Thursday, 24 December 2015

Merry Christmas...

Phantom, Sinus and I hope you all have a magical holiday season filled with 
 a grand haul of gifts
  friends and family who think you are special
 a clear run to the checkouts at the grocery shop
 a house that magically cleans itself
no fail recipes and pinterest worthy wrapping
no traffic jams, or surly shop attendants
 a table laden with food that sends your least favourite relative home with a complex
fifty squillion fairy lights
quiet time to catch your breath
a never empty glass of something bubbly to calm the nerves
that the annoying uncle who drives you all nuts falls asleep at an opportune time
and most importantly
that no one gifts you slipper socks... or a foot spa... or regifts what you gave them last year

thanks you for being my tribe and making my life amazing
safe and happy holidays and happy painting xx

Friday, 18 December 2015

My Sort Of Christmas Colours...

The last few days have seen me pondering the whole christmas cheer thing
 I am a bit of a boots and all girl when it comes to Christmas usually
 the cookbooks come out early and complex and in depth menu planning commences
 which is then followed by me cooking the same things as usual of course
 the decorations go up, present lists are drawn up and all the bits and bobs get put out
 after all I like my Christmas to be served with a nice big old helping of kitch
 no colour coordinated, military operation here
 we have a crooked tree and weird and wonderful singing and moving animatronic things
we live in a mish mash of dodgy decorations and slightly sad strings of lights hung at a height that could take off your head if you aren't careful
which I can't tease Sinus about because it was just recent history where Phants and I ended up putting scorch marks on the ceiling of the dining room after our attempts to create a ceiling of fairy lights... turns out you can have too many fairy lights... who knew right
 but this year things haven't felt quite Christmassy
despite the fun challenge of a Christmas light obstacle course to get to the front gate

So I decided to attempt to paint myself into some Christmas cheer 
and every day has been all about the seasonal themed sketch to warm up
which saw me painting up some baubles the other day
followed by a deer head with some gold bits for lights
and it was mildly working... the first stirrings of humming carols started to emerge
and then I got an email suggesting it might feel a bit more Christmassy if I used Christmas colours because otherwise baubles just looked like balls with knobs on them
now I don't know about you but if you find your balls are bright colours and have knobs on them then you should get to the doc pronto because that just doesn't seem right
but that health warning aside it got me thinking
The whole red and green thing does my head in a touch
 and I have used it on occasion but it isn't my favourite pairing
and while I can go the white and icy blue as a great colour combo at any time
it just doesn't scream Christmas to me
for me Christmas has a whole other colour palette

To me Christmas isn't about red and green and snow scenes
I only see red and green together when I am cutting up watermelon
and the only ice is what goes into the blender for frozen margaritas or iced tea slushies
to me it is a season about the deep cerulean blue of the pool and the summer sky
the orange of mangos, peaches, apricots and papaya
not to mention that wonderful red/ orange/ pink of piles of prawns
it is the yellow of pineapples and the sun
the green of the bamboo and palm fronds, and pine lime splice ice blocks
it is the bright colours of the bougainvillea, frangipani trees
and deep pinks of the dragon fruit, and the purples of hydrangeas and agapanthus
it is the red of cherries and lychees
of getting sun kissed and burning your butt on the leather seats when you get in the car
it is the smell of bug spray, and sun tan lotion, the sound of pool splashes and cricket balls
it is all about Christmas cracker paper hats sticking to your sweaty forehead
and groaning at the bad jokes within those same crackers
it is being sticky from eating mangoes and trying to wade through the god awful humidity
and long afternoon naps before being woken by the rumble of afternoon storms
to me that is the sound and colour palette of Christmas and I am sticking with it

happy painting all...xx

PS I am very excited about this challenge next year... have you checked it out yet?

Friday, 11 December 2015


I decided this year was going to be about attempting to catch every opportunity tossed my way... it turned out that that led to things being beyond mad for most of the year. I have been trying to keep all sorts of creative balls in the air for the last two months especially, and it was inevitable that they would all come crashing down in a heap. I am no good at juggling at the best of times, and  suckers were coming at me like I was in one of those crazy ball enclosures in a play centre. I was drowning in the things. But the great thing is that now I get to decide which balls I want to pick up again. 

painting for me is totally going to be a priority. painting up this watercolour peony was just so perfectly fabulous... I am not letting that drop off again.

plus I am going to focus on more teaching... I really loved teaching delicious paint this year, and I have two others in the works plus a couple of free tutorials and things, so it is exciting to know that 2016 will be all about the classes. If you want to be kept up to date on all the info with them then scroll up to the top of the sidebar and sign up for my newsletter... I promise it won't be coming out too often and spamming your inbox... 

The other big thing I am going to keep doing is the large abstracts that a designer now stocks... I love seeing them in the shop and they are great fun to create... so it is in the mix

So all of this means that time is looking a bit full so I have decided to scale back the illustration and only take on jobs that I really want to do. A couple of companies are so amazing to work with and I love doing work for them so they will continue for as long as they want me, but otherwise I am only taking on jobs that really excite me

The print shop and all that will happen as it happens, and the housework is also being de prioritised as always... it is time to step out of the ball pit and get painting... I am working on scaling up the peony watercolour onto a 3 ft square canvas... it is just starting to emerge
happy painting all...xx