Friday, 25 March 2016

Grasshopper Carnage...

I have had grasshoppers on the brain for days
 which is quite something as I kind of detest the creepy, weird legged, clicky noise buggers 
 Two different people brought them up with me in different contexts early in the week
 but it was just yesterday that it took on truly fantastic proportions

One happened to be doing a passable imitation of a stone in the pool
it was backstroking rather sadly while slowly doing the inevitable titanic sink
which required me to rescue it from being sucked into the filter 
or meeting its end in the watery depths
well it required me asking Sinus to rescue its poor grasshopper butt 
as there is no way in holy high water I am not touching its weirdness
Sinus duly scooped the poor thing out and placed it gently on the side of the pool 
from where it promptly took off like its butt was on fire
 reaching mach 1 in about two seconds
and flew straight into the side of the shed at about the speed of light
now this would normally be a bit tragic, but because it was still wet from the pool
it happened to leave a wet shadow on the wall of the shed like a cartoon character
there was a visible splat...
 it's little creepy legs were splayed and its watery imprint was there for all to see
which led to a scary amount of hilarity considering the end to the poor tragic sod
but hey... at least he went out at speed, flying free and garnering a laugh
there are certainly worse ways to go and I have immortalised him and faffed him up a bit giving him some lovely colours, rather than his boring brown stickiness
I am hoping that means I now have grasshoppers out of my system and will be untroubled by crazy, suicidal ones for the foreseeable future

mugs from top right to bottom right... Catarina Engberg, Carol Nafey Kutz, Cupcake, Myself and Silke Powers
I am not tired of my Cuppa project and hoping to get it out of my system however
after yet another hiatus it is back in full swing
and it is fabulous fun to have them back gracing my desk and inspiring me to finish each studio day with a bit of sketching and painting
if you want info on it there is a tab up the top
or you can click here 
you might even want to contribute a photo of your favourite cuppa or mug
have a safe and happy easter all...xx

Friday, 18 March 2016

All About The Cocky...

I was rather rudely woken up this morning by a flock of raucous sulphur crested cockatoos
  these things are swarming like locusts during the apocalypse
 and they were going off their tiny little bird brains 
 making a racket similar to a horde of little kids hopped up on sweeties and fizzy drinks
 Our tree was briefly reduced to a seething mass of fluro yellow and white
feathers were flying, seed pods were being devoured like nobody's business
with leftover pods being tossed aside like little missiles onto the tin roof
it was quite the wake up call
and no I didn't take photos... though in my defence
it was ridiculously early and it was a tad overwhelming being torn from sleep and subjected to nature in all its fury like that
mind you it was all over in minutes 
and I was left standing there gaping at the now rather nicely trimmed tree
and wondering if perhaps I had imagined it
only the rather traumatised and shaking figure of Barry the cat beside me 
told me I wasn't going round the twist and the tree had been briefly swarmed by birds

So after that sort of wake up
I thought it only appropriate to draw up one of the noisy buggers
They have now moved through the neighbourhood 
and last seen were heading in the direction of the golf course
which has to be close to cocky heaven with all those trees bursting with seed pods
and now my mind is turning to creating a lino print of one of them
I got in and did a tea cup lino print during the week
mind you I got a bit cocky... yep I went there
and decided to do a two colour version
my registration skills are a tad rusty I have to say

 But all in all the fun trumps not being perfectly lined up
happy painting all...xx

Friday, 11 March 2016

Lino Friday...

I think we all understand creative obsessions
 and I have been known to give in to mine more often than I can count
 but I have actually shown restraint in the latest one
 It shocks the socks off me that I have managed to do it
 but it turns out I can actually not drop everything and plunge headlong into whatever creative whim takes my fantasy, but to be honest now that I know I can do it
 I probably won't need to go down that road again
 I can return to being having a glorious case of attention deficit... oooo paint

This latest obsession all started when we were on holidays recently
I bought a couple of gorgeous lino prints to bring home
in fact it was amazing that I didn't buy about twenty as this work was just perfect
and from that moment on I have been thinking about wanting to do a few lino prints
I hunted down my tools and brayer and all that as soon as we arrived home
only to find tools had rusted, brayer had a big dent in it
and the ink had dried so hard it was like something the centre of the world had coughed up
so off to the art supply I go
which had nothing
then another one... nada again
finally third time lucky and I got some stuff
I was so happy I took off out of the store and home to the studio like my duds were on fire
the joy of it all was almost too much and I happily pulled out this sketch which had been rattling away in the back of the old noggin as a likely opening subject

But then of course all sorts of things got in the way
the epic de-clutter of 2016 Part 1 took place
playing with Barry the cat takes up a silly amount of time
the great wall of washing had grown exponentially every time I walked past the laundry
contemplating my toenails even took precedence at one point
what can I say... I have a wonky big toenail which is just weirding me out
Of course then illustration jobs started mounting up
a commission was taxing the brain
not to mention getting Delicious Paint up and running was going to be epic
but despite some growing stress levels
my brain just kept going back to lino
so I decided to do the delayed gratification thing
and tell myself I could do some lino when all some of those things was done

So today was the day
Some illustrations had gone out this week
prints packaged and sent
commission contemplated at least
and Delicious Paint is up and running and filled with all sorts of wonderful people
so I sat down this morning and drew up
quickly carved and then printed this sucker
such fun... harder than I remember and I need some serious practice
but totally worth the wait

In fact I am going to go and hunt through the sketchbooks for my next subject
happy painting all...xx

PS if you want to come and join us in Delicious Paint

Friday, 4 March 2016

A Great Week...

I have had the best week

 I found an awesome bunch of sugar bananas which were screaming to be painted
 one of which happened to have a weird knob on the end
  like it is giving the world a little dose of banana naughty finger
 it is important to find joy in the little things isn't it...
 Years ago I saw this awesome painting of a hand of bananas from this sort of angle
 and I have been wanting to do something along those lines ever since
 this week I managed to achieve that
 I only wish I had the original sketch that inspired it so I could credit it...
I hate not being able to do that... 

Plus I have fitted in all sorts of little sketches between illustration jobs
and hours spent at the computer
It is no small miracle that my brain hasn't exploded despite spending every spare minute
to get my Delicious Paint online class up and running by my deadline of the 8th March
and yes it is a self imposed deadline, but if I start letting myself off from these things then it leads to a vortex of procrastination, indecision and despair... so 8th of March is D day

The great joy of running it again is that I can revamp, refresh and redo bits
and while that is a bit of a slightly slippery slope
 and has added quite a bit of time to the preparation
I am loving using CourseCraft to set it up, and I must admit it feels a bit more like me with the additions so I am really happy with how it is shaping up and it is very cool to create it
I will be skating close to the wire to hit that date
but I love the smell of burning brain cells in the evening

I even think I may have worked out a way for alumni to be able to be able to rejoin
so they can access the new content...just a kink or two to work out there
but I don't need all of my brain cells right

Another positive is that Barry the cat is settling in nicely
and in a magnificent turn up for the books
I found a teeny tiny shark costume
I think it is for a tiny dog but I am hoping I can convince Barry to wear it
then I need to make a deal with either my mother or my friend Ange
who both have Roomba vacuum thingies
so I can recreate what is possibly the greatest internet video of all time
I feel mildly nervous that so many good things are happening
but just the thought that we may be able to get him into a shark costume and onto a roomba is enough to make me skip through the days

And in a final snippet of joy I found a secret stash of raw chocolate
which I had completely forgotten about
This is shaping up to be an amazing week!!!!
happy painting all...xx

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