“Supplies Me” – Jane Davenport Workshop!

I’m super excited to be taking part in Jane Davenport’s new online workshop, “Supplies Me”.

When I met Jane at the Scrapbooking convention in Brisbane in June, she mentioned that this class was in the planning stages.  And now it’s HERE!!  It’s not to late to come and join the fun, class starts on September 8.

This is a jam packed class where the lovely Jane will be taking us through using all sorts of art supplies – there’s a coloured pencil week, watercolour week, and so on,  all with great videos and exercises and learning to draw faces and bodies and and and I just CAN’T WAIT to get started!

I’m also going to put in a quick plug for Jane’s online shop, The Insitute Of Cute (and also her In Real Life store of the same name in Byron Bay, which I am determined to visit one day!).  She stocks things that I can’t get anywhere else – the Prismacolor ColErase drawing pencil that has become my new favourite drawing pencil, for one. (I don’t get anything in return for this plug, I’m just a happy customer!)

And she also has a thing for ladybugs – long time friends (I’m looking at you, Nicole and Marion!) will know that I have long had a BIG thing about them too – ladybugs kept popping up as earrings and in my sewing stuff way back!

Anyway, I hope you’ll come and join the fun.

Coloured pencil… “A Lovely Dream” workshop

I’m taking part in Suzi’s new class, “A Lovely Dream” – it’s an art journal workshop that goes from September to May – lots of stuff to do!  (And if you buy it before September 15 you get it $10 cheaper).

Here are two drawings that will go in that journal – they’re not finished here, they will be cut out and  put on a background with some other images:

False Friend and Small Town Art Critic

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“False Friend” has a knife in one hand (to stab me in the back) while the other hand holds a tulip.  The background is Ranger Adirondack acrylic dabber paint in “Sandal”  and the coloured pencils are all Prismacolor (which I just lovelovelove!).

“Small Town Art Critic” is determined not to like anything he sees because he is a blocked artist himself who hasn’t done any art in years, but he goes to every gallery opening and drinks the free wine.  Background is some cheap craft white acrylic paint, drawing in Prismacolor pencil.

Both are on old book pages – there’s something about painting/drawing on book pages I really like – I did a lot of it when I was doing the Art Diploma course at TAFE.

Meanwhile my back is still cactus. (For readers who are wondering what the hell that means, “cactus” means “not working” (Wiktionary says “(Australian, slang): Non-functional, broken, exhausted.)

And we have new neighbours in one of the three properties around us up for rent.  Time will tell if they’re bearable… so far she seems to be on a cleaning jag, scrubbing the bathroom windowsill with a toothbrush  – sheesh!  (I dare not scrub ours because the wood has rotted!)  No big dogs or hordes of toddlers in evidence as yet…


Some journal pages – barely started; and a rant about shops.

I’m taking Pam Carriker’s online (free) class “Recycled Journal Pages” from Strathmore Artist Papers.  (So are 1,016 other people!)  This week’s class was on finding and recombining elements from previous journal imagery. I chose to use black and white copies, since they’re only 6 cents per page, as opposed to nearly a dollar a page for colour copies.

Next week we are working with adding gesso, charcoal, and oil pastels – should be interesting!

There were also some recycled pages featured in the new Art Journaling magazine from Stampington, including some by Pam Carriker.  (Overall, I was a bit disappointed by how same-y this issue was to the last couple… I know they have a long lead time, but – meh.  Maybe I’m just having a bad day.)

There’s a kerfuffle here in Australia at the moment with some big retailers whinging that Aussies are spending money on line, often overseas, not faaaaaaaaaair!!  If the service I DIDN’T receive from two retailers today is any indication (and it is!) then it’s not a surprise that we’d rather get better, faster service on a wider range of goods at a cheaper price online.

One was a chain store – Mr Beloved and I went in looking for a specific item, and watched 3 staff stand around and chat – not one even ACKNOWLEDGED we were in the store.  We found what we wanted, by ourselves, paid, and left – vowing to buy online in future.  Stuff ’em if they can’t even be bothered to do their jobs!

The other was a locally owned business who treated me in a VERY rude manner.  And they won’t be getting any more of my money, either.  I’ll probably be buying those particular products from an Aussie online store where I can get the same thing, cheaper, faster, and without the attitude, THANKYOUVERYMUCH!

And I simply don’t buy the argument that some retailers are trying to spin about brick-and-mortar stores having higher costs – online shops still have to warehouse and pack and post, and employ staff to do that.  And I bet most of THEIR staff aren’t casualised, either! (Isn’t “casualised” a deeply offensive word?  Not just the sounds, the idea – that staff will be exploited as capital and are not ever to be viewed as actual people.  Grrrrr.)

And so to bed.

Some (in progress) art journal pages

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All these pages have been sitting waiting for the last couple of weeks.  (Cutting paper isn’t a good thing right now.)

Starting (another) new medication in the morning – this one is only short term, just to try and get over the hump of this pain and depression.  All my joints are sore and some look swollen – especially my knuckles and fingers. No flute or oboe practice happening!

Reveal – she got it!

Well, my secret Small Art Pen-Pal swap partner, Shannon in British Columbia, got my piece of art (?! well, the thingummy I made), that I showed you a sneak peek of way back here.  So now you can see the whole thang:

Approx 8″ x 8″, wonky stitching and all! The crown, wings, and cloud border at the top were printed from .png sheets from the lovely Marsha of Tumble Fish Studio (I love her original artworks, and also the digital collage sheets she offers as .pngs  – soooo much easier to work with than .jpgs!)  The background is some scrapbooking cardstock that I used the credit card painting technique on – ever since I learned it from a Kelly Kilmer online class, it’s been my favourite way of getting a quick, interesting background.  (If you don’t know what I mean, pop over to Michelle Ward’s Green Pepper Press Street Team blog – she used the same idea (with cool variations!) a little while ago in Crusade 44: In A Scrape.)  The other bits and pieces came from magazines.

I was really worried my secret penpal wouldn’t like it – I was NOT confident, I didn’t think it was my best work, but then, I never like my stuff!  But she’s been very kind.

And here’s what she sent me – a gorgeous hand made journal with lots of little prompts and interesting pages!  And although she had no way of knowing this, she used pages from one of my favourite scrapbooking ranges – Cosmo Cricket’s “The Boyfriend” range.  I love that she also included some magazine pages  – as we know, I’m a bit of a magazine junkie (although my habit is now restricted to buying them second hand, as other money is all for oboe reeds!)

My photos don’t do it justice  – I LOVE this journal!  I’m going to start using it very soon – just a few pages I want to finish in the current one.

Thanks to Samie Kira for organising this swap.  Part of the requirement was that the swap partners write an encouraging letter to each other – I forgot to take a photo of mine to Shannon, which I wrote on painted over pages from an old encyclopedia – Shannon wrote her letter to me directly in the journal, which is so cool!

And in news from the aviary: there’s  a new hatchling in the cockatiel cage.  Since Bollinger and Dorian succesfully raised Rex, we’ve been wondering if more little birdlings would happen.  The new one was sighted this morning, but was soooo teeny – and sometime the parents abandon the little ones.  So we’ll have to wait and see…

Walking! And mowing. And Stuff.

After some hard truths from the Doctor on Monday, (115 kg!!  SHIT!!  That crept up!) I’ve been walking.  I even had Mr Beloved drop Connie and me at the library in town and we walked the 3.2 km home!  Today I walked home from my appointment at the chiropractor, only 2.8 km (and 20 minutes of the 38 minute walk was down hill) and without Connie, so I’ll be heading out again later today.

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Yes, that is Constance J. Woodle  – but no, that’s not really me, LOL! Connie is in her full winter coat – I think next time she sees the groomer she’ll have a close shave – her hair starts to get knotty at this length.

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The bottom line that the scanner cut off says “I am really looking forward to bed!”

We see the doctor again in a fortnight and I’m determined that I will have lost at least a couple of kg by then.  I’m back to using the CalorieKing.com.au website to count calories and record  exercise: that really helped last time when I managed to lose weight.  I’m aiming for around 80kg as my final goal – heavier than Weight Watchers or CalorieKing recommend for my height and age, but more achievable than their estimate  – 60 kg? I don’t THINK SO!!Last time I was that weight I was 20 something years younger and caught any flu/cold/lurgy that was going. That’s when I got the glandular fever that is still effecting my life NOW.

And here’s a journal page I started at Social Cre8te at Tammy’s shop yesterday:

There’s some stamping in the background using one of the new ($4!) Kaisercraft texture stamps (the one called “Flourish”, CS759) – I’m looking forward to using the same stamp in wet gesso to give more texture to backgrounds – I forgot to take the gesso with me yesterday!  The buildings are made from a book I bought for $2 on British plants –  a very good buy because the paper is such beautiful quality, no foxing at all, and very sturdy, even though the book dates from the late 1930s (from memory). (No, it wasn’t worth anything as a book, but it’s lovely as art material.)

In other news: Mr Beloved hired a slasher (what a beastie!)

yesterday, and did the yard.  First time in about (mumblety… 5?) months, and the !@&*^!* kikuyu grass ( Pennisetum clandestinum – if you do a search on google images you’ll see just how invasive it is!) had grown into knee high, tangled mats that an ordinary mower  had no chance of defeating.  (And our mower still needs to go off to be repaired anyway…)  At least we can see the dog when she’s in the yard now!  We’re pulling up runners and trying to poison the rest of the kikuyu, it’s awful stuff.

And now it’s time to hang the washing  – such a beautiful almost Spring day here,  blue sky and the birds are turning over the drying “hay” left in the yard…

Pages waiting for what comes next…

These are some new journal pages, made from prompts from the wonderful Kelly Kilmer (her new Memories and Reflections class is open for enrolments!)  Please bear in mind that this is very much the first stage of these pages; some might only have some writing added, some will get a lot more elements before I consider them finished. (clicky for biggy on all these)

Collage 1

As you can see, I’m working in a spiral bound journal (A4 size) rather than making either of the book’s Kelly’s teaching; I’ll probably have a go at the books sometime but for now I’m happy with yet another A4 journal.  I’ve used a lot of scrapbooking papers in these pages – mostly because I have them and I’m trying to use them up, instead of being precious about them and “saving” them!

More pages to come…