Thursday, September 29, 2011

10 min sketch no 8. Magnolia

My younger child was off school today as she was not feeling her best.  We sat in the garden together and had lunch in the sunshine next to the beautiful pink magnolias.  They smelt divine  and the tree had started to drop petals all over the deck and path.   I just had to go and get my sketch-book and timer and do a little drawing.  

 blind contour sketch 4.34 mins.

All pictures drawn with a fine liner.  The second one has a dash of pink felt-tip.  All started as blind contour ( looking at object you are drawing, not the picture on the page) but did peek a little bit to line up the petals with each other.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

spring cheer

Aren't these out-fits from Meadham Kirchhoff spring 2012 just fabulous?  I especially love the red pinafore ensemble and also the lovely pom pom shiny shoes.  I can't see it catching on down my way, which is a shame as I could quite fancy myself parading down the main street in one of these creations.  Not sure what the kids would think.

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Me and the girls have a big sewing project coming up in the next couple of weeks, so I decided that our pin collection needed sorting out.  Numbers had dwindled to pretty pathetic proportions, so off I went to the haberdashers and bought three boxes of pins, one of which had pins with buttons, bows and flowers on the ends which was pretty exciting!  And I made three pin cushions. 
 out of some material I have had for some time now and loved very much but had no idea what to do with.  I'm not very good at chopping up lovely fabric, it fills me with fear and trepidation, just incase I stuff it up and the fabric is ruined for ever.  
 We now have the problem of not being able to stick pins in where the lion, man and giraffes are.  It seems a bit cruel somehow.
 The idea for these was pretty much taken from a lovely friend of mine who had made some beautiful big square pin-cushions out of lovely old embroidered linen.  My daughter was very impressed, and I felt a bit feeble picturing our own selection. Anyway now we have one each, great, except although I shared out all the pins equally, there has been arguing and pin swapping already.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

snake toy

 I made a toy snake for a little girls birthday.  
I made it in five parts so that it could be taken apart and re-arranged, thrown at the cat etc.
and hopefully be pretty too.  The background is a patchwork I made to cover an outside seat.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Rugby world-cup

 Last night we went to watch a rugby world-cup game.  My daughter made up this little display when we got home of our souveniers.  The rubber-band came from the back of a truck which was full of rubber bands apparently ( I didn't see it) and was almost as exciting as the streaker who came on at the end.
I was quite excited about this, not my beverage of choice but the packaging was cute.  
We watched Russia vs. Italy and despite starting off going for Italy, decided early on that Russia needed support more and changed my affiliation, as did a lot of the crowd.  

10 minute sketch no. 7. Camelia

 today I picked a nice white camelia from the garden, 
 and did a quick sketch with felt-tips.  Those bits in the middle were fiddly, I need to check out some flower drawings to see how other people manage these things.
and there were some pretty wild flowers, pretty wild, pretty wild-flowers ( weeds).

Monday, September 19, 2011

swirling dervish

My youngest daughter has hoiked up her red Cotton On skirt, attached a ribbon to the shoulder and now has a rather snazzy red dress.  I'm not sure if she decided that one-shoulder was the biz or just couldn't be bothered to sew on the other one, but I think it is rather cool.  Of course she will not be allowed to wear it out of the house in case she catches either a cold or sun-burn or both.  

Sunday, September 18, 2011

childrens books

I recently found some more beautiful old childrens books at the local op-shop.  I always think I should teach myself to paint/draw like this, they are so lovely.  The colours are always so cool, I guess this is the old printing process and a bit of aging too may-be.
 I haven't read this story yet.  That green dress is very pretty. " The Strawberry Fairy" Nursery tales related by Aunt Lucille (Mulder)
 I like how the fox is always bad but also quite cool, this one has a pretty groovey out-fit on.  The pants are rather fashionable but I'm not convinced about the jacket. 

 Alice in Wonderland, an Oldhams All-Colour Book.

these illustrations come from a A.A Milne book "A Gallery of Children".  There are so many beautiful drawings.  Flash-backs to child-hood...

Saturday, September 17, 2011


 My daughters came back from the neighbours house this morning with a little present for me.  The little girls next door had found this little bird at deaths door and tried to nurse it back to life, but as most of us know this is usually pretty futile and the little bird didn't make it. Boo Hoo! But there was a positive for me, I had really enjoyed drawing the blackbird a few days ago and so was quite chuffed to get another chance to draw a bird.  This is a wax-eye/ silver-eye and is originally from Australia but is naturalised here in NZ (which I think means, it's made itself at home here and it's not causing too much of a problem with the local wild-life, but I might be wrong)
It arrived wrapped in two magnolia petals, which were the perfect size for it and also a rather good back drop.
 The over-lapping tiny little feathers are so delicate and perfect and sweet.
 vibrant green
 I love the combination of patterns here with the stripes and fluffy. 
 little fluffy head
 such beautiful colour combinations

 Vivid/Marker pen, hmm not sure about this one, was trying to get the stripes on those tail feathers.
 Charcoal and watercolour,  needs more intensity me thinks.
Watercolour, they are in reverse order, this was the first one I did, makes the bird look slightly pathetic, which it didn't.
I have put the bird in the fridge for further investigation, I'm hoping my husband won't notice. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

10 minute sketch no.5

 Coloured pencil.  My daughter who doesn't have eyes quite like this, but I was in a hurry.
 Watercolour from this little paintbox which is  perfect except it has no black, I find it quite hard to get the right intensity without it.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

silver firemans trousers bag

Yesterday I happened to be passing close to a newly opened op-shop and I couldn't resist popping in for a fossick.  I found four beautiful green bowls.  One of them had a Crown Lynn sticker on it so I am guessing they are all the same.  they are very pretty and I am pleased as bowls are hard to come by in op-shops generally.  This is probably as like us people break their bowls more than any other crockery and there isn't much of it left to send to the op-shop.
 There was also this rather interesting pair of silver trousers.  Further investigation revealed them to be, not a pair of fabulous disco pants, but a pair of firemans trousers.  There are internal warnings/reminders not to wear them without structural trousers, whatever they may be?!  
 They are quite large.  I didn't buy them to start with as they were $10 and I am too mean to spend that much on one item in a charity shop.   But I went back later and got them, I just couldn't resist.  I had a vague image in my head of a nice canvas back-pack that I can wear while on my bike, that isn't just sporty.  I have one that fits a water bladder and straw, for those endurance activities, but not much else... like a bottle of wine or a tub of ice-cream, certainly not both together.  I googled silver bags but they were all very 2007 and Prada.  Then I looked up these bags, which are a bit more like it.
Rugged little satchel by J Crew
This is so cool, by swift-industries.  I love all those satchel-type buckles and straps
Of course if I make a bag it will look nothing like these, and it will be silver.  Am I living in a early 2000's time warp?  Will a fire-proof aluminium bag have any serious health implications?  Is a silver bag a good idea in a sunny climate?

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

beds and bedrooms I would like

 So gorgeous and it looks nice and sturdy too!
 Makes me think of convents, it's quite austere, but I wouldn't say no to it.
 This has curly-wurly over-the-top-ness which I like.
 The mirrors, the fire, the soft bed and the fairy frock all add up well.
 This room is about the size of my house.  And the headboard is sublime.
Beautiful and colourful turquoise headboard.  And the feather wall decoration is gorgeous.
 Not sure if I would like to sleep in here or not, but the over-all effect is so pretty.
The rest of this fairytale castle at desire to inspire makes me want to cry.  It is just so amazing, I would have to have a cleaner and a chef if I lived here though, I would be too busy sipping champagne in beautiful dresses to do much else.