Enter the dragon!

I suppose this is a product of my restless spirit (at the moment!) and my warped sense of humour! I created the background over the previous weekend, whilst home alone (and we all know what can happen, don’t we?!!!) and I carved some “house stamps”, using cheapo erasers that I’d bought on my previous shopping trip (40p for 2 at Morrisons!!)

For this week’s Three Muses – Oriental – challenge: Dragon courtesy of Dover publications. All the rest is me! The text reads:

“And the people fled as the great Dragon, Hun-Gri Mun Chin

descended on the village to do his weekly shop…

just in case “Ribs” were on his list!”

That painted and stamped page is still bare in my art journal, looking a tad “Vincent” with the circles, so I might develop it more later, but it sure made for a fun background here!! What a joy digital/hybrid art is – especially when I have trouble getting up and downstairs for now! Never mind… I’m on the mend and grateful for all the get-well wishes – thank you all! 😀


SPA – summer…

As they said, it hasn’t been very summery here this weekend especially… and laid up with a sprained foot, I have been frustrated by the whole situation. Having said that, I did spend a bit of time yesterday evening, playing with watercolours and drips and stuff…

The background started out more blue in hues, and of course, I have been carving small eraser stamps too! So this piece of paper was the foolscap sheet of lined white that I used to check my carving, that I then painted over!

The fun part was then scanning that into my PC, changing the hues and then playing with a new set of brushes which were presented to us over at Digital Whispers ning group. These are quite advanced files as I only have CS2 and when I downloaded them originally, I couldn’t open them! However, being married to a “web guy”, I offered to share my new toys with him and he opened them for me and sent them back so I could play too! (Doesn’t that sound complex??? Lol!)

So today I made this hybrid postcard for Sunday Postcard Art’s “summer” theme… using a few of the lyrics from Club Tropicana by Wham!

This is my promotional postcard for my new beach bar – Club Tropicana – which will open for business when I have the funds in place!!! 😉

TAW – Wedding!

When I was working with Lisa Vollrath on her DT for Ten Two Studios, we always had some beautiful vintage images to use.

I recently combined 3 small altered frames to make a vintage-style wall-hanging.

I used lots of broken/recycled costume jewellery, scraps of ribbon and lace and the whole thing has a D-ring brass hanger!

Personally I am no fan of weddings – especially when they are outrageously expensive these days – but there’s something so innocent about this vintage couple’s photos, that I enjoy seeing this hanging every day. It’s one of those creations that you really don’t mind hanging onto!! 😉

See more interpretations of WEDDINGS over at Take a Word this week!

Wednesday Stamper closes its doors…

I think this is so sad as I’ve been a participant on and off for the last 3 years or so. But, everything comes to an end and new challenge blogs emerge and life goes on as people get busier, etc. In honour of their closure, I wrote haikus and created this page:

“We flocked to their blog

and we created with joy:

every week was new.

Their challenge awoke

sparks of creativity

In all who took part… “

So farewell to WS and I wish you all joy and peace and creativity…

I am adding this to Theme Thursday’s “Wings” theme, which inspired the page originally! The stamps are a combination of handcarved and commercial. 🙂

Running up that hill

“And if I only could, I’d make a deal with God

And I’d get Him to swap our places…”


The Prompt: What’s the deal?
The Song: Running Up That Hill by Placebo (or Kate Bush)
Written Lyrics HERE
Product/Technique: Playing Cards

I fell in love with the lyrics to this song, written by Kate Bush in the 1980s and vaguely remembered the tune. Now of course, I can’t get it out of my head! Like many of her songs, there’s a lilting, haunted recurring theme, that takes you deep down inside yourself and I love the choreography on the video too…

Here’s my take on the challenge where I’ve endeavoured to interpret the words and how they make me feel.

I forgot all about the playing cards aspect, and look at those hearts floating around!! So much on my mind lately too! My subconscious has a mind of its own, obviously… 😉

The stamps (except the heart), are handcarved. Size – 8″x8″ (20x20cm) To see more examples, please click on A Year in the Life of an Art Journal!!!

The Caretaker Bird

The caretaker bird is a colourful character with a very responsible job. It is his job to sing the notes that help grow the steps to the Family Nest, right at the heart of the Tree of Life. He has to be in good voice and gargles daily with honey and mead, brought to him by the faithful Gatherbees.

This is a big illustration, as you can imagine, for the Tree of Life is tall, and the journey long and winding. (22″ x 16″) (58 x 42cm)

Inspired by the Three Muses this week… I think it will adapt well to customized posters/Family Trees. We shall see!

Graphite pencil, black (and white) pens (various), Derwent Inktense pencils and Caran d’Ache Neocolours were used.

Eggs for breakfast?

Admittedly, Gordon the Gnome was a little surprised at the size of the egg he’d collected for his breakfast that morning, but he was really shocked at the size of the birds flying overhead… He wondered what their eggs looked like? Hmmmm….

For Sunday Postcard Art today!

I created the background artwork last night with watercolours and Gordon was discovered today, courtesy of Google images!

Have a great weekend! 🙂

It’s all about… ME!

For Sunday Postcard Art this week –

The fabric pieces are all attached to a postcard about planning for the future and that’s exactly where we are at the moment… planning. So, really, this postcard represents me totally! 🙂

Musical Musings

For A year in the life of an art journal

THE SONG: FUCK YOU by Cee Lo Green
CLEAN version :”Forget you”.
Written Lyrics HERE

So I was lucky enough to find this wonderful magazine advertising image in my stash and rearranged the letters slightly to form the song title! My journalling is personal too, but deals with all those “doubters” who ‘knocked’ me for leaving school at 16 and not going onto University, etc.

I think even back then, I knew I wasn’t going to live a “conventional” life!! I wonder how many of them are really “happy”???


That used to be the way that “oriental people” were described, back in the old black and white movies’ days. I remember watching Charlie Chan films with my Mum when I was little, on BBC2 on a Saturday afternoon – we also watched a lot of musicals!

So, for me the term oriental has many inflections…


I started out making the background with strips of torn masking tape to leave space for journalling – trying to be a bit more disciplined!! Then came the walnut ink and some watercolour tones of brown.

“When I collaged this page I was thinking about the “state of GRACE” and that no matter how much you want to RAGE against the Machine, it doesn’t pay to rant and scream. It’s better just to try to maintain your dignity and keep your self-respect by rising above it all and preserving a dignified silence.”

It was unfinished, so I added colour and shading and some doodles, plus more detailed text… At the top I wrote:

“Although she looks very beautiful with her hazel eyes, I bet she’s not inscrutable, like the oriental races are… or appear to be! He has his glasses to hide behind.”

“Is it really better to live a minimalist life? Should we really discard things and not invest them with memories? Are we just too sentimental? Too steeped in the clutter and ownership of possessions?

Is “less” really “more”?”

Ironically, the Fortune Cookie paper at the bottom reads: You have a keen sense of humour and love a good time.

For Take a Word – “Oriental”.