Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Looking towards a creative New Year.

 My brain is working overtime at the moment, I have so many projects planned in my head so need to get down to getting them out in the world. The main focus has been getting my website up and running. Which has come to a bit of a halt. Got all the pages done but having trouble with the shop bit.i will get there.
Mean while I have ideas for an artist book and another book sculpture. Which I'm hope to start in the next couple of days. Just to give myself more to do I have joined two one line classes.
This is a year long class,where you are shown how to make a differant book structure every month and then given prompts and suggestions to fill the pages with the help of different teachers showing techniques. Did a little taster in Dec and really enjoyed it. This type of Journaling is new to me and I'm having to learn to alow myself to make mistakes and not worry about how I think it looks. Although haven't produced anything earth shattering I'm learning a lot about myself and my art.

The second class I'm taking is called Sketch your life. 
Not got too far in at the moment but I'm hoping to find more encouragement to sketch more regularly.
Still making the book too and will be putting more or Esty soon and the website ( hopefully) 

One of the latest books 
Happy New Year one and all see you on the other side!!

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Learning new Skills

Over the last week I have been on a couple of workshops and have had a whale of a time.
First off the chickens. Chris Moss showed us how to make wire chickens. Had a great time making the mine although wasn't anything like as good as the things Chris makes.
The workshop took place at Horticap in Harrogate. This is a place well worth a visit in its own right, it's a place for people with learning difficulties to develop skills in gardening. The gardens are great to wander around with some interesting pieces of sculpture dotted around in among the the plants. A very tranquil spot. They have a small cafe and gift shop as well, here we were given a lovely lunch of sandwiches and broccoli soup. We were in a potting shed to work so had plenty of room to work and we all manage to produce a chicken or a duck.

This was mine it has got more tail feathers than it appears to have.

When I got home I was then preparing myself for my next trip away.  But first needed to make a few more books as stock for the craft fairs I doing in November. 

Managed to make three. 
Then went to Artison in Masham and did a 2 day workshop, learning have to make Stained glass. Had a great time, was totally engrossed and the time flew by. I didn't want to push my self by making things too complicated. Firstly I decided on straight lines which I thought might be easier but found they brought their own challenges. It was supposed to be an abstract landscape. I was pleased with the result. Have learnt a lot from it. I had a couple of hours left after finishing my first one so had chance to make a second again a very simple pattern and was chuffed to get it done in the time, showing I had learnt something and still had all my fingers. So it was win win. 

A very poor photo of the result.

Since being back been working again at building stock up.

Some more books
Then discovered a way of using book pages that had begun to mount up, making butterflies.
Then made a mini tunnel book in a mint tin 
Need to really crack on now and get stock built up. 

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Rainy days......

The weather hasn't been that bad, the rainy bit refers to a day a few years ago when I was in Edinbugh visiting some friends. I had traveled up on the train the weather was bright and sunny all the way up the minute the train entered the station the heavens opened and the rain didn't stop all the time I was there. I did manage to take a few photos though. 
Having lately got back into making things again I have negelected to some extent drawing and painting so got some paper stretched up ready to attempted a watercolour. Something I have done for some time. Decided I would work from a photo I took on that rainy day in Edinbugh.
I also have been watching Downton Abbey and needed to get up to date before the last series starts at the weekend. So instead of going into studio I sat on the sofa watching the last series on DVD while doing some drawing to work out the light and dark values in the photo.
Drawing one in pencil 

Drawing 2 using tinted charcoal 
Ready now to start painting in the morning. Will post again with further progress, watch this space

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Back to it.

Been back from my short break for just over a week now and have not found much time to do much book binding. Makes me wonder how I ever found the time to go to work. Spent some time with family.

In between days out I have been working on an artist book which involves holes cut in photos of flowers.
More on that as I get nearer to completing it. 
Today I have been taking photos and editing them ready to post more Items on my Esty shop. So far just one new listing.

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Away on my Jollys

 One more sleep and I'll be away on my Jollies. Not got any where too exotic, going up to the Yorkshire Dales for a few days. The idea is to do some walking and perhaps get so photos fo work with. Looking forward to the break mainly someone else cooking and the rest.
Saying that as I said in my last post I am enjoying myself and have had a productive week. 
Made "button hole" bound book using one of the papers I had prepared earlier in the week. Was a trial print with a geli plate. Also used some of the tea stained book pages to decorate the spine.


Then made a collection of thing from some blue leather bought on my trip out to search for a leather supplier a few weeks ago.

A large leather journal a small leather notebook with button fastening.

A key ring a pendant and some ear rings  from same leather and still some left to make a couple of small books .

Next up was a small envelope shaped note book using a small piece of leather from the same trip.

The last book was a new type of binding for me . Using tapes to attach the signatures to the covers. Love this binding will be using it a lot in the future. 

Well that's it for the time being. My shop has been closed for a few days will be open again Thursday. Although it will be next week before I get to photograph and add the latest books to it. 
Watch this space perhaps I could add to my blog while I'm away internet permitting. 

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Enjoying my life.

Needed to spend some time making stuff today as the last couple of weeks have gone by and I have either been working on my computer or only getting a couple hours work done in my studio.
Today I spent the whole day there, (well some of it the kitchen)although I didn't get any thing finished as such, I feel that I've had a productive day. Printed a trial cover picture for my diary, cutting a pile of text blocks ready to make covers, painted some backgrounds to use as covers and collage. Finished the silk painting I started at a workshop I went too, then stained some plain paper and some printed book pages with tea. After that I made a start on an artists book I have been planning.

Doesn't sound like much but I'm so lucky to be able to do this. Lots of stuff to keep me out of mischief for a while. Sat in my little studio shed thingy on a lovely day doing what I enjoy doing. I have a small DVD player in there so when I'm doing the repetive stuff, I can watch a DVD. Today's choice was the old series set in Bradford, "Band of Gold". Had forgotten what a cracking drama it was.
Happy Days :)

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

A quick post today just to announce the opening of my new Esty Shop.

Having a day off today and having a family day out. Might just get some photos for my blog and future projects.

Monday, 3 August 2015

The beginning of a journey

Over the last few years family stuff has kept me busy but I did manage to do some photography and digital art. Last year things changed in a big way, for family reasons I gave up work and then things changed again. Suddenly I had free time and no job. Approaching 60, I decided to go back to art work and generally making stuff. 
How things have changed since I was at art school. Lots of new materials, learning technics has become easier, lots of videos and information out there just to dig into.
At first I was looking into mixed media things that I could perhaps incorporate my photography and digital stuff. 
This was the first photo I used and although not brilliant it spurred me on.


After that I played around with lots of media with varying success. Then I discovered book binding.
I needed a sketch book but couldn't see what I wanted. This lead me to YouTube and the bug bit.
At first lots of mistakes but as with everything it got better. 
Lots of different styles of book binding. Different folds to try. I had found some thing my photography was made for.
A few artist books later got into up cycling books
I have enjoyed this immensely and have since been making other artist books also notebooks that have my photos on and leather journals and lots of different types of books.
This has helped me decide to open an on line shop. This is happen in the next day or too.
The purpose of the blog is to record my journey into the Arts and Crafts world and hopefully as time goes on I can see the improvements.