Saturday, 13 September 2014

Guess what? It is only Saturday.

A lovely Saturday it is too.
I haven't shared a grandson picture for a while so I better do that because apparently grandparents are supposed to brag a lot and I need the practice because of being a bit of an introvert.

I think this boy is totally gorgeous. All of two months old and everything his parents could have wished for in terms of cuteness factor, contentment and good health. I like that he enjoys me singing to him and settles peacefully into my arms. I like having an appreciative audience even if he is captured in my cuddle. tee hee captured audience.

Okay on to other stuff and nonsense. I recently became a patron to two groups of musicians. I feel very excited by this. I believe in sharing what I have with others and although my financial base is limited to the lower rungs in terms of Australian affluence I am aware that my level of low income is an immense fortune for others. I am very fortunate to have a warm sturdy house, food in the cupboard, a reliable car to drive and all my needs available to me. Throughout my life I have been involved in many volunteer positions to the point where a friend referred to me as a gold star volunteer. It was cute. At one point I was volunteering for more than a dozen organisations. I have sat on hundreds of committees, raised funds, cooked for missions and I have been a foster parent for 25 years. Over the past two years I eased out of the majority of my volunteering as I dealt with surgery and recovery and hit the wall in terms of my health and well being. Through my life other people have assisted me when I was struggling and I like to think I can "Pay it Forward" in what ever way I can. I reevaluated the charities I had supported and reduced my outlay to two. Then I was inspired to support other creatives as I face the challenges of making my own creative journey into a career.
I am now a patron for the bands Walk Off The Earth and Home Free through patreon and feel a great sense of wonder at the marvel of being able to support the arts in this way. I can actually see the result of my financial outlay.  I think the reason I have been able to move past the difficult challenges in my life is because I am so busy helping other people so I don't have time to focus on my own dramas too much.

When I get down I try to get busy. It works for me but I am me and no one else is me and so my methods probably won't work for anyone else. (Disclaimer...)

So being creative I managed to complete some art work for an upcoming anthology of fairy tales which I will share on pinterest when the anthology is published.
I finished some art for a student who wanted original art work on her catering portfolio. Her theme is Alice in Wonderland and she made some yummy food. Here are the pictures I created for her. Apparently she is very pleased with them if the number of exclamation marks in her thank you text is any indication.
The 52 week challenge this week is balloons. Here are my little messy balloons in chalk pastels.
I looked at tutorials on youtube to try a few different approaches to balloons and liked the reflections in the top two in this picture.
 I like this little piece and continued with it after the scan, smoothing out the colours and white spaces. I enjoyed working with the chalk pastels.

I wanted to draw a crystal ball with this piece and started out following instructions given on youtube using graphite but then began to play with a pink pastel and turned it into a balloon. I do like the freedom of playing with styles and art products.

Oh last week in the challenge the theme was House, as I said in the last blog post I would upload my pieces when I finished them. I decided to pay tribute to two of my favourite fictional houses.
 This is my rendition in pencil of Howl's Moving Castle. From the studio Ghibli movie of the same name based on the book by Diana Wynn Jones. I love the books by Diana Wynn Jones and my entire family has been delighted and entertained by Ghibli movies since my second son travelled to Asia as a teenager and brought back the joy of a complete set of Studio Ghibli movies. All other animations and cartoons took a back seat to Ghibli and the magic created by Haiao Miazaki and the team.
Another place I loved was Mr Tumnus' house in The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe. This is my tribute to CS LEWIS and the original artist. Pauline Diana Baynes (9 September 1922 – 1 August 2008)  an  illustrator who illustrated over 100 books including for JRR Tolkein and CS Lewis. I love the art in Narnia.

This piece is very similar in content and composition to the original with my own touches. Pencil and graphite.

So plenty of art time snuck in around family dramas and demands but not so much writing time which takes a lot of uninterrupted quiet time. We now have the television in the centre of the main living space which creates a great deal of inane irritating background noise but I have conceded to the needs of the extra little family in my home and it is right here beside my work space driving me crazy. Argh I do not like television. It is not something we usually have running at all except for movies at prearranged times so my creating quiet is all gone at the moment.

It is interesting how many compromises and adjustments we make when someone new comes into our space for extra time. Having an entire family sharing the space requires a lot of adjustment for everyone concerned but it is all worth it in the end as relationships are renewed and strengthened.

So what else exciting has happened this week. Oh yes I did have a story returned to me by an editor asking if I would split it into two so I have done that.
I was approached by a man in the street who had seen my pinterest and he has asked me to create art for him, I spoke with another person who would like me to make art for her upcoming book. Another anthology has been launched with art and a poem.
 this is the second Teapot Tales and has 17  contributing authors and six artists.
Published on 5 Sep 2014
A collection of short stories with pirates and mermaids that will open your eyes to the magic that can be found under the sea. Let yourself be pulled into the magical worlds found within these stories. From pirates and sea monsters to kind-hearted mermaids and flesh-eating sirens, let these charming ocean tales sweep you away into the realm of fantasy. With twenty-six stories, including four poems, written by seventeen different authors from around the world, “Teapot Tales: Pirates, Mermaids and Monsters of the Sea” is a wonderful collection of short stories, each story just long enough to enjoy with a cup of tea.

To get your on copy of the anthology:

US paperback:
US Kindle:
UK paperback:
UK Kindle:
So altogether a busy and interesting week. I hope you have had a good week and an interesting one too. Tomorrow I am off to the F Project art market at the Fletcher Jones Garden. Time to sign off, have a cup of tea and go finish the novel I am reading. 'Four' by the author of Divergent et al. Veronica Roth  

oh and speaking of Veronica's, I have been invited to go to Lakes Entrance for several days with my friend Veronica. She and I might just get some quiet writing time together. Fingers crossed.