Friday, 16 December 2011

Note to Self!

I often make the mistake of feeling that the niggle inside me needs to be filled with a good dose of art~so off I go to the computer to have a nose at others' works of art. But I have come to realise that it is not necessarily that which is needed, neither is it the idea that I need to but the next art tool or book on the market. What I really need to do at those times, is get on and make my own art!!

I forget so often that I just need to make an outlet for all the creativity inside me that I so easily forget about in the daily routine of life and three kids (as lush as they may be, of course!!). I just need to get on with it, because 9 times out of 10 it's just what the doctor ordered and I feel so much better for it!

So, note to self~ remind myself to look at my own blog entry of 16th december and just get on and get creative!!!


Tuesday, 6 December 2011

'Junior' Commission

A friend asked me to do a name canvas recently for her nephew, as a Christmas present. I have not done one before but it was good to stretch the old brain and think of how to incorporate the little lad's name on a canvas painting.

I enjoyed creating something new and like the finished piece.

Have a great week.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

It's finally arrived!!!

I have been waiting with baited breath (metaphorically speaking, of course!!) for my copy of Cloth Paper Scissors to arrive since the 1st November, and finally it arrived yesterday morning!

The reason I was being more impatient than normal waiting for the mag,
was that I wanted to find out if I really had made it into the magazine through being selected in a Reader's Challenge titled 'Home Sweet Home'.

And when I leafed through the pages yesterday morning I found it to be true~I had indeed made it as part of the mini house challenge! I know there were 6and a half pages of these little homes, but the more I tell folk about it being in print the more chuffed I get!! It's just such a boost to be chosen for one's art work! It's just amaziing to think that one's work is being viewed
in the artisitc community by people all over the place! Wow! Wow! Wow! (Did I say I was chuffed????!!!)
So here it is for those of you who can't get hold of the actual mag to take a peek!

Cool huh?
Have a great evening!

Monday, 14 November 2011

Sparkle 2011!

This weekend was quite a busy one for me. On Saturday it was our church's 5th 'Sparkle' Ladies Conference. As part of the planning team for the event, I had been meeting with the other members of the team over the past year to help organise the conference. I was the co~ordinator for the craft stalls which was something I had not done before so that was exciting in itself!

So it was finally upon us! We all brought our items to church on Friday evening to be set up ready for Saturday and it was really exciting unpacking all the beautiful crafts and artwork that folk had made, and we spent Friday evening setting out the display and rooms ready for the next morning. It looked so great all set out and arranged, and we were all relieved to see that
there was more than enough selection and variety for everyone's tastes.

The Craft Market was open in the breaks throughout the day in betwe
en some excellent speakers and seminars, and it worked really well. It was fab to see that everyone selling sold some of their work and that their hard work paid off. We had decided that 10% of our proceeds would be going to a Womens' Refuge in our town so it was great that we could support a charity as well.

Anyway! Enough of the waffle~here are some photos of our work. Please excuse the flash photography! It was just a bit too dark without it!

Caroline's Alli Balli Bees stall
Bex Parr's Jewellery stall
Kerry Phillip's Homeware and Bags stall
Angie Walsh art work
Lisa Simcox scarves, Ruth Stewart knitted toys, and various works
Deb Legge's Homeware and Jewellery stall
Rachel Rushton hand covered journals and diaries and Ruth Parr's homemade jams and marmalades.

I am really proud of how hard everyone worked to make it a fab part of a fab conference! Well done all! Same again next year??? :o)

Sunday, 13 November 2011

What a Treat!!!

Wow! Doesn't time just fly by so fast???!!! This post is long overdue!

A while ago my friend Rachel mentioned to me that she was going to do an art workshop taught by artist Sue Brown. I was excited for her but a teensy bit jealous as I love her work, e
specially her printed spoons! Anyway! After showing such enthusiasm for Sue and the course, Rachel made enquiries to see if I could also go too!!! It transpired that it was possible; all I had to do was find a very kind friend to look after the little man for me for the day! After looking into different possibilities, (thanks, Jo T,) another friend very kindly said she would look after him for the day, and Hubby managed to sort out me having the car and I was sorted!!!

I was so excited!!! So on the day, off the little one went to my friend's with his Buzz Lightyear backpack and Wellies in toe, and I dashed the kids to school and off I went!!
There were only 7 of us at the workshop,which was great for one to one a
ssistance if needed, and we started off looking at Sue's sketchbooks and she then showed us one of the techniques she uses a lot in her work: gum arabic printing. This involves taking a black and white photocoy image and using ink and gum arabic solution to transfer the image from its original state onto a surface as a print. The ink comes off the black part of the image and leaved residue on the white part. It was quite tricky at first as we had to make sure that the ink consistency was correct, and the image we chose wouldn't work if there was any grey in it, (it had to be black and white with nothing in between) but soon we were getting all sorts of images printed onto our paper and feeling very proud of ourselves!

Next on the agenda was Acrylic Transfer which involved transfering a photocopy of an image (coloured or black and white) onto a surface using white acrylic paint as the transferr
ing material. This was a much simpler process but still took a bit of practise to get good results, but it was fun to practise and play!
Sue also taught us an easy way to make patterns by printing with wallpaper, and also, (my favourite technique), Quink ink and Milton bleach! So we spent the afternoon playing with all the different techniques we had learnt and then at the end of the session Sue showed us how we could transform our patterns into a simple booklet.

I had an absolutely fabby day and it was great just to play around with different materials and have fun!

I decided not to transform my experimenting into a booklet but intend to make what I produced into something eventually!!!

So here is what I made:

Whole piece
Have a great evening!

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Butterfly Commission

A while ago I was asked to do a commission for a lady's daughter's birthday in November. She wanted a specific book to be used for the text and image, so once she forwarded it to me
I was able to get making!

The book was called 'Ingo' by Helen Drunmore and was about a mermaid adventure. I was quite intregued at the story as I read bits while turning the pages into butterflies, and loved the colour and patterns which turned from paper pages to butterfly wings in the central image.

I finished it today and hope that the lady's daughter is happy with the result! (Please excuse the poor attempt at a photo though! It really does not do it justice, honestly!)

Now onto finishing all my other work for the 'Sparkle' Ladies' Conference in two weeks time!!! EEk!

Have a great evening all!

Saturday, 22 October 2011

The Butterfly Party!

Well, in the calm after the storm, I thought I would take this opportunity to post my little girl's party photo on here while I remember!!! Can't believe she is 5 tomorrow!!!! Time has gone so fast!

Anyway! So, this year she wanted a butterfly party so I thought some crafts would be good as well as some butterfly themed party games. She had 9 guests and they all made butterfly antennae and butterfly face masks, as well as playing the obligatory pass the parcel and musical (butterfly) statues. They all enjoyed colouring and sticking their crafts and palying the games, and of course the party food! I never know how much to make for parties but there was plenty left over so everyone had enough it seems!

The only down side was that I forgot to take a photo of the cake BEFORE it was cut up!!! But I think from the photo you get the jist of what it looked like, and for once, it didn't tak
e too long to decorate which was a relief!

So all I have to do now is wrap up her pressies for her actual birthday tomorrow and decorate the 'birthday chair' with balloons as is our little custom and then we are done!!! Phew! Am glad it's half term next week!!

Have a great evening!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Busy! Busy! Busy!

Well, now autumn is upon us finally and the nights are drawing in....I don't feel like doing much other than snuggling down in front of the tv with the hubby!! BUT! I have lots of projects and things underway at the mo, so I am trying to do some work towards them during the day which is a novelty! Now my little cupcake is nearly full time at school it just leaces me and little boy blue to find things to do during the day and sometimes I just need a little 'me' time where I can get on and be arty while he is otherwise engaged for half an hour.

So first on the list to get finished is a littlebirthday book that my friend asked me to do for her sister's 50th birthday party in the October half term! Thankfully I have just finished it and I quite like the result! Hope she does too!

And here it is!

Well, now it's off to gymnastics for the little cupcake and then back for tea later!!

Have a great evening!

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Sparkle! Sparkle!

Just another sneaky peak at some more paintings for the 'Sparkle' Conference! Am getting so excited about it! Don't leave it too long to book your place, ladies, as spaces are limited! Go online to CCC Cheltenham Church website for more details!

Hope you are all having a happy day!

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Happy Happy Birthday!

It was my birthday on Friday and I had a lovely day! I received some gorgeous pressies and was even taken out to lunch by my hubby as he happened to be working from home that day so we made a quick escape into town in his lunchtime!

Just wanted to show you my lush pressies and gorgeous flowers:

So happy with the arty stash I received from hubby and kids! Can't wait to use them!! Already got ideas floating around! :o)

And I love the Gerberas!!!

And to top it all off I went out to the cinema with some friends in the evening!

So a great birthday indeed!

Well, hope everyone has had a good weekend. Looking forward to what lies ahead this week!

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Sew excited!!!

So, as you know, I finally got round to asking my friend to refresh my memory with my sewing machine again, recently. It had been sitting unused for years, until about a year ago when I asked another friend to show me how to work 'The Monster'. I then tried it out once and then back it went into its hiding place until very recently, when another friend inspired me to try again! So with her help I finially got the nack of how to set up all the thread etc and even how to put thread onto a bobbin! (a scary prospect to me I can tell you!) Anyway, to cut a long story short, this is the result!!!

I am really pleased with it for a first attempt!! Sure, the stitching is not straight in parts, and I have even got the wrong colour thread visible, but I am just so excited that I actually made something that works! I shall wear it with pride!

The other thing that made me really happy was the fact that I found some old fabric paint in my stash, which I don't think I have EVER used! (don't even know where I aquired it from!) I used that to try out my new clear flower stamp and some clear alphabet stamps which I got in the sale, and it just works so well on the canvas of the apron! I was over the moon!!! And hubby still laughs at me for being SO excited at the result! hee!

So, two birds killed with one stone! I am now not so scared of my sewing machine AND I have actually stamped with fabric paint and LOVE the effect! So I will be doing THAT again too!!

I also used the practise stamping I tried before stamping straight onto me apron, in my art journal. Simple yet effective!

So in the words of a recovering scaredy cat...just try it! You might like it!

Thursday, 11 August 2011

More experimenting

I have recently been paid for the work I did at our church on the two day workshop with school kids from schools in Gloucestershire, and while I am keen not to blow it all at once, I have bought a few new items this month.

I ordered some gelato gel pastels and a Clings clear stamp from the Donna Downey Online store in USA, and while the postage ended up being about the same price as the items I bought, I treated myself to buying from her store as she has some fabby stuff! (And incidentally, I LOVE the green tissue paper than the stuff was packed in! Nice touch I thought!)

I also bought some acetate shapes and some cute butterfly cut out shapes as well as some glazing medium to go over my paintings to seal in the colour. The only problem I have found with the glazing medium is that it smudges anything waterbased, like inks and the like so will have to work a way around that!

Anyway! So last night I experimented with the above and came up with this:

I am really happy with the colour and use of text as well as the inclusion of acetate and card shapes. I'm going to have to get more info on using the gelatos and will have to experiment more with the flower stamp, but for a first attempt I was very pleased!

Have a great rest of the day all!

Saturday, 6 August 2011

More paintings

Here's a sneaky peak at some of my paintings ready for the 'Sparkle' Ladies conference in November. Having them sitting on the radiator drying and then just sitting there has caused me to be rather sentimental over them! Is it weird to feel that one's paintings are kinda like children???

Ok, not literally, but I do seem to have a growing fondness for these lovelies!

I am really liking the effect of having the fabric flowers as a focal point. May well have to do more of those! And still am loving the birds!

I wonder how long I will remain on this type of theme! I am still really happy producing work like this, and I'm still learning as I go which keeps it from going stale so that's only a good thing I guess!

Well time to get tea ready! Have a great rest of the weekend!

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Summer holidays

We've been having a very relaxed summer holiday so far, with not much travelling about and mainly staying at home and doing home/local type things, like the redecorating of the little girl's bedroom, (which is almost finished), and teaching her to ride her bike without stabilizers. This has been mainly due to the fact that we have had a bout of sickness which has lasted about a week and half in order for those of us who were ill, to recoupereate! But today, we went swimming with some friends and the kids had a great time, and we are planning a few more outings a bit further afield over the next few weeks now that everyone is feeling better!

But since we have been at home a lot, the trampoline and garden have been our haven, but as has drawing! The two eldest spent a morning the other day decorating loads of the garden slate stones with felt tipped pens and they looked great! Just a shame that I didn't take a photo or two!

However, I did manage to take a photo of my eldest's drawings of me and the hubby! And even if I do say so myself, for an 8 year old, they are rather fab!!!

Brilliant aren't they?!!!

I have also been carrying on with the pieces I am working on for 'Sparkle', our church's ladies conference in November, and I have also started a project which I am really chuffed with involving my sewing machine...but I shall tell you more once I have finished it!!! Have also got ideas for something else along the same lines but that too will have to wait a while!

So many ideas and not enough hours in the day!!!!

Hope you are all having a great summer holiday and enjoying the sun!!!

Friday, 29 July 2011

On a roll.

I am really liking this mixed media approach to journalling and I want to keep going with it to see where it leads me! I love the fact that the book I am using to do my experiments in is becoming thicker and thicker and I have long been unable to shut it, and I am just wondering how much fuller it can get!!

Anyway! here are a two more entries: (one of which I did pretty much straight after my last entry, as you can see, it uses the same colours and materials. I just didn't want to waste the things that I had used on my first creation, so used it again! And I rather like it!)

And the other is also using up scraps of things that I have already used previously, and was just about to throw away. Instead I used them to experiment again and see what I could come up with. Happy with that too I'm glad to say!

I am thinking too about using some of my art books that I have in my little collection. I have bought a fair few of these books through my time but looking back I realise that I haven't actually ventured out further than just reading them and thinking "wouldn't that be lovely to use that technique" or "I wish I could do that!" But it is about time I actually started using some of those lush techniques that look so good in my books! So I am hoping to get freed up a bit and explore some more!

I am loving the steps on this journey at the mo!!!

Well, I think that's all for now.
Have a great weekend!

Friday, 15 July 2011

Wings inpiration.

Ooh! Oooh! I like!!!

After watching Donna Downey's 'Inspiration Wednesday ' this week (July 13th entry) I decided to have a play. And this is what I came up with! I am trying to push the boundaries in my artwork at the moment and want to try out new ideas and go further in my experimenting. I find this process quite daunting as I don't like to make mistakes but I know it is the only way I will grow in my work so I know I must just go for it!

And so far, thankfully, I am liking it!

Have a great weekend! It is painting the little girl's bedroom weekend in our house and I am very excited!!!

Bye for now!

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Journal page

Look at me! Two posts in a week! Wooo!

Just had the urge to do some more messing about in my journal. Something that doesn't take all evening but is just a quick experiment.

I like it!

Hope you do too! Simple and sweet!

Off out to the theatre later with hubby!


Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Judging a fish...

"Everyone is a genius. But judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree and it will live believing it is stupid." (Einstein)

Ok. So say I am a fish.

A fairly happy fish usually.

Swimming along in the water quite contentedly.

However, when I take a look at myself and realise that I can't climb a tree, or (for example) more likely I realise that my little home is not as tidy as it could be, then it feels as though I have been hit by a huge wave and I am sent reelling!

Fish analogy aside, I was just struck at how much emphasis I put on the little things in my life that are not 100% perfect, and I get bogged down by these minor imperfections and I forget all the things that are going well, or that I am getting right most of the time.

I tend to freak out when I realise I am not doing a certain action right and feel I am a complete failure and totally forget all the things in my life that I am moving on in and progressing in.

So, maybe it's time for this little fishy to realise that it's more important that I am carrying on my journey one step at a time and that I will get there, even if I can't climb a tree that well!

Well that's my rambling for tonight!

Thursday, 30 June 2011


Well, hubby was away last night so I took the opportunity to have an arty playtime once the kids were all in bed! I started by painting four canvases which I am preparing for our craft table at 'Sparkle'~our church's ladies' conference, in November. Once they were done, I decided to have a play in my art journal.

And here is the result!

Quite pleased with it myself!!!

Not bad for a bit of a messy fabric, paper and stuff doodle!!!

And now, time to stop playing and go and collect the little girl who has just been having her taster morning at BIG school!!! Eeek!

Bye for now.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

The house that I built

Just thought I would post this little house on the blog today as I am entering a readers' challenge in my most fave art/mixed media magazine that I subscribe to~Cloth, Paper, Scissors.

I was well pleased with myself for even attempting this challenge as I have never done one before and really enjoyed making my little house!! So even if it doesn't get selected to be put in the mag, it was a great experience just getting on and doing it!

It's good to step out and try new things!

Have a great evening all!