In which I talk about the joys of painting, drawing, knitting, cats, music, living in London, and whatever else takes my fancy.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Advent Calendar 24

The last image in my calendar. Happy Christmas, Everyone : )

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Advent Calendar 23

I'm looking forward to a mince pie later on, when I have done the travelling : )

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Advent Calendar 22

Time for some present wrapping, whilst the Christmas puddings are steaming : )

Friday, December 21, 2007

Advent Calendar 21

My thoughts are now turning to food shopping. Brussels sprouts are a personal winter fave, along with yummy roast parsnips. My mum always liked to have a fresh pineapple at Xmas, hence the one in this box.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Advent Calendar 20

A little romance under the mistletoe before last minute xmas shopping!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Advent Calendar 19

The xmas tree is not indoors yet, but here is one of the pink glass heart baubles imagined hanging from it!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Advent Calendar 18

Bringing my tree indoors, and decorating it is one of the things I hope to do later on today : ) I love xmas trees, and always enjoy looking through the decorations box and remembering the histories of the baubles. This year I have some lovely pink glass hearts to add, too.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Advent Calendar 17

I've painted these angel chimes from memory, and I've not seen the real things for 8 years!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Advent Calendar 16

I deliberately waited today for it to become dark outside: it did not feel right to attempt the pretty xmas street lights during daylight hours! These were inspired by the lights in Highgate Village : ). A real challenge to paint in watercolour, and that is probably a very good thing about making this advent calendar - I dreamed up the ideas for each day without thinking how easy or otherwise the images would be to paint!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Advent Calendar 15

Xmas shopping has been today's main activity so far - present giving is something I really enjoy: ). Oh yes, and I did find some mistletoe on my travels!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Advent Calendar 14

Today's advent painting: a reindeer eating a carrot. Last night on the local news I saw a feature about a pet reindeer, including her really eating a carrot, as well as travelling on trains, going to the pub etc!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Advent Calendar 13

Mistletoe for 13th day of my advent calendar : ). Usually, I have bought a bunch of mistletoe by now, but so far this year I have not seen any - I wonder whether the rain this year has affected it's growth? Anyway, it made it hard to be sure I'd chosen exactly the right shade of green for the leaves!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Advent Calendar 12

The mittens on the carol singers were inspired by today's very cold weather!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Advent Calendar 11

The idea for today was originally a snowman, then I got to thinking about how my young nieces would dress a snowperson, so here is the snowgirl!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Advent Calendar 10

Another very late in the day post! A glass of mulled wine is very xmassy, and not the easiest thing to paint; )

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Advent Calendar 9

We do make Santa lists in my family, so that is what inspired today's advent painting : )

Saturday, December 08, 2007

advent Calendar 8

Today's painting is a robin! I love to watch birds in my garden, and there is often a robin : )

Friday, December 07, 2007

Advent Calendar 7

Today's image was inspired by a very old Christmas decoration I own, which I suspect is Victorian: brass bells and paper holly with wax holly berries: )

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Advent Calendar 6

Day 6 of my advent caendar paintings! Last posting date by second class post to UK addresses is 17th December it seems.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Advent Calendar 5

Rather late today, but here is my fifth advent calendar image : )

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Advent Calendar 4

Here is today's picture. I usually make Xmas puddings towards the end of November, but have not done so yet! Maybe if I dig out the recipe I use and post it here, I will be inspired to start stirring myself; )

Monday, December 03, 2007

Advent Calendar 3

Here is today's advent image : ). As well as having fun with the painting, I'm also learning a lot about scanning: the images are painted on the same block of water colour paper, so I have to isolate the the right part to make into a jpeg!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Advent Calendar 2

Here is today's advent illustration. I'm experimenting to try to get the image to display here more like it's real size, instead of enlarged!

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Friday, November 30, 2007

More painting

It has been a trying week, so I'm pleased to have still completed some paintings! Here it the completed Xmas kitten fairy, and another Xmas tree. I'm looking forward to starting a watercolour advent calendar tomorrow : )

Monday, November 26, 2007

Society of Secret Fairies Trick or Treat

A fab halloween parcel arrived last week: my Secret Fairy had sent me a delightful little crossstitched pumpkin cushion, along with a wonderful rubber bat (I love bats!), some tasty australian gummy bear sweets, and plastic spiders and skelington, and a great halloween card. Thank you so much www:// : )

Monday, November 19, 2007

Christmas Fairy kitten?

This is an experiment: I've not tried doing anything like this before, so thought I'd show the Christmas fairy kitten here (even though not quite finished the painting) and see what you think.

Friday, November 16, 2007

christmas tree

A tad early, but here is my first Christmas tree for this year! I love Christmas trees, so am planning to paint a few more between now and December 24th. 'Also thinking of doing an advent calendar of a tiny painting a day, inspired by the wonderful one by Lorna Brown, last year I think.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Pumpkins illustration

Here is the cd sleeve I made for a compilation of tracks, loosely themed around the idea of "changes". I took the seasonal theme of pumpkins, and painted a growing one for one side, then a pumpkin lantern for the other side! 'Having got a bit carried away, and ending up with a double album, the track listings ended up inside, in a kind of gate-fold arrangement.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Scenery update

Thank you for the kind comments on the design! 'Seeing the scenery under stage lighting at the dress rehearsal, I realised it looks too clean and new, so I am plotting ways to tone down the new paintness, and make it look a bit grubby. The setting is meant to be a slightly neglected, village train station waiting room. Cold tea, and some dust is probably the way forward, plus one of the actors suggested some graffiti..

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

preview of the scenery

I'm still working on the scenery (the dress rehearsal is on Friday!), and this is the top right hand panel. In the photo, it is lying on the floor, which is the only way I can paint it - too unstable upright, plus there could be a problem with paint running. It is an interesting challenge form a technical perspective: the panel is recycled, so it is the rough textured back of hardboard which you can see, plus on the right hand side there is a whole row of short strips of tape, which I have to paint over!

Friday, October 19, 2007

An especially busy week or so!

I'm having a very busy couple of week, so not found time to post on my blog. Last weekend I was away visiting family. This week is an especially busy time of year in the housing development world, with funding bids deadline looming, plus I am painting some scenery for a play! Photographs will appear here soon..

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Illustration friday: Open

Here is my idea for this week's topic of "Open". I currently have more than a bit of an obsession with "The Owl and The Pussy-cat", who seem to be lending themselves well to playing around with ideas - thoughts about what else they do, apart from sailing away with honey, and dining on quince with a runcible spoon! "Missed the deadline to draw up and post in time for Illustration Friday, but I did rough out an idea for the Owl and Pussycat juggling, too. It's a good idea, and gives me useful practice with Wacom pen and Painter, so will make the image and post it here soon.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

And then there were three

Today I have been wielding pencil and paintbrush again, hoorah! Also had a revelation about myself, which is that I get acute performance anxiety when I am doing a "proper" drawing - for my portfolio or a client - which at is worst results in me being too nervous to draw, and best that I draw very stiffly, and lose the freshness from my work. 'No idea yet how to change this. So, this morning, I downed pencil and picked up paintbrush, and finished off this loose rough of "cat with stars". I'm liking the colour direction this idea is going in now, so will print out another outline for my next bout of artistic anxiety; )

Here is new humpty, Sorbet, with her friends!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

New pictures tomorrow

Well, I've been a bit, or rather, very slack over the past week or so, and not posted anything new here! The best explanation is that I've been very focussed on admin tasks like my tax return. There is a new humpty, and another almost completed, so I'll post at least one of them here tomorrow.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

A lucky find

Today I found this lovely shaker-style wooden box in a yard sale. Perfect for storing the yarns, etc for knitting humpties! So much more elegant than the plastic bag I had been using.

I have completed the knitting of a new humpty, Sorbet, who will be appearing here very soon.

Puflet has suggested humpty egg cosies would be fun, so watch this space!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Introducing Humpty's friend

Here is Humpty's new friend: complete with very funky black raggy suit, and gleaming purple shoes! I don't know what name to give him/her yet, so any suggestions would be welcome. I'm looking forward to making another this week.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Illustration friday: wedding

At last, another Illustration Friday image! All done in Painter digital water colour using Wacom tablet: about an hour's work, although I came up with the idea over a cappucino while out this morning. More from Edwad Lear's "The Owl and The Pussy Cat", which is a favourite this year.

my fave ipod

This is a very quick, fun idea while experimenting with Painter watercolour! All actually drawn with mouse pad whilst sitting on sofa..

Monday, September 10, 2007

yarn for more humpties

Well, I've had some very encouraging comments about Humpty, and also a suggestion that I need to make him more trendy! So on Saturday when I went shopping for some proper toy filling, I kept an eye out for some interesting yarns. Then I knitted a sampler: the black fluffy yarn knits up fluffier on the purl (wrong) side I discovered, so I have had to adapt the basic knitting pattern slightly. Watch this space because I think a new humpty will be appearing this week!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


The first humpty I have knitted for many years! It was fun making him, and I have ideas now for lots of others.

Monday, August 27, 2007

arches and another paintbox

I've been away again, and have photographed several arches and other views looking through spaces, it seems, so I'm guessing there is some kind of fairy tale idea developing in my subconcious for painting soon.

I've also added another paintbox to my collection - a lecherpentier barbe which needs a lot of cleaning

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

8 Random things about me

I've been tagged by Penny and Toby - - to tell you 8 random things about myself. It's been fun thinking what to tell you, and I hope you enjoy finding out more about me.

Now I have to tag 8 other people. This is not compulsory, and if I have chosen you, and you don't fancy joining in, that is fine. Here are the rules:

1. Let others know who tagged you.
2. Players start with 8 random acts about themselves.
3. Those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts.
4. Players should tag 8 other people and notify them they have been tagged.

I tag:


1. plectrum collection

My plectrum collection, the majority of which I have found in the street or on buses!

2. peaches v raspberries

I love both peaches and raspberries, and have never been able to decided which is my favourite fruit. Today I am eating raspberries, because the peach is not quite ripe!

3. asiatic pheasant

I use asiatic pheasant china most days: I love the design, and old Victorian one, which fascinated me from when little broken pieces of it would turn up in the garden when I was a child. Then to my delight Habitat re-introduced it for a couple of yearsl so my family gave me loads for presents. Nowadays I also have a few whole items of the original Victorian china, too.

4. A shared birthday

I share my birthday with one of my nephews: here is us together in 1998.

5. thimble and scissors set

My granny gave me this embrodery scissors and thimble set when I was about 8. It's had a lot of use over the years, hence the worn out state of the red leather case! The set was made to commemorate the coronation of the queen in 1953, and the thimble has a coach and horses round the base, with ER and 1953. I think my granny gave it to me in particular because I love sewing and all crafty things, and was born the same year.

6 . paintbox

My first proper artists watercolours paintbox was this wonderful Victorian Winsor & Newton tin of half pans I bought in a junk shop. It still has some of the original colours in it, plus I've added some. I love the shaped, almost fleur de lys ends to the paint sockets, which I have tried to show in the photo. Yes, it is still in use, although I do have some less battered sets now.