Wednesday, 29 January 2014

It May Be Winter Outside (But In My Heart It's Spring)

And the British Winter is currently doing what it does best - sending us rain, wind and gloom.  This is not a favourite time of year for most people (myself included) - that long stretch between  the sparkle of Christmas and the zing of Spring.  However, my imagination always makes up for it and takes over my creative output almost as if this grim period didn't even exist.  Spring has arrived in my head, so I'm thinking daffodils, bluebells and sunshine.

I love Spring - walking in our beautiful woodland, seeing the buds burst from the trees and the flowers begin to bloom is quite magical.  I don't enjoy the heat, so I love springtime - including the rain!

And my creative output is focusing on bright Spring colours rather than the grey of a miserable January.  Here are a couple of recent pieces.

I even bought my first bunch of daffodils today - I LOVE daffodils!

Is anyone else finding their inspiration has skipped forward a couple of months? :)

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Furry Friends ...

So, I was giving some thought to the things that enrich our lives.  Obviously family, friends, quality free time to indulge in what gives you pleasure, holidays etc. all feature fairly highly.  But also, many of us have pets.  I'm not lucky enough to be owned by any currently, but they have played a major part in my life in the past.  When I first moved in with my now-hubby over 20 years ago, we weren't allowed cats or dogs in our flat.  So we had mice - named Cobweb and Swift after characters from my favourite novels - and hamsters, Bilbo and Punk.  (Punk was the coolest hamster you ever saw - he really did have a streaky mohican.)

Sadly, I don't have any photos of our lovely rodents.  And the photos of our first cats, Sherbet and Cornflake, are all pre-digital, so I've had to scan them.

(Cornflake and Sherbet, probably the only time they ever sat together.
  Check out the tasteful cushion and chair ... )

They were an absolute menace, those two - especially Sherbet.  We had to remove all our ornaments, but still between them they managed to wreck the curtains, the wallpaper, the sofa, the carpet, two lamps, a table, a plant pot and a hatstand.  Yes, really - we found Sherbet in the wreckage of the hatstand after an almighty crash in the middle of the night.  When we first got them, they were so tiny they used to sit on hubby's feet looking up at him (this was usually a prelude to shinning up his body with claws like needles, but it looked cute!).

(Cornflake, who liked nothing better than to roll in as much dust as she could find, then come in the house and shake it all over you.)

After Sherbet and Cornflake came Socks, then Blue.  Socks had the most amazing quack, and you could hold a whole conversation with him.  He loved to sit on anything that clearly had anti-Socks warnings on it - most noticeably a whole tray of marzipan fruits which had taken yours truly five hours to make for presents one Christmas.  He was not popular that evening ... He was arrogant and affectionate, and most definitely a character.

(Socks, who knew he was a king.)

And Blue was a very different character.  Terrified of most things, and probably the most unphotogenic cat in the world, she absolutely loved hubby and used to tear across the room to meet him every single day.  She was a solid lump of a cat (probably due to the fact that she never ventured further than the garden, where she could often be seen, hunched over in the pouring rain - definitely a cat after my own heart!).  One of the funniest things I ever saw was the day one of the other cats knocked her into the tiny pond and she tore around the house in a panic, spraying foul-smelling pond water everywhere. ;)

(Blue, who did love her daddy ... )

Anyway, now I've rambled about our pets, I want you to tell me about yours.  We're a nation of animal lovers, and I know many of you share your lives with a furry/feathered/scaled friend or several.  Ours gave us much joy, amusement and sincere heartbreak, and the fact that they were 'only' pets does not diminish the way we felt about them.  I'm hoping this will be the year we find ourselves owned by another one.  If not a dog, most definitely a cat.  I miss my moggies!

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

New Artwork Creations ...

Just a quick post about what I've been up to over Christmas.  I hope you all had a fabulous time, and that you aren't all mourning the utter lack of sparkle the way I'll admit I am, just slightly ...

If you follow my blog, you'll know I've only recently picked up my pencils again after a hiatus of many years.  I've been having lots of fun drawing, and it was suggested to me that I might like to make some of the drawings into cards.  So I did. ;)

These are the first batch, and a new batch of (different) cards are on their way.  Anyone who has ever seen their artwork professionally printed will know how thrilled I was when I opened the box.  It's the first time it's ever happened to me and it was almost like looking at someone else's work on those smooth, high quality cards - incredibly exciting!  (Way more exciting to me than anyone else I showed them to, I'm sure!)

Then one of my lovely customers and followers mentioned that one of my drawings would look nice as a pendant, and that got me thinking ... a few supplies (and a right gluey mess, naturally - as it's me) later, and I now have glossy glass and silver encased miniature wearable artwork, like so:

Exciting, huh?  Fear not (unless you hate my wirework), I'm still obsessed with my many - many! - reels of wire and still experimenting with it every chance I get.  It's nice, though, to have one creative interest lead (back) to another.  What diverse interests and hobbies do any of you have - and are they much more different to each other than mine? :)