I did however use my time in Melbourne to pick up a couple of new toys, both of them art related. First is a new Wacom Intuos tablet. I found a 6x8 one being sold in an educational bundle, so it was only a bit more expensive than the Graphire version. I've only briefly tested it with my laptop, but it seems to be very nice.
Secondly, I've bought the academic version of Adobe's CS3 Web Premium pack, which I'm hoping will help my art considerably, even if it's just the purchase price that compels me to get my money's worth out of it. I'm really keen on playing around with Illustrator and Flash to see what they can do, and I think Flash will be a great tool to get my feet wet with basic animation, not to mention vector based games.
Unfortunately I'll have to wait a few days before actually trying out the Adobe software, as the store I was in didn't have the pack I wanted in stock until today; they called when I was just about to head back to Canberra. I'll have to wait until it's shipped up here first before I can use it. But I'm keen on trying it out, even if it does slow down my output for a while as I get to grips with the new software.