Friday, 17 November 2017

I'm on a . . .

. . . Grandma hiatus right now, and will be back with you in a couple of weeks.  May your pre-Christmas time be a joy!

Thursday, 9 November 2017

I'm on a roll...

... or maybe I'm just rolling over.  This purge has me alternating between howls of laughter, amazement and pure unadulterated stunnery (is there such a word?).

I've been working like a fiend to cut papers down to a size small enough to fit into a file folder.  I now have more than a yard of folders, crammed full of colour lusciousness.
 

Apparently, I'm still not done;  I keep finding more and this stack of heavy texture is a case in point.


Years of teaching means that I've a huge stash of material to go through.  At the risk of you thinking I'm absolutely crackers (and truthfully, at this point how could you not?), I have to show you what I found this week - a box crammed full with bags of painted mats, conveniently chopped into odd shapes and sizes.


Obviously, at some point, I decided I had waaaaaay too many painted matboards (done for background demos in workshops) and chopped them just for fun.  I say that because I've no idea now what the end game was, and my mind is whirling with 'what the hecks?'.

At any rate, I have to show you some close-ups of the mouth-watering colour!




  
I hope you can give me some suggestions in your comments below because there must be near 1000 pieces here, and the colour is so good it would be a shame to throw them away.  If I had a wood panel big enough (yup, they're all gone now), I'd be doing something wild and wonderful, but I'm hoping you've got a ton of ideas for me instead.

To end this post on a truly joyous note (apart from the colour, of course) I'd like you to meet our eagerly-awaited first-born grandchild who arrived this week. 
Linkin Nathan Christensen, born Nov. 6/17  6 lbs. 13 oz...welcome home!
May your week have been filled with as much joy and laughter as has ours. 





Thursday, 2 November 2017

I'm a great sneak...

when it comes to studio time.  And in spite of all the purging to downsize, I have very craftily (artfully?) managed to get in some play time with friends.

Five of us gathered one morning, and in no time at all turned the studio into delicious Tag City Mayhem.
Gay, Linda, Carol, Dena with her head cut off

With access to years of supplies gathered for teaching mixed media, there was no shortage of fodder, and with a bucket (lower left) of inspiring tags garnered from online friends, no shortage of inspiration either.

Dena, head reattached, Gay and Carol

Carol was a tag-making machine, and I suspect she took home the most...wowza, can that woman create at lightning speed?!


Aren't these delicious?



Dena is enamoured to the max with text/words/verse/script, and I believe that all of her tags incorporated verbiage in some way.


I was all over that NOW tag!


Gay's words for the day were to the effect of 'Oh, WOW!, as she found an array of gears, organics, and other embellishments to add to her pieces.



Linda, an extraordinary quilter, transferred her design skills into some gorgeous tags for her family members.



I must say that because I was, once again, nattering waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too much, I accomplished little in the way of completed tags.  The one on the left is the way I feel in the midst of all of this decontamination, the centre is what I hope to achieve, and the right one is what I'll need in copious quantity to celebrate at the end it all.  (Well, actually, the one on the right is for John, who's a red wine drinker, but the former makes a better story.)


However, I was inspired to do some quick tags through the rest of the week as I plundered my way through the gargantuous stash on the way to downsizing glory!  I think this one is VERY apt.


And I truly think that all this hard work will...

I hope that you've had as much fun with your week as I had during that morning.  Tell me about it in the comments below, please - I'd love to hear!

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Bet you can't...

...guess what I've been up to this week (well, apart from purging/cleaning/downsizing, that is):


I spent a great morning with Laura Leeder 




and we painted!  Given the upcoming Spook Day, we opted for pumpkins (thanks, Eileen for providing them),

 and spent an inaugural morning in Eileen's new studio.


Can you tell we had a blast?  The morning went so quickly that this is about all I got done.  I'm not sure whether it was the photo-taking or the blabber-mouthing that had me slowed down, but I was IMMENSELY impressed with how much Eileen and Laura accomplished!


As I took breaks from my work at home, I added to the piece until it resembled a manic picture of my current life, with labyrinthian pathways, stops and starts, mad dashes and wild colour.  What could be more appropriate for this time of the year? I've got five more days until the big day, and I suspect this will get additions, because why stop at psychedelic when outright gaudy is a possibility?


I'm wishing you a Happy Halloween - may you enjoy the costumes and colour, with no tricks at all!  

Thursday, 19 October 2017

With chaos...

...all around me as I clean and purge (we're planning on a spring down-sizing), I've been doing much too little in the studio.  That does not mean, however, that I can't appreciate the out-of-control colour around me as we head towards the end of fall.

Here's what I mean:
The front lawn is carpeted with maple leaves.

The shrubbery in the backyard fairly shouts with riotous colour against the clear blue of the sky.

The mountain ash down the street is laden with berries.

There's glistening gold everywhere I look.

Even the fallen colour carries that POW factor.

Strawflowers are gorgeous at this time of the year.

Sunflowers are at their best as they wave goodbye to summer.
Of course, there's colour on the web when I need a break from all that sorting/organizing/cleaning, etc.  Here are a few of the luscious goodies I found over the past week or so.

Wendy Mamattah
Anita Bloch Ceramics

Debbie Colby

We live in a magical world, don't we?  Everywhere we look there's a feast for the eyes.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

I've been flitting...

about from town to town this past month, and have found little time to play in the studio.  Isn't life just like that sometimes>

When all else fails, though, I revert to a Gelli plate session just to keep the juices flowing and retain my creative sanity.  I knew that time would be short to do any leaf printing (how the heck did it get so close to winter so quickly?!!!), so I tore into it with great enthusiasm.  John was about to compost the flower boxes, so I stole some dusty miller before it disappeared, added some fern, Japanese maple and other goodies, and had a blast.


There was a huge range as I worked back and forth from first to ghost prints (and even a few haunts).


And while I know it's fall, I couldn't help but put some sunny spring and summer prints through their paces as well.

 Each print was so delicious, it was hard to stop.


Were it not for the fact that the family likes to be fed occasionally, I'd likely still be there.


Of course, being Canadian means that we were in the midst of Thanksgiving colour this past weekend, so that certainly added fuel to the colour schemes.


I can't get enough of green and orange lately, and there were quite a few of them in the pile!


I used all the brayer-cleaning sheets up before I finished, and the geometric lines through some of them pique my interest.


These will all make marvellous backgrounds or additions to journals,


and I suspect they'll grace a few cards and tags as well.


I'd LOVE it know what you do creatively when your time is short and your need is tall.  Please tell me in the comments below so I can add your expertise to my arsenal; post a link if you like!  

Thursday, 5 October 2017

When this group plays...

...they play hard, and with spectacular results!  The TAPS workshop ended last week, and there were some crazily creative quilted collages completed (say that ten times fast).


Just take a look at these works of art!

Don't these pears pack a punch?

This apple was clearly grafted!

Such a serene landscape.

Hard at work!

Applicious!

These pears look fabulous floating over the Himalayas.

Pears POW!

Now there's a dream landscape!

Is that a pink worm?  I think so!  :D

Apple haven.

I'll take a bite out of that!

Check out that dragon!!!
I was amazed at the variety of colour and vivacity in these pieces - no two alike, and some amazing takes on our valley!  What a wonderful group of people here - they were a delight to play with each week, and I was so impressed at the engagement of the participants.  Helping each other, chatting, exchanging news and ideas, and generally keeping a sense of community is often challenging for seniors living on their own, but this program does it all.  Kudos to the organizers for ensuring there is a space in which seniors can remain so engrossed and absorbed in daily life.
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