What’s on the Easel: 4

Here’s where it was four days ago

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Here’s where it is now

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I think it’s fair to say this piece has been influenced by current world events.

It’s not quite finished – but shouldn’t be too long now.

As always your comments, thoughts, questions and critiques are welcomed.

To finish, here’s Siddy giving you a wee flirt just in case your spirits need a little lift.

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Thanks for coming by today, I’m so glad that you did

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Time Spent in the Art Room…….

…..is never wasted.  I’ve been spending time in the art room.  I have somehow garnered a few new products to play with and they all need places to live.  I’ve also completed a bit of fine tuning in making sure my tools are to hand when required and therefore get used.  I’m sure we all have versions of what happens when our tools and embellishments are not easily accessed, no matter what our craft might be.

I’ve been taking to heart the need for crafters to use the things in their stashes.  Too often we are creatures who gather stuff.  And there is so much stuff to gather!   Stuff that is pretty, stuff that might be made pretty.  Stuff that is useful, stuff that might be useful one day.  Stuff we acquired simply because it is our favourite colour.  Stuff we got because it feels lovely when we stroke it.  Stuff we have bought and never use because we paid good money for it and when we use it it will be gone….  so it sits in a drawer or on a shelf forever.

If you are a maker of things I know you know what I mean!

So now, in my art room, there is a paper crafting supplies area, a bead making supplies area and a miscellaneous supplies area.  All fine tuned.

There is also an art supplies area, which tends to spread.  Paint of all kinds of viscosities and opacity and colours.  Pens that are oil based and permanent some for drawing, some for writing, some for first layers, some for later layers.  Pens that are water soluble and can be used like paint but aren’t permanent and require setting in some manner.  Crayons that are water soluble and can be used like paint.  Water colours that can be used like pens or pencils.  Pencils that are water soluble and can be used like water colours………  There is sketching paper, painting paper and card of varying weights.  There are painting boards, canvases and a selection of all of these things with works of varying degrees of completeness or hands-up-in-horror-lets-paint-over-this-abomination-fast facing the wall in disgrace.

There is so many supplies that should I churn out a masterpiece every day for the rest of my life there will still hardly be a dent made in the vast supplies my daughters lovingly refer to as their inheritance.

Despite all this, YD, (Youngest Daughter) the Official Photographer went to spend some days with her delightful older sister ED (Eldest Daughter) in Wellington.  Of course some time would be spent shopping so I gave her a wee list to investigate the availability of some papers I was interested in finding out if I could afford.

ED was working on one of the days so YD was dropped off in the centre of the city with the list and directions to Gordon Harris.  Gordon is one of the best and biggest art supply stores in the country, sadly not located in my part of it.  Not content with looking and acquiring knowledge of availability and pricing YD went nuts and purchased examples of paper in large, larger and largest sizings in varying weights and presses.  I have to admit to shedding a tear or two when I saw the haul of pure white cotton hot pressed 280 gsm  paper that, until now, has been something I can paint on only in my dreams.  There is also two sheets of A2 yupo paper.  Hallelujah!!  A2 is HUGE!!  Yupo is the incredibly pricey stuff that I buy from the UK  in tiny sheets and make the inky doodles on that adorn the note cards in my little shop.  (Here’s the post telling you all about it if you are interested or need a reminder.)

So when I conquer my fear of making a mess on any of these fantastic papers I’ll be painting up some kind of a storm I can tell you!

In the meantime, not prevaricating at all, I turned a sock dryer into a stencil hanger.  Here it is sporting half it’s intended load

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I’m not a hundred percent sure it’s placement is perfect as I’ve successfully blocked the wall clock and now the only way I know what the time is is when Siddy comes for his bi-hourly game of fetch or to remind me it is treat time.

Fetch

Here’s the long view of the room, in case you are interested

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To the right of the stencil hanger may be glimpsed the ‘Dangler of International Happiness’ which long term readers may recall from two or three years ago being something many of you contributed to and which I stand and rifle through from time to time while thinking of you all fondly.

After all the sorting and sighing was over, I finished a painting in my art journal.  Thinking of a particular friend going through hard times, I was inspired by a quote I stumbled upon via You Tube and another artist who had used it in her work.  I Googled to find the quotes author  and discovered another person doing good in the world whom I had never heard of before.  These are the people who should be hogging the headlines in my opinion, but we mostly never hear of them.

I threw all my new products and some old ones as well at this piece and completely over did it, but I learned a lot while experimenting and playing about.

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The quote is ‘Sometimes when you’re in a dark place you feel buried, when you’ve actually been planted.’  Christine Caine

Detail

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I am pleased with the tears.

And for all you pet lovers out there, an update.

Orlando has been a little less door-phobic since my last post  – I thought you might like to know, the attention directed towards his welfare seems to have lifted his spirits somewhat and I have been delighted to see my kitty return to almost his old self…….

Orlando June 17

He comes inside more readily, stays in longer and cuddles again just like he used to.  We thank you for all your kind thoughts and good wishes xo

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

A Woman Who Can – and Does!

My friend Laurie who blogs at Life on the Bike and Other Fab Things had a birthday recently.  It wasn’t one of those ‘significant’ events but still,  I felt it was time for me to celebrate this amazing woman.

I met her via another mutual friend, the delightful Boomedeadda who noted on her blog when Laurie had sustained horrific injuries when her bike was crashed into by a car.  It took pretty much two years for Laurie to rebuild her body and her life after this event – but one of the wonderful things that came out of the whole awful thing was that a lovely friendship built up and grew.   Laurie was one of the bloggers I flew to the US to meet up with two years ago.

Let me tell you just a little about this woman and why her painting looks as it does. Laurie is a full time, sought after Nurse Practitioner.  Her patients adore her and rely on her.   Her work is demanding, with long hours and high standards of professionalism to adhere to.  Despite this, being aware there is a dearth of women in politics in the US, two years ago Laurie ran for her State Legislature on the Democratic ticket, in an area that historically voted Republican and male.  She narrowly missed out on winning. (She now actively supports the latest, male, candidate in his bid.)

An active member of her local community over many years Laurie’s dedication and pride in her town and the surrounding areas was palpable when I visited.   She takes an active part in the ‘Ride of Silence’ every year.  A thoughtful and touching tribute to those who have lost their lives in cycling accidents and a punchy reminder to everyone else of how quickly these events happen, how devastating they are for family and friends and how often these avoidable accidents occur.

Despite her active civic and political life Laurie has a huge circle of friends, a busy ‘things to do’ schedule that leaves me gasping for breath and needing a cup of tea and a wee lie down just hearing about AND a big red truck and a big red motor bike – a Harley Davidson no less.

This tiny, feisty, beautiful brunette drives or rides about with her camera and takes fabulous photos wherever she goes.  And then, when she has a moment she blogs about her rides, drives, trips and adventures.   She is positive, upbeat, cute, funny, capable, energetic and motivated – she’s pretty jolly amazing really!

Laurie makes a difference –  She works hard, knows how to play and enjoy herself and cares about her community, her family, her many friends and her country.

And this is what I wanted to hint at in her painting – she’s a Woman Who Can – and she does!!

If you haven’t met her yet, pop on over and say hello, tell her I sent you if you like – I know you’ll love her, just like  I do.

Laurie May 17 (C)

This is a mixed media painting on 300 gsm media paper, size A3.

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

The Mystery On the Easel Phase VI

It is done – and what a marathon!  I have to thank you, my dearly beloved regular and loyal readers – or in this case, viewers – who came by with so many thoughts and guesses and questions and who inspired me to tweak a little here and adapt a little there until the final version appeared.

So here we go folks, for the last time let’s recap and see where it did end up

Phase 1

Phase1

Phase II

Phase 2

Phase III

Phase3

Phase IV

Phase4

Phase V

6 Phase 5

We Are All Made Of Stardust

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Detail pics

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10 Phase 6 detail2

I always knew it was going to be a dream catcher drifting in the wind.  I did not know until you interacted with me that it would become a dream catcher drifting through the cosmos, gathering stardust and starlight.  Carl Sagan’s words came to me as I began the final work on the many little galaxies and universes scattered about:

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.”
― Carl Sagan – Cosmos

And having mentioned Mr Sagan, how can we not end without going there, to his Pale Blue Dot

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

The Mystery On the Easel Phase V

Here we go folks, I just know you’re wondering where we are at with this. Here’s Phase V – I wasn’t happy for the longest time with what happened and I forgot to take photos so you have this to go one with.  It’s nearly there …….

Phase 1

Phase1

Phase II

Phase 2

Phase III

Phase3

Phase IV

Phase4

Phase V

6 Phase 5

Can you see where it’s going now?

Maybe, perhaps, some of you might have a vague memory of this page from my art journal last year – this was the piece that inspired this latest experiment

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Phase VI, the final phase is almost ready to show.

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