Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Pure silk

These are two of my silk scarves that I have recently started to make and sell in my Etsy store. I am always looking for new crafts to try and the silk scarves are the latest. I have to say they are great fun to make, if a little time consuming to steam set the silk dyes. But what great gifts they make. I have already sold one of the husky scarves and have a couple of commissions for more. The fox scarf is stamped using a hand carved rubber stamp that I made a couple of years ago and never used. The beauty of it is that the foxes are discretely placed on the fabric so they look like they are merging into the fabric - just like a real fox merging with the undergrowth. It's like a puzzle - you have to search for the foxes among the colours. If you want to see more pictures of them you can find them in my Etsy store.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Much to do

This is the time of year when we all have loads of things to do so what better way to remind oneself about those important little (and large) jobs than with a 'To do' list. I saw some on Etsy for sale but thought how easy it would be to make one for myself. So I made this page using the Gimp image processing programme and printed out a few sheets. It has lines for writing what needs to be done and a separate line for ticking off the jobs. It certainly serves it's purpose so I thought I would share it with anyone else who wanted to use it. You can find a PDF of four printable sheets on one page here or you can use the single sheet jpeg image below in your own desktop publishing software (just click on it to open it full size, right click then click 'Save as' or Save image as'). You can use it for personal use or make it into a small pad of 'To do' sheets, clip them together with a fancy paper clip and give it to a friend or relative who needs a helping hand. Please don't sell them though. Each sheet is designed to be A6 in size (approximately 6x4 inches) so four sheets will fit on a standard sheet of printing paper and it is very handy to slip in a handbag or to sit by the phone.

If you have any trouble downloading the PDF then do drop me a line at gsmcmurray(at)ukonline.co.uk and I'll send it to you by e-mail.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Challenge Gillian - October

Last month I actually managed to do four watercolour paintings. I even surprised myself. This coming month I have to have three pieces done for a winter exhibition so I know that I will manage to get next month's quota done too. Looks like things are looking up in the inspiration department too. This month I took a look at other things I like to paint - like architecture - instead of just animals. The window here is taken from an Irish church though the view from it just from my imagination.

The penguin is a bit of fun. I was trying out my new paint brushes and decided a penguin was a simple subject for testing out the shading capacity of them. Of course, the one I drew had it's head down and I wondered what it was looking at. Was it saying to itself, 'I really must polish my shoes'? Then I remembered that it is getting close to Christmas so it must have been looking at a gift. I think he's saying, 'Who left this present for me?'

Insects intrigue me. Their design is amazing and they are really tiny works of art in their own right. Of course a ladybird is the ultimate in British summertime insects. Everyone seems to love them.

And finally, as it's autumn, I had to draw a pumpkin. This one is listed in my Etsy store and is called Hide and Seek. I just thought that the mouse looked like it was hiding from the damselfly during a game. So now it is onwards to come up with some ideas for the exhibition. Considering the hand in is on the 25th November I'd better get my skates on.