A fruitful day

IMG_E9524

 

Or should I say a vegetable day?  my desire to keep painting seems strong at the moment.  Am I enjoying it, Yes, absolutely.   Am I pleased with the results, absolutely not !!  this is the perfectionist in me, its such a hard task master to have this running all the time.  Never ever feels good enough.  For years, nearly 30 years I have been an interior designer and its only been in last 2-3 years that I can say I am interior designer and not feel a fraud.  My creativity has taken many forms over the years, from drawing and watercolour sketches, to making things with my hands, cutting paper, clay work, collage, oil pastels, dry pastels, oil paint sticks but when it comes to painting, there is a lot of doubt that comes up.  Not Good Enough, is the foremost one and most times it hampers the start, so recently with the urge to pick up my paintbrushes, oil paint and so on and  keep painting is rather new to me.  Its normally paint one or two, dont like them and put paints away for a few months.

Painting is a great teacher, it brings up so much for me that I can now sit and watch and see exactly what is happening as it unfolds.  self doubt, conversations on size, whether to make it abstract or representational.  Then there is the conversation about the cost of oil paint these days, absolutely ridiculous prices and like everything else now we have these small artisan workshops making specialist paints that are even more costly.  One thing that has changed my painting though is Rosemary’s handmade brushes.  I had never heard of an Egbert brush before, but these together with large long flats are helping me obtain the brushstrokes that I desire.  To know they are handmade in Yorkshire make using them feel even better !

IMG_E9526

 

 

 

bowls, bangles and beads

Another day of experimenting…….  mod roc bandage as base of clay bowl, three new bangles, again with Mod Roc base, one now has a paper clay “wrap”, one has milliput and the other awaiting a decision !   Thanks Hilary for the heads up on MOD ROC !   The beads are, are discs and ovals cut out and  pierced, with the left over pieces hand rolled into beads.  I used Modena air dry cold porcelain, it’s very different from paper clay in that you can roll it quite thin, at first I wasn’t keen, didn’t like its bendy plastic rubbery texture, but have grown to quite like it.

I purchased Modena in white translucent, cobalt, red, yellow ochre and brown.  Mixing red with tiny bit of cobalt and white made a lovely violet colour, and added more white to each batch until they became a very pale lilac.  Then I mixed red with yellow ochre to make a terracotta, and again mixed each batch with equal part of white until it became a coral colour through to a  very pale pink.  Results strung onto recycled sari ribbon

IMG_6998

IMG_6993

I also tried out alcohol inks, Adirondack col “stream” and “bottle” . Only need a meer “smear” on the translucent clay and hey presto, a lovely affect, you can see the test piece on my book.  Love my new Moleskine, it has printed squares down the side of each page, so you put image, sample, fabric scraps and so on and room to write notes, Grand !!

 

 

Picked fresh today

IMG_5173

IMG_5168Borlotti beans, luscious sweet figs, yellow and green courgettes, fresh mint, yellow tomatoes

A tub of  hedgerow picked blackberries, swapped for some courgettes.

Have loads of chillies coming along, and my sweetpeas are in bud at last !!

PS , just realised the figs have ripened  almost 4 weeks earlier than last year !!

 

 

 

The trees are still talking to me

my creative journey continues, the forests of trees that hold such abundance.  Somethings calls me when I walk amongst the dancing leaves, the verdant lushness, their vitality and majestic power.

A dear friend posted this beautiful poem, I had forgotten just  how beautiful these words were, a poem I had ready many times a few years back, but had faded in the mists of time…………….

Sleeping in the Forest 

I thought the earth remembered me,
she took me back so tenderly,
arranging her dark skirts, her pockets
full of lichens and seeds.
I slept as never before, a stone on the river bed,
nothing between me and the white fire of the stars
but my thoughts, and they floated light as moths
among the branches of the perfect trees.
All night I heard the small kingdoms
breathing around me, the insects,
and the birds who do their work in the darkness.
All night I rose and fell, as if in water,
grappling with a luminous doom. By morning
I had vanished at least a dozen times
into something better.

the shoe journey

Another day of enforced resting !   a long while back I began a journey with my ancestors, I made shoes out of white paper and tissue paper that I printed with images of my grandmothers.  Its been a long time since I looked at them and have today spent sometime working with a pair I made with hydrangea petals, I wanted to bring them together in an image, and here it is.

Click on the shoe to see more paper made images

Ballet Russe

Thanks Mr Bowery, it was because of you I came across this image, I thought it was a costume of yours, but then I read it was in fact a costume for the Ballet Russe designed back in 1935 !

Leon Bakst drawings I have always admired, and recently when I watched the Chanel / Stravinsky story my interest in the Ballet Russe became more prominent in my life again. I find the colours so inspiring.   Diaghilev was a very clever man, he put together composers and artists the most avant-garde of their time, Braque, Stravinsky, Chanel, Picasso, Matisse and Nijinsky the famous dancer and produced the most inspiring and challenging ballets.  He was not at all afraid to break with convention and his passion paid off, however at his death it limped along but was never the same again.

The boldness, the colours, the loose shapes, ballet costumes had never been seen like this before.  I just love them, the colours sing out, I so would love to have been around to see their opening nights, especially THE RITES OF SPRING, apparently this caused a riot and they had to close down the theatre!!  It’s hard to believe that now, but here is a collection of some the hundreds of costumes that were designed and made especially for each ballet.

Could they be transformed into paper sculptures, could the colour combinations be transformed into my design work and paintings, somehow they will have an influence, my creative mind is like a sponge, its absorbs everything around me so that one day it will be expressed in some form again as I continue along this creative path