Saturday, December 19, 2009

More Winter and Pieces ATC's

Here are some more of the Winter and Pieces Swap cards.
Called this starting the beanie
This is a crochet cluster

These are peg dolls made from
bits and pieces
some cotton reels
and finally some chess pieces

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I have been extremely fortunate in winning a draw prize from Melody Lamb - a wonderful miniaturist. The little frog porcelain ornament arrived yesterday in the mail and it is beautiful!

I would recommend any and everyone to have a look at her beautiful miniature artworks on her blogsite at . At the moment she is doing a series of winter birds - and has the story on there of a little baby house sparrow that she hand raised - so cute!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

More ATC's

Wow!! Last month here in Oz was a scorcher! We broke temperature records!
It has finally cooled down, but I think it lulling us into a false sense of security, then at Christmas it'll be a stinker!
Anyway I have been doing ATc's for a few swaps all at once - still doing some for the pieces swap and so here are some more game pieces that I have done for that one.
Rubik's Cube
Twister Spinner

I have changed tack on the Winter trade and decided to do some on knitting. I am knitting beanies for newborns at the moment - part of the knitting for charity that I do - and I thought that it would be a great idea for the cards - just couldn't hold the knitting and sketch at the same time LOL!

And the last swap I have on my hands is one on giraffes - I didn't think I could come up with enough ideas for it but I managed - so here are a few of my giraffes - stuffed ones, romantic ones and hungry one's. I am continually amazed with the fact that I can come up with so many images just from hunting through photos on the net, and everyone else on the swap comes up with images that are individual as well. I guess it is this swapping of singular ideas and styles that keeps me swapping . I love these tiny individual paintings!

Monday, October 26, 2009

I have been making cards for a monster swap and had to wrack my brain to think of what was scary to lots of people and I came up with these for a start.
I love the fact that so many everyday things can become scary objects in our minds, a nasty grin or odd look, add a little darkness and our imagination takes over big time!
Happy Halloween

Saturday, October 17, 2009

I have realised that I haven't posted any of my pastels........they aren't new, but I am proud of them - most are on full sheets of Colorfix, except for the tiger's eyes below - it is about 17" x 9" (if I remember right) - I wanted to get that look as though he was watching through a gap in the grasses - I wanted the eyes to follow you around the room, I don't know if I got that, but the eyes can give some people the willies!

I started doing pastels of companion animals, and this bassett was the first one that I did - he is an Australian Champion - I just loved those soulful eyes, couldn't resist him, really.

This is my first ever nude - I was planning to do a pair - male and female - for my bedroom, but my best friend was so admiring of her that I made it her Christmas present a little while ago. I enjoyed doing this so much that I did another and will probably do a few more.

This second nude I just had to experiment with the play of light - I loved doing it ....but pastel dust all the time on the black Colorfix was a real pain in the proverbial!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Well I have done a couple more ATC's for the swaps I am in, but have been running relatives to and from hospital appts lately and have some more chauffering to do next week, so will be slower with these swaps. For the 'Pieces' swap I have decided to do childhood games - those things that we could never play with when we wanted because we had lost the important pieces!

And I am trying to get used to the new softer Polychromos pencils and I think I am getting better with the blending - this native hibiscus was fun to do.

Today I was trying to get rid of one those hideous malaware attacks that somehow snuck under my Anti-virus Protection. The Protection people were great though and step by step told me what to do and I now thankfully don't have the rotten little pop-up associated with the malaware popping up every few seconds and making it impossible to get anything done on the computer.
With dial-up it took me half the day though to download the program I needed to do the deed then get the log back to the guys in the know ...........I hate not having any speed!! But at least the job is now done and I can surf around again in relative safety!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

New Desk

Well I have realised my carpentry limitations, so while I would love to create my ideal piece of studio furniture I know it ain't gunna happen. So I was lucky to be the only bidder on ebay for this desk that will do half the job. I will just have to make or buy a paper cabinet - either flat file drawers or a large pigeon hole type arrangement that will take a full watercolour sheet in most slots.
But in the meantime I have a desk that has some pigeonholes to take my bits and bobs and my art books and some larger items can find their homes underneath in the shelved cupboard area. I will be picking it up on saturday afternoon and then rearranging my drawing space again.
I am looking forward to finding the right way to use this vintage piece of furniture to my advantage!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Bangles and Beads

Today I stopped in at a bead shop not too far from me ............well a half hour drive, but that's close really. They were having a free class on charm bracelets and all I had to do was pay for the beads and findings that I I stayed and took forever to pick a kit that I liked. I have never worn much jewelry before because as an RN you tend to have problems with disorientated patients attempting to rip out earrings, strangle you with necklaces etc etc etc. But now that I am no longer actively nursing, and not able to be called in at a moments notice to work, I am wearing different things. So here is the very first piece of jewelry I have made....

Don't you just love the summery colours!

And I think I will try some earrings soon...........will let you all know how that goes too.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Dragons and dust storms

I spotted this Bearded Dragon the other day trying to blend in with the trees. I thought you might like to see him.

I took these today - we have a huge dust storm here - it was 11:30 am when I took them. The redness is the iron that we have in our soils in the interior - the red dust has been blown all the way from the deserts in central Australia.

Sydney was affected earlier than we were here in Queensland, and their airports were closed with flights redirected to Brisbane. You couldn't even see the Harbour Bridge - it is amazing when these things happen, just not looking forward to dusting ..............even though the house has been closed up it gets in everywhere!! Many people in Sydney apparantly woke up to the storms, thinking that the eerie red glow was bushfires, and it really feels like the hazy redness that you get with them.

These pics are of the trees at the front of my place and along the creek at the back - normally can see more trees beyond them.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Well I have been trying to figure out how I can reduce the furniture needed for my art 'stuff ' and how I can have a piece of furniture that could be out in the open in my lounge room or where visitors can easily see. At the moment I have a small wardrobe, a computer desk, books everywhere and a fold-up table all in one corner of the lounge. So I looked at some ideas and came up with this variation on a Victorian writing desk. I just have to decide on how to support the flip down lid for when I am drawing on it....I love the idea that I can close it and hide it all away!! Plus the large flat drawers on the bottom that will take a full sheet of W/C paper, so I can store new paper and finished images. Now I just have to work out when I can get it made, or if I will change the design yet again...............any ideas will be welcomed !

Am starting to do some flowers, not my strong suit, for a winter swap on Wet Canvas. It is coming into summer here, so I really don't feel like doing the cold stuff, besides it doesn't snow where I am in Queensland. In Australia we do have a large number of plants that flower in winter though, and here is a Brachyscome in coloured hoping tha ove the length of this swap my prowees with the flowers in CP will improve.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A link

I have been tip-toeing through the blogosphere looking at inspirational sites and found Linda Huber and her wonderful tutorials on portaiture - they are really terrific and I have recommended them to others so I thought I should mention her here. Please find her at this net address :

It was well worth my time waiting on dial-up for her tutorials to download, so those of you on fast internet services yourselves a favour and check them out.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

1960's Trade

I shall have to 'sketchercise' more............I figure that's what exercising my sketching muscles would be called. I have been doing some serious knitting for the local charity here for winter warmers, but as the warm weather is setting in I am slowing down a bit with that, so will 'sketchercise' more.

Here are a few of my ATC cards from a recent 1960's themed swap.

I am great Hitchcock fan (pity he didn't win an Oscar himself)

I loved copying this iconic image of Peter Fonda in the poster for 'Easy Rider'

Bewitched was one of my favourite shows in the '60s.

And who could forget the 1960's very funny and campy Batman!
("Holy nightlight Batman!" ......
"To the Batmobile Robin!")

I had a lot of fun trolling through movie and TV
references for this card trade.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Birds and Sketch

I have been doing battle with my Derwents and losing - usually resorting to using my watercolour pencils as a dry medium. I just found the Derwents so scratchy and could not get much colour without what seemed like way too much pressure. So I bought a set of 36 Polychromos and I love them! They are as smooth as butter and they have wonderful lightfastness! Almost too good to be true (I just have to live up to them now lol).
These are done with the new Polychromos for a Drawspace Bird ATC swap.I really could see the difference between the cards that I did with the other pencils and the second half after I got the Poly's. Its amazing what a difference a pencil can make.

Sulphur - Crested Cockatoo


This is a quick sketch that I did in the 5 mins before I had my physio appt. I loved the way the purple flower spikes curved and trailed..........done with the 6 watercolour pencils and waterbrush that I carry in my bag with the sketchbook.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Contrary to popular belief I have not shuffled off this mortal coil.........I just haven't updated the blog.......naughty naughty!

I haven't beeen much of a shutterbug, but I have some pics from my last ATC swap titled Childhood. I hosted this one on Drawspace, as well as a cartoon drawing challenge, so I haven't been totally slack while I haven't been here......

Here are a few of the cards that I did for that swap:

I will be a better blogger and be more consistant with my posts.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


I am wanting to be more spontaneous in my art, I will draw straight on the page when its my sketchbook, but I will so often be afraid of the page when it comes to doing a complete piece. I sketch and erase and fiddle and diddle about till I get it right, or if I want to be very precise I will grid up.

Talking to Jeanne Grant (her blog is listed to the side here - check her out), I realised how rigid I can I have decided that while I know I can draw and sketch, what I am lacking is confidence in my own ability. I mean here is a sketch of a folding shopping bag of mine that I did some time ago.

So I can do it - its the belief that is the problem. I just have to refine and practice to make sure I get more confidence in the lines I put on the paper.

In order to do this I got myself a copy of Bert Dodson's "Keys to Drawing". It is amazing that while he is mostly saying a lot of what I have heard or read before, but its the way he says it just "clicks" with me. I will be working my way through the exercises in his book.

I would recommend it to anyone to at least have a look at this book, even if you don't add it to your own library. With pride it has joined my instructive books.

I will add pics periodically to the blog as I work my way through the exercises. I hope it will do as much for my quick sketches and initial drawings for projects as I think it will.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Alphabet Swap

I am in the middle of an Alphabet ATC Swap on Wet Canvas
I just loved trying to come up with ideas for each letter - some are cartoon characters so I won't post those here.

But here are:

J is for Jabberwocky

O is for over

SH (we had 27 people ha ha) is for Sheep
- that's Baa Baa Black Sheep!

And Z is for Zingaro which I believe
is Italian for gypsy.