Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Find some joy in your life

A couple of weeks ago, we watched 'The Bucket List' starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, about two men who escape from a cancer ward and decide to complete a list of tasks before they die. Of all the things that they did, the one that struck me the most was 'find some joy in your life'. The Jack Nicholson character, whilst being fabulously wealthy, was a fairly unpleasant character who was estranged from his family, and finding joy was one of the things that he couldn't buy. It made me think of some of the people in my life who have been through some terrible things recently, but manage to stay positive. My husband has often been known to call me a duck (i.e. gliding along on the surface of things but paddling like mad underneath) and there is a tendency to dwell on all the hard things in life when you are feeling a bit out of control, but probably what we should do is focus on the happy things, however tiny. Like this morning for example, when my five year old crawled into bed in his stripy pj's, all warm and soft, and covered my face in kisses. With a start like that, it doesn't matter how bad the day gets, that little boy will make me smile all day....

The background is acrylic paints, water soluble crayons, oil pastels. The pennants at the top are hand-drawn on 7gypsies 'catalina' paper, the letters are magazine clippings. The images are from lisa' altered art and the leaf shapes are from Stampin' up, stamped onto pages from an old german paperback.


Back to the Claudine-esque style for my friend who after a very stressful 12 months has finally moved into her new house. We went to school together, our children are the same ages and we have had to maintain our friendship over hundreds of miles for years, but now she lives only about 30 miles away, which is fantastic for both us and the children. Anyway, in her new downstairs loo, she has a couple of framed pieces of artwork by visitors, so I thought she might add this canvas to the collection. It is all Studioline paints, some old book text and marker pen.

Monday, 19 October 2009

Didn't we have a lovely time...


What bliss! After a week of operating at full tilt, where I was in danger of meeting myself coming back the other way, what better way to wind down than spending a day with Kate getting messy? We made gift bags, Christmas bunting (not finished mine yet) and then got the paints out and got messy. This canvas came together really quickly and was very therapeutic. It started out quite Christmassy, but ended up not so, but I still like it. I'm going to make some of these as Christmas presents for my special friends, instead of Christmas cards.
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Thursday, 8 October 2009

The eternal search

Ooh, I've had a lovely time this evening - kids in bed, husband out, iPod on, inks out (in fact my hands are now blue)and I've made lots of mess. It's therapy, relaxation, whatever, it just helps me to download. Anyway, as a tall girl who also happens to be on the curvaceous side, I find it tricky buying jeans. If they fit me in one place, they don't fit me in others, and if they fit most places, then they are too short to wear with anything but flip flops! Last year, on a shopping trip to New York I found THE perfect jeans, and they were soooo long I had to take a couple of inches off them, even wearing them with platform heels, which at 5'11 (and a bit)is pretty unheard of for me. But, they are black, and I want them in blue! I have been searching for them ever since, but it appears they do not exist. I guess I have two options: go back to New York (sounds like a plan), or ask our local butcher to use his meat slicer to shave bits off me, so that I will fit in the kind of jeans that the Claudia Schiffers of this world manage to wear. I know which option I am erring towards...

Anyway, the tags are from a pair of jeans that I bought recently, and are purely functional - i.e. they can be worn for work and it doesn't matter if they get covered with paint/snot/poo etc.
The hems and pocket are from a pair of Gap jeans of my daughters. I have been trying to persuade her that they are way too small for her now, but she still insists on wearing them - but not any more, ha ha! The background is adirondack denim ink pad applied direct to paper and the stamps are Tim Holtz, with a couple of 7gypsies rub ons.

Saturday, 3 October 2009

Rants of the middle aged

I'm not sure when middle age officially starts, but my ranting has definitely hit 'writing letters to the editor' proportions this last few weeks. Had fun getting some of it off my chest anyway. The images are from Lisa's altered art and stamps are Paperartsy and Tim Holtz. I used sequin waste and acrylic paints for the background - a mixture of babywiped studioline and ranger dabbers.
Feeling on a bit of a roll at the moment, but I think preparing a few backgrounds in advance has helped, and I sat in front of the tv the other night and cut out several sheets of images so that they are ready to go whenever the creative fairy visits. It certainly speeds things up. I have been known to put on a coat of paint before breakfast this week, slap on another before leaving for work and then tackle the page proper between the kids bedtime and mine. Hmm, maybe that's why my son ended up at his swimming lesson without his trunks this week? Off to batten down the hatches at the allotment now, as riding Megan in the gales outside my window at the moment is not an idea I relish. Apparently they have already lost power and telephone lines up at the stables and as I write the power has flickered off and on here too. Best post this quick!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Swimming with the Fishes

No, not like that! Last weekend I had an amazing experience, swimming a mile in a local lake. The early morning mist made it really magical, and the opportunity to see the wildlife from a different angel was really special. Can't wait to do it again! The images are from phenomenen1859 and indigochyld on Etsy, the background is old book pages, studio line paints and oil pastels and charcoal. It's the first journal page I have done that I feel quite happy with, although I think that I'll probably go back and tinker a bit. As I can't find my camera, I had to scan it, which makes me think that in future I'll make journal pages that fit the scanner better!