Tag Archives: steampunk

A Bit Stiff

20 Mar

Carreg Llafar

Husb and I paid a rare visit to a pub yesterday evening to see a live band, Carreg Llafar,  who play contemporary folk in the Welsh language. Being a rock chick, I’m not a big fan of folk music but I make an exception for Carreg Llafar who bring authenticity and atmosphere to traditional music. And it’s also a rare chance to hear a pibgorn, an archaic horn pipe. And to hear singing in Welsh.

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I drew onto a sheet of recycled cyanotype in my leather steampunk sketchbook. I used up all the paper a few months ago so I replaced it with leftover pieces from print and drawing projects. I used two Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens, size F and B and also a white Derwent pencil to scribble highlights onto the deeper blue. I find it very hard to sketch musicians because they move about, their instruments are unfamiliar to me, they hold their hands at odd angles. Factor in that there’s a stage full of them and they have to be drawn in proportion to each other and that’s a very difficult piece of drawing to do. It took a lot of effort but even so, or maybe because of it, the end result is quite stiff. Never mind, it’s good practice.

Check out Carreg Llafar’s lovely music on YouTube below.

At The Bus Stop

7 Mar

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I had a bit of a scribble when I was waiting for the bus yesterday. I had 10 minutes or so to kill and that’s enough for a bit of street drawing. A while back I finished all the pages in my leather steampunk sketchbook so I replaced the pages with scraps of paper left over from other art projects. The paper here is a piece of Somerset that I’d initially squeegeed with a browny grey acrylic screenprinting medium the screenprinted in with some of my sketchbook drawings and photographs. I use these papers for mixed media work but this bit was left over and too good to throw away. I drew the street scene with a black Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen, size F.

Recycled Sketchbook

9 Nov

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I’ve had this handmade leather Steampunk style sketchbook for ages and used up all the paper a while ago. Its simple design meant that I could remove its innards and replace them with new (old) paper. I have loads of bits of paper left over from drawing or printmaking projects, some plain, some covered with ink or some sort of print or even squeegeed acrylic or cyanotype. I cut the leftovers down to fit and reassembled the sketchbook. Bob’s your uncle!

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I did some scribbles en plein air at an event in Swansea’s Castle Square, the city meeting place, a few weeks ago. It was organised to offer positive support to refugees in the area.

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The grey/white pages on the right are recycled bits of Somerset paper that had been squeegeed with Daler Rowney acrylic screen-printing medium and overprinted with a photoscreen image in white. I’ve been trying out some new UniBall pens – Uni Pins – and they work really well on the plain white paper, but a bit less so on the bits squeegeed with acrylic which dragged a bit.

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I have a new piece of art in the Womens Arts Association exhibition, opening on Saturday 11th November. Please pop by and take a look if you’re in Cardiff🙂

Big Pants, Burkini And The Nightwalker

19 Jul

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Another glorious day, temperature around 30 Celsius, a heatwave!!! Husb and I went down to the beach again this evening, when it had cooled off a little and for the first time in years I went into the sea for a splash about. I can’t swim and our summers are usually so miserable that I rarely bother going in for a dip. I don’t even have a swimming costume so I made do with a sports bra, crop top and a pair of big pants, Bridget Jones style. If the weather stays nice I am tempted to buy a Burkini. I’m a pale, freckly, gingery Celt, practically a nightwalker and I rarely go out in strong sunshine so a Burkini might be the answer. I hear Marks and Spencer sells them now. Hhhmmmmmm!

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When I was little we were on the beach all through the summer and stayed in the sea for hours. Ironically, it was pretty grubby back then, now we have international standards and Swansea Beach is nice and clean. I scribbled for just a few minutes, focusing on getting down the barest details of the scene using a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen into my A5 leather bound steampunk style sketchbook. The sun was much stronger last night and I took this snap of Husb and me as shadows on the beach.

 

I have been travelling across South Wales with Rhondda-born archaeologist Dewi Bowen and Swansea film maker Melvyn Williams, hunting the wild megalith, accompanied by my portable drawing board, portfolio of Fabriano paper and a bag full of assorted artist’s materials.  Dewi is researching his latest book on Neolithic monuments and Melvyn is making a documentary film of our literary and artistic adventures. All the work I’m doing will eventually be featured in a solo show in The Worker’s Gallery in the Rhondda Valley in September. If you want to know more, please click here.

Scribbling Sparta Puss

5 Mar

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I haven’t been doing drawings in my sketchbook regularly for a while, so back to basics today with this sketch of Sparta Puss who occupies the footstool almost permanently. I drew with a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen into a leather-bound, Steampunk style sketchbook. Richard The Bird, our family Senegal parrot, stayed a few days while his people were in holiday and went back last night but Sparta keeps staring at the space where his cage was, just in case…….

If you want to see some more of my artworks, please click here.

Ecstasy And Male Pattern Baldness

25 Jul

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Husb and I went off to Cardiff last night to the cinema to see Julien Temple‘s new film, The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson, a truly amazing film about the legendary Doctor Feelgood guitarist. Extraordinary. We arrived a bit early so I did some scribbling in the auditorium. There were a lot of men with not much hair so I decided to concentrate on drawing male pattern baldness. Why not, eh? I drew into my leather steampunk sketchbook with a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen, size F.

In The Beginning

22 Oct

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I’ve been invited to take part in a collaboration between artists in Swansea and across the meltwater in North Devon. I’m starting to plan a new piece of work for it, probably an installation in cyanotype if it works out. I’m beginning with some sketching en plein air so today I took a walk up a local hill to do some drawings and photos of some very specific places that will be relevant to the final artwork. I used Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens in sepia, sizes S, F and B and spent just a few minutes on each. I drew into my A5 leatherbound steampunk sketchbook.

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When I got back home, I put on some tonal washes with the walnut ink I made this week. It’s great stuff to use, very silky and thick, it flows nicely off the brush. It settles out in the jar so I dipped into the top to do the pale wash and then pushed the brush into the thick sediment to do the darker tones. This is where the final artwork begins. I have to work quickly from now on as it has to be finished for exhibiting in January.

The Tiniest Scribble

4 Oct

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Today was hectic. So packed I didn’t have time to think. I only managed a tiny little sketch, a few fleeting minutes in a cafe. But any drawing is good. The important thing is to do it every day. In my opinion. I used a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen into my A5 leatherbound Steampunk sketchbook. Which is cool.

 

One of the reasons I didn’t have much time to draw today is because Husb and I went for a stiff 7.5k walk along the Swansea Bay seafront. It’s so beautiful and the weather was glorious after last night’s storm. Autumn has been fabulous so far. I’m lucky to live here. Did it in an hour and a half, bit slow, need to speed up.

Felafels And Rain

5 Aug

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I’ve spent a long day hunched over a computer, from 9 am to 7.30 this evening, doing business stuff. I was hoping to have a workout on the gym on the beach but the heavens opened this evening and I wimped out. I did a bit of yoga in the living room and watched telly instead. Husb cooked tea, he made brilliant felafels from a tin of butter beans and some spices and fresh coriander.

I am carrying on with 3 minute head studies from photos, practicing for something on Thursday. I drew these with a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen size F into my leather Steampunk sketchbook, size A5.

My Steampunk Sketchbook

31 Jul

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I’ve been scribbling away today into my rather funky leather bound Steampunk sketchbook, size A5. It isn’t brilliant paper but it looks so cool. I bought it a while back in London’s Camden Market but have hardly used it.

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Carrying on with the ‘head’ practice, I set myself an upper time limit of 4 minutes a drawing and worked from photographs searched from Pinterest.

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So here’s a quarter of an hour of sketches, using two Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens, sizes S and F.

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