PROFILE

Heather or Zulu as she is known to many…
achieved her dream when she was accepted into art school, this was the true beginning for this young girl who dreamed of being an ‘artist’. After graduating she worked as a graphic designer and a few years later she set up her own graphic design studio.

Throughout the years Heather was still driven with the need to create her own images just for herself, not meeting other’s desires or commercial application. So she continued to paint, design and create anything that she needed or spirited her mind and hands.

Zulu works with flat graphic images and uses a beautiful French acrylic paint that retains it’s magnificent rich pigments. She paints her images in a form of layers and chooses to forget perspective. Heather sees life as patterns and rhythms of colour and shape. She has taken this style into tapestry and also now onto fabrics. Heather’s work is about looking at things differently.

Heather continues to study, is a regular participant at life drawing and a valued painter with the now well know and regarded group ‘Artback’. Heather also performs with tribal bellydance troupe Womanjah and her textile work can be seen on YouTube go to belly dance costumes – Carma Cohuna.

Heather, although semi-retired and now living at Cape Paterson, is still busy doing corporate and product naming and branding, exhibition & staging design and producing AGMs for a select group of long time clients, but her main focas is now on solo exhibitions, costume and textile design, and print works.

Art is embedded in me, like a tattoo on my soul – Zulu

The years in Graphic Design
Heather is an Honours Graduate of Swinburne University. Opening up her own small graphic design studio in 1973 led to the development of Towns & Co.

This studio prospered and won many large projects that had a major impact on corporate design in Australia. The company underwent a change in structure, and with Heather leading a team of designers, the studio was re-established as Value Added Design (VAD) in 1990.

Over the ensuing years much of Heather’s work won a variety of awards. VAD consistently won recognition with gold, silver and bronze in annual report design, corporate communication, packaging and exhibition design. Heather’s approach to business has been straight to the point and she has always believed in totally transparent reporting. This approach made her a valuable part of any Corporate team in many of Australia’s blue chip companies.

A natural flow in the design business was for VAD to progress from logo design to branding. The need to develop a culture of thought rather than just a ‘mark’ became one of Heather’s favourite directions. An area where she could get her teeth into the deeper ideals and ambitions of a company and really shake out what was required to provide an appropriate and effective brand for her client.

Since the late 80s Heather has taken on speaking engagements, addressing various professional and educational groups discussing design and its application. She was one of the inaugural members and on the board of the Australian Graphic Design Association during it’s inception and continued as an active member of AGDA. Heather was on the judging panel for the Southern Cross Packaging Awards for several years and then served as head judge for three years. She was a committee member of the Society of Business Communicators for four years.

She continues to apply her design and branding talents across many disciplines, also working in exhibition, display, conceptual colour pallets and interiors for homes and commercial areas.

In 2013, Value Added Design Pty Ltd was incorporated into Carma Cohuna International Pty Ltd which has been in operation for 18 years. Carma Cohuna was, and still is, the trading name for all her paintings, textiles, prints, costume, exhibition and staging work.