Sunday, March 05, 2017

February Done

Already a sizable bite has been taken out of March and it's another busy month ahead. In the chaos I forgot to say goodbye to February so here we are -

Todo transfer:
Edith Holden
Rie Cramer, maandenboeken : Februari, sprokkelmaand. 1:
Rie Cramer
Alphonse Mucha - FĂ©vrier 1899 // The Months - February, 1899.:
Alphonse Mucha - 1899

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Dream Interpreters - Interpret This!

First a whinge. Bought a shiny, red apple coloured new car. Lovely. Went to pick it up, alas there is a problem with it. This doesn't bode well and I knew I shouldn't have gone to that dealership but as self-employed (credit cliff edge) I didn't have much choice. This is why people drink.

Anyway, onto the dream which, ten hours after waking up, I can still remember really well. It's too bizarre not to post for posterity.

I arrived at this ordinary terraced house (the kind you find in every Scottish town). I was to look after this huge 10-month-old baby. And I mean, this lad was the size of a three-year-old.

Turns out the family were throwing a birthday party for him (at 10-months-old) and I had to take him there. Off I went, had to take a tram, while carrying this baby who had a distinctly wet nappy and, oh, I had nothing to change him with. He was a perfectly nice baby, by the way, all smiley and cheery. 

The tram had the seating arrangement you'd usually find in a subway carriage and to get to the door you had to pass through one set of doors and stand on this open area which then would let you onto the platform.

The building this party was in was underground too (so maybe it wasn't a tram but I remember people using the word "tram" and talking about taking the tram, being on the tram etc. rather than underground or subway). We ended up in this purple corridor which led down to the rooms. It sounds sinister but didn't feel like that at all. I got to the door where the family and friends were and handed the baby over.

At this point, it turned out the family were Polish and I was wondering how they had heard about me (obviously, my job in this dream was giant baby transporter). I thought about Polish friends I have and if they were in the room, no idea why I didn't go in but I went to another room which was like a school gymnasium and there was some sort of performance going on.

A group of children (looked like about P6-7 so 10ish in age) were sitting in rows as though to get their class photograph taken. People standing in front of them had different coloured sheets which they then held up and you had to reach through them.

At that point, I woke up.

You can imagine my disappointment.

Analyse that!

Image result for red fiat 500x
This is the kind of car I should have been already driving but it'll now be next week...hopefully...
This is why it's taken my six years to change my car, it's a painful experience when you're self-employed!
I can feel a crash bubbling away in my forehead, I really cannot deal with another hard year. I do feel like I want to check out. A simple life with no stress would be bliss right now.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Normal Service Will Resume...You Know The Score

This last week has been an education in stress levels. In other words, if my hair wasn't dyed purple it would no doubt have gone completely grey. 

I'm behind on my art project, I can't afford those lovely, relaxing moments with my pad and paints. And it's very telling how much those stolen moments have meant to me. With that in mind...

I'm going to keep using these prompts. They are giving me the opportunity just to paint, not to have to think of subjects. Just paint.

This time I'm going to upload in batches, it seems to work best. And I might use pastels instead of watercolour or mixed media or possibly something else. I'll take these ideas and run with them.

Meanwhile, it's bad to the stress. I'm not quite out it yet...not quite. 

Monday, February 20, 2017

Another Little Bunch of Sketches - Day 17-20

It seems to be working, uploading a few at a time. So here we are again, let's go.

Day 17 - Shells

Oops, missed the plural, so just shell then. I have dozens of shells, collected from all over Scotland, whenever I visit a beach I look out for interesting shells and sea glass. It makes for a happy day. Simple things and all.

I had difficulty in trying to make the shadows not look as though the whelk shell was coloured. I don't know that it worked so well. Again, this is another subject I'd like to come back to in more depth. Yet painting everyday has been very cathartic, even though the results are sometimes iffy at best.

Day 18 - Plants

For weeks we had beautiful violet-coloured hyacinths filling the living room with their rich, heady smell (or as youngest son put it "Wow, they stink!") The flowers are gone and the leaves are now gathering sunlight for the bulb. Yes, my disastrous gardening efforts are about to attempt to regrow hyacinths rather than chuck the bulbs in the compost.

We'll see what happens when the leaves finish their job and begin to die. Until then they are still resplendent in green.

Day 19 - Eggs

Oh dear, it looked okay but the dim February light was kinder than the camera on my phone. It didn't work as well as I thought and I didn't realise that until uploading the photograph. 

Many years ago I visited Germany just before Easter and bought a set of plastic, decorative eggs. Hence the brown string. They now sit in a dish on the hearth. 

Let's call this one a fail.

Day 20 - Bugs

Okay, see what I did here? Ho ho, clever clogs me.

In light of last week, when this bottle saw me through the night without coughing up a lung, I thought it apt.

A bit wonky but lots of fun to do and that's the point.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Play Stopped By Cold

My darling youngest son kindly passed on his nasty cold to me so this week has mostly been spent with a cough that makes me sound like a barking seal and battling against a river of snot. 


Again, updates are a few days at once. Some better than others, it's calming to paint when you know you should be working but can't because stringing more than a few words together is impossible. Under the influence of cough syrup you see.

Day Twelve - Puddles (and a new word that I sort of already knew)

If you can't read my scrawl it says "Hoppipolla (Icelandic) - Jumping into puddles"
I remembered the word from this by Sigur Ros -

Love the song and the video, why I didn't find out at the time the meaning of Hoppiloppa when, from the video, it's kind of made obvious. For what are puddles made for if not to jump in?

Day Thirteen - Rainbows

How tempting would it have been to draw a stupid looking bear or egg type creature? (Yeah, only me then.)

Painting an actual rainbow would have been interesting but would have reminded me too much of being back in primary school. Maybe throw a unicorn into the mix for luck. So I went with the idea of colours, colours in nature and, of course, that meant (to me) - 

Day Fourteen - Fire

One of my favourite places on this earth - Timanfaya means fire mountains. Apt.

Day Fifteen - Leaves

I haven't managed to kill this plant yet. 


Day Sixteen - Rocks

I might come back to this one again but rocks to me mean the Scottish seaside - rocks and beaches in equal measures to be fair.

Went far too dark in the background hills, makes it look like another piece of clothing on the line.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Seven to Eleven

I did forewarn this challenge with the disclaimer that I would mostly be doing quick watercolour sketches and not to expect much. That has come true. So here we go with the dodgy and skew-whiff -

Day Seven - Bone

Oh, see what I did here, the prompt was bone and I painted a bone china cup and saucer. (At least I think it's bone china, I wouldn't know the difference. It's from my grandmother's tea service so I've probably guessed right.) 

Day Eight - Birds

I want to keep practising on items in front of me and as the local birds never stay in the same spot for long then I decided to honour a little ornament I have.

Day Nine - Silver

Oh-oh, almost binned this, then I remembered, it is all good as no one immediately paints perfectly. And if they do, well, boo to them! It's *meant* to be a silver ring.

Yes...quite...oh dear.

Day Ten - Mammals

Just one mammal, my mammal - believe it or not (and I think you'll believe it) this is my first time sketching Happy Dog. He stayed long enough to get this done before wandering over to see why I kept staring at him.

Day Eleven - Trees

I have a few birch trees visible from my window, so I added some more. All "contemporary" like. Yeah.

Despite the somewhat dubious results, I am enjoying the 20 minutes I'm setting aside each day to paint. I'd like a little more but earning pennies is taking up nearly all my time at the moment. How lucky are those who can afford to do this all the time. I've been pushing myself too much these past few weeks and the ME/CFS faerie has granted me a stingingly sore throat and barking cough as a reward. I can't stop.

Tomorrow it's "puddles" - I've lost track of the days and the boys only had Friday off so far. It's February break, any break would be nice.