Graham (also in Vic, but will ship to you).
Insect Designs (an online shop for preserved insects: great range, reasonable prices)
Woolloongabba Antique Centre, 22 Wellington Road, Woolloongabba, (Cnr Nile St)
9amfree, are a China based ebay store who stock a great range of hobby and craft stuff. I bought some great doll's eyes from there recently. Postage is fast!
Amazon Books (if you're not in America, remember to make the most of current exchange rates)
Fishpond (Free shipping Australia Wide for orders over $50)
Emporium Books (Based in Australia, able to supply more unusual books)
Better World Books (Benefits the disadvantaged and world literacy)
Oxford Art (Art supplies as well as books)
Folio Books (Only $9.00 postage Australia Wide)
Scrapbooking and Stuff Like That:
Red Lead Paper Works (based in USA, but have a really good online shop)
Vintage Crafts, 128 Long Rd, Tamborine Mountain
Over the Rainbow, sell polymer clay, beads etc. This shop is very up to date with improvements in technology and new products. Highly recommended.