This week…

So this week in Jane’s Supplies Me class we’ve been working on blending pencil drawings and adding some watercolour.

Learning that coloured pencils don't like to blend on rough gesso!

(one side of the face is deliberately left unblended to show the difference.  This blending was done using a cream prismacolor pencil –  I have yet to try blending colour pencils with the other choices: GamsolBlender Marker pens, and “Zest It“.)

This one was on plain paper, but wrinkled due to glue on back of the page...
Getting better, but started too small to work on the details...

The next two pictures were for Week 2 Mixed Media homework – we were learning to draw backs and bums (I’m not good at arms yet, LOL!) and the assignment was to include coloured pencil with watercolour and acrylic, plus play with stencils.

Mostly 'armless...
Again, wonky arms, arrgh!

I don’t think either of those pages are finished yet – more paint needed on both.

I’m trying to catch up with the classes (haven’t watched the videos from Suzi’s class yet) but again, my back has been bothering me. Boring and whiny, yep.

We haven’t been to anything for the Carnival of Flowers – I’m hoping to see at least Queen’s Park and Laurel Bank Park next week, while they still look good.  It’s a busy week though – Monday I see the pain management specialist, and Wednesday could be the hospital procedure to help my back; Tuesday I (finally!) see the new psychiatrist, and Friday is my appointment with the Helpful Psychologist.  Thursday is my regular day for our little scrapbooking group, where I usually draw or do stuff in my art journal, but if I have the facet joint injections on Wednesday I might not be up to sitting on Thursday.

I’m REALLY hoping that the specialist agrees that I need the injections – now that the weather is nicer I would love to be able to go for walks – but right now it’s a struggle to walk between the house and the studio.  Fingers crossed that he’ll agree!

What I’ve been reading: a very well written paranormal, from a male author  – Hounded (Book 1 of the Iron Druid Chronicles) by Kevin Hearne.  Very clever and funny.  Now I’m waiting for the library to get the next two books in the series.


Stork Raving Mad - Book 12 in the series

Stork Raving Mad by Donna Andrews: I’ve been a fan of her Meg Langslow series since the first book (Murder with Peacocks) = they’re cozy mysteries (which means that even though there are murders, you don’t have to read about gore) and each book really does have something to do with the punny bird in the title.

Art and Max by David Wiesner came in to the library, too – and it more than lived up to my expectations!  Definitely on the wish list.

So that’s the week…

Drawing faces… and fingers crossed

Wonky weird faces, yeah, but recognisably FACES!  Most of these took under a minute.  No joking.  JANE is an AWESOME TEACHER!!  This is the first lesson we’ve had in drawing faces and she breaks it down so it’s very doable.  Quite different to Suzi’s style – I’m loving that I’m learning so much from this online stars!

[as always, clicky for biggy]

An A4 page of basic faces...
And another A4 page!

Importantly, I discovered that I do not enjoy doing preliminary sketches using the Prismacolor pencils – love ’em for shading, but HATE them for drawing!  I’ll be doing some more of these but either using the Prismacolor Verithins (which sharpen to a satisfyingly CRISP point) or the black Prismacolor Col-Erase pencil.

In other news, we saw our lovely GP today, and she’s managed to get me in to see the pain management specialist in the next fortnight!  My back has not eased up at all and it’s now stopping me from even walking very far – so something has to be done.  I had a series of facet joint injections some four years ago which made a HUGE difference – I’ve been trying not to go down that path again  (it’s a hospital procedure) but I just can’t stand the constant pain any more (not to mention the icepacks, brrr!).  I’m hoping that once my back settles down I’ll be able to walk more for exercise… fingers crossed.


“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.

Where does the time go?

Last week seems to have gone by in such a rush!  Let’s see:   On Monday I went to the Scrapbooking and Papercraft show in Brisbane with the scrappy girls.  We left here at 5 am (after I hadn’t slept well) and two of the girls had classes that were scheduled to finish at 4:30 – and ran late, so we didn’t leave the convention centre til after 5.  Add in a stop for dinner at Plainlands on the way home and I didn’t get back in my door until about 8 pm…  WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY too long a day for me, I was so exhausted and anxious and had got myself into such a state that even with a valium and Mr Beloved holding my hand, I still wasn’t able to sleep until well after midnight.  INSANE!!

I just can’t do such long days any more.  Tuesday was a write off.  Wednesday wasn’t much better… although a visit to our lovely GP to check on my new asthma medication (it’s WONDERFUL, I haven’t had to use my reliever puffer at all – such a huge change!) ended up including a referral to get Mr Beloved’s shoulder injury fixed (we hope). He needs an ultrasound guided injection to fix the bursitis that developed after he fell up the stairs and shoulder charged the house…

Wednesday also brought a surprise care package from a lovely Canberra friend – and if I could only work out how to get photos off my new phone and onto this old computer, I could show you!  She got EVERYTHING right, it was all such beautiful stuff and very me – I especially loved the badge that said “Craft is the new black” and another that said “Make tea not war.”  Good, yes?!  So generous, and you know who you are, *mwah*!

Thursday is our usual scrapping day – well, the others scrapbook and I admire their work.  I’m taking a wonderful online class that has got me interested in actually playing with my art materials and drawing again.  YAY!  The funny thing is, I’d signed up for the classes and hadn’t realised that one of the teachers, the wonderful Jane Davenport, was going to be speaking at the Scrapbooking show – it was such a delightful surprise and hearing her talk about art journals made the long day worthwhile. She is SO INSPIRING!

Here’s a page of very wonky drawings (mostly done with my left hand) – an exercise from Carla Sonheim’s Drawing Lab book

Wonky cats - an exercise from Carla Sonheim's "Drawing Lab"

And a boring page (but interesting to me!) of playing with pencils – I never would have known how much I like drawing in pencil over gesso if I hadn’t done this exercise from Jane’s class:

Pencil on paint... hmmm!

The rest of the week and the weekend is a bit of a blur – taken up with usual stuff, I guess.  I’m still recovering from a couple of super-anxious days that saw me chasing my own tail… thank goodness I see my lovely psychologist tomorrow!

Meanwhile, even with his wounded wing, the lovely Mr Beloved has been plodding on with  the ever-present task of reorganising the studio.  He’s a brave, brave man to wade into piles like this:

Another pile of books to be sorted...

We need to weed out books we don’t want, but there are still an awful lot that need to be re-shelved in our new bookcases.  Some of the bookcases are “zombie” bookcases that Mr Beloved has managed to patch together from odd shelves and pieces of timber – but they work!

And now I’m off to the post office (waiting on a book my psychologist recommended, The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion) and then a bit of housework and some DRAWING!