Friday, 29 January 2016

Beach Dreams...

I have holidays on my mind in a big way this week
 the beach is beckoning and I am feeling the need to feel sand between my toes,
 revel in that crusty crunchy feel of salt drying on your skin
 hair that takes on mild dreadlock tendencies
 which should be something as it is so short now
 afternoons spent walking the long stretches of beach
 cups of tea while floating in the pool
  and most importantly going to sleep to the sound of the waves 

of course there is also a downside to all of the beach loveliness
there is the sand that gets everywhere
the nuclear level burns on the bottoms of your feet getting from your towel to the waves
constantly having blurry sight from salty air coating your glasses
not to mention the whole crap shoot that is my packing method
I prescribe to the pack with abandon and chuck it all in in ten minutes school of packing
I believe it adds a touch of random fun to the holiday
the family will grumble the whole bloody time of course

The one thing that isn't packed with abandon is books
this is a deadly serious process
Phants and I start building our piles a few weeks before
then there are constant revisions and discussions
until we get the right balance of literature and beach reads
not to mention we have to have sufficient variety for every possible reading mood
we are nearing our final piles but they aren't quite there yet
we deviated from the process this process last year after heckling from Sinus Man
 and then we had to go to the bookshop as we ran out of books
the shame ... no fear this year though as the process is happily back in place
not many sleeps to go now
happy painting all...xx

Ps there is a new youtube video
and Barry tries to steal the limelight of course...

Friday, 22 January 2016


It is time to introduce you all to Barry
 the cat who adopted us... we think
 he is here all the time, and makes himself totally at home sleeping on beds and laps so we think we are now his owners
 For many months he used to pop over and say hello then disappear for a day or two
 he was here so much that we started giving him a name as calling him cat seemed wrong
 this is despite the fact that my childhood dog was called Dog
 anyway we tried out a few, but Barry seemed to trump them all
 but then we noticed Bazza was getting skinnier and skinnier
 and despite our efforts to find an owner he appears to be a stray
 He has been spending more and more time here... full time in fact
 and we couldn't watch him get thinner by the minute so of course we fed him
 and now he has moved in

He is a lot more handsome than this sketch indicates
turns out they are quite the challenge to paint 
but he is quite lovely for a cat and appears to have a bundle of quirks
some weird phobias, the iron , spaces behind doors, and fresh ginger... yep a knob of ginger shows up and he is freaked out and tries to attack it before beating a hasty retreat
he is weirdly uncoordinated, does a great slinky impression, loves being on your lap or in your arms, drools when he purrs, which is a lot btw, and is insanely vocal... he literally yell-meows at us left right and centre, but he is training us up nicely and we seem to be communicating better now

He is not a dog... and he is no Mushu the wonder mutt, but he is a lovely addition to the clan
happy painting all...xx

Friday, 15 January 2016

Painting demo...

Early last year I made this painting for a project for a class for Soul Food
 It was a great experience, but sadly Soul Food is no more
 so I decided to re-edit and cut to the interesting bits and make it available on youtube...
 because I started a channel over there which was Phant's idea
 I kept saying there was all sorts of things I would like to include in classes that didn't really fit with the subjects but would be handy for people to know maybe
and so Phants sat down and opened a channel in about two minutes flat
told me to stop boring her with all this stuff and post it instead and promptly walked off muttering about inept mothers
now I was mildly put out as I feel I listen to her endless discourses on subjects such as literary theory, the perils of the wrong mascara, and why Halsey is the voice of a generation
but it had some merit so I am dipping my toes in..

of course in true style it is still slightly dodgy and the narration on this one is a tad tired
because it took twenty six thousand takes or there about
because the bloke next door would yell at a kid, I would sneeze, I would record over part, but not others, I would forget to blank out old narration so it came through as a chipmunk in the background, I forgot what I was saying and started just chatting randomly, well you get the idea... so it sounds a tad flat and tired, because I was weary and tired and so sick of watching the bloody thing and seeing those same bloody tea mugs...
So if that magnificent introduction has sold you on it, then here it is to have a watch...

  Outside of doing all of that palaver, there was the sending out my first newsletter,
setting up delicious paint on a new platform... not finished by a long shot btw... and opening the print shop on my website.
All of which has made me wish I was either twenty years younger, or that I didn't have the attention span of a gnat when Phants is explaining things to me

Once all of that was behind me I got in and did some drawing, which calmed my whole being into a place where I lost the mad look in my eyes and the twitching of my left shoulder
tonal drawing just settles me and calms my brain back to a manageable state
I also completed another page in the sketchbook I am using for the Colour Me Positive prompts... two weeks and still sitting at 100%... small miracles abounding left right and centre around here at the moment
thank goodness for art to restore my sanity after a wrestle with the computer
I have to say a cordless keyboard may not be the best thing for me as I end up very tempted to hurl the bloody thing at regular intervals

maybe it will grow wings on the way down lol...
happy painting all...xx

Friday, 8 January 2016

Holiday Wrap Up...

Christmas and New Year are done and dusted and thoughts are turning to the fun ahead
 but I wanted to take a moment to reflect on all that was wonderful in the last few weeks

I found the greatest candle ever to exist... a giant pink flamingo candle
I mean come on people this is the very definition of kitsch genius
this is closely followed by the joy of now owning a fart whistle
yep.. my life is now almost complete
well close to it... a blow up donut floaty thing for the pool would complete it

My mum came out with the quote of the season when she declared
It isn't Christmas until Grandma is flashing
not touching that one... will just leave you with that image lol

Jigsaw madness ensued as is the norm at this time of the year
we even had to set up outside for meals over Christmas as we couldn't use the dining table
as we had one in progress and it wasn't done yet so it took table precedence
this was finally finished and promptly followed by setting up a new one
with Phants and I spending New Year's eve on an epic quest to complete a 1500 piecer
in record time in a 12 hour window... we party hard here I tell you
sadly it took us until 1.20 am so we fell short of our midnight deadline
but it was impressive none the less... 
and an honorable mention must go out to my MIL Loretta for her early help
a dishonourable mention to Sinus Man who was bloody useless in our quest and did not contribute one stinking piece

we appear to have been adopted by a cat who we have called Barry
he gave us a test run last year for a time but he appears to be back full time
downside is that he loves to sleep on the shade cloth on the pergola outside the back door 
and every time we use the door he drop bears us
my nerves are shot I tell you
plus he is unexpectedly dumb and uncoordinated
we are talking tripping up stairs, trying to hide behind a single spindly branch and having a meow that is like a whole song of woah

some light painting has recommenced with some sketchbooks dragged out
and the palette and pens are at the ready
I even managed to do the first prompt for the Colour Me Positive Challenge 
which means I am sitting on a 100% strike rate for that challenge so far which I call a win

we have also commenced the declutter of the century
the studio is almost done and a few rooms are finished which is truly fabulous
 loads have been going to the tip and charity shops and the cull continues with abandon
of course the only reason I have embarked on such a venture is that I want to get a book on decluttering when I am done and then be smugly read that sucker knowing there are like three extraneous things left in the house, one of which is the book itself
nothing like a smug self help reading to make you feel good about yourself
happy painting all...xx

PS... my first newsletter will be going out next week with all the details on when online classes are starting for this year... if you haven't signed up head up to the top of the page and sign up...