Friday, 25 July 2014

Well I have been looking at this clock blank for some months/years and wondering what to paint....... this glorious sunshine and my Ellis' Orange Apple Tree laddened to the max with gorgeous eating apples made me think of this design by Ritva Rasmussen.  Ive used it on a soap dispenser in my downstairs cloakroom and love it every time I look at it so decided to paint this.  I used the main design from her book and then adapted some of her separate apple branch designs to create the sweeping effect across the clock.  The apples were a delight to paint and I was loathe to paint anything else but they looked eerie floating without branches and leaves..........wish Id varied the size of the leaves a little more though!!  Leaves were done with a floating stroke work technique which is very effective if you remember to strike the central vein through the leaf before it dries!! which I did most times............  the grass was a doddle just a wash of Plantation Pine and flicks of undiluted PP.  The cute little apple fairy was a delight to paint and loved the way the branches showed through his wings.  I decided on how to paint on the numerals leaving just dots for the in between numbers rather than "Mug Out" the design with numbers and then I had a tussle putting on the hands!!  Thank goodness for my fav clock shop "Its About Time" in Killamarsh, they are full of old wind up clocks and restored my Mums old clock to look like new absolutely marvellous company would recommend to anybody.

Well its finished and now sitting in The Nichols Building Shalesmoor Sheffield with a price tag of £15 looking for a new home............... I do hope somebody nice buys it!!  It is as you have gathered a favourite piece

Saturday, 21 June 2014

A few commissions this week................

Well my friendly power washer guy, Lee has a lovely girlfriend Mandy who wanted a key cupboard, my hubby brought one home from the car boot sales so I painted this up using the sea sponge and diluted acrylic paints in 2 shades of green and a French Blue sky.  Mandy had seen the "Girl with the Flower"  painting Id completed and commented on how much she liked the white daisy so I decided to paint a cluster of those to start with............. then I thought about it and decided to paint a yellow butterfly to compliment the centres of the daisies.  Then I needed something on the sides and thought ladybird....... I know the red wasnt in tone with everything else but I love ladybirds and it was such a sunny day when I was painting I had to include one.  The other side I painted the cute little brown beetle which seems to have so much character and it was finished.

And the next project................ my sons girlfriend saw this cute little shelf with drawers and coat hooks on the bottom (missing in the photo I took them off to paint and varnish this)(PS they are now back on it)  She has seen some of my Ritva Rasmusson fairies before and I had a new book with Trolls and Fairies in it and she saw this cutie, its supposed to be on a wood cut out with a cane at the bottom to stick into your flowerpots or flower beds.  She loved the look of her but didnt want me to use red on the flowers so opted for pink.  I set to and really enjoyed doing this one even though I had to do the same image twice.  She says shes going to hang it at the bottom of the stairs.  At least its another piece out of my craft room and less for hubby to grumble about.................

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Clare's technique messed with by me..............

Well I loved Clare's workshop so much I couldnt leave the idea alone that I had/needed to paint another lady.............. I went through my stash of photos and images and finally found something to paint - "The Face" then I dragged out a canvas thats been stood against my wall for a couple of years and set to using the Multi Purpose Sealer from DecoArt................slathered it on then found an old book and pulled out the pages wincing at every page ........... I was brought up to not vandalise books etc so this was completely against the grain but had to be done.......... these were supposed to be soaked in water with some coffee round the edges to age them but they were so flimsey and aged anyway I missed this step out........... what a mistake the central page is the only one that didnt wrinkle and thats cause I kept reapplying the paint brush over and over to flatten it out with my hand underneath the canvas for leverage!!  Next time I will soak the pages (Oh yes there will be a next time I love this technique and look) and do what Clare said!!  I lay the pages onto the wet MPS and applied more and more MPS............ the canvas was awash with it by the time Id finished but at least I knew the pages wouldnt peel off.........they wouldnt dare!! tee hee

I then got a sheet of clear plastic and laid over "The Face" and carefully traced with a permanent black marker pen.  When the canvas was dry I traced using graphite paper and then outlined and started to enjoy my painting relaxing into the flow and watching the paint make magic.  When it came to the hair I wanted full lions main type hairstyle with curls, waves and spikes.  This was great fun and I had to restrain myself cause I could have filled the whole canvas and swamped The Face which would have been silly.  I checked with Clare and she gave me some pointers (I needed them!!) and then felt I could step back............... Silly me asked hubby what he thought and all I got was silence.........

There you go then....................

BADFA Convention - Clare Holmes technique

I went to the 20th Anniversary BADFA Convention at Crick, Rugby, Northants (31st May/1June 2014) and what a brilliant time I had, I made so many friends I was a little emotional coming away on my own in my perfect little car!  I took 3 workshops:  2 Saturday and one Sunday.  Saturday I started off from my house at 6am and arrived at 7.10am which was brilliant as the M1 is a nightmare at the best of times, I found the Ibis Hotel and parked up going into the lobby and waiting for the ladies to all start coming down for breakfast. My delight at seeing Gill Hobbs from Bude, Cornwall and enjoying a huge hug from her.  She was my first workshop of the day and we painted a little traditional piece which was fun to do then we had coffees and did some chatting and the like!!  Next was Clare Holmes workshop which was something completely different in the it fell into the category of Altered Art having first pasted book pages onto board for us to then trace and paint the little girl with a flower.  I adored this technique........... We all enjoyed her workshop immenseley and then went to settle down for the evening meal.  It was on 2 tables and we all had plenty of conversation and a fabulous meal together.  Then we went for the evening "Make & Take" which was Dian Harris putting out some crafting goodies, stamps etc and letting us run free with it.  She had kindly made a bag with the contents to make a concertina book and was brave enough to let us loose on her stencils, stamps etc.  Everybody made something different and unique and we all enjoyed ourselves so much.  The next day I did the Andy Skinner workshop which was an altered art journal.  This was very different from what we usually do and brought out the best in us all!!

Sorry about the lopsided images doesn't matter what I do I cant get my photos to stay up the right way around..........

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Key Cupboards for Joyce

I painted the first cabinet using Peggy Harriss' bee and butterfly designs from her book and the queen anne's lace and took the seperate elements and composed it all together.  She was so happy she asked me to paint another one for her daughter with a fairy sitting on a toadstool so I looked through my Ritva Rasmusson painting books and spied this cute little fairy sitting in some flowers so made her sit on a large mushroom and painted the ones as if she was surrounded in a fairy ring of mushrooms.  This was  a fun project and I used some mica paints to give a pearlescence to her clothes and wings.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Mum's 90th Birthday Cake - took me 2 weeks to make all these sugar flowers!!!! Was so worried as I was baking it hoping it would be perfect!!

Window Box card

This was sweet I copied this from another blogger as I wanted to try it out......... I think it was a Stampin Up designer as the punch I used for the flowers was one of theirs.  It was so sweet but the instructions were a big vague so I winged this one and used a stamp by Claritystamps for the leaf spray and a Martha Stewart edging punch for the butterflies (I kept the scraps but didnt used the edger on the card).  The next time I make this one I want to find my wood stamp to give the flower box some more realism.  The second attempt on this card I used the brick template to look like a wall at the back of the flower box which was fun.

Patchwork Stamps from Chocolate Baroque

The first attempt at this card was through looking at a member of the design teams from Chocolate Baroques and copy it with just the scant instructions that it was made with 2 6 x 6" card blands and that they were interweaved at the front.  Well I had a go as I love this set of stamps and the look of the distance between the layers.  I didnt have the die for cutting the fence at the front though so of course improvised and I used a Martha Stewart punch.  When Id completed it I was really satisfied but then remembered that Id bought a stencil that was brickwork so decided the the fence should change into a brick wall with trellis on the top.  This was fun to make but very labour intensive and I was frustrated as the greens were too dark and if they were lighter they seemed to turn blue.  I used a selection of Promarkers, Sharpies and Prismacolor pens the latter 2 being obtained fron the USA!!  God bless America cause the UK is rubbish at variety of markers apart from the really really expensive ones...........