Saturday, 5 December 2015

Into the black

Journal page,
white pencil on black gesso.

Inspired by this:
Warning: It gets heavy! :)

Monday, 30 November 2015

Never to be told

It's the end of another AEDM and I'm finishing on a high note.
 One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy,
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
Seven for a secret,
Never to be told.

You may have noticed, when it comes to my artwork I'm my own biggest critic, but occasionally a piece just comes together perfectly; and this is one of them. I'm really happy with this and it's in my personal top three pieces.
There are several versions of the rhyme above, depending which part of the country you're from; but the version above is probably the most well known as it was used for a children's TV show back in the seventies.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Almost there

AEDM, last day but one.

This started life as one of those brown cardboard/papier-mâché blanks that can be bought from craft shops. It's a storgae box that's book shaped. Add a few layers of paper towel, cover with yellow and pink tissue, attach a few embellishments, and hey presto a birthday present. 
(Contents are not yet decided)

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Another sketch

And another one that I've had to darken to get the detail to show,
which makes it harsher than the real sketch.
This one definitely needs more work.

Friday, 27 November 2015

Little Jenny Wren

The sweetheart of Robin Redbreast.

Robin promised Jenny, if she would be his wife,
she should `feed on cherry-pie and drink currant-wine';
and he says:

`Ill dress you like a goldfinch,
Or any peacock gay;
So, dearest Jen, if you'll be mine,
Let us appoint the day.'

Jenny replies:

`Cherry-pie is very nice,
And so is current wine;
But I must wear my plain brown gown,
And never go too fine.

'Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Tell me what you see

Hopefully you'll be able to see something this time,
unlike last Thursday's offering!

The actual image isn't this dark,
I've had to digitally enhance it,
or you would be looking at a white oblong again.

It still needs more work yet,
but I'm taking it slowly.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Small things

In this case a 4x4 canvas.

Not the best image of a robin,
the shape isn't quite right,
and the red is too sharply defined.
Not bad for a quick painting though.

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

The saga continues........

Day 3 of "the canvas"

I think I'm getting somewhere;
or at least I will be when it's dry (again)!

I have a vague idea of what's coming next,
but that could change by tomorrow
if I see something else in the swirls and lines.

Monday, 23 November 2015

No pics again

Nothing to see here folks,
move along....

Nothing to show again today. 
Unless you want to look at the latest layer of gesso on canvas. After yesterday's layers had eventually dried, I slapped some green paint on it, but it didn't look right. If ever this canvas gets to the stage of being a piece of art, I'll need a reinforced wall to hang it on!

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Non-sticky, sticky stuff

Have you ever had one of those non-stick pans?
You know the sort I mean;
they're coated with something that was supposedly developed for NASA
or the military,
and nothing will stick to it ever;

Until you get make the perfect fried egg that is,
the one that is cooked to perfection,
perfectly shaped
not too runny
but just runny enough.
At which point the pan develops the adhesive quality
of a limpet armed with duct tape and superglue!

Well, today I've been working on a canvas.
I had the wonderful idea of layering up paint
and marking off sections with masking tape.
The kind that you can easily peel off,
and it even it falls off when you don't want it to.
And once it was dry I could peel it off 
in one smooth movement 
to reveal a masterpiece. 

Yeah, right! 

The canvas is now covered in a thick layer of gesso!

Saturday, 21 November 2015

99 luftballons

Another recycled canvas,
this was inspired by a song on the radio today
which I haven't heard for a while
but it took me back to living in Germany in the early 80s.

Apart from the balloon, this has been created without using brushes
just an old plastic card and some kitchen roll.
If you're wondering why there's two images,
I couldn't decide which I preferred.
The one on the left is with flash.

And this is the song.
The original is much better than the Anglicised version '99 red balloons'

Friday, 20 November 2015

To let

Playing around with a piece of canvas board from an earlier experiment (that didn't work out as expected). I used black gesso, and some red paint to make sure everything was covered over and didn't show through.
And then I needed a bit of detail adding.

I now need to decide on a resident for this.

After yesterday's post which was too light for people's monitors, I hope this isn't too dark. I've tried playing around with different images, but the light isn't great in here.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

The details are a bit sketchy......

If this works, it will be a surprise for a friend.
If it doesn't it will remain buried in the sketch book!

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Caution! Wet Paint!

Actually, it's wet ink,
but paint sounded better.
A random page in a journal I was given a while back.
The pages are brown kraft paper, 
which makes it 'interesting' to work with;
or a pain depending on your viewpoint!

This is gesso,
torn pages,
skeleton leaves,
paper flowers,
distress ink,
and finally a healthy dose of spray ink,
(which is taking ages to dry)

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Over the hills and far away

I don't use watercolour very often.
I don't dislike them, I just prefer acrylic,
but sometimes I want a background that's more muted,
so I dig them out and play.
The figure is gouache as it needed to stand out more.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

Chakra angel

There's not much to show today,
just some gesso slapped on a page,
bits and pieces of prep work on things,
but nothing worth posting.

So I've dug out one of the few pieces I did earlier in the year.

The wings were fairly straightforward,
but the body with the chakra colours was a different story!
I must have tried 5 or 6 different variations,
and there's several layers of paint and gesso!

I'm still not sure it's right!

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Nothing much today

With events unfolding in Paris, 
this all seems rather trivial, 
but life has to go on, 
otherwise the extremists have won.

The beginning of an idea.
One page with background,
and one with a quick sketch.
I'll work on combining them,
whilst I look for a canvas that's the right size

Friday, 13 November 2015

Red (ish)

Not a lot else I can say really.
It's a canvas
and I've painted it metallic red.

I used a roller and let the paint dry very slightly so there's a nice texture to it.

Thrilling stuff eh?

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Caw caw

Well, I did warn you I might do a crow

Thankfully, the black on black was was easier with this one.
Probably because it's a bigger bird
and a bigger canvas (8x8)

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

It's ok! I've got it covered..............

It wouldn't be AEDM if I didn't do at least one handmade book.

Remember the painted paper from a couple of days ago?
Well, they've been through the printer and have some of my verses added
(on the non-painted side)
and are now inside a nice fabric coated cover.

It's worked so that each poem faces a painted sheet,
and I'll work through it from time to time and add to the painted pages.
Stencils, masks, stamps and anything else that seems to fit the words.

Monday, 9 November 2015


Not sure what to call this one yet,
but starburst sounds ok.
8x8 canvas with paint layered on it.
I'll see what comes to me next.
Watch this space.

Sunday, 8 November 2015

A beautiful mess

Several tubes of paint
1 roller
as much paper as required

Saturday, 7 November 2015


A handmade card,
something I haven't done for a long while.

Watercolour pencils on basic cardstock.
Quick & easy :)

Friday, 6 November 2015

Like a bird on a wire

One of my favourite birds, the good old blackbird.

Last year I did a sketch of a winter wolf,
and quickly discovered that adding white detail
to something that's basically already white,
isn't easy.

Guess what! Adding black detail,
to a black bird isn't any different!
I'm happy with the way it has turned out, apart from the legs.
They really need some more work!

Maybe I'll do a crow next!

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Playtime is over

Didn't have a huge amount of time last night, so just added the details to this one.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015


Another WIP.

Last night I mentioned that I play games
Apart from Space-sims, I love D&D, quizzes, puzzles and anything that makes me think;
rather than twitch games which tend to rely on reflexes more than anything else
(I'm a bit long in the tooth for that).

This is another journal page, and it started off as a selection of scraps from various gaming sessions and quizzes; pasted down and covered in paint.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Into the void

A change of style for today, creating with words instead of pictures.
When I'm not creating, I sometimes play games, especially space-sims.
I've always been fascinated by the stars, and the latest game 'Elite', features a full galaxy to roam around. Apart from the usual game styles, pirate, trader, etc; Elite gives you the chance to explore the galaxy. It's a wonderful way to relax, just head off into the dark, away from the inhabited area, and fly amongst the stars, and the nebulae and star clouds. Skim along the rings of a gas giant, or maybe watch the clouds swirling on another earthlike world.

I must go once more into the void
into the eternal night
A myriad dots in the quiet blackness
Cold and hard, diamond light.

Twinkle twinkle little star,
but not out here;
not where we are.
Here amongst the whispering spheres,
who's song's not meant for human ears
A siren's call, to a deadly embrace,
the last adventure,
an endless sleep

The painting is one that I created earlier in the year, during one of the slightly less dark times, and it seemed to tie in with this, so I figured I'd add it to this post.

Monday, 2 November 2015

Our Lady of Electric Light

aka AEDM Day 2

Here's the one I started yesterday.
I've brightened up some of the colour, and added the lady.

The inspiration for this is a track from Clutch - Our Lady of Electric Light.
Having listened to the lyrics a bit more, it maybe doesn't fit the words,
but it's what came to mind on first listening,
so that's what I'm going with it.

Have a listen and see what you think.

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Out of the darkness

Is there anybody there?
Is this thing switched on? 
*tap, tap*
Right, let's see if I can remember how to do this......

Hello, I'm back.
I knew I hadn't blogged for a while, but January!?

In my head I had this wonderful amazing post about why I haven't been posting;
but it refuses to come out as words on the screen that make sense.
And besides, it would probably sound like a 'woe is me' post;
so I'll just say, it's been a crap year, but time to move on.

And then I realised it's the start of November;
which means it's AEDM!
So here we go;
30 days of creating to really get me back in the swing again.

So, without further ado, here's today's contribution.
Journal page, acrylic on paper.
 Still a WIP, but I had to stop as the paints need time to dry because the colours were getting a bit muddy. Hopefully I'll be able to finish it tomorrow
(famous last words).

So, there we have it. Day 1 under my belt :)

Now I just have to remember how to get it on AEDM........

Wednesday, 7 January 2015


One for sorrow,
two for joy,
Is is true,
or just a ploy?
Black and white,
loud and raucous,
or subtly coloured?
Bright eyed stealer,
thief and taker,
or jewel eyed messenger?