What’s on the Easel: 1

Less a mystery and more a what happens next – mainly so I can keep track of my progress……  And hopefully shorter than the last ‘Mystery on the Easel’ that so many of you loyally followed along with.  (Thank you 🙂  )

Here’s what we started with, from the last post.  It’s a big board for me 1200 x 900 mm.  My main thought whenever I look at it is ‘I hope I don’t muck this up!’

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After two coats of gesso and a bit of fiddling it looked like this.  Why I chose yellow and then mixed orange with white to make peach – I have no clue.  Terrible colour palette!  But I quite liked the way the lower half of the canvas looked ……

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I had no real idea where I might be going – except for the vague thought I might like to see if I could paint light …..

I threw a bit more paint around the following day but forgot to photograph it.

By the time I lay the brushes down today this had appeared

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Let’s see where we go from here – I’m not seeing much light yet and who knows what might happen next!  You old hands know that anything can ……..

Any thoughts?

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

 

365 Days – February

Two down – ten to go!  [And today is my first blogging birthday!!  Isn’t that cool.  I had forgotten all about it but the nice folks at WordPress left a note in my comments box.  🙂

Blink and you will have missed it – that’s February done and dusted and there weren’t that many lovely hot days at all……..

Here are the daily ‘snap-shots’ neatly divided up into weekly portions as this is the only month that allows neat freaks like me to arrange the full month into equally numbered piles of four:

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And now, because it’s my blog and I can – here are a few of my favourites:

Obviously feeling pretty good about Life, the Universe and Everything on this particular day.  Despite the fact that the face got smeared and looks like a clown, I like the movement in this one:

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I had a break-through with The Book:

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I like how this one turned out – I had time to play and no particular word for the day, so I just started doodling and kept going – the word ended up being ‘Doodles’  🙂

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And here I was celebrating the sighting of a beautiful skirt I had seen on Etsy that reminded me of days gone by when I was this slim and could dance like this:

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The theme of the month appears to be gifts – I was the recipient of so many wonderful handmade gifts from my bloggie friends and a couple that I gifted myself –  and dancing and skirts – which I did succumb to in the end – not the wildly expensive number I had eyed on Etsy, but another quieter, more mature version…………

Do you have a favourite?

Here’s the collection to date:

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Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!

Choose Joy

Today was a trying day for me.  My brother is very ill and in the final stages of cancer and for the past couple of days as I go about my daily doings, my thoughts are mostly with him.  For those of you who read the first installment of my memoir and know some of my history, he is the one I call the memory keeper and I hold him sacred in my heart.

And, more mundanely, despite the fact that the whole world and his dog believes we are in the middle of summer, it was cold and it had rained overnight.  The wind was howling and roaring over head in wild gusts.   I didn’t sleep well and got up at 4 am to finish the latest painting.

Five hours later the last flower was in place, the last leaf embellished and the mantra written.

I’m in love with this painting!  There is something quite magical about it and I am excited to share it.

So off I went to the photocopy shop with it.  I get my mixed media paintings scanned and prints can then be made for my Etsy Shop.  But today I was told “No!”

Whaddaya mean “No!” ??

Turns out that I have missed a vital piece of information and my painting is too big and too inflexible to be put through any of the copy machines.  If it is bigger than an A3, it has to be on paper to go through the flat bed scanner…. Don’t ask, I don’t know why, or how they work.  That appears to be the truth of the matter – I got the same answer in two different places so that is that.

No cards, no prints, no post-cards, no options, just the original.

Battling the cold howling wind and with no sleep to sustain me, I got a little tetchy with the world!

I came home and took some photographs, I propped her up in the corner and there she sits dancing happily urging me to ‘Choose Joy’.

Bah, Humbug! I said to her in my best Ebeneezer Scrooge voice.

I opened my email and ran my eye down the list, there was a post from the lovely Alys over at Gardening Nirvana.

I thought, that will be a nice wee visit to help cheer me up, and opened the link.  Imagine my surprise to see one of my paintings looking back at me – and then I read her words ….. You can follow the link to see what I read.

All my grouchiness vanished in the twinkling of an eye. Wouldn’t yours?  Who would elect to remain grouchy when it is so much more pleasant to feel that actually everything is just fine – it will all work out one way or another – it always does!

Thank you Alys for that beautiful testimonial – in one of those wonderful serendipitous moments that we both love so much, you turned the sun in my direction at the very time I needed it most .  That does indeed make you a true friend!

So here is the latest whimsy girl.  She is mixed media on a rigid canvas board measuring 35 x 46 cm. You can double click for an enlarged view.

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And here she is again propped up in  corner of the bookshelf

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The wind has died down the sky is clearing and we just might get our fifth fine day for January tomorrow 🙂

There are more options, tomorrow I shall call some printing places and see if they can help me out – there will be a solution!

Thanks for coming by today, you know that I love that you did!  🙂

365 Words – A Beginning

My personal challenge this year is to make a small art piece every day and to record a word or short phrase that encapsulates some aspect of each day.

I didn’t actually decide to do this until 3 or 4 days into the New Year, so I started on the back foot.  Which is a fairly typical place for me to start anything really.

I settled into work one afternoon and began by preparing a load of old defunct business cards.  I taped two together, then another two, then another two, until I had about a months worth of daily cards.

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I adhered some torn book pages to a few of the cards and then happily sploshed some paint around and got something happening colour-wise:

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Here is what I had produced at the end of the first seven days of January:

365Days1 3These are the second 7 days:

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I journal a bit more detail on the backs of the cards because I know that in six months time I will have no idea where my mojo had got to or why I was urging myself to ‘slow down’ ……..  And why am I surprised that it is virtually impossible for me to stick to one word every day?  If you’ve been tagging along for a while you will be well aware I am a woman of many words – how can I use just one or two words when sixteen or twenty give a more in depth and juicy image?  🙂

Here are a few individual days cards.  This first one refers to how I felt the day after I had remembered to take the long view and see just what had been achieved and how I had been blessed in 2013……

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Surely you know what this one refers to:

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This one celebrates the life and memory of someone very dear to me still:

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This was a happy day – the sun actually shone and we reveled in it – the next day it had gone again!

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This is the latest one.  One of my oldest friends blew into town  – [I’m god-mother to their youngest daughter]. He turns up three or four times a year and we sometimes miss each other as he never thinks to actually give me prior warning.  But this time it all worked out and he took me out for a meal.  We teased the Italian waiter for leaving Sardinia to come to a place that Summer had deserted, ate probably the best fettucine and calamari I have ever tasted, drank good Otago chardonnay and finished with real Italian dessert – I had Tiramisu which had a party in my mouth and he had Chocolate Torte….. We watched the waves thundering and crashing against the sea wall and had a wonderful three hour long conversation that served our souls well.

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So there we are – the first two weeks of January are gone already.  In retrospect I realise I spent it dealing with technology issues, pining for my lost summer and being saved by charming men!  🙂  Happy Dance!!

Thank you for coming by today, I’m so happy that you did  🙂

Smallest Things

It’s raining today – still warm, but wet and grey.  Typical spring weather really, yesterday I found I had a tinge of pink on my arms and shoulders after an hour sitting in the garden – medium rare 🙂

I’m been working on 180 gsm water colour paper – but from now on will move to 300 gsm – I don’t like the amount of buckle and curl on this lighter paper – you’ll see it in the photo.

It’s because of all the different mediums I’m playing with.

Acrylic paints, papers, stamps, pencils, pens and inks.

It makes for an interesting texture, there’s loads of ‘layers’ so the eye has a sense of depth.

As so often happens with me, I thought I was painting one thing and ended up painting something else – but I quite like her:

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The legend is a quote from AA Milne – it’s in one of the Winnie-the-Pooh books, but I can’t remember which one ‘Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart’

Painted on A4 paper, ready for framing – she is going into the shop today!  🙂

You will have noticed the watermark?  I’ve been warned that there are people out there who steal your work and pass it off as their own.  I knew this before, but didn’t think that anybody would bother to help themselves to mine – but apparently they have and so now I have to do this for anything I load onto my blog or pinterest .

On the up side – I am flattered that my work is considered good enough to steal.  Thank you for the compliment 🙂

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did 🙂