30 juillet 2009

Holey Moley Club

Since the beginning of the month I started a year-long during challenge/workshop organized by Dale.
Every other month a new ‘task’ is given to work/play with.
As warm up exercise and because I first wanted to finish another workshop, I did a postcard-sized surface :The woven paper/fabric strips were sewn on painted/ironed cellophane and a coloured fabric background with a patterned stitch.
I sewed with a ‘circle pattern stitch’ because I wanted to accentuate the holes made by the bubbles.
The strips were kept apart as false illusion of freedom for the air bubbles.

The second ‘exercise’ I did, was stitching with a napkin and then distress the surface.
This will be layered on top of this drawing :
Cold heart trapped :
Ellen Lindner asked me if she could use my ‘Marseille – Frioul’ quilt I made during her class : “Design you own nature quilt” last year. Of course, I agreed.
You can read about it on her blog and on her website. I can only say that this was a FANTASTIC workshop and it’s starting again on august, 7th.

"A discovery is said to be an accident meeting a prepared mind".
Albert Szent-Gyorgyi

Write you soon,

29 juillet 2009

Side Table

I finished altering the side table for my eldest daughter. I enjoyed the process very much.
On this picture you can see that we added some reading marks and some more pages from old books.
A few paint layers later
You can see the result

My daughter still have to sand the sides and colour it with a protection oil.

“I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage.”
Charles De Secondat

Write you later,

26 juillet 2009

Dreaming lady

This is my “dreaming lady”.
I painted my lady with ‘red/auburn hair because I coloured my hair that very same colour some time ago.
Her eyes are looking nowhere, just like my eyes when I’m daydreaming.
She has a little blush – maybe because she’s tired ?
I also love her neckline.
I’m a bit scared to add more details but I don’t think it’s a necessity.

"Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night. "
Edgar Allan Poe

Write you soon,

25 juillet 2009

Side Table

My eldest daughter couldn’t wait for me altering her little table soo…
She sanded the table, washed it off and..
brought it to me.
Thus…. I gessoed :
A mom does what she got to do…

I started playing on her table earlier than I expected.
After a collage with words and pictures of books, I gave the surface a first colour.
Since her favourite colour is green.
I started to paint a greenwash.
Then some gesso and more collage elements and some doodles in blue.

Since the whole thing has to dry till…
Let’s say tomorrow, this way I can go and sleep early tonight.

This is one of my favourite quotes :

“Patience is the greatest of all virtues.”
Cato the elder

Write you soon,

23 juillet 2009

Mixed Media

I’m having one of those ‘time of my live’ moments lately.
I’m still working on the four canvases and, the more layers I add, the more depth I begin to see hidden details.
Now I feel I can finish the canvases.

My eldest daughter, seeing the canvases asked if I wanted to alter her side table, from her lecture corner, in the same way. I told her, she could do it too but then she said : you’re the artist, not me. I know what to do on Sunday, don’t I ?

“Art, like morality, consists in drawing the line somewhere.”
G.K. Chesterton

Write you soon,

21 juillet 2009


I played a bit more with the 4 canvases from Jodi’s workshop.
My canvases are ‘coffee themed’. I used a normal pencil to draw some extra letters and flowers.
Since I had to fix the doodles and as I didn’t and still don’t have any fixative, I used hairspray.
At least I have a nice smell !

Creating those surfaces is something like ‘instant continuous gratification’.

The canvases were already great without the colour but even better with the added colour.
And it’s not finished yet but I have to wait till the painting has dryed.

My Modigliani-style portrait from Pam' workshop looks like this for the moment, I haven’t work a lot on her :
I only did some background painting and stamping.

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.”
Thomas A. Edison

Write you soon,

19 juillet 2009


I’m so glad I was able to play – for several hours !!! - in my studio.
I’m a happy girl again.I planned to work on Shelagh’s challenge : done for this month.
I finally understood how the grass thing had to be cut.
When I sew free hand flowers, I mostly draw/sew a swirl.
I also was able to continue the 4 canvasses from Jodi Ohl’s workshop.
I added some collage elements with a theme : coffee.
My favourite hot beverage is coffee, more specifically : espresso’s, I really drink a lot of them.
I also took a picture from the canvasses individually :

Now, I have to wait till they’re all dry.
I hope I will be able to continue playing with those canvasses sometime next week.
My self portrait is ‘on hold’ because I haven’t solved the mouth problem.
But I have started a fantasy Modigliani lady thanks to Pam Carriker :

I begin to feel more confident in drawing portraits and the more : I begin to like drawing them.

I always had great respect and admiration for artists making portraits with a few lines.
This is a portrait of me when I was 11 years young. The artist who made this, used matches and sepia ink. He only needed 15 minutes to draw my portrait.
This is the artist who made the most impression on me.
This artist is José Van Gucht (1913-1980).

"Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Write you soon,

16 juillet 2009

Almost done

This is my self portrait so far :
With a detail :
Those glasses weren’t easy to colour since it’s almost all transparent.
How to give a colour to something that let the under layered colour come thru.
How to give a light reflection in the metal and in the plastic ?
I realized I coloured one eye bigger than the other. On the portrait I’m all nose.
And I looked for a different picture of me laughing without showing my teeth to make it easier for me next time : I don’t have such a picture.
It seems I can’t draw my teeth, so I left a blank in my smile !

Why on earth did I want to learn drawing portraits ?
My life is complicated enough without that !
And I know I have plenty other gifts.
But portraits ?
OK, I know why… because my hunger to learn is so BIG, HUGE.
So, Pam : don’t fear.
I will take one step at the time, I love to be challenged !

About challenges, the next part of Shelagh’s challenge has been posted two weeks ago and I just have been able to read it and start it.

Sometimes English is just like Chinese for me. I have read a part of the challenge just about 10 times and I still don’t understand it – that’s maybe the challenge – LOL. I will read it again in the morning with a ‘fresh head’.

I also started the next lesson of Pam’s ‘Pursuing Portrait’ .
Again a picture of me (don’t think I begin to feel like ‘Narcise’ a personage in the Greek mythology) and some important elements in my life : keys, I added a symbolic five, because we are 5 in the family ; one shell because we live very near the sea.
Still have to add more elements :
a butterfly, because it’s my symbol in my art
a poodle, because I have one
and a sport element .

"The pen is mightier than the sword, and considerably easier to write with."
Marty Feldman

Write you soon,

13 juillet 2009

Summertime feeling

Although we are in the middle of the touristic season,
I have a real summertime feeling.
My evening are, after a long day of work, filled with ‘doing nothing’ and ‘doing everything’.
It’s the first time in years I really take the time to do nothing.
What a great feeling ! I enjoy listening to music with my eyes closed.

I enjoyed taking the time to make a pizza :
We ate the pizza with a glass of ‘vin rosé de Provence’, a ‘rosy wine’, a typical summer wine, made in the Provence, France.

I even took the time to make jam with red fruit – la confiture aux fruits rouges :
This will be eaten with a ‘baguette’, a long, small bread or ‘croissants’.
Every ‘boulangerie’- bakery- sells those fresh baked.

I exercised a bit more on doing more portraits :
Not always with the same success
But I want to succeed.
I worked a bit on my self portrait
That nose and that mouth !
I’m turning crazy !It seems I can’t rectify my errors.
I’m in a loop and I can’t take a step away to be objective and really SEE what I’m doing wrong. HEEELP…
It’s maybe helpful to show you the reference picture :
On my self portrait I had a quick ‘plastic surgery’ and removed some of the –few- wrinkles.

“What is youth except a man or a woman before it is ready or fit to be seen?”
Evelyn Waugh

Write you soon,

9 juillet 2009

Summer is in the country

We have a fabulous weather for several weeks now and after work instead of being creative on paper or fabric, I take a long walk. My dog just loves it and me even more.
The ‘Pursuing Portrait’ workshop given by Pam Carrikkker started this week and I’m curious about her way of drawing her portraits. I like her ephemeral style.The first lesson was about a generic face :

We were advised to draw eyes, noses and mouths :
She gave us some great tips, making the drawing of a nose and a mouth much simpler.

I continued the drawing of my portrait :
This is the result so far :
I will continue a step at a time.

“The secret of creativity is, knowing how to hide your sources.”
Albert Einstein

Write you soon,