Peter Sparkman

Creative – Graphic Designer – Visual Artist – illustrator – painter – drawer – photographer.

Ballarat based. Visuals with a twist.
0424 874 598


2023 Certificate 3 Photography
Oxygen College Ballarat

2010-2011 ADGD – Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design
University of Ballarat (VIC)
2001 Photoshop 6 – 8 week course / Dreamweaver 4 – 8 week course
Casuarina Senior College – Adult Night classes (NT)
1987-1990 BAVA – Bachelor of Arts (Visual Arts)
University of Ballarat (VIC)
Double major: Drawing/Sculpture – minor: Printmaking

(This list is incomplete prior to 2010– I lost all records of past exhibitions and had to assemble this from memory)

2023 “Find Your Wings” LGBTQI+ Group Exhibition for the Daylesford ChillOut Festival – RADIUS Art, Hepburn, March 3-26, 2023

2019 ‘POPIX’ Ballarista Cafe – Lydiard St, Ballarat – November 16 – December 21, 2019

2018 ‘Reload’ ‘80’s Fed Uni Graduates exhibition – Post Office Gallery, Ballarat Dec 15 – Feb 2, 2019
2018 ‘BOAA Dark Group Projection Exhibition –St Andrew’s Kirk, Ballarat Sept 21- Nov 6th
2018 ‘Oblivious-International Tourism in the Modern Age’, Unicorn Lane Gallery, Ballarat Aug 31 – Sept 15
2018 ‘Cats in Art’ – Backspace Gallery, Ballarat Jul 5-22nd
2018 ‘Cover Versions 3’ – Unicorn Lane Gallery, Ballarat Feb 1-28th

2017 ‘Dog’s in Art’ Group Ex – Backspace Gallery, Ballarat Feb 2-26th

2016 ‘Cover Versions 2’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat March 18th – April 9th

2015 ‘Halloween Creep Show Group Ex’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat Oct 31st – Nov 5th
2015 ‘The Darling Buds of August’ solo Ex’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat Oct16th – Oct 30th
2015 ‘Body of Work’ Backspace Gallery, Alfred Deakin Place, Ballarat Oct 8th – Nov 1st
2015 ‘Cover Versions’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat Sept 18th – Oct 10th
2015 ‘Cosmic Terror’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat

2014 ‘Halloween Creep Show Group Exhibition’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat
2014 ‘Blacklight Retro Works Show’ Nerrina Tavern, Ballarat

2013 ‘Halloween Creep Show Group Exhibition’ Wolveschildren Artspace, Ballarat

2012 ‘City of Ideas’ Art Gallery of Ballarat Annex, Ballarat

2011 ‘UB Graduate Exhibition’ Mining Exchange, Ballarat

2010 ‘Gallery 806’ Small works exhibition, RU Advertising premises, Ballarat

2004 ‘Art of Pride’ Darwin Visual Arts Association, Darwin (won 1st Prize)

2003 ‘Art of Pride’ Darwin Visual Arts Association, Darwin (won 1st Prize)

2002 – 2005 ‘Drag Queens of Darwin’ Mississippi Queen Railcar Bar, Darwin

1995 ‘Flame Art – Event 2’ Grainery Lane Theatre, Ballarat
1992 – 1994 Artspost, Old Ballarat East Post Office, – ongoing, changing exhibition rental spaces
1992 ‘Blacklight’ Solo exhibition, Artspost, Old Ballarat East Post Office
1991 – 1992 Artist’s Gallery, Bridge Street Mall – ongoing, changing exhibition rental spaces
1987 – 1989 Various exhibitions at the University of Ballarat Art Faculty, Mt Helen and several at other Universities in relation to my drawing major
1983 ‘Begonia Festival Art Show’ Botanic Gardens, Lake Wendouree, Ballarat
1982 ‘Begonia Festival Art Show’ Botanic Gardens, Lake Wendouree, Ballarat
1981 ‘Year 12 end of year exhibition’ Ballarat East High School Hall

I was born and bred in Ballarat, Victoria & I come from a family of artists and received an ‘Outstanding’ for Art in year 12 at Ballarat High School. I studied theatre in my teen years, working with a ‘Theatre In Education’ team in Ballarat called “4’s Company” who later changed their name to ‘Barnstorm theatre”. Eventually I went on to study Fine Arts at Ballarat University, majoring in both Drawing & Sculpture, with a minor in Printmaking, thus equipping me with a well-rounded knowledge of visual arts spanning 3d to 2d.
After finishing at U.B., I ventured out on my own as a self-employed artist. I became part of the committee of a newly created and very extensive collective network of artists from around Ballarat & the Central Highlands, incorporated under the banner of ‘The Artist’s Gallery”.
Initially, we opened a major exhibition space in the old CBA bank in the Bridge St Mall, Ballarat in 1990. This space was designed in a way so that artists could rent exhibition space rather cheaply in a group exhibition environment that was in perpetual exhibition, with artist’s works changing on a monthly basis.
This proved such a success that we opened a second gallery in a space directly opposite the original one. The two spaces demonstrated an even greater need for more exhibition space, as approximately 150 artists were exhibiting at any one time.
We then secured the two storey Old Ballarat East Post Office, an excellent space that managed to accommodate all our needs in conjunction with the other 2 galleries. Eventually, we closed the other 2 galleries & concentrated on what had become “The Arts Post”. The mismanagement of the Incorporated Association by the President eventually resulted in my severing ties with the organisation, along with the majority of other artists, which allowed me to concentrate on other aspects of my art career.
I began to get commissions from the Ballarat City Council to document various aspects of Ballarat & to create a presentation for the deputy Prime Minister, who was visiting Ballarat in an arts funding related capacity. The Ballarat Fine Art Gallery also engaged me to record the opening of various exhibits & the restoration & re-sealing of the original Eureka flag into a high tech German vacuum frame to preserve it for the next hundred years.
I became involved in the acquisition & upgrade of an old Grainery in the heart of the city. Working in conjunction with various Council departments, we renovated the old building into a multi-function Visual & Performing Arts Space. Today it is a thriving success, with performances & exhibitions held constantly with a bar/lounge space on the street frontage.
At the same time, I also became the Public Officer for a new group of performing artists…”Flame Art Inc”. Our purpose was to engage the enthusiasm of teenage/young adult artists & get them involved in projects that were active through the darkest & coldest months of the year. This time of the year, May through to October historically demonstrated a large rise in the numbers of suicides in young people, which we wanted to address. Between us and the Community Arts Office, we created a new festival called: “The Ballarat Flame Festival”. This was a success for the two years we ran it, with people at risk making it through this depressing period of Ballarat’s weather.
Then, in 1996, I visited Darwin and ended up getting stuck there for 13 years. The Council took over the running of the Flame Festival & expanded on it, with the concept evolving into what was known as “The Ballarat Winter Arts Festival”. Then the council made it financially unviable and shut the whole thing down.
The climate in Darwin being what it is, plus the fact that I was poor, with no art supplies, meant that although I grew to know many artists, my favourite form of art, drawing, was not really a viable medium to work in. The Darwin Contemporary Art Scene was a rather small, closed community at that time, so it was rather difficult to develop a network and make any works for exhibition for quite some time.
Eventually I moved in with a friend who had a computer and my fascination with what you could do with one proved to be an outlet for my creativity. I began publishing a newsletter for the community group “Gay North” which was so successful that the community grew into a very active & vibrant one…communication is always the key…and the newsletter grew into a 44 page booklet; an exhausting project that took 60 hours a week of my time. Eventually, I had to move out of my residence & a friend took over the running of the newsletter in an evolved glossy form called: “GNT”. I concentrated on working to survive and building my knowledge of programs like Photoshop.
In 2002 I was asked by another group called “Darwin Pride” if I would consider building them a website for their upcoming festival, which I did designed/managed that site from 2002 until 2006.
I also held a solo exhibition beginning on June 13th 2002 inside ‘the Train’ (Mississippi Queen Restaurant & Railcar bar) during the Pride Festival that year, which stayed in place, becoming a perpetual exhibition which I added to over the years, with an emphasis during the annual Pride Festivals. The exhibition finally closed the night the Train closed its doors for the last time, on June 26th 2005, so my exhibition spanned over 3 years & 4 Pride Festivals.
At the end of 2003, the owners of throb nightclub asked me to build their website, based on what they’d seen of the Pride site. I still manage their site today. Early 2005, the owners of Resident magazine (who also run Throb) engaged me to build the marketing site for their magazine, which I maintain.
The Darwin Visual Arts Association contacted me to create their site (which has extensive galleries of images of exhibitions), I maintained that for the rest of 2005/begining 2006, until they engaged me to teach their administrator how to maintain the site. I created sites for both Powder NSW (hair stylists) & the Northern Territory AIDS and Hepatitis Council Inc. Both of these have their own webmasters now… In 2006 & 2007 I was engaged by Puffta media in Cairns to totally compile a a gay tourist guide for the Northern Territory and a separate one for Queensland. This included the entire layout of the books and the creation of the majority of ads for the businesses involved – everything Pre-Press.
Over the years I have had requests from various sources for my skills & have constantly created new images & designs, as one does as an artist. I found the Top End quite a different catalyst from my home town of Ballarat in Victoria & although I tended to miss drawing (I draw rather large pictures) I do get a lot of satisfaction out of what I can accomplish on the PC. The speed at which I can create an image is far greater than if I was simply drawing. Both have pros & cons though. I also enjoy seeing my images & photographs on buildings around town or in the paper or in magazines. After a decade living in the Top End, I felt privileged to be a part of a large & valued network of friends, associates & businesses.
I returned to live in Ballarat at the beginning of 2009 due to my mother’s demise. Hence I didn’t exhibit that year as I was re-establishing myself and my old networks in town. In 2010, I began studying the Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design at the Arts Academy TAFE in Ballarat – graduating at the end of 2001.
Since then I have been a freelance Artist/Graphic Designer (leaning towards Graphic Art, more than design).

I currently am contracted to the Arts & Culture Unit of the City of Ballarat to resource, collate, design the layout and produce the monthly ARTeFACT Newsletter – a 50 page resource of what’s been going on in Arts & Culture with the city of Ballarat and what is going on in the Ballarat Community and surrounds along the same lines, plus a huge resource of Callas, Awards & Prizes – Grants & Funding, etc. It is available to anyone via a link on the front page of the Arts Atlas. Just click on the purple ARTeFACt banner to go to the archives page and view or download the issue of your choice.

Computer Skills
• Fluent in both IBM & Mac Operating Systems – Snowleopard OX and Windows 7
• Adobe Creative Suite – InDesign – Illustrator – Photoshop – Dreamweaver – After Effects
• FTP upload programs
• Microsoft Office 2010

Creative - Graphic Designer - Visual Artist - illustrator - painter - drawer - photographer. Ballarat based. Visuals with a twist. Easy to talk to and work with. If engaging me as a designer, please supply me with all the correct info, files, etc I would require to realise your concept. As a visual artist I don't subscribe to any 'particular' style - I make the artwork the way it needs to be made. Mainly a drawer / digital 'graphic' artist & Photographer currently. (2023) My number's 0424874598.
Visuals with a twist...

Contact Details

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Phone number: 0424874598
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Membership of Organisations

Art Gallery of Ballarat
Ballarat Arts Alive
Ballarat Historical Society
National Gallery of Victoria
National Association for the Visual Arts