Friday, 8 May 2015

Fabric manipulation

I have been doing a workshop with Alysn Midgelow-Marsden in fabric manipulation.

We have worked with metal shims, natural materieals, paper and man-made materials such as organza which we have altered using heat guns and soldering irons, Bonding, layering, stitching, gilding, embellishing.

Sometimes several of the above techniques have been used together.

This piece was made with silk paper we made in one class and leaves made with two layers of organza bonded together and cut and marked with a soldering iron.

The silk paper is three layers of silk fibres with the middle layer at right angles to the others and glued together. I embedded thread and feathers in this.

The leaves I was making for another piece but decided they would be nice by themselves. then I saw the silk paper piece and the colours went well together so I married the two up.

I have also done a horse painting but I think there is still some work to be done on this with the colours on the horse.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

currently I am

So. Now I am retired.

Do i get more done? No. Procrastination is not the best tool for getting started.

However, I am finally getting into action.

I have joined a life drawing group. First workshop today.
I have joined a writing group and that is going well.

I will be setting up a separate web page for my paintings under my name. I'll see how I go with writing as to whether I create a separate web page for that.

I also spend time gardening - very much a fair-weather pastime - going to the gym, doing a craft class with fabric manipulation - that is so much fun.

And of course spending time with friends when we can get together.

I will be going to an Outlander gathering in May. That will be interesting. I was talked into it (she didn't have to try very hard!) by my friend Caren.

Off to find my drawing pad and gather pencils, charcoal etc. ready for the life drawing group.

Friday, 8 June 2012

15 Habits of Great Writers - day 2


2nd day is to believe. And here below is what Jeff said
"The challenge

How do we turn something like belief into action? We don’t. Not yet, anyway. Instead, we marinate.
A wise man once said we are the sum of our conscious thoughts. In other words, we become what we fixate on".

So do just that: Take some time to dwell on the fact that you are a writer. Meditate on it; let it sink in. Write about it, if you want. Do whatever it takes. The important part is you believe it.

And just so you don’t think this is all esoteric, you’re going to do something radical tomorrow. You’re going to get up two hours early and write. If you usually get up at seven, get up at five. If five, then three. You get the idea. Don’t check your email or read blogs. Just write.

This is how you know you really believe something. Thinking and talking and tweeting about writing is one thing; actually doing it is another. So today, believe it; tomorrow, do it. (Don’t worry; I’ll be up with you.)

Until this happens, until you actually believe you are a writer, you’re only kidding yourself. And you’re not doing anybody any good with all this self-doubt. You’re a writer. Not because I say so, but because you do. Start believing it."


I get up early tomorrow (yeah right) - lucky it's not a work day.

I'll let you know.

15 Habits of Great Writers - day 1

Well i've signed up to the 15 day challenge on writing. They're onto day 3 already. I found the site through my friend Darlene's link on her facebook page.

The first day is to delcare you are a writing. Very timely as I've started re-writing Frid and Mud. It needed a new beginning so I am one page into that.

Jeff Goins is the auther writing th ecahllenge - he can be found here -

Sunday, 3 June 2012

moleskine exchange

I'm part of a moley exchange. There are eight of us.

Using the accordian style Japanese moleskine journals we each do four pages.

Tha latest set of pages I've done is for Cathy's Undersea cave.

This spread was mainly using copic markers, ciao ones, that I've just bought some of. Tricky to blend them and they bleed through the page. Luck that in the exchange we only work on one side of the pages. Coloured pencil and other media does go over the top though and they do cover the page fast without having to clean brushes.

For this subject I did like the bubble effect when I used the colourless blender that lifted the colour rather than blending.

And Ive put my name down for another exchange starting September, even though we have three more spreads each to do in the current one.

And the theme I've chosen for the next exchange will be Nick Bantock. I admire his creativity, sense of design and whimsicality - is there such a word? There is now.
And his type of art fits weel with the fact that this exchange will not just be paint and drawing but can include mixed media.

This is a short video available on his web site.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Art Journal

I've been trying different things in my journal. Underpainting in orange
Underpainting in red.
Also have done the on-line Strathmore workshops again this year. Workshop One with Traci Bautista took me out of my comfort zone -"Whether you are a beginner or an experienced artist, you will enjoy a creative escape as you combine different media, color, texture, collage, doodling, lettering and more to create your own mixed media paintings. Play with paper in ways you never imagined!" Her blog - While her style is not mine, I learnt heaps about playing and not being scared to try something I hadn't thought to use before E.G. white out ink. The first one was not my style at all but using new techniques and following someone switches off the internal critic. I think it is the colour combination and some mess. I used a wooden cut out from the craft store as a template and then embellished, with tentative circles of whiteout ink.
The next I used leaves as templates. Then embellishing. Some parts I like better than others. It really gives ides for journalling backgrounds tho. However, often I found i liked the art and didn't want to journal over it :)..
One thing about the workshop, even tho online, is the interaction with others, seeing their work gives inspiration and ideas, not only for ideas but colour combinations. Here I used buttons as templates for the flowers, spraying on acryllic and water colour. I bought cheap plastic spray bottles for $2.
This spread was more of the same but using cardboard letters as templates. I liked the colours. On the left i used the wooden templates and then pressed them on the right hand page. The white is corrugated cardboard shapes used as a stamp/. I liked that effect.
Here I added to the trials of colour combinations and made further use of the corrugated cardboard.
Another thing used as template was embroidery canvas. I like the neat lines of squares and I also had buttons . Here I put the templates on an uncoloured page but you can colour it first like i did when I used the leaves as templates.

Sunday, 25 December 2011

intuitive portrait

Woter colours, Copic markers, ink, silver gel pen and coloured pencil.

I loved the cool yellowgreen next to the sky blue and ultramarine.

It is great playing this way with paint and shapes.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

intuitive portraits WIP 2

intuitive Portraits WIP1

Having fun with these intuitive portraits, ATC size so I thought i woudl post a WIP - work in progress.

You can see the intital step of a wash or too. Then adding more washes and putting in details. Sometimes I have the card propped up on my desk for some days before deciding what more needs to be added.

I enhance some areas with another wash, or pick out more detail with ink or water colour, keeping in mind balance and having light and dark

Thursday, 29 September 2011


I have been doing more ATC's with a bit of writing rather than any journalling.
Strathmore have recently announced 3 more journalling wroshops for 2012 and I have put my name down for all three. See their newsletter for details

The first two are 'intuitive portraits' ATC size.
For these, I wet the watercolor paper and put in washes of acrylics and water colors. Then the shapes are picked out with pen. Fun.

This one is part of a Klimt swap I participated in. And it was published in the Art Trader magazine, This is an on-line and downloadable magazine devoted mainly to mail art. A new one is published every 3 or 4 months and they are full of informative articles on art and ATC's

Blue woods is in Water colour

Spring Meadow is acryllic

Saturday, 14 May 2011


I used plastic food wrap for texture. You lay this on the paint, scrunch up a little and leave to dry. The wrap peels off easily but as I wasn't using liquid acryllic, but acryllic straight from the tube, it left the suface shiny. I liked the shapes but couldn't think what to do and how to journal on it so .....

Painted more transparent yellow on the LHS.
Put blue on the right - don't ask me why. I didn't like it so added some yellow to make green. Still yukky - so ....

LHS. A copy of a horse I did in another journal and paper behind.

RHS. After dulling the background with gesso coloured with transparent yellow, I drew a horse. It needed more so I put some green dots on with bubble wrap. Still not happy. Put dark green around the horse. It was only when I put red colour pencil over the green that it started to gel.
I found that having little scrap of coloured paper I could see what colours might work. I may still play with this a bit more.

Saturday, 30 April 2011

IFJM # 30 - last post for the challenge - see IFJM # 1 for details

Woohooo! I do believe Daddy Dearest has met his match! The Director received an order from DD and will not comply.

I could even smile at the gargoyles today.

Daddy Dearest arrives tomorrow - 1 May.

But I won't be here !!! Director is sendin me off on the Haldinger hunt
I'm Off !!
I won't be here tomorrow.

Friday, 29 April 2011

IFJM # 29

The ditsy doo-dahs can usually cheer me up but not today.
That Mondo couldn't stop himself from letting me know he messaged Daddy and he is on his way. He will want to throw his weight and money around to take me to a 'serious' job.

IFJM # 28

Wow. I'm so excited. The Director asked me if I would be interested in cataloguing and recording all the details of the animals he has.
Would I! There is a family board he has to check with first.

Not quite gnu, not really unicorns. This elegant creature is a quatroix.Off to research, starting with this one.

IFJM # 27

I Thought I was too harsh on Mondo yesterday but the accountant gave him a note from Dayy Dearest to pass on to me. Mondo had a smirk on his face as he handed it to me without a word. He's up to no good.

Thursday, 28 April 2011

IFJM # 26

Mondo was less than happy. Why do some people sour themselves with jealousy?

Weasel dog (lives in burrows) reminds me of Mondo come to think of it.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

IFJM # 25

Poured with rain last night but time for us to go back. Went past the large lizard enclosure - the Director's own gene-regeneration programme.

He was surprised by the colour variations.

IFJM # 24

There were large flocks of birds in the swamp lands. The Director knew where the fingers of hard land reached into them. This world is mostly low-lying and the zoo is looking to make more use of the land.

The director read my journal so now he knows. He also shared that his family owned the planet but asked me to keep that quiet.
PS. we found an ideal spot for tourist accomodation.

IFJM # 23

The Director's dog - yes he has a real dog. Not a man I thought would have a toy poodle.

Apparently she goes everywhere with him except the large animals' enclosures.

IFJM # 22

Mondo was sick and unable to drive. When I queried why he was needed the said They Director had wanted to go out to the swamp area to look at the viability of a wild-fowl area. He is an animal person - not at all mechanical. I sort of volunteered.

After a day's drive - the Director relaxing in the hut. I didn't realise we would be away overnight. I used some of Rondo's stuff that was in the 4WD.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

IFJM # 21

You've got to be impressed by elephants. I am.

This poor old elephant is near the end of her days and has arthritis.
They are trying to find a replacement but they are becoming quite rare. This one was too old for breeding even when they got her.

IFJM # 20

Rock dog from the same planet as the jitterbug a very stony worls. A pack animal. Some drive the prey to the others lying in wait among the rocks. Their armoured backs are necessary because the prey herd gtallops over the top of them . Hooves made for travelling on rocks are very tough.

Of course, in their pen they are fed already dead meat similar to the tigers and cheetahs.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

IFJM # 19

I had some explaining to do last night. I found the escaped haldinger for them but some **&%!!+* you can't please. In the end, all's well. They're still figuring out how to recapture him.

I said find an outside enclosure - like a canyon - and give him some company. He seemed happy with the herd of sprinboks.

These spots kept me occupied for a while.

IFJM # 18

Didn't get much sleep last night - much to-ing and fro-ing in the corridors. Before dawn I gave up and as it was my day off , grabbed some fruit from the kitchen and headed off for a good walk

Springboks getting their winter coats.
Uo-oh - haldinger hoof.

So - last night explained.
New Fact - haldingers like apples. We shared mine and he melted back into the bushes.

I crept back out of there before he decided this vegetarian was related to those human predators.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

IFJM # 17

Simpson's Blue - a real mistake with gene manipulation. These animals are untamable, viscious but oh so beautiful to watch galloping across their large meadow.

I'm lucky most of my work is morning and evenings so I have time to wander for an hour or two in the middle of the day.

Saturday, 16 April 2011

IFJM # 16

Raining. Had to copy from a large photo on the dining hall wall. Borrowed pencils.

Friday, 15 April 2011

IFJM #15

I got to thinking about haldingers. How come other animals that live in the same area are not annihilated by them?

Some of the animals are not very obliging when I am trying to paint them. My WC box was a great investment.

IFJM # 14