Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Baby Goodies

I've been busy over the last few months knitting baby goodies for friends of mine.  From the moment I found out, I dug out all the knitting patterns I had and found bonnets, hats and any yarn that looked lovely and tri-coloured to knit something original and useful.  

And now, I'm up to my last piece:  a second baby square.  I've knitted up one and it looks lovely and cuddly and very much something a parent would use to spread out on the ground to keep baby off the dirt for a moment to change their nappy or to put into the bottom of the pram to add a little more warmth over a cooler day before other covers over their bundle of joy with more covers to keep them warm.

I've also knitted three 6-month hats with a loop on the top so it's easy to pull the hat off if they need to.  And there's one sweet little new-born hat with a loop on it too - just in case when little baby's born, the weather is cooler than expected (as their little one's due in December; and if you remember what Christmas in Brisbane was like last year, you'd all agree it was a little on the cooler side).
I hope you guys enjoy seeing the almost completed pressie I've got for my friends.  It's taken me over three months of solid knitting at night - and during every afternoon (including weekends) to get this all done!  The baby blanket/square too me around 6 times to get started; with the stitch I wanted to use.  And it's turned out wonderful!  

Baby Pressie - 4

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Art Opening At A Hair Saloon!

How cool does this sound?  Yep, I went out to a very cool art opening at Retrograde Hair Saloon at Holland Park tonight; and the artist was Sandra Hosking with her 'Girls Just Want To Have Fun' exhibition opening!  And what a success it was!
There was so much food and drinks and great people there I loved it.  Mum and I totally enjoyed ourselves as we took numerous photos of the large paintings that were hung around the main front room, the wash room and out the back.  There was even a back area for the smokers - or for people to get away from the crowds - where there were braziers all lit up and hot to keep us warm while outside in the safety of a fenced off yard.
The atmosphere of the opening reflected the style and feel of the mixed media of the paintings which have been put together with feathers, hats, false eyelashes, buttons, paint, resin, lacquer and glitter... as well as other things I've missed, but Sandra has used a lot of things to express how much girls love to dance, shop, dress up, party and have long soaks in bubble baths as well as flirt with guys.  One artist who is most definitely worth looking out for!  

Girls Just Want To Have Fun Exhibition  

Home Festival Postponed!

Over the last few days, I've been informed that the Home Festival has been postponed from today to 25th August.  This is because the weather has been unpredictable and wet; and the park wouldn't be any good to anyone if it's a mud-city.  So, they're hoping it'll dry out well enough for the festival to take place a week after the RNA Show here in Brisbane.
As for my art works?  Well, the Altered Book is now complete and ready for show.  The pages I've laminated are ready - except I need to buy fishing line and that's it.  So... that's all there is now.  Just that fishing line.  I punched the holes in the tops of the pages last night with a single hole-punch last night after dinner and set the rest of the pages to one side.  And below is the the collage of the Altered Book!  I'm so excited about it! 

Altered Book - Complete! 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Finishing Touches

Over the weekend and the last day or so, I've been working on the Altered Book like a crazy person.  I have gotten off here and been sitting at the kitchen table for 2 and 3 hours at a time without a break just to get it finished before the deadline.  How exhausting!
But as of today, it will be finished!  I have just one more page to finish gluing up and then I can paint up the rest of it!  How cool is that?

Right now, I've glued up the last lot of pages together and organised the last piece of paper to write on to go into it.  The paint plate is in the fridge ready to be used and I'm going to paint all afternoon today.
However, I'm so happy I've gotten as much done as I have over the last week.  Here's some links to the work so far:

Over the next day or so, I'll upload more photos and show you all how it finished up before I send it off to the Logan Art Gallery to be dropped off for the Collector's Exhibition.  I have uploaded other photos into the album on the side bar; however as usual, Photobucket isn't behaving itself.  So, I'll upload some links here as well.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Gustav Klimt at 150 Years Young!

This morning, I was cooking breakfast when I received a phone call from my folks letting me know of Gustav Klimt's 150th Birthday this year.  Personally, I haven't heard of him, so I noted down the site Mum told be, ate breakfast and jumped on here to look it up.
And I'm totally amazed at the paintings this man did!  How beautiful!  How modern!  How do I put my amazement into words?  I can't.  Instead, I'll leave the link here for you all to click on and you can have a look for yourselves at this amazing artist's work.  I just find it hard to believe a lot of these works were done over a century ago.

Gustav Klimt 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Progress Report

I've been busy with the Altered Book and I thought to show you guys some photos of it.  But some apologies about the album.  It's not organising as it should; so I've put in the numbers of the photos to look for.  Just put your mouse over the photo until you find it and it should have the number already on it... Photobucket can have its problems.

Anyway, I have come to the last stretch of my Altered Book.  It's almost finished and I've been painting a rainbow through it - to keep the people who pick it up reading it, following the colours through it and the children's eyes occupied as well with pretty colours.  Otherwise, there have been some setbacks; such as the weather.  It's been wet and cold here, which means it's been taking longer for the glue to dry.  Oh well, beggars can't be choosers.

Photos for this post:

Altered Book Thus Far


Tuesday, July 10, 2012


I've been busy as anyone can get.  In between catching up with my housework, grocery shopping and cooking, I've been doing my art project for the Home Festival.
I've been fortunate enough to avoid the colds and flu going around (touch wood!) and so have been working on the Altered Book this week.  So far, I've worked on two pages in the last two days, and this morning glued three pages together in preparation for the next lot of artwork to do this afternoon.
I've been able to work on this project for about 2 hours each day after figuring out what I want to say.  But first, I'll glue four or five pages together in advance, then further along in the book, I'll pull out a couple of chapters so it'll work better, the book will be shorter - but the spine isn't damaged - and it'll keep up the appearance of being a proper-looking thick book. 
By the end of this week, I hope to be getting into the painting and fixing up the exterior of the book; as it's a black hardcover; and I don't want its appearance to put people off.  Well, until my next post, keep creating!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Collector's Workshop - Week 4

Today, I was away early and catching the bus by 11:25am.  I wanted to get there by midday, eat my lunch and jump straight into working on my altered book.  When I arrived at the Logan Art Gallery, I was the first to show!  I thought we had agreed to meet at midday; but everyone else didn't.  Oh well, I got into working on my book after my lunch of Ratatouille and a nice hot Milo.
I unpacked my backpack, pulled out old 'Good Reading' and 'Writer's Journal' Magazines and found a pair of scissors and picked through them over the next hour or so until everyone else arrived.  And before I knew it, they all did - one by one - and so did the people who were bringing the laminating machine (which I've never used before).  Once we got it to the right setting, which was the hotter setting, I started slotting my painted up - ready - pages into the pockets and feeding them into the machine.  They came out better than I thought!  And now all I have to do is get a pair of scissors and take off the excess laminate.
I went through my magazines another 3 or 4 times and still brought them home just in case I missed something in them.  But I didn't glue or paint anything.  So, tomorrow, I'll be working on the next phase of my story in them.  After I've got the whole story finished up, I'll work over it again and paint the background with a detailing brush and some bright colours.

Photos for this blog post:

2 photos of the desk full of work and laminated pages - No. 054 & 52
1 photo of a laminated page of my work up close - No. 53
1 photo of the laminating machine - No. 55

Friday, July 6, 2012

Busy Friday

I haven't been working on the pages or the altered book over the last two days.  However, there's a good reason.  On Wednesday, I had to do my shopping and catch up with my mail and bills.  And yesterday, I had two doctor's appointments which had me out and about all day until sunset.
Today, though, I'll be off the net at midday and back at work with my pages; and this time I'll be writing on the backs of them, preparing them for lamination.  And once they've been written on with words of inspiration about reading and imagination, I'll be working on new pages again, cutting out more stuff from magazines for the altered book and work on the book tomorrow while the pages get laminated.
I hope to have more work done by next week - as I'll have a freer week than this week.  I'm sure this will work out really great.  I just wish we had more time to work on our gear; as it would have given us the time to get together the things we wanted to get done.  I guess the best laid plans don't always work out.  Until my next post, keep creating!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Working From Home

Today and yesterday, I was very busy catching up with housework and working on the art I'm contributing at the Home Festival.
So far, I've got 9 pages fixed up where I've wet them onto sketch paper, painted them up with red paint - smudging them to look like they're bleeding a little - and then letting them dry and pucker; and not gluing them.  On the back piece of sketch paper, which is partially attached, I'll be writing a line of why I collect - or a word - to let people know in as little as possible of the reasons and purposes for my collecting.  Tomorrow, I'm hoping to get around the same amount of pages done again in the afternoon.

Then, tonight, I worked on another two pages of my altered book.  This book will tell the story of how my passion for reading and books turned me into the writer I am today through pictures and collage.  I've made up 4 pages already and tonight did another 2 of them; but they still need more work.  
The book I'm using is 'The Dark Half' by Stephen King in hardcover and so, seeing it's black, I'll be doing up the cover in different colours, styles of things and items to make it attractive to people at the festival; to make them pick it up and read it.  It will still be called 'The Dark Half' (as there's no copyright on titles) but it will be about how writing is a craft that is honed, it can also be used to be something to hide in from the world too.  So, my story inside that book will have a moral as well as be something about me.  I hope the pictures can speak about my passion as well as my words; as my writing has helped me through a lot of pain, problems and personal issues.  However, my art is something else that has begun to bring something out in my life - something visual - that my writing can't do.  Bringing them together is difficult, but I've found it's something I'm enjoying.

It's only been two days and I have paper and scraps from one end of the lounge room to the other... something I hope will be gone by the end of the week!  Well, I am hoping... anyway, until my next post, keep creating.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Collector's Workshop - Week 3

Yesterday, I wasn't feeling all that great.  I had had a broken night's sleep as I was woken in the middle of the night - twice! - by my landline only to find somebody out there had mistaken it to be a fax machine!  Not a great thing to do.

Well, I made it to my workshop in plenty of time, got changed into my painting outfit - as I was working with paint that day - and started on my project.  The first thing I did was lay out all my gear that I was going to use:  4 books, the large sketch book, sponges and notebook.  Then, I searched for paint, brushes, water, tea and anything else I would need for this afternoon to work.  
First things was first!  I began tearing the pages out of some of the books.  This caused everyone in the group to scream at me to stop!  I looked up and asked what was wrong?  They stared at me in utter shock... what was wrong?  Was I nuts?  I was tearing in to the pages of something I loved and collected and treasured!  Smiling, I held up one of the books and said I had bought them from a thrift store for .50c each; none of them were destined to be a part of my collection any time soon.  A lot of them were still a bit weird about how easily I tore into the books I had in front of me; but after they saw what I did with those pages - and heard my proposal of how I was going to display them at the Home Festival - they were amazed how pretty they were going to look.
We had ideas running around the place at how things were going to appear at the festival this month; from fridges to a bedhead, cushions and a bedroom kind of scene to a bookcase where we could all display books... and I could make an altered book about my why I write - if I wanted to.  I said it could be done.  
And today, while I was getting some housework done, I found backdated magazines of 'Good Reading' from 2009 and 2010 sitting underneath Little Miss Stevie as though waiting to be discovered just for that altered book project!  How good is that?  I'll be getting into that very soon.  
So, that was yesterday's workshop, and today's ideas for what I'll need to get done.  Next week, we'll have a few laminating machines working hard to get my pages laminated and ready for the Home Festival.

Collections Exhibition Workshop 2012 Album

Unfortunately, everything I'm saving on Photobucket is showing up all over the place... I have tried saving it oldest photos first; but it won't do it.  And I did put in descriptions; but it won't save that either.  So, I don't know what is going on, but Photobucket has got a lot of problems.

The photos you're looking for are sketch books, a page with a red border, a group of people talking and a young lady sorting out a set of speakers on a cd; then a close-up of the same photo of her.  These might come up first or last, who knows.  I have tried to work out photobucket, but it's not working the way I had hoped.