Friday, 11 November 2016

Furniture Jenga...


The renovations continue... endlessly
 but it is certainly getting to a stage where I can kind of see the end in sight
 The continued chaos is fuelling my need to exert control somewhere 
  so my paintings are continuing to lean towards realism to soothe my poor frazzled brain
 and I am loving the progress on this one... I might even get to finish it later

There may be more realism to come though
as we aren't going to be done for a few more weeks yet
demolition and reconstruction continues at breakneck speed
 but soon we will at least have the right things in the right room again
at the moment it requires us to move things from one to another as walls are demolished, doors moved and different rooms are worked on
it is sort of like a giant furniture and homewares game of Jenga


I have always been a fan of Jenga
not that I have skills in this arena...I am actually pretty rubbish if truth be told.
My Dad however, is scarily good at it
he blitzed us all one Christmas night a few years ago.
Now on one hand as a retired builder you would hope he would be good at it
but his nicknames, courtesy of Sinus, are either Thumbs, or Knuckles 
and the man has never met a tablecloth that he didn't feel the need to spread crumbs over
or a floor he didn't like to drop something on, and he does have a noticeable, albeit slight, hand tremble so you would think he could have been picked off like low hanging fruit
but no... he was a bloody genius at it


I however excel at dishwasher Jenga... and fridge Jenga
I can stack things in those suckers like no one else.
it is a weird savant type ability as I have no spatial awareness to speak of
and don't even mention depth perception
but somehow fridge and dishwasher Jenga are my thing
perhaps I got more from Dad than just my hair
which showed up as it grew in post chemo and led to him walking in one day and me realising we were sporting matching hair cuts... like exactly! 
same colour, sticking up in the same places... the whole hair shebang...

I had hoped my fridge Jenga prowess would transfer to furniture jenga 
to make the furniture moving for the renovations a bit easier
but I totally suck at it... turns out a large chair on a small pouf doesn't work
well it works if you like a cascade of chair and objects with the first gust of wind
but even I didn't believe myself when I said that was my objective
So I will continue to leave furniture jenga to the experts and will retreat to the studio to attempt to finish this painting

happy painting all...xx


Friday, 28 October 2016

When Renovations Give You Lemons...


Next time I calmly announce we are living in the house while undertaking a major renovation then I want you to take a dirty great back swing and slap me silly because I will obviously be in a delusional state and will need a good flogging to set my head straight!

We have renovated before, though it was a while ago now, and I seriously thought it would be a bit of noise, a bit of dust, and as we hardly live in a quiet, pristine organised environment how different could it be... well I was so far off track it is insane. 

The noise has been epic, the dust has moved through the house in drifts, and the mess and living out of boxes thing has been quite the challenge. Not that I don't mind the obstacle course nature of it, I think that is quite fun. The opportunity to do a commando roll to get to the broom is a joy everyone should experience. But five weeks in and I am kind of over it.

It isn't just the noise and dust, it is also the need to be up at sparrow's fart to greet tradesmen who are either crazy early, or epic-ally late depending on which opposite you require... if you have to get somewhere then you can guarantee the will be at least an hour late, and if you have been a tad tardy getting yourself together, then you can guarantee they will all be very early!... I swear the patron saint of all tradies must be bloody Murphy and most of these guys spent their whole lives worshiping him I tell you. They have all been amazing when they are here and we have been blessed with the nicest bunch of tradesmen ever and are doing amazing work, they just have no sense of time... seriously... their watches must all be synced up to a weird alternate sun because they turn up according to tradie time zone.. 


Tradesmen and their rather flexible schedules aside we are making progress... one bathroom was completely demolished in a two day jack hammering marathon... another was half demolished... those two have been rebuilt, a third has had a light reno, so outside of some painting they are sorted...
Floors have been ripped up and changed over to a gleaming loveliness. The kitchen was demolished and after more than a week of camping with no sink, oven, cook top or bench-tops we are finally approaching a usable area again... almost

As I type the pergola is being upgraded, doors and windows are being prepped for moving, and built in banquette seating is being designed and fabrics chosen, which is the fun bit of course...
which means in a few short weeks or so we will be done except for the painting and decorating of course
and the new front fence, garage door, jungle garden cull and painting the outside of the house... dear god it is never going to end

so I am doing what all creatives do when life is out of control, I am channeling that need for control into my art and doing some quite realistic styled watercolors. I just try to zen out on the need for observation and detail.
happy painting all...xx


When Renovations Give You Lemons...


Next time I calmly announce we are living in the house while undertaking a major renovation then I want you to take a dirty great back swing and slap me silly because I will obviously be in a delusional state and will need a good flogging to set my head straight!

We have renovated before, though it was a while ago now, and I seriously thought it would be a bit of noise, a bit of dust, and as we hardly live in a quiet, pristine organised environment how different could it be... well I was so far off track it is insane. 

The noise has been epic, the dust has moved through the house in drifts, and the mess and living out of boxes thing has been quite the challenge. Not that I don't mind the obstacle course nature of it, I think that is quite fun. The opportunity to do a commando roll to get to the broom is a joy everyone should experience. But five weeks in and I am kind of over it.

It isn't just the noise and dust, it is also the need to be up at sparrows fart to greet tradesmen who are either crazy early, or epic-ally late depending on which opposite you require... if you have to get somewhere then you can guarantee the will be at least an hour late... I swear the patron saint of all tradies must be bloody Murphy and most of these guys spent their whole lives worshiping him I tell you. They have all been amazing when they are here and we have been blessed with the nicest bunch of tradesmen ever and are doing amazing work, they just have no sense of time... seriously,,, there watches must all be synched up to a weird alternate sun because they turn up according to tradie time zone.. 


Tradies and their rather flexible schedules aside we are making progress... one bathroom was completely demolished in a two day jack hammering marathon... another was half demolished... those two have been rebuilt, a third has had a light reno, so outside of some painting they are sorted...
Floors have been ripped up and changed over to a gleaming loveliness. The kitchen was demolished and after more than a week of camping with no sink, oven, cook top or bench-tops we are finally approaching a usable area again... almost

As I type the pergola is being upgraded, doors are being prepped for moving, as we are also doing several windows, and built in banquette seating is being designed and fabrics chosen, which is the fun bit of course...
which means in a few short weeks or so we will be done except for the painting and decorating of course
and the new front fence, garage door, jungle garden cull and painting the outside of the house... dear god it is never going to end

so I am doing what all creatives do when life is out of control, I am channeling that need for control into my art and doing some quite realistic styled watercolors. I just try to zen out on the need for observation and detail.
happy painting all...xx


Friday, 7 October 2016

Dusting Off The Blog...


Two weeks is a long time in renovation world let me tell you
 the dust
 the noise
 the jackhammers
 the mess
 it has been epic!!!!
 but happily today the last of the dusty awful stuff is done
 well until Monday at least 
 so I got to spend a glorious hour or two corralling dust and crap
  or at least the worst of it
  and for two and a half long and amazing days
 no dust, no tradies and no noise
 It is going to be bliss
I may even be able to drink a little less nerve calming Dandelion tea
I adore this stuff... not for everyone I know
but it is awesome with just a touch of honey...


 I have spent the time somewhat wisely
 I have been working in a frenzied and crazy manner getting 
 up and going
and by late tomorrow all of the lessons will be open 
and people can work through at their leisure
I always forget how long it takes to upload the videos etc
which perhaps hasn't been helped by our rather dodgy internet connection
i have a sneaking suspicion that believing Sinus when he said he had the skills to upgrade and install an new high speed modem thingy.
I blame the dust for my possible poor judgement in that area!


Other genius things have happened too
I got a new mug
and it is perfection...


Barry has decided it is great fun to help me paint
not perfection
bloody cat has been driving me nuts

Phants got a sleep app
and then spent two days working out how to fool it into thinking she is asleep
It was such a proud moment for her which had me shaking my head
she has some serious issues I tell you

and then today we saw an old bloke in a motorized wheelchair
flying along outside our favourite coffee place at a rate of knots
while wearing a helmet and with his dog riding shotgun
he was getting some serious speed up and they were both loving it
makes your whole day to see something like that.


I am getting back to uploading more videos so I can get more of these lessons open
if you are interested in my lino classes there are some buttons in the side bar showing the various options
If you add the code EARLYBIRD before the 17th Oct
you get quite the discount too
it has life time access so you can buy now and play later if that works for you
maybe I will see you in class
happy painting... and printing all...xx





Friday, 23 September 2016

The Sneeze House...

I must admit that there is a mild chance that my brain may in fact implode this week
 The dreaded/much anticipated renovation starts for real and for just three messy and noisy weeks my studio will be smack bang in the middle of demolition central
I am not sure how much painting will be tackled, but I am hoping that at least enough to maintain my tenuous hold on my sanity will be possible

 added to this excitement, spring has arrived
 with its seasonal swathe of sneezing and watery eyes
 not to mention the truly awe inspiring sneezes from our neighbor
 you have to admire a sneeze that can be heard through two sets of walls, a huge bloody fence and  across the yard... this sneeze is so epic it stuns me
the only disappointment is it is always a single so it scares the bejeezus out of you and then disappears before your heart beat even looks like returning to normal
sometimes I wish it was a pair, or a triple so I could truly admire the force of them, but I am always mildly stunned from hearing it so I don't get to stop and truly admire its volume
not that I admire it so much that I want to be too close
as I fear such volume may come with flyers... and that is never pleasant



But neighborhood sinus stories aside
and you will note I am blithely ignoring the fact that we are in peak snore season here in our house... I scarily think we may all be quite something to hear and perhaps sneeze house call us snore house... though I doubt we can even touch the volume required... perhaps as the season progresses we may work achieve such heights.. maybe
 Hayfever matters aside, I do love Spring well except for Barry's shenanigans
there is always something isnt there... Mushu used to sneeze on our feet and generally snot us to bits, but Barry seemed to be completely uneffected by seasonal snot so I was hopeful that spring life would be quieter with a cat
unhappily with the return of the warm weather sees a return to Barry sleeping in his self proclaimed cat hammock that is the shade cloth over the pergola
this is a genius spot as he can safely watch all that is going on, happily taunt the poor dog that lives in the sneeze house
and drop bear me like crazy when I go out to hang out the washing... every time he gets me
I swear I will just get used to looking up when I go outside and it will be high summer and he will have retreated in front of the aircon like the smart feline that he is
he got me twice this week
washing dropped on the ground, nerves shot and muttered curses that would make a longshoreman blush
quite frankly I sometimes wonder if my nerves will survive the season

When my sanity is in doubt there is always work to get me through
the blue and white love is continuing
This large lino printed urn is finally done 
and awaiting a frame to hang beside the other one
of course on seeing the two together I am more certain then ever that a third of the same huge proportions is required for them to really look great
so I will be turning my brain to planning another this week

on top of the painting I have been crazily filming and writing and the lino class should be up 
October 1
I am so excited to finally have this class opening and if you want to be kept up to date with it all and get the early access to introductory/ explantory video and information then scroll back up to the top of the page to sign up for the newsletter
I am actually filming and doing it as two classes... one for beginners, and one the next step on, so people can do the one that suits, or bundle both together
it is just such a huge area and if I was teaching it in person I would run it this way, so Lino Printing 101 and Lino Printing 201 will come in to being soon
exciting times ahead
happy painting all...xx