Creative ideas come "out of the wild" growing like yeast. Enjoy a meander around my creative pursuits - art printing with stamps, sketching, photography, baking, gardening...

28 November, 2012

WOYWW No.182. Christmas cards a-go-go

Good evening South-west Pacific. Good morning over the other side. Hope you're all doing well, desk-hoppers one and all. Yes, this is the weekly What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday which is a large of mob of people who connect over at Julia Dunnit's Stamping Ground and then share the current desk projects.

This week is not very enlightening in my studio as it's a continuation of last week with the assembly line of Christmas cards under way. It takes me roughly seven minutes to make each panel, and then there are all the added bits which I will show you during the week. In another life, I used to set up assembly lines for light packaging and assembly work for people re-training for work following a disability. Now the secret is out... Ha!

A bit of late afternoon sun on the desk.
On the left are the panels in three stages of completion, then selected Lyra colours and their palette, and selected Twinks and DIs. I use a Marvy Metallic pen for edging the matts, a white dabber for clouds (dabbed with built-in dabber called finger), and mini-mister with Perfect Pearls spritz. It's all go, at last!!!

Will show you the finished product mighty soon.
Happy desk hopping, and enjoy the week.

22 November, 2012

Storing Long Skinny Things

This post is a little side-step from an exchange with Shoshi during the week. Her show and tell post about storing rulers prompted me to mention my little set of drawers that are invaluable for long skinny things.

It is really a wooden cabinet set of three drawers designed to store paints or pastels of various kinds, however I find it so useful for things I want quickly whilst working, and then a place to put them rather all over the desk.

Of particular relevance to rulers firstly, is the bottom drawer which has no dividers so it accommodates 30cm/12 inch rulers easily. Longer than that, they are a problem for which Shoshi may just have the right solution. The link above will take you to her post.

You can see that this set of drawers also takes a stack of stuff on top. I'm planning to get another paper tray.
There are not only no dividers but this bottom drawer is slightly deeper than the next two. Here are bulky pens, a Fiskars knife, sundry rulers, set square, large erasers, texture hammer and so forth.

A shallower drawer which holds items in a single layer, and which is partitioned.
In this layer are punches, special pens for glue, Versamark, fine-liners, and various craft knives. There is also a mouldable eraser for pastels.

The top drawer is similar in size and layout to the second.
In this top drawer is a swag of tweezers which I use frequently, some of my more fine brushes, sundry poking and pricking tools, nibs and blades of different kinds, and my favourite tiny fussy-cutting scissors.

So there you have it. Hope this is of some interest to the desk hoppers.

Warm wishes,

21 November, 2012

WOYWW No 181. Christmas Cheer

Greeting friends and followers.

I hope you are well, content, and feeling creative. I'm looking forward to the usual round of desks and beg your indulgence if it takes me a few days. Tomorrow I'm off to Melbourne again for another workshop at Bellbird with a different instructor this time. That will divert me from my desk hopping somewhat but I'll around to as many as possible.

If you are curious, visit The Stamping Ground and find out more about What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday from Julia Dunnit there.

Here's a broad view of the general flurry happening at present. What about the cute ironing board.
I have been playing with wax paper and heat techniques, and also some new shrink plastic I found in a cheap and cheerful shop. It works very well - both the ironing board and the plastic.  ;-)   My stamps catalogue is open on the same table but otherwise you just have an overview of the Den!

Here is the intense muddle of too much on the go at once.
I have indeed got three things (or more) happening here. Encapsulated in the usual array of 'grab n use' items around the decreasing work area, on the left are the dummy runs for Christmas cards. Have I ever got to get a wriggle on!!!  Then sitting on top of a DI pad further to the right is some music, reduced and distressed  that I though might work as a background for another design. It's a version of an Australian bush Christmas song which is lovely words and music, but maybe next year. Then open in the centre is my ideas book where I'm recording some possible designs and techniques that I had on my phone. The phone is not my fave for taking photos as it's old and inconvenient but then I just want it to be a phone. So I'm recording and deleting and as a photographer, I'll take a camera any day.

Now here is the real Christmas Cheer! I went to the local grog shop to buy wines for the impending round of hospitality. Amongst the sparkling reds I found this bottle of shiraz bubbly which I couldn't resist. McLaren Vale is a good wine growing area in South Aus but of course, I thought immediately of you Elizabeth. You can see that we have this silly affection for chooks in this country - hope you can read the wine-maker's tongue-in-cheek description on the label. I'll report on the contents of the bottle in due course.

Quite the handsome chook. Hope the shiraz is as fine.
Sometimes the wine-makers do this silly stuff which I thing is the best fun. It's a great conversation point and the wine is usually great. Does anyone have other examples of fun wine labels?

Speaks for itself.

Enjoy your week remaining and the weekend.
Miles of smiles,

Poppies Running Riot

I wish I could move my art room into the bathroom. The view is so lovely, especially in the mornings as it faces east. Just look at this view. The tall trees in the background are eucalypts and are not on this property. They are part of our 'borrowed' view. The bit of the vista that demands my attention is the wheel barrow and the prunings stacked for the mulching machine.

So much colour, remembering that soon it will be drying off and the mulch will help keep some moisture in the soil.
 In amongst all this are the poppies, self-sown from last year and full of surprises that we didn't know we had. What a picture.
Here is a good selection in the early sunlight.
Here are the big reds! Interesting how the centres are black and lemon on the same plant.
Little California dreamers that come back each year. Love 'em.

And this gorgeous purple dish mop that has never appeared before.
Hope you enjoyed this little poppy show. Best wishes to my followers and callers. I do enjoy your comments very much. Thank you.

14 November, 2012

WOYWW No. 180 - a double dip.

Hello again dear WOYWW-ers. (I feel as though this silly acronym could be Warriors with a speech impediment.) Let me assure you that a silly acronym belies the serious and delirious enjoyment we People of the Desks have on Wednesdays. It's What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday, you see. If you're even half curious, then follow this link to Julia Dunnit's Stamping Ground to see where it all starts. Why, she's even been on the radio about this splendid delirium!!!

Thank you and welcome to my new followers. It's a pleasure to have you along and if I haven't already, I will certainly return the compliment.

I was absent last week to my regret, however am back again and looking forward to seeing as many desks as I can manage. On my desk this week is some preliminary design planning for my Christmas and New Year Greeting cards which will have a nautical theme. I have another idea as well that is musical but it's taking time to gel.

This is one of Michael Powell's shore thing stamps which seems quite celebratory with all the bunting.
The other thing on my desk today is my lovely art journal that I started in a workshop with Cathy at Bellbird Paperarts a little while ago. We did part 2 last weekend, adding three pages to which I have been putting the finishing touches today.

Various techniques here for background and the features. I particularly like the vellum butterfly wing.
The designs are Cathy's although she encourages us to make individual changes to the colour schemes for instance, or the placement of the elements. I love the butterfly which is stamped on 160 gsm vellum and coloured with Twinklings. It's then embossed with a ball tool on the back which bruises the vellum making it white. This makes the mica water colours so much more brilliant.

These workshops are such a great way to learn the nature of art materials and techniques and come away with some tools and materials that we have been able to try out. She also expects us to add our own pages between classes so we learn from a bit of  'show and tell' the next time. Great idea.

Enjoy the rest of the week and the weekend.
Miles of smiles,

01 November, 2012

Firestar - the Rose

Here is the name of the rose I photographed yesterday but could not tell you its name - Firestar. It honours the Country Fire Authority volunteers and staff in Victoria, who fought the fires on 7th February, 2009. So many lives were lost, homes destroyed and beautiful countryside razed. It was such an awful day that I will not forget in my life-time.

Firestar - beauty, fragrance and meaning.  This link will take you to the story of Firestar rose which might be of interest. Otherwise, just enjoy.

Miles of smiles,