Friday, 23 December 2011

Merry Christmas

To my dear online friends, 
Merry Christmas to you all,
with very best wishes,

(Recycled magazine tree thanks to Lesley's link to this site ) 

Sunday, 18 December 2011

The next project

Moving away from the cutlery theme for my sketchbook work I toured the house looking for inspiration and finally chose this Royal Crown Derby Little Owl paperweight, one of a collection Mr T has bought me over many years.  I love the rich colours and the shapes in the decoration so I thought I would use this as a theme for a series of pages.

After a couple of quick sketches and looking at the owl in detail - probably closer than I have looked before, even though I have owned him for many years -  I chose this particular feather pattern as the basis of my design. There is something reminiscent of '30s patterned paper about it.

My first project using 'magic expanding sponge' was to make a negative and positive print.  I used the feather shape and mixed up some acrylic paint to reflect the gold,  Imari red and cobalt blue.

This is the page so far with some colour wash - not sure where I will take it next, or just leave it as a pattern.
Meanwhile I have cut a small 'lino' print of a double feather.  Below are a proof print and a couple of rubbings taken from the block. The one on the right is gold oil pastel rubbing on brown paper with a colour wash which I am particularly pleased with.

Hopefully this little motif has a bit of mileage in it and I am already twitching to get out the needle felt.

And for all of you kind souls who asked about Marvin here he is...
"Look Ma! No dribbling"
Although I have to say his fur has looked better.

We had snow this morning, although it has all melted, it is now beginning to freeze hard.  Hope you are all keeping cosy and have a a good week.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

These things happen!

In my last post I showed you this collage I had started using the linings from recycled enveloped.  I was moving stuff around on my desk when I had a spillage accident.  I squeezed a sponge over the page - don't ask why - and it left a great blot of green watercolour wash over the spoon!  

I had already decided to add texture to the page using a Sharpie pen.  Rather than just make random marks I had decided to mimic the textures of the paper with different types of cross hatching, so I managed to squeeze some more green wash from the sponge and painted it across the two pages.  When it was dry I worked on it with pen and added the lino print which I had cut earlier using the lines on the paper used for the spoon as a pattern.

Carrying on with the black acrylic I added some texture with some different size sequin waste  as this mimicked the texture of the background paper, I then worked into it with colour pencils and oil pastels to add more depth.

The stencilling seemed to suggest another fork, so I emphasised that and added some extra colour to link it to previous pages in my book which have beed much warmer in shade , I also added  some stamped letters.

Afterwards I though perhaps I should have spelled out "mash it up" as that was more in keeping with the fork.

Before I go I want to say "hello" to Diane in Surrey and Barb in North Carolina who have both e mailed me this week about my page, although they don't Blog themselves. How lovely it is to get mails out of the blue.
Hope you're keeping warm and dry and have battened down the hatches for the gales.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Thursday up-date

I hope all you UK residents are holding on to your hats!  It is certainly blowing a hooley here and I know up north it is even worse. 
 I have managed to fit a bit of creativity in.  
Here are four gouash and indian ink resist pieces I have been experimenting with.  They look rather better here than in reality.  Linda Kemshall did a demo on DMTV which I don't subscribe to at the moment (Too many other things going on) but a quick google soon came up with a few explanations.
I have coloured them with my Koh-i-noor intense watercolour dyes.

It has also been back to the cutlery drawer for me.  On the left is a cut out inspired by Matisse and on the right a collage formed from cutlery shapes cut from the insides of envelopes.   I managed to make the cut out all in one piece - but I could do with a new blade in my craft knife.  Not sure how to develop the envelope collage so I took a couple of copies on the scanner.

Here is one of them which I have been working on with a black Sharpie pen. You can see the different textures from the envelopes better in this detail.
Not sure yet if this is the finish I want. Without any work the textures are rather too subtle.

Thank you for all the comments on my previous post,  I have managed to clock up 150 followers so I shall arrange a give-away, but not sure if if I will fit it in before Christmas.  On Saturday I shall be supporting the Artists Network Bedfordshire at the Dickensian Fayre at The Disovery Centre, Stockwood Park in Luton - although I'm not sure what times I shall be there. (No, we're not dressing up) So if you live in the area, please pop in.

Keep warm

Friday, 2 December 2011

No Longer November

No longer November...

Like many people, I find this is a very emotive time of year. Christmas is bearing down on us, and there is an overwhelming urge to prepare for the festival. However in my very small, grown-up family there is really not a lot to do.  I'm sure many of you will envy our quiet time. However somehow I still feel the pressure to get things done...

I am enjoying my sketchbook course. Here are another batch of pages.

The page above now shows the pickled onions in the jar  through the window cut out in the right hand page. I have tried to integrate the photographs into the background with mixed media and different techniques without getting over fussy.

Onion studies.

Here are another two pages using the idea of a cut out and integrating a photograph into the page - the bottle revealing the spotted paper above and the photograph below.

And here is my journal page for December - going for a frosty look, although we haven't had much of that so far this autumn.  The white writing is done with acrylic ink and a dip pen.  They are all December quotations.

Marvin the cat has recovered well from his dental treatment but now only has his canine teeth remaining.  He seems perfectly happy especially as he has to have his 'kitty bricks' soaked to soften them.  We are happy too (although a lot poorer).  Not only has he stopped slobbering over everything, he no longer greets us with his 'killer breath'.  I shall soon be able to remove the pieces of  fleece which  cover all his favourite sleeping spots.

The convalescent sleeps soundly.

Have a great weekend and see you soon