Wednesday, 24 December 2008

3D work using fibre and shell

I did these the other day - an idea I had been playing with - some of which were sent to my parents for their Christmas Gifts - made with shredded flax and shells from one of the local beaches...
I am VERY much into natural products, things that preserve - and don't harm our environment in their creating or their disposal, and that influence is becoming more and more important to me the older I get so I love the idea of creating an artwork like these using 100% natural and biodegradable things to work with that will benefit the ground when they eventually return to it.

Currently i have several palm tree spathes soaking in the bath also - the word is getting out that I am making lovely containers with them and the other afternoon I woke to find some Kind Person had dropped some off on the porch ready for me to use (thanks).
You soak them to soften the wood so it becomes flexible and also so you can pierce holes in it more easily. The water laden wood seems to 'fold around' whatever you are piercing it with rather than splitting lengthways so you get a smooth hole, not a tear, in the wood.

Thankfully this person had also copped off the fronds for me which makes them much easier to work with - this one in the bath is not pre chopped and was very hard to remove the main frond stem.

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

hooray - sold one of the Kete

Just received a wee cheque from the Wellington exhibition with a lovely letter to say 'wild and wooly' sold at exhibition

Here's the link to the post where I talk about making it and the symbolism.

I am SO thrilled, had a grin from ear to ear when I got the mail! Not sure what happened to the other Kete I sent down - no doubt I will find out soon.

Between that and the exhibition up here I was able to put quite a bit away into the fundraising account for my trip away next year. It is great to see the $ creeping up and knowing I am getting closer to my goal. Quite a way to go yet but am getting there.

Gosh, it's so encouraging!

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Artistic Pet Project for Artschool fun

My mentor set a project to do some artistic shots of our pets so here goes...

Hedgewick, the baby Hedgepig

Opal the Cat

I have a 'part time cat', Harry, who visits when he feels like biscuits. He bought me this charming Goldfinch not so long back.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Just finished the art and craft show - Dec 08

I am feeling very encouraged at the moment – 2 of the postcard-sized life drawings I did the other day sold at exhibition this morning – Indian ink and oil pastel. So that was encouraging –I loved them but did not know if anyone else would. Also sold a lot of cards of my work that I had produced last year and some names down to do some weekend workshops with me in 2009.
Heaps of feedback also on a container I made this week from a palm spathe, flax and paua – really thrilled with it myself – it did not sell at exhibition BUT one of the people coming through loved it and took a photo to send to her sister who runs a gallery in Kerikeri as she might be interested in exhibiting my work so that was good. If nothing comes of it – I have lost nothing – but perhaps something WILL come of it and then I will have gained.
I would have loved to have sold some of the bigger works – but not to be this time around – although have an offer on one that I did not take down to the exhibition that I think I will accept.
The car is full of stuff from the exhibition so that will be a big job in the morning to unpack and put everything away. I've had to call it quits tonight but I’ve treated myself to some blue cheese with pesto on crackers and also frozen yoghurt to end the week in a nice way. Very tired but very content.

Oh – a wonderful thing occurred – i had fresh flowers from the garden just to add to the 'look' of my space each day – and the woman doing the catering loved them so much that I was able to swap her a fresh bunch of flowers for lunch yesterday and today. What a good system! Today she went home with a HUGE bunch of lime green and scarlet alstromeria so she was thrilled.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Portfolio and exhibition work off today Yahoo

Above is the really beautiful spider that was on the flax as we were weaving on Friday! Apparently an Ausi import!
Have sent in my final lot of work for the year to artschool and also packedged up the 2 Kete I have made in the last couple of weeks to go to exhibition and hopefully sell.
The trickiest thing was to pack them so they didn't get crushed -
Filled 'Feels Like Home' with a shopping bag full of shells and sand from a nearby beach to help it hold it's shape.
'Wild and Woolly' I made last week using Natural fibres, sheep wool from a friends farm fence and polished discs of bone and packed that with what was left of the wool so hoping that works. I had to wrap the long ends of shredded flax carefully so they did not bend and loose their shape.
Thankfully everything fitted nicely in my art portfolio so did not have extra courier fees.

It took two hours yesterday to tie off the bone disc handle on 'Wild and Woolly' so it was just right!

There are also 12 bone discs threaded into the rim for the twelve tribes of Israel, the shredded flax forms a huge mane around the Kete (Jesus referred to as the Lion of the tribe of Judah) and sheep wool also talking about His being known as the sacrificial Lamb of God, covering and paying for our sins.

I have also started working on some decoupage pieces in the last few weeks. At the moment working on an old suitcase and my hakere fridge (good inside but not so great outside). - very time consuming but quite absorbing. Enjoying the challenge of something new.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Traditional Maori Flax Basket (Kete)

Last week I called into a friends for a coffee and she had a pile of beautiful baskets she had just finished weaving so in passing i asked if she could teach me, next minute she had a pair of cutting tools in her hand and off down the garden we went where she cut long leaves of flax and showed me how to strip and soften them and then we both worked side by side on a basket each so she could show me what to do. I made a pipi-picking kete a while ago but didn't really know what I was doing (and Tangaroa ended up being gifted with it after a big wave slapped me from behind whilst I was bent over gathering Pipis (Grin)).

I am thrilled with mine - after we had woven down the top edges I was concerned that they might unravel as the Kete dried and I had the inspiration to shred the flax and then knot the different strands together right around the rim. I've also threaded some slipper shells on some strands from one of the local beaches. It's drying a lovely golden yellow almost so very pleased. On Friday we are meeting again to weave together - I have already made some grass handles for the next Kete so can't wait to try them and see if they work.
Have called the work "Feels Like Home"

Friday, 3 October 2008

Illustrators workshop end of day two pics

I worked on four paintings over the two days of the illustrators workshop
Revamped the native Parrot Fish painting (of the pororae) in acrylic by adding some koru designs and repainting the background. Did some more work on 'Arohanui' also.

The two new paintings were the Paua with Koru design in green tones (acrylic on canvas) and 'HineMoana with the net of the faeries' (actually started as a self portrait) in acrylic, wood glue and beach sand.

Monday, 29 September 2008

Illustrators Workshop - Sept 08

Today I have been out on an Illustrators workshop with Theresa Reihana. She spoke with me about the symbolism for womanhood, nurturing which is like a seed pod with seeds inside being protected and nurtured and she also showed me how to do the patterned spaces using repeating koru themes. Spent the day working between several paintings – one she drew the koru patterns on then I darkened the inbetween spaces leaving the koru in the original colours.

Doing koru is quite therapeutic – so curved and flowing and smooth.

Came home and used the TLC drawing exercises to start work on a self portrait – going to ‘sand’ it in the morning at the course to texturise some parts (you use wood glue and shake sand over the top.

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Hi Build, Garden Signs, More Organised Painting Space and Cat Characture Cards

Below are some cat characature cards in INdia Ink and oil pastels iwas using as a warm up the other day

I thought i would be rather clever today and incorporate the art school exercises into making some garden signs for the vegetable patch - however it didn't quite gel! I did do a few signs though for the various potatoes that have sprouted in the cupboard and need to be planted (Agria and Rua) and for the Kumara I am having a go at sprouting ready to plant in a month or so (Golden and Beauregard).
Anyway - here's some of the work from this week. I had my first experimental session with some 'Hi Build' that came with the art school starter pack. I think it may prove quite useful if I can get a handle on how to make the most of it.

I have discovered that if i lay the paint out neatly according to colour and depth of colour that I am able to work far better. I guess because i can immediately lay my hand on the colour needed rather than having to scrounge around trying to find it amidst all the other paints and paraphernalia.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

art societies and goal setting analogues and overwhelming sadness

Yesterday dropped in some work (including the Maori Madonna and some of the new art school work) to the Northland Art Society and used the opportunity to have a look at what work was on exhibition there and the prices. I have some ready to send to gallery who have asked if I could sell my work through them in Matanaka - just out of Auckland so Need to do a write up or artists statement for them. Just waiting for the address to arrive so can get it underway.
Today I had intended to do a full days work but worked in frustration for three hours on an analogue that still has not come together just right so will re work it again tomorrow. It is supposed to depict how I feel about my present and how i would like to feel about my future. But since Thursday I have been struggling with feelings relating to a sudden and significant loss in my life and the uncaring way I was told about it and the huge implications for my immediate situations and future and I have been unable to break away from the trauma response I am having to that. Even in todays work it came through. Feeling sad and scared and cluttered and all messed up and angry and full of mistrust with the people who should have been there to ease the news and check up to see if i was OK. Will load the pics of todays work when batteies have charged

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Sundays work - colour theory and papaya painting

At the moment I am watching a movie on Andy Warhol - very interesting

Started today by working on completing my colour analogues - this time using short music fragments. In my initial planning I had looked at the idea almost of a church window shape so that's how it was all divided up. I will add it onto my emotion swatches from the other day when I am able to buy some backing support and adhesive.

Have been working through some colour exercises today that have resulted in a nice acrylic of a papaya using complimentary colours (the seeds also have blue added to the brown to contrast with the vermillion flesh and the background is essentially blue blended with the initial yellow blocking in colour which has resulted in a deep rich green-grey almost)

The inspiration for the work came from an advertising pic in a magazine that really appealed to me because of the shocking colour contrasting with the black seeds. I had chopped it out a month or so ago and put it in my visual diary on pattern.

Compared to my other work this piece seems full of energy and light

Friday, 12 September 2008

Tin Foil Masks - Saturdays Creativity

Today I discovered that the courier sometime last week had been and left my art portfolio sitting in behind stuff on the porch which was a bit frustrating and VERY lucky it had not gotton wet. So have had nice time looking at the feedback dvd and browsing through a book that was sent and in a moment of energy ripped off a piece of aluminium foil from the kitchen and made an imprint of my face which turned out really great and is now pinned over the stove. Looking at different online Galleries to sell my work from at the moment. Have found one a friend uses that will market also Tee shirts of your work which really appeals to me - so going to hopefully have some 'get up and go' this evening and sort through my work and see what is suitable. I also have to choose work to send to the gallery in Auckland and some for an indoor market that an acquaintance has offered to hang some work and sell some cards for me (I will give her a commission). interesting to look at the different online galleries as you get a feel for what other work is out there and how yours compares quality wise so a good experience for me and inspiring me to have quality work out there.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Colour Theory - The Colour of Emotion

Today the first hour was spent planning and thinking about what i needed for the lesson on Colour theory - so at the end of the hour i was SOOOO BIG and complicated in my ideas that I had to get out of the house for a while and refocus a bit. Paid off the art supplies bill to date which was a big burden out of the was and enabled me to book up another couple of items that I needed. With the CFIDS I find loud beaty music tends to overload the senses and causes stress and every place I went into had loud beaty music playing so by the time I came home I was totally wiped out and dysfunctional (not the right word).
I was so glad I had my notes from the morning to refer to as when I got cracking and began working on the emotion analog colour 'swatches' I just referred back to my morning notes and worked from them rather than rethinking everything.

I find clutter quite stressful and by the end of the day the table was so cluttered with paints and glitters and notes and pallets and brushes and and and.....

Poor Opal was so tired of waiting for me to finish (I had to keep going or loose the wetness and blending of the acrylic) that she took herself to bed before I had the chance to feed her!

The analogues are on one sheet of paper divided into four parts (fear-suspense, happiness, hatred and love/romance) I wanted to do the 'swatches' in stripes of colour after reading and looking at the work of an artist who did landscapes by painting strips of the colours that had impressed him about the landscape. So I wanted to play with the idea of doing strips of colour that reminded me of the emotion.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Work Thursday, Saturday and Today

It's been a busy day today - starting out with scrubbing out some soup bones and hanging them on the line to dry (wet bone smells a bit weird) as I thought they might make interesteing painting surfaces for hand made chunky pendants.

I will write up the rest tomorrow. Have run out of steam!