Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Heavenly rottweiler and co.

My recent purchase of Inkadinkado's Dog's Life stamps brought a wonderful surprise with it. One of the stamps is a Rottweiler with angel wings. Those who have been reading my blog for a little while will remember that my sister had a Rottie called Stanley. He is wonderful. Like many people I was wary of Rottweilers. I never thought they were the demons they were portrayed by the media but, still, I felt they might be short tempered. As a pup Stanley was nuts. He paid no attention to anyone and bounced around like a rubber ball. However, he had his first birthday last week and has mellowed beautifully. So I was very happy to find a rubber stamp of a Rottie in a packet of rubber stamps that were mainstream. I had to make something so fridge magnets were the order of the day. A scrap of matt board, hand painted paper and black ink made the base. I added detail of the ginger fur with coloured pencil then used copper tape around the edge. A coat or three of Diamond Glaze added gloss and durability. The final step was a bit of magnetic strip and some Pebeo Metallic Touch dots.

As it happened there was also a stamp in the set like my sister's other dog, Oz. Being a silhouette stamp and Oz being black I didn't have to do much. A little flick of a paintbrush with white acrylic gave the dog Oz's trademark white chest flash and some aluminium tape toned in with the blue background.

I wrapped them up in a little handmade white card box, stamped with another Dog's Life stamp and gave them to my sister.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

I've got Bramblings!

No, it's not a horrible disease. Bramblings are little birds from the finch family. They come from Russia and Norway and visit Britain during the winter months and I have never seen any before. Usually they are very shy but I read today that they will venture into gardens to feed during very severe winters. Considering we have had more snow that I have seen in years I think February could definitely be considered part of a severe winter. These birds are so attractive with their yellowish chests and mottled heads and tummies. The female is one of the prettiest female garden birds I have seen yet. Usually female birds get to be dull greys and browns. I'm very glad they came to visit. I'm afraid the photos are not great because I took them through the kitchen window which was splashed with rain drops.

Last week I managed to capture a brilliant image by pure chance. I just happened to press the shutter button on my camera as the action happened. A poor old blackbird fell off a snowy branch and splatted in the snow. I couldn't have taken that photo even if I tried. He didn't fall far - just a couple of inches - and he got up and ran off after another male blackbird that was trying to eat his food.

Friday, 13 February 2009


Here is a Valentine's card I made for my Mum to give to my Dad. My family decided they would rather pay me for my cards than spend money in the shops for something that will just be thrown away. So I get asked to make cards for all sorts of occasions - including St Valentines - my least favourite festivity. There is something about the day that is very artificial for me. Everyone is being told they have to do something nice for their loved one, spend, spend, spend, but I would rather have something given to me for no reason at any other time of the year. It doesn't take much imagination to buy a bunch of flowers or a box of choccies when every shop is screaming at you about Valentines and waving giant hearts and teddies. If someone does something for you for no other reason than they love you then, to me, that means more than a thousand Valentines.

Anyway, the card was made with hand painted paper that was embossed with orange and copper embossing powder. The heart was cut from chipboard, covered with hand painted paper, lightly stamped, had a coating of oil-on-water foil round the edge and gold acrylic smooshed round the circumference. Then came the ultra thick embossing enamel. While the second coat was still molten I sprinkled micro beads onto it and added another coat of UTEE. A little 3D foam, some shiny red card as a mat and and a cream hammered card and it was done.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Life in miniature

I have been painting a little more these last few days. For some reason painting flows, then stops, flows, then stops. However, I am about to embark on a large commission so I felt I had to at least pick up a paintbrush and fling a little paint around. Here are two miniatures - one of a puppy watching a butterfly, the other of a badger watching a butterfly.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Post It post

I am a Post It note fiend. I also have a chronically bad memory which is why I need the Post Its. My bookcases, desk and any other available surface has Post It lists attached to it. What to do, what I've done and shopping lists galore. They come in square, rectangular, big and small. In short, I love 'em! So my mini Post Its inspired me to make some covers for them. They are made from hand painted watercolour paper that I rubber stamped using a selection of Inkadinkado acrylic stamps. The holes were reinforced with eyelets just so they last a little longer.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Snow time for fun?

It snowed yesterday. And snowed and snowed and snowed. To top it all of it snowed a little more. I haven't seen this much snow in years. Compared to some places I could mention it is just a drop in the ocean but Britain has been lacking in snow for a few years now. Everyone was blaming global warming, of course, so councils were totally unprepared for the situation this time. Now the media are complaining about all the school that shut and people who could not get into work. I find that sad. People up and down the country have been out in the snow having a great deal of fun. These days, when people are loosing their homes and jobs due to the credit crisis it is nice to see something joyful happening. I, myself, went for a walk in the snow yesterday and today shoveled snow to clear the path to my door. I had fun. I even built a little snowman out of the snow I cleared away.

Not to be outdone I created a few sparkling snowflakes of my own to hang inside too. Some die cut snowflake punched out of hand painted papers were liberally glittered using a new glitter I bought. It is made up of strands rather than tiny dots and gives a different effect. It also spreads for a mile when you spill it on the work surface.


Seth at The Altered Page has created a new collaboration of artists taking part in a project of disintegration. Basically you wrap up a bundle of papers any way you like then place it in a nature and watch what happens. Those taking part have posted before photos of their paper bundles and will post after pictures on the first of May in a grand unveiling. As a nature observer I have seen many things disintegrate through natural actions and it is fascinating. This is the first time I have seen art created out of it. I chose to make my bundle in the form of ancient scrolls. Anyone who has watched documentaries about ancient history will be familiar with the image of piles of scrolls in museums. Discoveries of ancient scrolls are often of decrepit sheets, rolled tightly and crushed by time. Now I get the chance to see my very own snapshot of the ravages of time.

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

What a card!

These are some of the cards I have made over the last month. So many celebrations - birthdays, anniversaries, etc. Next stop on the greetings card express will be Easter.