Saturday, July 13, 2019

My 9th Bloggiversary!

I think blogging for 9 years is a pretty amazing achievement💖 At my first bloggiversary I had done 120 posts and had 34 followers.
My Original Blog Header
This is post 1110 and I now get many more visits per post than that number of followers. I know many people have given up blogging for Facebook and Instagram which are a much quicker hit of art (and you can find me there too if you click on those links), but I've kept up my blog because it's more than just sharing a finished piece of art for me.
Blog Header 2016
I want to tell my story in the hope that I inspire others to be creative and find time for art in their lives; I want to share the inspiration I find in the form of excellent teachers, special workshops, and FREE online offerings; I want to help you discover fun new supplies and then where to purchase them; I want to engage with you via comments or emails; I want to share my love of all sorts of different kinds of creativity in my life.
I also want to capture my process so that I can look back and remember how I did something; to celebrate completing projects; 
to set myself challenges; to capture my journey both artistically and for self-growth; 
to be able to set goals and see how I'm making progress; to have a record of achievement when I feel like I'm not doing anything....
I've learned that we all have seasons of creativity, and sometimes you need a break, but sometimes what's needed is a look at what was happening last year to recognise how far you've come, or that this feeling of not wanting to do much is a regular response to this time of year. In short (which this isn't!) I am grateful to be here, in full colour, sharing my process and my thoughts about my creative life, and I'm especially grateful for your presence here as well. 

I am currently coming out of a time of low creativity for a variety of reasons. I love my monthly reviews as a chance to reflect and to plan ahead. I am now in the middle of school holidays and have been very grateful for the time to recover properly, and to have a chance to have a bit of tidy up as we look forward to the second half of the year. Here's a before and after photo from the beginning of the week
I am so lucky to have the space. Mine is very practical - I would rather art and organise my supplies than make it all really pretty. So while I do have pretty things around
my main focus this last few days has been to organise a few things. I've been very interested and inspired by Laly Mille's free 5-day email workshop of videos covering her favourite supplies. Find out more and sign up HERE.
Of course there was lots in there that I already knew, but she has such a lovely way of explaining things and as a result of watching her I've re-sorted all my pens/ pencils/ markers
as well as organised all my brushes by size and shape for paints
vs gesso and glues
and I feel like I can put my hands on things more practically than before

Today I've basted the quilt that's on my list for completion for the coming week 
and I'm planning my next move on this art journal page....
and after that - you just never know! For now, I am happy to be here, sharing my creativity with you and looking forward to seeing what the rest of July looks like. I hope you are inspired to continue on with me. I can't wait to see what's going to happen in the next 12 months.
 Talk soon 😊

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Face image transfers in your journal

Last month, I shared my samples in my journal from when I taught a class about transferring an image from your printer to your journal. Apply gel medium (I use 3D gloss super heavy Reeves) and adhere your image face down smoothing to make sure there are no bubbles. When dry, spray with a water bottle and rub the paper off gently leaving the ink transfer behind. The black and white image was a photocopy, and the colour from my home printer (Canon MX726). Both worked really well. Great free images available from Unsplash
I purposely demoed for the class in my journal so I had 2 pages begun. Now it's holidays I've had time to get back to them and I'm really thrilled with how the first one evolved....Simply started with black gesso, black posca pen and skin toned acrylic paint just to get the basic shapes in. I fancy doing something special in all that black hair. 
Once I did that blocking and it dried I realised that there was still quite a bit of pilling from the paper underneath - perhaps I should have done another wet and wipe. Anyway - covered with clear gesso and then proceeded. The rest is in photos only - click on any to see larger. 
Will share the other face next time.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Klimt lovers in the garden with Rumi

It's school holidays. Yay. I got a bit run down during the term and paid for it with a nasty flu that began a week ago. I couldn't even teach my class on Journal construction so you'll have to wait for the post on that until August. But I'm on the slow mend and I've started my holidays by making another art card inspired by Effy's A Year of Rumi online class. The last one you saw of this series was an Autumn card at the beginning of June, but I hadn't yet done the actual quotes from May or June so now it's finally school holidays I'm having to play a bit of catch up...I looked back at what I was doing in May for inspiration, and I began by teaching my Gelli plate printing class so an old gelli print became part of my gatherings. I knew I wanted to use the Klimt faces from the serviette I've already used on the box and for March, but this time I wanted to rearrange the position of the heads.  I also wanted to use that lovely heart that I made some time ago of polymer clay. 
Stitched the base paper, fabric, sari and decorative ribbon down. Then needed to make a decision about which way to orientate this with positioning of the serviette faces and quote
Then I remembered that I'm doing Klimt in the garden - need to add some floral...I just love this very Klimt fabric that I have in my stash.
This is where I got to by the end of day one - the green is very dark behind the faces and I didn't quite position them as I had originally thought but can work with this
Today I added my mix of machine and hand stitching, and the buttons. White posca pen to highlight her nose so not so green, and gold dots complete the card. 
Loving the repetition of elements which are working as an additional linking of this series together. These include hand stitched Xs, using metallic thread for machine stitching, quotes all printed in the same font/colour on recycled paper. All cards begin as a square of watercolour paper measuring 5 3/4" and become truly mixed media by the end. Click on any photo to see it larger.
Find out more about the "A Year with Rumi" class with Effy Wild HEREYou can also enjoy this class by joining Effy's Patreon account and paying monthly. Check out the labels below for more entries about my project.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

All of Me in June

I wasn't going to do a review of June cos I've been feeling a bit down about not making much completed art. And then I decided I'd gather as many photos as I could of things I've been involved with this month and it's a very happy list that has improved my perspective ♥  
My work life continues to bring new challenges and joys. I work at Carncot Independent school part-time as their librarian and part-time in administration, and get involved in other diverse ways as you will see. This month is my birthday month, and my friends and family know I love to extend birthday celebrations - it's just such a lovely excuse to catch up with the people that mean so much to me. Also my youngest son's birthday so he gets a weekend to celebrate ;-) 
This is a photo record of my busy month with lots of social interactions that make me happy. For you - a great month may be more time spent in solitude, in reading, in writing, in walking....What does a happy and inspiring month look like to you?
Began the month well with my Klimt in the Garden with Rumi : Autum art card Sunday 2nd June 
Monday 3rd - long weekend : quilt top completed and ironed ready for basting layers together. Didn't get the time to go further = on the list for my holiday jobs.
Gatherings made over weekend and beginning of week and taught art class on faces and image transfers on Wed 5th. 
Thursday was for gathering materials needed for Friday 7th Quilt Elective at school 
Saturday 9th : especially fun afternoon cos visited the craft market with my lovely Mum and 2 Aunties...and I bought some gorgeous earrings
Sunday we went for a river walk over the new He Ara Kotahi bridge - just down the road from where I live.

Tuesday 11th I helped out at the Carncot Year 8 speech competition in the evening - inspired to hear these talented students on the topic "If I could be....for a day"
Friday 14th was my birthday. Special treat to go to the Matariki Glow show at the Regent with Carncot's junior school
After school I got to celebrate my birthday at home with thoughtful gifts and my Mum to stay a couple of nights. That glorious embroidered pencil case at the bottom from Trade Aid may turn out to double as an evening purse. And we're going to WOW World of Wearable Art show in October - so excited!
Saturday 14th was further celebrations with all my lovely extended family that live close
and my brother has pre-ordered this for me : YAY - due out in August. 
Sunday 15th managed to complete this art journal spread!
Monday 16th - took my gelli journal to quilt house group and managed to begin a face
Tuesday 18th - supported Carncot students and videoed their performance in Te Pae Tamariki at the Regent.
Tuesday night - another birthday celebration with some special friends
They know me well and gave me such thoughtful gifts. The pen has the word "Shine" on it and the Wild Child scrub bar (
palm oil free, soy free, sls free) label description is very cool - click on any photo to see it larger.  
Also on the menu that night, my friend made this stunning Klimt heart cake 
and then I was preparing again for Friday's school quilt elective 
as well as purchasing presents and organising birthday celebrations over the weekend for my youngest who turned 15 on Sunday 23rd. 
And then it was back to me again! Tuesday 25th was afternoon tea with a dear friend and a sweet posy from her garden 
and Thursday 27th with 2 creative friends at a favourite cafe that serves delicious lemon and white chocolate slice. The stamps and butterflies will be appearing in my work soon I'm sure. 
That night I was VERY lucky to be able to spend birthday money at the Farmers sale and get some great 1/2 price bargains that have helped fill some gaps to warm up my winter wardrobe in style.
Friday night I was brewing a head cold - lucky for me that after an early night and beginning this last season, I got to finish it on Saturday when I had to spend the day on the couch - silver linings! 
And here we are at Sunday 30th June. I've done some gathering and notes for my class coming up on Wednesday night about journal construction. I'll be sharing ideas and links here on the blog after I've taught the class. 

I've enjoyed creating this blog post today. It has really made me realise that I'm doing lots in my life that I love, and it really was impossible for me to find more time to complete art this month. We all have different seasons of creativity and for me this month needed to be about being inspired by events and filling myself up with love and support from my people.

If you're new to this blog, you've had a peek at some of the things that bring me joy, and be assured the tide will turn back to more art in July because I've got the class above to teach on Wednesday night, and then 2 weeks of school holidays from Saturday 6th July. As well as the free inspirations I shared in my previous post, I'm also going to be spending my first weekend immersed in this FREE event
See you again soon.
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