Archive | April, 2020

Tools Of My Trade

30 Apr

box 5

I’m not a fan of shopping except when I need to buy tools and materials, then I’m a danger to my bank card. A while back a friend gave me a set of vintage Isabey paintbrushes that had belonged to his late father. They’re fabulous to use and I wanted a larger range. Unfortunately, they’re made from squirrel and sable and although I don’t mind using old ones, I’m trying to find alternatives to animal products when I buy new.

I put out a call to fellow artists for recommendations and Myles Mansfield suggested Escoda supplied by Ken Bromley. So that’s what I bought.

They came today, beautifully packaged in a travel pouch in a box in another box. Each brush is in a cool metal tube. Gorgeous. Now I need to give them a tryout.

 

 

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Warm Buttered Plums: The Recipe

29 Apr

plums 3

You can download the recipe and print it out, it’s a jpeg. It’s delicious, even if I say so myself. I’ve given gluten-free, dairy-free and vegan alternatives.

oaty plums

Tecchie stuff

I took the photos with the camera on my phone, put them into Instagram, then reduced the size in Adobe Photoshop. I used Comic Life for the layout (I LOVE Comic Life) and exported it as a jpeg. If you right click on the image, you should be able to save it to your My Pictures folder and then you should be able to print it out.

If you don’t have an ovenproof frying pan, try a tarte tatin tin or a heavy pie dish that you can use on top of a stove.

Quote

Dogs: our faithful companions since the paleolithic

29 Apr

A gorgeous blog about dogs with drawings from Patti McKenna Jones

 

via Dogs: our faithful companions since the paleolithic

The First Cut

28 Apr

first cut

I made a start on carving my two latest lino blocks. The first cut is made with my smallest cutting tool to carefully carve the outlines. It’s the fiddliest bit of the process, I think and it takes time and concentration.

Sparty rain

It rained today for the first time in ages and Sparta Puss commandeered my dust sheet in my studio while she watched the rain coming down. She wasn’t too happy, she’s been enjoying being out in the garden all day for weeks now.

Here’s a short film of David Bull, a woodblock carver based in Japan. It’s a joy to watch him carving a block – wonderful….

 

 

 

 

 

Lino, Love Hearts And Leftovers Pie

27 Apr

six and seven a

More little grey lino blocks cut and lettered, in reverse, ready for carving and ….

fabric ink 1a

I had a delivery from Handprinted Co, a tube of Speedball fabric block printing ink. These little blocks will be printed onto home made face masks. The first one I did a couple of weeks back was printed in Caligo Safe Wash, which is great on paper but didn’t work so well on fabric. And the lovely people from Handprinted put in a little tube of Love Hearts too.

leftovers pie 2

Then I made Leftovers Pie, what was left of yesterday’s roast chicken dinner in pastry. Easy and it tasted lovely. Enough for tomorrow as well.

 

 

 

Rough Cuts

25 Apr

four and five a

I spent a lot of time bent over a bench hook today, carving away at some more little lino blocks. I’d started some on brown lino yesterday but it wasn’t working out, the lino is very hard and not suited to my design. So I switched to the grey lino, that I’d used for my first three blocks, and it’s working well. I’ve done a rough cut so the next thing is to do proof prints from tham all to see what needs recutting.

four and five b

 

 

 

 

 

Technical Issues

24 Apr

problems

I’ve been cutting away at tiny lino blocks to print words onto fabric and I’ve been using up offcuts as lino is expensive. The grey has been fine but I started on a brown lino block earlier and it’s much harder than the grey and quite slippery too. It’s not really suitable for the rounded text I’ve used so it’s back to the grey lino tomorrow.

Zoom, Lino Cuts And Digital Exclusion

22 Apr

cut 3

Today was a mixed bag with Zoom meetings (how quickly have we taken to Zoom?), an allotment visit, finished cutting a small lino block and marked up two more, made soup and biscuits and then had an hysterical family ‘pub’ quiz on Zoom. It’s been so good to be able to keep in touch through IT, but there are still so many people who don’t have that option and are going through the lockdown alone.

There’s a lot of work going on in this city to get homeless people into housing and to support those who are isolated, but this emergency has highlighted how many rely on libraries or others to connect to the Internet. Some people are living on their own, shopping on their own, going out to exercise on their own, without the Internet, without human contact, week after week. Digital exclusion doesn’t just affect people’s life chances but also their health.

 

tunnocks

Tunnocks Teacakes. No reason, they just look nice.

The Rainbow And The Censored Dog

21 Apr

rainbow

I painted a rainbow onto a small canvas and put it into the window and then went out to do a bit of shopping and came across another of these little Jack Russell wheatpastes, this time he’s been censored! He’s on Instagram, he’s @theswanseajack

swansea jack

Queueing At The Chemist

20 Apr

queue pharmacy

Queueing today at the chemist (pharmacy). It took a while so had a quick scribble while I waited. It’s lucky that we’re having such good weather, queueing is pleasant enough, but it’s going to be horrible when the weather turns.

 

 

 

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