Friday, 26 October 2012

Final Epona; there is a melted blue glass tea light holder on the left and there is a cobalt oxide wash to define the detail.
Having done this and read Fifty Shades of awful writing I have decided that I loathe the whole idea of "inner goddesses" with a passion

Thursday, 19 April 2012

 Revisiting the pottery horse and goddess sculpture - Epona

The first stage got the look sorted

however when I returned to it I realised that the female figure had to be cut right back as the woman's head was much too large in relation to the horse...

so there was quite a bit of radical surgery.

I took the female head right back down

After two more sessions I was much happier with her proportions and feel that the horse and female are much more harmonious.

I gave Epona her hair with a braid around the forehead

 then I  worked with the horse's mane and the woman's hair so that they blended into one another...

The figure has been dried out over Easter so will be fired soon; then I will have to decide whether to glaze it or stain it with oxide

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Peak District in snow last week and Clumber Park

On 5th April we drove back from Manchester  and stopped near the summit of the Woodhead Pass to draw trees in the snow with the iPad2. This is the first time I have tried using it as a sketchbook on the go though it was too cold to actually sit outside the car.

The second sketch was made in the car park  overlooking the lake at Clumber Park.

I added more foreground to the picture of Clumber Park lake afterwards as I had left it very unfinished.

Saturday, 24 March 2012

spring progresses...

More iPad Brushes app; I am learning more about colour and different brushes, but I am still getting the layers mixed up at times though.

This is my view from the bedroom window - more daffodils and the weeping willow are out now.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

spring comes to my back garden

Stages in an iPad drawing - with apologies for blatant plagiarism but I am trying to do the same view through the seasons now - and yay! there are daffodils...
Still experimenting with layers, and textures and sneaking a bit of colour in now...

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Monday, 27 February 2012

Still playing at iPad 2 trees with the Brushes App and still don't have as much control as I would like...

The top one is the tree I see from my window, I have been trying to add more colour and use different brush widths.

The second one is from a photo in Dulwich park.

I am trying to decide how to simplify what I see while showing enough of the subject...
Oh dear I have been so busy making Sylvanian clothes* *
that I have neglected this blog, I am obsessed!

However, I am pleased to say that my mixed media piece Mind Games has been selected for the 12th South Holland Arts Exhibition, 29th February to 6th March at the South Holland Centre in Spalding, Lincs

Monday, 13 February 2012

Sylvanians - dressmaking

Dressed Sylvanian mole - for my granddaughters - I'm gradually working out patterns...

Saturday, 11 February 2012

More iPad drawing

My daughter says that there must be a rush on people buying iPads and the Brushes app after seeing the Hockney exhibition. They will then go off creating loads of dodgy landscapes on it. She is quite right! Thanks dd!! Hence my latest go at the tree from my bedroom window... and I am even copying Hockney by drawing the same tree over and over again  (but without his technique of course!!)

I have now found out that I can use many layers to do a slice at a time and go backwards and forwards to work on them.

I did the background last of all and tinted it to get rid of the stark white background.

The foreground tree was done first with a layer underneath to fill in all the tree with a creamy colour - as otherwise the background layers of the pond, trees, ice and snow showed through the trunk where there were no marks made...

I am also playing with the built in brushes now...

I have a Bamboo stylus to use as I found using my fingers very hard.

I have always been reluctant to take a sketchpad out with me as I was afraid of making a complete mess of it - but I am now hoping to use the iPad instead of a laptop when we are away for emails etc etc but also as a discreet sketchbook...

Life Book 2012 - image transfer whimsical self portrait

Life Book 2012 self portrait project; this is an image transfer technique using a reverse photocopied image of myself which was then transferred using acrylic medium and used as the basis of a whimsical picture of myself with crazy hair.

The hardest part was choosing from a given alphabetical list of positive words to write around the self portrait!

I find positivity a real challenge:( - and whimsy!!

More knitted cacti

I must stop now, this is becoming obsessive:(
I promised my daughter-in-law I would knit her a cactus and I have obviously gone mad.
They are still basically different lengths of ribbed tube, gathered up, stuffed with a cardboard base inserted in the bottom of each one and stitched over. The flowers are crocheted in rounds. Fluffy wool made fluffy cacti and also I crocheted on some extra fluff! The Cleistocactus straussii* centre back has knitted flowers rolled up into tubes. (*I know this name because we have a cactus nursery!! I could give them all Latin names lol)
They are all now stuffed into in clay pots.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Knitting cacti and trying to draw with the iPad

My blog has been rather quiet - but I have been knitting ribbed tubes which are drawn up at the end to make a curved top; then they are stitched together and filled with stuffing; then I crocheted flowers - just a chain and a row of double crochet.

I have also been in London to see the Hockney exhibition, it was fantastic and genuinely uplifting...

It is not often you see something genuinely celebratory.

I am now playing with the Brushes app on my iPad  - 2 views from my window and a self portrait from a photograph - but I have a long way to go....

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Life Book 2012 - Light and Dark Goddesses

This has been a very interesting challenge - to represent aspects of oneself through the imagery of a dark and a light goddess; but without going with the evil/good aspects. These are to celebrate the contradictory yet complementary sides of the personality and of life: light/dark; birth/death; yin/yang; feelings/logic; private/public; secretive/open...

I had a generic moon and sun goddess as a work in progress and I knew I wanted to add a bit more detail to them and also name them...

So I have used watercolour glazes and pens and given them some hair to die for!!
I am pleased I carried on as they have a lot more drama and personality now...
They are now Arianrhod and Bridget - I always thought the sun/light goddess was Bridget but my moon/dark goddess was Artemis and I really wanted a Celtic equivalent.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

More mindful mandalas!

Mandalas and Sacred Geometry - Squaring the Circle and other symbolic mandalas

Of course mandalas can be used as profoundly spiritual routes into meditation so I have been looking for mandalas with an added message or significance.

I feel very relaxed when I am filling in mandalas, whether I have drawn them myself or chosen them to complete, so I have been browsing around the web to look at the spiritual aspect of mandalas.

There is a lifetime's reading out there! And I am still only scratching the surface with Jung and his mandala work , however I keep coming across the idea of a sacred geometry
 which has been felt to underpin everything that exists; including the tree of life, Metatron's cube and squaring the circle

Wikipedia says "Squaring the circle is a problem proposed by ancient geometers. It is the challenge of constructing a square with the same area as a given circle by using only a finite number of steps with compass and straight edge. More abstractly and more precisely, it may be taken to ask whether specified axioms of Euclidean geometry concerning the existence of lines and circles entail the existence of such a square.
In 1882 it was proven to be is a mathematical impossibility.."

However, geometry notwithstanding,  I found this rather natty template on and have been playing with it, using a ruler, protractor and circles template because - as is the way with scissors, rulers, glue etc,  I have mislaid the compass.

I much prefer the metaphorical approach to squaring the circle:-

"From the domed Pantheon of ancient Rome, if not before, architects have fashioned sacred dwellings after conceptions of the universe, utilizing circle and square geometries to depict spirit and matter united. Circular domes evoke the spherical cosmos and the descent of heavenly spirit to the material plane. Squares and cubes delineate the spatial directions of our physical world and portray the lifting up of material perfection to the divine.
Constructing these basic images is elementary. The circle results when a cord is made to revolve around a post. The right angle of a square appears in a 3:4:5 triangle, easily made from a string of twelve equally spaced knots. But "squaring the circle"... drawing circles and squares of equal areas or perimeters by means of a compass or rule... has eluded geometers from early times. (2) The problem cannot be solved with absolute precision, for circles are measured by the incommensurable value pi (π = 3.1415927...), which cannot be accurately expressed in finite whole numbers by which we measure squares. (3) At the symbolic level, however, the quest to obtain circles and squares of equal measure is equivalent to seeking the union of transcendent and finite qualities, or the marriage of heaven and earth. Various pursuits draw from the properties of music, geometry, and even astronomical measures and distances. Each attempt offers new insight into the wonder of mathematical order."
Rachel Fletcher,
Squaring the Circle: Marriage of Heaven and Earth
Nexus Network Journal, Vol. 9, No. 1, 2007 119"

I have also found the comtemplative  labyrinth  at Chartres cathedral and used it as a mandala...

It was used by pilgrims as a path for meditation (and I  see it also comes up in the site on sacred geometry; I did not notice until I was fact checking just now about the labyrinth so I seem to be sticking well to my theme:))

The Kabbalistic tree of life....

and a temple plan based on the Vasta Purusha Mandala

also interested me as meaningful mandalas  ...