Sunday, December 28, 2008

What Happened to Today???

Ok what happened to today? Has anyone seen it? Has anyone taken it? Looks like I had a day off. I was intending to do some artwork but then I thought I would just watch a dvd that Bob got for Christmas and ended up watching the entire first season. I totally loved it when it was on tv but seemed to miss an episode here and there. Jekyll starring James Nesbitt is absolutely brilliant. Kept me glued to the edge of my seat. James Nesbitt is a favourite of mine anyway but he was absolutely outstanding in this. Oh and I must say I did enjoy his dark side. Worth having a day off for hehehe.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Sunshine and Reading

I have been reading through You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay. I will be reading the book more thoroughly with a group of on-line friends starting in January. Here's a paragraph I found particularly interesting
"Our breath is the most precious substance in our lives, and yet we totally take for granted when we exhale that our next breath will be there. If we did not take another breath, we would not last three minutes. Now if the Power that created us has given us enough breath to last as long as we shall live, can we not trust that everything else we need will also be supplied?"
Did a little art today. It felt so good to get back to it. I'm working on a series of three and I will work on all of them together. They are on square canvases 61cm x 61cm (24"x24"). I have formulated some ideas while getting ready for Christmas. You know those times when you are dying to do some artwork but Christmas chores come first. This time the inanimate objects are coffee cups or things related to the joys of drinking coffee. I'm trying something a little different and so have ruled up a 10cm (4") border and will do my usual layers on this section. The middle of the canvas I am planning to apply some stained tissue paper as the background and paint the inanimate objects over this. I stained some tissue paper today in various coffee shades and hopefully will start applying it to the canvas tomorrow.
The weather was glorious today. Not hot, just pleasantly sunny so I spent some time sitting in the garden reading. The birds were singing and Jack was happily munching on a bone. While waiting for some tissue paper to dry I had a cup of coffee in the courtyard and listened to the sound of the fountain in the fish pond. All seemed right in the world.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Its been a hectic few days of cleaning and weeding and generally getting things ready for Christmas. Some of the cleaning didn't need to be done now. However while I was at it anyway I thought I'd to do those things I neglect because its much nicer to spend the time at my easel. You know those things that make you feel guilty, the things that leave that nagging thought in the back of your mind. Well its done now YAY!!! You know what I find strange, the more you clean the more you find things that need cleaning. Maybe the clean bits make the dirty stand out more hehehe.
Tomorrow I will start preparing some of the food. Make some potato salad and some roasted pumpkin salad (the recipe I got from my friend Deb). I always ask her to make it whenever we go to her place for a barbecue. Its got roasted pumpkin (obviously) and rocket with a dressing of olive oil, mustard, lemon juice, walnuts and chives YUM!!! I might have to sample some. You know just as a taste test hehehe.
I am missing my art :(. I can't wait to get back to the easel. It seems so long since I've been there. My friend Laura has been in her studio (lucky lady). I don't know how she does it. I just don't find the time with Christmas preparation.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Christmas Rush

Things are starting to get really hectic now. Trying to keep up with my everyday stuff and also do all the extra things associated with the Christmas season. Little by little I'm getting through it. Would like to still fit in a little gardening as we have a garden party for Christmas and it needs some weeding and a little pruning.
Wednesday is Vanita's birthday. We are spending the afternoon together doing some mindless shopping and then we will go out to dinner to celebrate. I haven't seen her for so long. She will be coming for Christmas and so is my other good friend Kris. We basically have open house. Bring your own drinks and a plate of food to share and we all spend the afternoon and into the night out in the garden listening to cheesy Christmas music and eating way too much. We do this on Christmas Eve because that's the German tradition. Christmas day lunch we are going to Bob's daughter and son-in-law's place. So far the weather hasn't been too hot. Fingers crossed it stays like that.
No art was done today. I'm hoping I can still squeeze in a little art time before Christmas. I'm in such a creative flow at the moment its a shame to interrupt it. Time out with family and friends will do me good though. Have to refill the well sometimes.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

She Collected Teacups

Bob's mum collected teacups. The pretty old English bone china type and she kept them in her china cabinet. When she died no-one in the family wanted them and they ended up in a cardboard box that Bob rescued and brought home. I adore them and I treasure them. They remind me of her. She always had a table cloth on her kitchen table and whenever we dropped by we would sit in the kitchen at the table. The table was in front of the window and you could see her plants that grew down the side of the house. There was a particular shrub there that had the most glorious lemon scented leaves. I still have some of those leaves, dried in some potpourri. Anyway I'm getting away from the story. We would sit at the table and she would make a cup of tea. Bob would drink his tea and then go and do some odd job. It was then that she would tell me some interesting story. My favourite story was her re-count of the end of World War 2. She told me how there was dancing in the street and people everywhere filled with joy. She described everything, the sounds, the feelings, the sights and it was as if I was there. I always felt like she knew everything. If I wanted to know something I would ring her and ask and she always knew the answer. I miss her dearly and I miss our chats at the kitchen table. The teacups I have painted aren't exactly old English bone china but I did use them as the model.
She Collected Teacups
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
60.9x50.8cm (24"x20")
p.s. I have all her table clothes and now use them on my own kitchen table.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Happy Happy Joy Joy

I woke up early this morning and got my chores out of the way. I knew if I did that I could spend the whole day on my artwork. What joy, what bliss **insert big happy smile here**. I got the background done on a new piece and have drawn on the image ready to paint. Yes, another of my inanimate object series. This time a stack of teacups that belongs to Bob's mum, but I'll tell you that story when the piece is finished :p.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Its Raining

Its summer and its rained all day. Its been lovely! However when you are in a drought you cringe at all the water pouring down the gutters and not being caught. We haven't had any real heat yet. I'm not complaining. The weather has been glorious. Warm but not hot. Our gutters need cleaning. The water is overflowing so I've got all my buckets out catching the water. I keep getting soaked but its worth it. Water restrictions mean you can't always water your garden when it gets parched in the hot summer sun so I collect every drop I can hehehe.

Tonight is the largest and brightest full moon for the year but I'm not going to be able to bathe in the moonlight as it spills through my bedroom window because the sky is overcast and the moon beams won't get through. Never mind, overcast sky means rain and that's a good thing.

I've posted a pic of my latest work. Not sure how good the image is as its been a bit gloomy for photos. Its another of my inanimate objects that I love so dearly. My work of late tells the story of human life. The everyday objects that turn a house into a home. I suppose its showcasing everyday objects and raising their level of importance. This painting/collage also displays my German-ness by using the word Kaffee (coffee in German). Mum and I go shopping every week. We love to shop at the market as readers of my blog already know. We like nothing better than to sit down in our favourite coffee shop, our trolleys laden with the week's fresh fruit and vegetables awaiting our cappuccino. We sip the hot brew and discuss bargains we have gathered and which are now safely tucked in our said trolleys. Occasionally I might have an orange and poppy seed muffin and Mum will indulge in some fancy cream filled sponge. She's told me that as a child she would see women dressed in their finery, sitting in a coffee shop and drinking coffee and how she thought it was something special. Well I consider it something special too. I love sitting in a coffee shop with Mum, talking about women things and creating wonderful memories.
Eine Tasse Kaffee bitte
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
60.9x50.8cm (24"x20")

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A New Canvas is Waiting for Me

Yay I finished another artwork. Haven't taken a good pic of it yet so can't share it till I do. Its nearly time to cook dinner but I've got another canvas waiting for me on my easel. I think I will start it tonight once dinner is over and done with. Well I say that now. Usually once I eat dinner I just sit and watch tv till I get sleepy.

My daughter Julia has started a blog called My Pisces Heart. I've put it in my blog list on the side bar for anyone interested in taking a peek.

Off to cook some lamb chops and whip up a nice summer salad for dinner. Bob will be home soon.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Busy Busy

No time for a long post. I'm keeping those dust bunnies at bay, going to gym and doing my artwork. Will have a new piece to share soon I hope.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Grandma Heaven

We were babysitting Evan yesterday and we asked Zoe if she would like to come too.

Will this joke ever die hehehe hahaha

Evan invented the screaming game

Whenever I screamed back louder Evan would laugh and laugh.
Zoe didn't like this game and I got told off for being too loud :(

Butter wouldn't melt in his mouth ha!

Story time! Evan loved it when Zoe read to him.

Time for a walk.

Zoe teaching Evan how this toy works.

A little dancing is always fun.
There was so much fun, running, playing and dancing that everyone was very tired by dinner time and we all had an early night.

Sunday, December 7, 2008


The movie Australia is absolutely fabulous. Aboriginal spirituality was seen in a wonderful light and told with such sensitivity. The controversy of the stolen generation was also addressed hip hip hurray! I thoroughly enjoyed the whole movie! Its set in 1939 and shows the rugged beauty of the Australian outback up north. The cinematography is breathtakingly amazing. It has romance, it has war, it has villains, history, spirituality and the injustice of prejudice. Will definitely wait for that one to be out on dvd. It must be seen on the big screen to really appreciate the cinematography to its fullest though!

We are looking after Evan today and I have asked Zoe if she would like to come too. Both grandchildren for the whole day is grandma heaven :)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Lots to Look Forward to

Today I'm taking Mum to visit my sister and we're all going to an art market at the port and then off to the movies. We're seeing "Australia" and the reports on that movie have been good. Beautiful scenery from up north and a love story. What more could you ask for? I'll let you know what its like.

Been a bit slack in the art department this week. Too much socialising. Went out to lunch on Thursday with the girls from my aquarobics class. Had a lovely time and we chatted as only a group of women can. It was nearly 4pm before I got home.

Also caught up with my friend Vanita on the phone last night. Its nearly end of school so I'll get to spend some time with her. We planned going out to dinner for her birthday on the 17th so I'm looking forward to that. I would personally hate having my birthday that close to Christmas hehehe. She did such a lovely job opening my exhibition in Naracoorte this year that Julia, Zoe and I have asked to open our exhibition in May. I think its good having someone talk about your work and art practices that knows you and your work so well. Lots of things to look forward to.

Christmas is coming up fast. Am I ready? HA! At least our home is tidy and clean. I've been keeping up with the chores really well. No dust bunnies in sight. As for the rest of it I'm sure it will all fall into place. It always does.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Way of Working

This is for Deborah because she asked.

Obviously I start with an idea that's been swimming around my head. Its usually something from around my home; something in my everyday life. I then set up a still life and start taking lots of photos. I like to use lighting to see what interesting shadows I can achieve. I keep moving the objects around and keep taking photos. Once I've loosened up I start getting interesting compositions. I play with those compositions by changing where the light comes from, how much shadow is revealed or by adding new objects etc. I choose the pic that stands out to me as being the most interesting and I print it out. I then crop it so its in scale with the canvas I will be working on. I like to work from photos because it means I don't have to keep the still life set up and I don't need to worry about any changing conditions such as light etc.
Next I start working on the canvas to create a background. I do have a fear of the blank canvas so I need to cover it to ensure I don't freeze hehehe. I start with old book pages or other interesting paper. I use gel medium as the glue and once its set off a bit but not completely dry I tear back some of the paper. It leaves a lovely texture and creates interesting results once paint is added. In some instances it leaves the text from the other side of the paper revealed which means the text is reversed. Once the whole canvas is covered I check for ugly gaps and fill these in with either patterned paper or some hand writing or more book pages. I allow the canvas to dry or use the heat gun to hurry things along. Next I put washes of acrylic paint on and some rubber stamp patterns. That's basically the background done. I then draw the image on and "colour it in" using acrylic paint that I've watered down slightly. This allows the background to show through. I don't worry about detail at this stage. Its just to get blocks of colour down.
Final stage is drawing on top with conte crayons. I use conte to do the shading and add the finer details. A quick spray with some fixative (to set the conte) and then some matt varnish is applied as a protective layer.
I hope that answers your questions Deborah. :) I have pics of the stages in some of my past blog entries.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Lots of Art Activity

Zoe has been working hard towards our exhibition. Here is a new piece she did of her dad and his guitar. She's been working with a different medium and she says she likes it a lot because it does instant shading hehehe.
I have also been working hard and have finished another piece. All it needs is a coat of protective varnish and its done. Next I will do a series of three square canvases. They will incorporate coffee cups from different views. I usually start by taking photos. Moving the objects around and taking loads of pics until I get a pleasing arrangement. I like playing around with light from different angles to see what interesting shadows it creates. So that will be on the agenda for tomorrow, photos, lots of photos.

He Loves Tomatoes on Toast
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
50.8x60.9cm (20"x24")

Saturday, November 29, 2008

On This Day 50 Years Ago

Fifty years ago today my Mum, Dad and I disembarked in Melbourne from the ship Castel Felice. One of many migrants leaving Europe for a better life in Australia. Imagine packing your entire life into a suitcase. Migrating from your home into the unknown. Leaving behind your heritage, family, your whole support network and even a piece of your own identity. Imagine the conflicting emotions of excitement for the adventure you are about to embark on, and feelings of apprehension and fear. With that comes the painful last embrace, final farewell and possibly the last visible glimpses of your loved ones. A journey such as this had a profound effect on my life and influence the themes in my work. These themes explore the emotional and psychological issues connected to such a journey. The conflicts between my culture of origin and the culture of my new home. Possibly the strongest theme and one which re-occurs constantly in my work is house and home and how the home is symbolic of self. It seems to me I have placed added importance to "home" and what "home" means to me. Possibly a direct consequence of migrating from my cultural birthright.

Mum and I had a lovely celebratory lunch, reminisced about the old days and toasted with a few wines to the next fifty years. In fifty years time Mum will be 125 years old and I would be 104 hehehe.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Today is a day to take care of the business side of things. Going off the Gallery M to pay our deposit and to give them photos of our current work, artist statements and some ideas for our invitations. Its about 25 weeks till our exhibition opens. Time goes so quickly. It will be here before you know it. I want all new work so I have to stay on my toes and make sure I do some artwork every day. This morning I finished the apple piece. I now need to buy more art supplies as I'm out of canvases. That's another job for today, go to the art shop and try not to buy more than I need hehehe.

Fading Apples
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
50.8x60.9cm (20"x24")

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sunday was Fun Day

The waterslide was so big that Daddy had to go down first. You could hear Zoe screaming right from the top of the water slide "Ahhhhhh, Dad catch me. Daaaad, dad catch me!"

Not a good landing on this slide. Luckily dad was there to catch her.

A little bit of mini golf. There were 8 of us playing so we held up the course a bit. I came 3rd, Zoe came 5th I think and Bob came 1st.

Sitting at the table surrounded by her family and 2 very close family friends plus presents to unwrap, what more could a girl ask for?

The birthday girl at the head of the table of course!

Zoe and her mum Julia with a chocolate and strawberry birthday cake.


Zoe with my sister Ilka and her partner Herman. Yes I know my sister and I are nothing alike, she's tall and thin and I'm ...... not hehehe.

Zoe being her usual charming self with my son and Zoe's uncle Troy.

Opa (granddad) helping Zoe with her new Zoingo Boingo.

We all had a lot of fun and agreed there should be more fun family outings like there were in the good old days before people got so busy.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Birthday Celebrations

Its Zoe's 7th birthday celebrations today. Its the first year she isn't having a party with all her friends. Instead its a family affair. We are heading off to Semaphore foreshore. Its a surprise. Zoe doesn't know where we are going. Semaphore has an amusement park which includes water slide, bouncy castle, carousel etc. It also has a train ride through the sand dunes. So on the list is hat, towel, bathers and camera. After we play we are having a late lunch at the Palais. Its very popular. Its a beautiful art deco building built in 1922. We tried to book for lunch for Zoe's birthday two weeks ago but was booked out till 3pm, hence the late lunch. Will have to snack on ice cream while I wait heehehe. The later time will actually work out better as that's when the live band starts. Anyway time with the family, the beach, amusement park, live band and a meal in a beautiful old building. What more could I ask for :).

I have had a week off from my art work to give my home a really deep clean that's been well overdue. Back in the studio now yay. Below is the background finished for my new piece. A title hasn't come to me yet. It will have green apples in it and its reminiscent of the time my kids were little and I used to bake apple pie on Sunday and have the neighbours over for afternoon tea. Mmm hot apple pie with freshly whipped cream melting over the top.

Still can't get in the habit of posting at night. I'm just too tired by then. Am toying with the idea of getting up earlier so I can fit it all in in the morning. I get up at 6am now. I don't mind getting up early now the weather is warm but in winter it will be a different story.

Friday, November 21, 2008

I'm Still Here

I know I haven't posted in such a long time. Been re-organising my time so I can fit more into my day and "do it all". Trying to do internet stuff at night instead of the morning. Trouble is with all the extra stuff I've been doing by the time night comes I fall asleep in front of the telly like and old granny hehehe (oh yeah, I am an old granny). It will be ok once the body gets used to all the extra activity.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Back to the Easel Soon

Well its been a week since I've been at the easel. I thought I'd take a break and catch up on some nagging home duties. When I'm in the full art swing I let a lot of things slide, only doing the necessities, taking every opportunity to work on my art. Then there comes a time when you say enough is enough. You have to catch up on those long neglected chores. Once done I feel great. A few more little details and I'll be back to the easel probably doing another inanimate everyday object that makes a house a home.
Weather is cooler today YAY!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Not Ready for the Heat

Forecast is for 37C (98.6F). The place is closed up and air conditioner is on. Too hot to go out and do anything. This year has gone so quickly and the heat is upon me before I'm ready for it. Can you ever be ready for it? Its not all bad. With the heat comes more barbecues, walks on the beach in the evening to try and get a little cool breeze, more swimming, less clothes and all those delicious summer fruits like peaches, watermelon, rock melon, strawberries etc etc etc. Yeah summer isn't that bad after all.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

A Little Humour

This is one of a series interiors I plan to do. I almost think I'm creating my perfect home through my paintings. As I planned it out I envisioned a painting on the wall. Then I thought, how funny it would be to have one of my own paintings hanging on the wall. Hilarious hehehe hahaha. The wall was built up with crack filler to give it a really textured finish. There are some torn book pages and other paper showing through here and there. I used to use modelling paste to achieve this texture but its expensive so now I raid Bob's crack filler which only costs a couple of dollars.

The Hall
crack filler, acrylic paint, collage and conte on canvas
101.6x76.2cm (40"x30")

Friday, November 7, 2008


Its Friday already and that means market day. The weather is slowly heating up and making me weary. I usually enjoy going to the market but can't seem to get into gear this morning. I know what it is. I've been overeating again and exercising less. I've worked out that I have this cycle where I look after myself really well, eat correctly and exercise. That's when my confidence is up and I'm very productive creatively. Then I sabotage myself and start overeating, do less exercise, put on weight and confidence drops. This is when I usually become less productive. Well the last few days I have been overeating and my confidence is dropping. Starting to question my abilities etc etc; doubts and fears entering my mind. Need to get back on track before it takes its toll on my productivity. So today is market day. Will only buy healthy fresh food and get back on track.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Not Posting Much

I'm in this really productive phase at the moment. I have more ideas floating around in my head than I can physically keep up with. If I'm not at the easel painting I'm in a gallery looking at other people's creations or reading articles about other artists. I'm filling the well. I only hope I don't drown. Another piece is nearly finished. If I don't finish it today I hope to finish it on the weekend. Housework has taken a back seat and getting out of hand so I will have to address those issues today before I can go back to the easel.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Domestic Bliss

As I was waiting for this image to upload I realised that I actually have a few series of work on the go. This latest one is part of the domestic series where I celebrate the sacredness in the everyday. It also explores the notion of home and the importance of once called "women's work". Its funny that I work in series and that all the different series all fit into one theme.

Starting a new piece today. I have to keep the work going in a nice constant flow so I have enough new work for exhibition next year. We received formal confirmation that our exhibition proposal was excepted by Gallery M. So our three generations of women exhibition is finally a realisation. Its called Peeking Through Someone Else's Window, opens on May 22nd 2009 and will showcase not only my work but my daughter's and granddaughters as well.

Domestic Bliss
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
60.9x50.8cm (24"x20")

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Create Create Create

Just recovering from a really bad gastro virus. Can't remember ever being that sick before. It came on on Sunday afternoon and I'm only just starting to feel better now! I'm happily back to the easel today. I missed doing my art and I'm sure it made me sicker not being able to create anything for nearly a week. I should finish the piece I've been working on in the next couple of days. Being sick has meant that I now have a backlog of ideas swimming around in my head. Laying around in bed, not being able to do any art means all I could do was think. I now have ideas for the next four pieces so I'd better get to work and create create create!

My sister and her partner have moved into their new place yesterday. They lived in a house that was too big for just the two of them so they sold up and bought a smaller place. Its about 10 minutes walk from the beach (just in time for summer) and I'm sure they will love their new lifestyle once all the unpacking is done. I'm taking Mum over there tomorrow so she can have a nosey around their new house.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Adelaide Zombie Walk

Started work on a new piece yesterday. Some more inanimate objects from everyday life. Got the background done and I'm quite happy with it. Its a bit darker than I wanted and covers a lot of the text from the torn book pages I used but that's ok. Nearly finished drawing the image on and then I'll be ready to paint. Have a backlog of ideas I want to paint. My ideas are coming in so strong and fast I can't keep up with them. That's good I say. Nothing worse than having no ideas at all.

Julia and some of her friends went on Adelaide's Zombie Walk last night. Yes they all dressed up as zombies and walked the streets. Zoe was excited to be in on the action. After the walk I picked her up and took her home so the adult Zombies could have drinks in the many venues offering cheap drinks to Zombies.

Zombies all ready for their big walk.

Mother and daughter zombies.
Aren't they beautiful?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Daisy

The struggle with the daisy is finally over and thoughts of a new piece are swimming around my head. Think I'll go back to some everyday inanimate objects that I understand. I bought a couple of new canvases and am itching to get started on them.

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not
acrylic paint and conte on canvas
60.9 x 50.8cm (24"x20")

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Story of the Daisy

Has it really been that long since I posted on my blog? What have I been doing? I have been doing my art as usual but am struggling with my latest piece. I worked out why so many artists paint lilies. Its because daisies are hard to paint hehehe. Yes I'm trying to paint a really large daisy and its giving me some grief. Now the funny thing is I needed a particular colour conte crayon to finish the shading on the daisy. I finally bought the conte I needed but was going to visit my friend Mignon for lunch so I couldn't work on the piece. I took some of my recent artwork to show Mignon and decided to take the daisy piece to face one of my fears of showing unfinished work that hasn't been resolved yet. We had a lovely time catching up and talking about art. Mignon shared with me the book she's been writting. She's always wanted to write children's fiction and she's finally doing it. Good on you Mignon!!! I love the story and can't wait till she writes more. Its left me wanting to know what happens next. Anyway I digress... I packed up all my artwork and left Mignon's about 5pm and in peak hour traffic I realise I left that darn daisy piece behind. So now I have the conte but not the piece. I drive right near Mignon's when I take my son to work so I asked her to leave it out as I will come by early to pick it up. She didn't want to leave it out all night so she thought she would put it out in the morning. However finding the piece was not outside I looked at the time and thought it much too early to wake people up by pounding on the door. I left some books on the doorstep that I promised to lend and left. Once back home Mignon rang hehehe. She was up and putting the daisy piece outside when she noticed I'd already been hehehe. Will try again tomorrow morning. Will I ever get this piece finished? Is this the universe trying to tell me to give up, its a lost cause, don't paint daisies.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Women's Work

I love the every day objects of everyday life. I particularly like the things that were considered women's objects. In days past women's work was never considered as important as men's and in a lot of ways that's still true today. By depicting every day objects in my art I'm trying to show the importance of what was considered women's work and lift it to new heights. Its so hard to try and talk about this and stay politically correct but I'm sure you know what I'm trying to say. I'm quite passionate about this subject and I think this may be the start of a series.

The frying pan and colander in this painting are particularly important to me as they belonged to my Grandmother. When my Mum got married my Grandmother gave her a few things from her kitchen to help out. When we migrated to Australia these items were carefully packed in big boxes and shipped to our new home. To me they are a link to the past. A link to my Grandmother who I never saw again. And a link to all those wonderful women who came before me and quietly performed all their duties to perfection.

She Performed Her Duties to Perfection
collage, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
60.9x50.8cm (24"x20")

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Blocked...nah not me!

Back on track after a couple of scary days. I've been really in the creative zone lately and getting a lot of artwork done. Of course this got me thinking. Rather than just going with the flow, happy that I'm creating, I had to start analysing it and thinking about how it will be perceived out in the world. Well that put a hold on my creative flow and could have turned into a major block if it wasn't for the skills I learned reading The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. Just create for the act of creating JC says and don't think about the outcome. Well I did just that and I'm happy to say I'm back in the creative flow once more. I started a new piece yesterday and if I don't spent too much time on the computer or sitting around in my pyjamas drinking coffee I could get it finished today. That would be a record. Two days for an artwork! That's unheard of!!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Happy Anniversay

This person you see below has made me happy for twenty years.
Happy anniversary Bob!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Blue Bowl, Yellow Lemons

This canvas was a piece that I just couldn't get to work so I glued on some old book pages as the first layer.

Now I've added image transfers of my grandmother's handwriting and added some patterned paper.

A little wash of colour is next.

A little darker colour for the edges.

Some text stamped on. (Sun was behind a cloud. Hence the variation in colour from the previous pic)

Still looked a bit bland so more colour!

Patterned stamp used in darker colour.

Picture roughly sketched in and filled with colour.

Details and tone added.

I felt the background was still too pale so another deeper wash was added.

Shadow of the bowl added to stop it looking like it was floating in mid air.
Irene's Kitchen
collage, image transfer, acrylic paint and conte on canvas
91 x 91cm (36"x36")

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Chicken Soup and Barbecue

Started a new piece on Thursday. Got the first layer of torn book pages done. Its a large canvas so it took the whole day. Yesterday was shopping day. With all the hunter gatherer action there was no time for art. The weather was a little cool again yesterday so took the opportunity to cook a batch of chicken soup. Summer is on the way and that's the time for salads so it was nice to indulge in a hearty soup one last time. It was a big pot of soup, enough for tonight's dinner too. That means I can get lost in the studio and won't have to stop to cook dinner. Might even work after dinner as well.

My friend Kris will be in town on Sunday. She'll be staying over so I think we might have a barbecue for dinner. Bob won a large meat tray in the raffle at the football club so there will be plenty of meat. All I have to do is whip up a salad. Seeing Kris won't have to drive, might get some wine to have with dinner. Mmm looking forward to it already.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Tuscany Looks Nice This Time of Year

Two posts in one day. What's the world coming to??? Just finished the Italian piece and thought I'd post pics of the layers like I promised.

First layer is just some random blotches of acrylic paint. I don't always paint first. It all depends on what paper I use to collage with. If I'm going to stick on old book pages I don't paint first.

Layer number two is just a wash of one colour to harmonise all the colours of the first layer.

Layer number three is very ugly. Paper glued on and torn off. This is to add texture. I usually like to use old book pages or newspaper or old phone book pages for this technique. Seeing this piece was about Italy I thought English text would be wrong so that's why I went for the plain paper instead.

Next layer is just a wash of acrylic paint and the texture is starting to appear.

Layer 5 is another wash of acrylic paint to make the surface richer.I like to use washes as they allow each layer to show through which adds depth to the finished piece.

I love text in my work so layer 6 was adding some Italian text and some pretty bits of paper here and there to add interest. Some of the text is image transfer using printable rub ons and other text I've written on myself. Got some Italian love poems off the net. It was hard writing in Italian. I had to be careful not to make mistakes. At this stage I'm still only working randomly and not thinking too much about placement.

Layer 7 is some stamping with my favourite letter stamps. The words say "Its a beautiful day, no?" Still just working randomly.

Layer 8 is yet another acrylic wash to blend everything together.

Now here I should have layer 9 where I painted in blocks of colour for the door and shutters etc and then layer 10 is the detail drawn on with conte and layer 11 was another wash to put in the shadows. I didn't realise till it was too late that they were actually different layers and should have been recorded. Will try again with the next piece. This just needs some layers of varnish to protect it and its all finished.
Tuscany Looks Nice This Time of Year
collage, image transfer and acrylic paint on canvas
76.2cm x 50.8cm (30"x20")