There is heaps more to woodwork when you move away from pine! I agree with Dan about heading into Northern NSW, some great timber to found down there.
Around here my recommendations are: Hoop and Kauri pine are great stuff to learn on, buy them secondhand if need be and don't compare then with Pinus, like radiata and elliotti; Silky oak, which can be found locally; Spotted gum for when you need a frame, from Bunnies maybe... I love the stuff but have been told its not too stable; and when you need good sized slabs at a reasonable cost go for Camphor laurel, again you might come across it in the Courier classified on Saturdays. The more cut down the better! If you're only beginning and using hands planes only, maybe avoid these last two! They are better with machines and sanding.
Change is inevitable, growth is optional.