Billie’s Craft Room – FREE online workshops

My friend Billie is hosting a series of online workshops, completely free of charge this summer, called Adventures in Acrylics! Be there or be square!

Billie has been making video tutorials for Youtube for a long time now and she’s cool, calm and collected! She delivers her tutorials in a no-nonsense, fun way and has lots of practical advice to share. So, if you’re having a “staycation” this year and want to have some fun with your acrylics, which will only cost you time and materials… here’s where it’s at:

I {heart} U xx

This is a 20″ x 16″  (51cm x 40cm) canvas I painted for my daughter to hang in her bedroom. She’s been after a big canvas (or 3) in bright, funky colours for her room but I never managed to be in the right headspace to do it… till a few days ago. I saw a smaller canvas on Tammy’s blog which inspired me in its simplicity. She just used bright Neocolours and water and kept it very simple.

I painted a large canvas with blobs first and doodled and drew and toned, etc. till I had lots of flowers in bold colours. It was too busy for Amber, but I had another idea and used “boxes” for hers, keeping it less cluttered, with more white spaces.

"I heart U"

A little closer…

And again…

And the best bit? She likes it… 🙂


My own childhood, (theme for Take a Word), varied between the sublime and the ridiculous… went from one extreme to another. It’s a mark left indeliby on me forever and not in such a good way, either. I cannot pretend that there were no ‘highs’, but there were just as many lows, possibly more because of their intensity. However, those responsible have long passed, so I try not to dwell on the past too often.

My most memorable Christmases were spent in Berlin – Britz – the old part, complete with frozen duckpond, baker’s and my grandmother’s “haunted cellar”!! I think she said that in case we ventured down there and drank her home-brewed wines and beers…

So, this tiny canvas came together in chaos but I really like it. The main image is from Crafty Individuals and I used fired brick distress ink to colour the background.


I have been rather inspired by Tim Holtz’s 12 Tags of Christmas again this year. What an all-round super guy he is!

MMM – On the Wings of Love.

Well, I get to play Guest Host again today over at Mixed Media Monday… and I challenge you to create a piece of art (in any format), using “On the Wings of Love” as inspiration.

I chose this theme because it illustrates this mixed media canvas which started as a Layer Love Lesson, on canvas, and then progressed, slowly over a couple of months, becoming this canvas for DH’s birthday. Raven is his nickname and both these birdies are image transfers, using images from Ten Two Studios…

A little more detail…

Yep, that’s me on the right! The tags read, “Birds of a feather flock together, and love one another forever and ever…”

So that’s the story behind this 12″x8″ canvas! You probably recognise the handcarved stamps, and additional accents were made with Sharpie poster paint pens, bits of scrim (like string) and wool from the Scrapstore! Hope you join in with this week’s challenge – I look forward to seeing your creations!

“Untitled” and an incentive!

So here’s a lideshow for the big mixed media abstract painting I mentioned yesterday. If you can think of a title that really rocks, I’ll send you a handmade gift. It could be anything – you know what I’m like!! I don’t usually struggle to name a canvas, but I’m too close to this one…

Click HERE for the Photostream on Flickr.

And thanks for the help!! =)


I discovered that 2 of the challenge blogs I have been regularly taking part in have ceased to be this week. Dear Sandy has given up – too much work and a real drain on her time. She has been running them for 2 years though and we all know what a job it is doing the challenges, never mind planning and orchestrating the whole thing, especially when they’re popular, as TGIF and SaWo were. She and the challenges will be missed…

I have been making fabric bookmarks as presents for friends for xmas, painting and designing my own personal xmas card. I finished a large mixed media canvas and am looking for a title or name for it. I shall photograph it tomorrow and ask for your help in the naming of this beast!!

In the meantime, I am quietly disgusted that my DD’s situation continues, along with the daily harrassment by the bullies. I have logged most of it on my other blog and as she turns 15 tomorrow, we’re having a breakfast party with her best GF and chilling.

Spill it!

I like Carmen Torbus’s work – a lot. I mean, she’s inspirational and “messy” too – gotta love messy because I identify with that. One of these days I’ll shoot a video and you can see and be amazed, that given my working conditions, I can still produce art!!!!

I want to take her online class. I’d love to take this class because it’s like a culmination of the other 2 classes I have taken with Julie Prichard – who taught me about paint, mediums and layers; who’s still teaching me about Art Journalling and who taught me to make fabulous books. They overlap a bit, and I am pretty penniless at the moment (about to lose my weekly part-time jobs, too), so if I promote “Spill It”, I get an entry into the draw to WIN this workshop…

…and then there’ll be NO stopping me!! So here’s Carmen, with a sneak peek at what she does:


And here’s why I want to learn this…

I want to be able to make that kind of art. Simples… 😉


Diane chose “Stars” as her theme this week for Mixed Media Monday and has created the most gorgeous canvas to inspire us! I am taking a different approach and sharing a canvas I painted for a lovely woman whom I am proud to call my friend (well, our friend, to be truthful!) We see each other nearly every week at market and despite the tragedies that have beleaguered her in the past year, she always has a beautiful smile and a huge hug for us (that’d be me and DH)!!

I love her dearly… she has that rare combination of beauty that shines from within and is also very lovely to look at – a glamorous Granny!! She’s in her late 60s, but you’d never believe it and she can talk to anyone on any level. Jan is a total STAR… and terribly well-spoken, hence the nickname “Posh”. 😉


The tiny face is from Third Coast RS – ideal for popping into a corner, isn’t she?!

Purple texture…

It’s been a beautiful day here today and I have been nusy doing chores like 2 loads of washing; grooming the GSD (German Shepherd Dog); clipping the Yorkie; cooking and baking; and the dreaded housework… So, feeling pretty righteous, I decided to have a go at the “Texture Painting” challenge from Sandy at Saturday’s Workout.

Instead of gesso or paint, I made my texture layer with Polyfilla… and then applied paint! Fun and more fun!


Hope you’re all having a lovely weekend! I have a couple of things I need to catch up on and some serious pruning to do tomorrow morning in the front garden jungle!

Make It Your Own…


Street Team Crusade no.31 – “Make it your own…” Fascinating, absorbing stuff. Reading what Michelle wrote made me think about my artwork – see I still can’t call it “art” plain and simple! It’s a psychological barrier that will eventually crumble, but I have to work at it.

As some of you know, I have been taking an online Class called “Layer Love” with Julie Prichard (Land of Lost Luggage). I got to ‘know’ Julie via the Street Team Crusades and was pretty awestruck by her painting style, her attitudes and her quirky sense of humour. I may not follow her blog or comment regularly, but I have a feeling she was one of those people I was going to have a connection with somewhere down the line…

So, I found out about Layer Love from Patty (Magpie’s Nest) and went for it. It was exciting! Then I looked through the supplies list and realised I had some serious shopping to do – and not in a good way. I have never been to college or Uni, I am not a painter, just a wannabe! Boy, did I have a lot to learn… Babysteps! Julie was incredibly helpful with the shopping – I do 99% of mine online because I live where I do, miles from anywhere really useful in an arty sense!! JP sent me emails by Blackberry when she was out and about, taught me the differences between the mediums, made sense of the technical terms and properties for me, but I just wasn’t getting it, in all honesty.

Adrienne came to my rescue and told me where to buy online in the UK. What a Godsend… I went, I shopped, I got my stuff and I started to learn how to apply paint in layers, mixed with mediums, and other paint; make drips, glazes, use Neocolours… golly what a rollercoaster ride. I was copying what Julie did on the teaching videos, using colours that I had and trying my best to “Julify” my works.

I got frustrated at first – surely, this wasn’t meant to be so hard, but I was struggling. It wasn’t very good and all the others in the Group did it so much better than me. They made beautiful paintings with wonderful colours – most of which I have never heard of! They were brave, they were adventurous, they could collage in the true sense of the word… while I couldn’t even paint. Oh dear!

Then I found I wasn’t the only one not exactly ecstatic with her results. I was not alone. There were even people who’d been painting for ages who couldn’t “get” the blending and layering – imagine! So I got over myself and got on with it! And each lesson got a bit easier to follow… I got the hang of blending a bit more. I experimented with mixing colours of paint, I got quite daring! And my confidence grew, until ……………….

Today I completed Lesson #8 – a layer painting on a wood panel and I tried something that JP mentioned before – I used my palette knife to apply a glaze. This probably sounds ridiculous to you, but for me it was a real “Eureka” moment!!!! I had stepped outside the Julification process, taken a chance and “Rosie-fied” my painting – yay! Hurray! Break out the bunting and party!!!!

So here’s my version of Lesson #8 – called “Urban Spirit”. I have made this one my own, thanks to Julie (and Michelle too!):


Here’s a close-up of the lighter area – the ghostly bit!


And the bottom – Urban Spirit – cut the words from a clothing tag and added them right at the end.


As the Created by Hand challenge theme is Open this week, it fits perfectly with that too! 🙂