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Thursday, 24 November 2011

Cyanotype shinanigins

Hello there all blog friends. I am divulging some cyanotype shinanigins I took part in a couple of years back. I remembered these after the lovely Geninne on her art blog posted some similar images. I was inspired by a lady I read about who was holding an 'Open house' art event. I went to see her work, it was beautiful. So.....I just had to have a go!  The whole process was quite tricky, from finding the chemicals etc, the right paper, glass to sandwich the foliage I wanted to use, and last but not least some UV light in the form of British sunshine, Ha Ha.
I found a brilliant book on the subject,(see above) gathered all the necessary bits, the only real problem (apart from the chemicals being slightly dangerous, cyanide I think??BIG rubber gloves necessary) was not having a darkroom or similar. I ended up in the garage, one dark night, (husband shouting, what are you doing in there, ??) painting the chemical onto watercolour paper, then trying to let it dry before placing in a black bag in another box and then in a draw. The chemical becomes light sensitive once it's painted on,(I like the brush strokes) so it meant waiting till the next day and hoping for sunshine. I wanted to do mainly Christmassy leaves etc, hence the holly you can see. I ended up with allsorts of floral bits in the end.(can you see the honeysuckle?)

It was a big learning curve to be honest. I now know of a place I could do this, with a darkroom and a UV light, I should/ MUST have another go. My only trouble is I'm not flipping fantastic photoshop wise, or I could do something with the images. Still I do like them, I could maybe try painting over like Geninne has, Hmmmn.....perhaps I'll get round to it one day? I do have some mad moments trying out different things, it all makes for good fun!! Hope you like the blues? I find them quite soulfull :)))

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Sweet Honeysuckle. Update!

At last I got round to finishing the honeysuckle I started earlier in October? I am quite pleased with it, I maybe should have put more green leaves in?? But overall it looks how I wanted, with some swooshy bits around the little stamens. I sometimes think I would enjoy doing Botanical Illustration? Possibly a course in it, I always love those sort of floral images. Sorry the light wasn't too good when I took the photo, it was a better day actually, but direct sunlight was too glaring! Hope you like them? I am feeling the need to paint birds, I have been taken with the blog 'the tiny aviary' and Dianas beautiful work on there!! but I have other things on right now. I need to push myself and do it!!!!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Window Shopping

Hello blogland. It has been a very dull and grey week here weather wise, it's made it quite tricky seeing artwork in the poor light (I have just got some new specs too). I have been working on some 'speculative' pieces this past week or so, for my agent ' Advocate' they gave me some ideas to work on, one of which was a shop window, so I took some nice photos on our trip away recently, and put these to good use on the artwork. I often take photos of anything I think may come in useful, it's just finding them again when I need them that can be tricky!! I used the above to create my new artwork. Hope you like them!
I'm back on to the 'Honeysuckle' now, so will post an update soon.
 Bye for now.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Stamping fun and Inspiration

Hi folks, I managed to put the finishing touches to my Christmas cards yesterday, stamping the snowflakes on,it was fun. The chalk effect inks worked well I thought, I just need a bit more dark area to put the snowflakes on, so I will keep this in mind when I make some more. I also used a stencil and my finger to get some different snowflake shapes in there. The metallic inks I had didn't work so well on the dark colour, but they may work on other ideas. Hope you like them? I shall be sending some out for Christmas, If I have some nice comments, I will send one or two out to my lovely bloggy friends :) Not sure how these give away things work, but I'll try my best!

I wanted to include some inspiration I have had for a few years now, a magazine excerpt I saved, showing the work of a talented artist called, Cath Read, she has her own website if you'd like to see more. These are worked in Pastel on a dark background, she really makes the light and bright colours work so well against the dark, and I think they shine so lovely. I am going to have to have a go at something like this with pastels, I shall try and study what she does, and find a subject to suit that I would like to do. Something floral I think?  Hope you like these too (Melody).
Bye for now. Jules X

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Crafty update

I just had to further pursue the Robin Christmas card I had stamped earlier. So late yesterday afternoon,(after doing some sketching for work) I mixed some lovely blue colours which I thought would come close to the colours on the book cover that had inspired me. It was a bit tricky working in the artificial light,(the clocks have gone back and it's dark at 5 o'clock,) as I wanted to blend the colours together, wet in wet, from light to dark. Natural light would have been better because I ended up trying to hold the card up to the strip light to see how the water was drying on the surface and judging the right time to put the paint down so that it would spread nicely, but not be a washout! The first blue went on really well, the other two I ended up blobbing them on, rather than trying to wash them in, as it continued spreading quite a bit. But I was happy with how they looked. Finally I added some salt, to create a snowy, frosty fuzz,( too much on the first one) which worked quite well too?
 Looking at them afterwards, I am very pleased with the colours, they are quite close to the book, do you think? But, I may need to move the stamped robin down within the card shape, to give me more room for the next stage of stamped, chalky snowflakes.Hope you like them so far, these are just testers really.  I'm looking forward to the next stage, will keep you posted.