Saturday, 12 January 2019


New year, new art.

I made some collages, hoping to make non-neat collages, even using some magazine pages along with my own artwork pieces.

This one went through a thousand stages (maybe a bit less).
There are two magazine pieces, middle left and top right.  The rest is my own artwork either painted or using hand-made stamps.

I turned it green.  I think I like the green version better.  What do you think?

Here's a greetings card made with the green version.  Douglas is laughing.

The next collage is for Alison's challenge theme "Geometric Shapes" at "Art Journal Journey".  I had a lot of fun with this one.  It's made with my own painted papers.

* * * * * * *

In Real Life Land - the weather here is quite chilly especially when there is a strong breeze but these brave little marigolds are still flowering.

And at Christmas my sister gave me this sweet little paintbox. 
It's one of the Prima Watercolor Confections sets.  It's quite delightful.  

I hope the next artwork I make will be with these intriguing paint colours.

Tuesday, 1 January 2019


Hello everyone!  I've been having a wonderful time in Real Life with the best of visitors and the best of visiting.
Now I'm back in Blogland and looking forward to being here.

I've made a collage for "Art Journal Journey"  where Alison has chosen the very interesting theme "Geometric shapes".  
It's made from magazine images, painted newspaper and my own paintings.


* * * * * * *

Elizabeth and Bleubeard offers us the opportunity on the 2nd of every month to repost an old blogpost.
I hope Bleubeard especially enjoys this one which was made for a challenge in July 2014 where the theme was "Spectacles".

I've copied the old blogpost below without any change. 
Some of you may remember it, if so I hope you enjoy seeing it again, and if you haven't seen it I hope you enjoy it for the first time.

* * * * * * * 


The challenge theme at "Soartful" for the month of August is "Eyeglasses/Spectacles". 
My second thought on the theme (after the first one which was "?????") was that a short-sighted cat might need spectacles.

Have you any idea how sinister a cat looks with spectacles?

I drew endless cats with spectacles.
These are the one that are safer for you to see.

Who said you had to be able to draw to be an art blogger?
I quite like the third one but I think he's a rabbit pretending to be a cat, I might use him later. 

Here's the first Pink Cat who came along.

You may have noticed that Pink Cat does not have any whiskers - yet - a slight oversight, which luckily I noticed at the last minute.

Whose picture is she keeping in her locket?
And who doesn't qualify for spectacles? - SCOWL!

I made a half arch

and some straight lines, which you will be able to imagine,
then put everything (including Pink Cat's whiskers) together in Photoshop.
The curly font is "Pea Sheila".

Bring along your pink cat!
This amazing offer is valid for the month of August 2014!

* * * * * * *

Apologies to all pink cats reading this but the offer has now expired.

Happy 2019, have a great year, and hope to see you many times in 2019.

Saturday, 1 December 2018


Christmas time at Orange Esmeralda's house is a big thing.
It is a calm time, both a time of meeting friends and staying quietly in or around the home.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth at "Art Journal Journey" are asking us to make art on the theme "My Favourite Season or 'Tis the Season".
For us it is the Season to be calm.

This lady is walking quietly among the trees, maybe thinking about her current book, her knitting, how pleasant the avenue of purple trees is, or maybe thinking of nothing at all.

I'll also link to "Moo-Mania" where the current challenge theme is "Trees".

* * * * * * *

The indefatigable Elizabeth and Bleubeard also host a challenge on the 2nd of every month where they encourage us to search into the depths of our blog and repost an old blogpost.  This old post was made in response to a challenge to make art using only black and white and one other colour.

So here, in contrast to the Season of Calm, is the story of ........


Have you ever passed one of the Cat Rescue places where they advertise cats who are looking for a new home by showing pictures of each cat in the window?  It can be heart-rending.

"Fluffy would like a quiet home with older people as she doesn't like noise",
"Timpsy would like a comfortable house without children",
"Mopsy likes to have regular meals and a pure wool blanket in her basket"
and so on. 

This card is for all those kind people for whom getting a rescue cat is cause for a celebration.

I've always been very fond of this cat card and hope you enjoy it too.

I especially hope Bleubeard enjoys it.

Thursday, 22 November 2018


Last week I went to a live workshop organised by Claire Heminsley
The aim of the workshop was to generate ideas for future artworks.

We started by painting a large sheet of paper with black ink but first had to create our own brushes.  The other artists painted actual objects and I painted abstract patterns from my sketchbooks.  The coloured bits were added later.

The paper was folded and cut as shown above and the rectangles easily folded into a book.

Little individual combinations appeared from the pages of the book.
Do you see the Smoke Monster top left?

I painted another sheet with fluid acrylic colours and you can see some of the "brushes" I used - a walnut, string, cocktails sticks used together or separately, a dish scrubbie, rubber bands and the edge of card.

I was amazed to see this delightful creature arrive fully formed.
All I did was colour his legs and feet and add his eye.  The rest was already there.

Do you think that is his cave on the right?
He has come out to look at the flowers.

I'm joining in with Erika's challenge at "Art Journal Journey" to make art on the theme of "Vintage or Modern" as creating and painting with invented brushes is a modern idea to me.

* * * * * * *

In the real world the art of nature in autumn surpasses all.

This Autumn the Brussels Sprouts in the garden are the best yet.

Douglas is laughing.

Wednesday, 14 November 2018


Erika at "Art Journal Journey" is asking us to make art on the theme "Vintage or Modern".

My friend J made me another beautiful sketchbook and I decided to use this one immediately (instead of keeping it to admire). 
It's going to be a book for collages.

I made these two pages for the "Modern" part of the theme.

A close-up detail.

I'm ridiculously pleased with these two simple pages

I'm not sure if the following qualifies for the "Vintage" theme but here it is anyway.

Many years ago, in the Olden Days, when I was at art college I did a project on the theme "Water and Sky".  

We were supposed to make lots of drawings before tackling the actual artwork but I chose to use photography and mono-printing instead.

The mono-printings were made by painting on glass then making a one-off print on to paper.
I took a lot of photos at the Botanical gardens.

It was a cold winter. This is a photo of a frozen pond

and here is a mono-print using the photograph as inspiration.
Do you like the water angel who magically appeared?

This is the same photo upside down

and the associated mono-print.

I did try to follow the photographs carefully but mono-printing can have a mind of its own.
(The mono-printing did it).

* * * * * * *

Thanks to each of you who, in a previous post, suggested one or more names for our new teddy.

Elizabeth suggested "Bashful" because I said the teddy was still very shy. Unfortunately Mr. Esmeralda has taken to calling the poor teddy "Bashie".  Thanks, Elizabeth, she doesn't really mind it. 

There were several other suitable names and I tried out a few on New Teddy with not much response.  However you will be glad to know she is settling in well and making her way through the books in our home library.
She has also borrowed a hat from one of the other teddies as she was feeling cold.

* * * * * * *

Although we may try to make beautiful art, there is nothing to match the beauty of nature, especially at this Autumnal time of year.
I found this leaf while we were out walking.

Have a great week ahead and I hope to see you again soon.

Thursday, 1 November 2018


The amazing Erika at "Art Journal Journey" is asking us to make art on the theme "Vintage or Modern".

I cut out (digitally) pieces from several of my own oil pastel paintings (old and new) and jigsawed them together with Photoshop.  I think that's fairly modern, don't you?

Here is an old friend, the Wibbly Wobbly Monster, walking into a colourful land.

And for a simpler contrast - I painted this little flower with water-colours in the old-fashioned way, no photo-editing, just water-colours and paper.

It is too small to be entered for the AJJ challenge, so let's just enjoy it for what it is, a little painted flower.

Mr. Esmeralda's sweet peas have continued to flower from late Spring to the present day.
Douglas is displaying them in the precious vase my niece made.

Douglas say "Hi" to all his friends and he and I hope you enjoyed your visit and we look forward to seeing you again soon.