Thursday, 25 February 2010

Getting there...

Here is my first finished pendant - made entirely by myself - painting, embroidery, beading, frame, necklace.  You might recognise this image from the Christmas cards I made, but this is a newly, specially painted polar bear for the piece. The back of the pendant is glass too, with the same blue, swirly background as on the front and more of the embroidery.  It is one and a half inches square, so I have a bit more area to play with than with the pendants posted previously.  It was quicker to make than I thought it would be which is great!  Am working on a couple more today, trying to see which images work and which ones don't.

Again, there is not enough daylight though, it is so grey and foggy here.  I really should invest in a good work lamp with daylight bulbs and stop moaning shouldn't I?  While there is still a bit of light left I will go, crank the music up (my lovely husband has just bought me the new Midlake album, been dying to hear it) make some coffee and get more work done. 

Friday, 19 February 2010

Help me I'm hungry

Just a quick post...  I finally got my act together and worked on one of the recent EDM challenges 'Draw something from your pet's point of view'.  Here is my quick watercolour sketch.....

This is the jar I keep my dog Scout's favourite biscuits in.  Here is the proof of how much she loves her biscuits....

Dogs! x

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Money don't grow on trees...

.... but I have been spending it this week, on materials and bits and pieces, as if it did!!  This week is seeing months worth of ideas and work come together in some designs I have made for pieces of jewellery I hope to begin selling sometime over the next few weeks (when I have my Paypal / bank account sorted :-)  ). I thought I'd post a couple of the pages from my design sketchbook here just to give you a feel for them and see what people think.

Firstly, here are a couple of necklaces I have already made using 'pre-fabricated' sterling silver pendants.  Each pendant is 1" square.  I will eventually have around a dozen of these to sell, each one will be different as the images are all hand drawn and painted individually.  I don't think I will buy any more of these pendants (lovely as they are) as I imported the pieces from the US and was hammered by customs!  I have made the bee necklace to keep and I think I am happier with the silk ribbon / clasp combination here than the one on the toadstool pendant.

I have come up with what I think is a much more interesting solution to make my own pendants for the the next designs..., these will also include a small amount of embroidery and beading (hope I'm not over-egging the pudding).  Hopefully I will have a couple of finished pendants to show you in the next week or so, the square ones will be 1 1/2" square and the rectangular ones will be 1" x 3".  Again, all the designs will be hand drawn / painted / made by me.  As you can see I will be concentrating mainly on 'flora and fauna' as subject matter.

Ignore the odd thing on the right!!  It's meant to be a fern pattern with an embroidery design running through it... it doesn't really work very well does it?  I might use the fern leaf idea for the reverse of some pendants but not sure yet.

There'll be a general 'otherworldly' fairytale quality to everything, I'm obsessed with fairytales, they definitely inspire some of the images.....  anyway, I do hope you like them!

Now I'm off to draw Scout's jar of doggy biscuits from her point of view - for the EDM I have been promising myself I would do all week!

Thursday, 11 February 2010

The best things in life are free...

... but art supplies are not unfortunately!  I have been very naughty today though and treated myself to a new batch of supplies, some new gouache and acrylic paints and various sundries.  I'm preparing for my week off next week, when I intend to spend lots of time sketching and painting - please don't let me get a mental block!!!  I will post images of my efforts here.  I am hoping (finally) to prepare some bits and pieces to sell too, hopefully as a means to at least try and pay for the materials I have bought!  I'm feeling very fired and inspired.

This has been helped by the re-discovery of an artist I had come across vaguely years ago and then, I am ashamed to say, had not thought about much.  However watching an obscure little art programme on TV last night, this man was featured and I totally fell in love with his work.  Not least because there are some beautiful images of The Peoples Republic of Yorkshire!  The artist is John Piper, I'm sure you will already know about him.  I have been researching his work on the internet all morning and love it.  Am very tempted to be extremely naughty and order a book I have found about him and his work.  I am offering a couple of images here which are from the website The Art of John Piper

Conisbrough, Yorkshire

Elgin, Scotland

I can't recommend the website highly enough, the work is just lovely.  I now have to visit Coventry Cathedral sometime as well because he worked on the design of the stained glass windows, when the new Cathedral was built after the original was destroyed in the Blitz.  The images of the windows look magnificent.

Don't you just love re-discovering artists and their work? 
Roll on next week! x

Sunday, 7 February 2010

You say it's your birthday

I have had such a busy few weeks (months) in my proper job I have hardly found time to produce any artwork.  Which has made me feel very sad.  It was my husband's birthday last weekend and I didn't even manage to get his birthday card finished on time!  I have worked on it all this weekend and when he gets back from walking the dog, I will present it to him!  I hope he likes it....

Each picture basically represents a band he loves - so he has to work out which bands they are!  He will, he's a music anorak, nothing will pass him by!  If he really likes it I'll frame it up for him.  I really enjoyed doing this.  Some of the images were more successful than others I think, but they were all universally fiddly to do as each square is around an inch and a half across.

The lack of recent artwork other than the above has made me have a look through some old images I have on the computer.  As this post is about Paul's birthday I thought I'd post this picture too.  A watercolour I did last summer (in daylight - when can we have proper daylight again???) - part of a series of studies I did trying to master painting snowy mountains.  We had visited Zermatt in Switzerland a couple of years previously and this picture was an effort to portray Paul with a dramatic mountainy backdrop.  Still not sure of the success of this piece, my sky wash is a bit weak, but I am quite fond of it because of the memory it evokes - so, here is Birthday Boy in the Alps!


Right, the light is disappearing on another weekend (where do they go?) so I'd better go and do something useful.  I have more time to myself again now, and from next weekend a week off the proper job - yey!!!  So, hopefully I'll find time to have a go at a couple of the EDM challenges I have been wanting to try - my fingers are itching to get cracking.....


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