Monday, 31 August 2009

Thanks sis

My sister sent me this shopper she has made using one of my favourite photographs I took whilst visiting her on the Isle of White. She is extremely talented with her sewing machine and I am sure she should sell things she has made. The trouble is she is not very into selling herself and you do have to have a certain mindset to market yourself. Still I thought this was well worth showing off, I hope you think so too. She has some fabric that you can put into your printer and print directly rather than make a transfer.

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tiger lily and friend
Here is the original photograph from my flickr page.

Saturday, 29 August 2009

Can you have too many watering cans?

Here is my collection of watering cans. In fact I have found another one since I did this drawing.  The classic family along the bottom are for decoration only as they are either too heavy or a big wonky, but most of the others are in use.  However I still manage to fail in watering my plants. The idea is to keep a can near a plant but of course I am supposed to use them.  The plants that I do manage to water are my orchids that sit on the kitchen window sill. Watering them is easy as is usually means delaying using the sink!

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Corn cockle : Agrostemma githago

This little flower is growing in my garden. I sowed a cheap packet of mixed annuals and this was the only corn cockle to grow. I believe that once these grew wild in our corn fields, but the extensive use of herbicides put paid to them. They don't appear in all of my wild flower books, but as far as I can tell they are a native species. The flowers only seem to open in full sun, so several times I went out in the garden to photograph one, and none were open, but a sunny afternoon paid off. I cannot remember where I first saw one of these, but I instantly recognised it even though one hasn't grown in my garden for many years. The name has a real country feel and I would love to know its origin. I haven't done much research I must admit. I was pleased with the photograph which I took with the standard lens, hand held. As it was sunny I was able to have a fast shutter speed and small aperture which gave this lovely shallow depth of field making the flower really stand out against the background. I have been trying to record the flowers from my garden in water colour and want to try this, but I have a feeling I shall have to work quickly as I am sure it will close quickly if picked. I shall definitely be saving some seed for next year.
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Tuesday, 25 August 2009

In a pickle

We have had a really good crop of onions and shallots this year so Tod has been busy making pickles. In fact some of the shallots are too big to get in a jar, but hopefully we have enough to see us through the season and have some for Christmas gifts. My contribution to this process is printing out the labels and making a few critical tastings. They need to be in the vinegar for at least three months before the flavour has developed. He has also made several jars of pickled beetroot. I thought I'd record the process with photography and made this collage using picasa - there is something very attractive about the amber colour of the onions sitting in the vinegar.
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Sunday, 23 August 2009

Other things in my life

Now I am coming to the end of my second Open College of the Arts course I am thinking whether I want to start another one straight away. I feel I have gained a grounding in photography and perhaps can make my own way for a while. I also want to explore my other creative skills. The internet via flickr and blogs are a constant source of inspiration so at the moment I have many avenues to explore. I have started to keep an "Art Journal" which is really a sketch book-come-art diary, but with more completed works than a sketch book alone. There seem to be thousand of Art Journal keepers across the net. I have found it a great way to be able to experiment with ideas and by doing it in various books I am not left with umpteen pieces of art work to store. Also with a freestanding piece of work there is the question of whether it is worthy of framing and hanging whereas that never arises when it is in a book. Often in a journal the artwork is combined with words. some people use theirs as a diary to record their lives, others as a means of expressions. So I shall see, I haven't got to decide about OCA yet - just follow the flow.

Monday, 10 August 2009

Final Portfolio - Autumn

This group is probably my weakest as I did not go out enough last autumn and take seasonal photographa as I was concentrating on my other assignment - so this selection does not fit quite as well, but unless I wait another 4 months to finish this course, these will have to do!

Rather cliched autumn scene

Rather like this little thatched summerhouse in th local park

Sunset from the Clappers - managed to find one suitable shot from my collection that linked in with the other seasons.
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Final Porfolio - Summer

Making this selection is taking me so long. I am full of self-doubt. I must now just get on with it. I am not going for assessment so only my pride is hanging on this - no grades.

Summer beeches - love the light created by these majestic trees.

Waiting for harvest - this view from the Clappers could have been taken from a plane.

Storm clouds over Harlington - enough said about our summer!!
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