Tag Archives: @WomensArts

A Pandemic Mask

8 Apr

Mask

So after several days of cutting cloth, cutting blocks, printing and sewing here’s my first pandemic mask. I carved the word “isolate” into a little lino block as the basis for the work. I hope it will be the first of many.

sewing 1

I learnt as I went along. My sewing skills are rusty – so are some of my pins! I didn’t allow enough time for the ink to dry – it’s much quicker on paper.

sewing 2

I used my lovely hand cranked Edwardian Singer sewing machine, now an antique – it was made in 1904. It has this beautiful sphynx-like decoration. Gorgeous.

 

 

Pandemic Printmaking And A Wheatpaste Dog

7 Apr

 

isolate 1

 

I’ve been working on a new art project, a response to the pandemic and lockdown. It’s taken me a while to get ideas coming through but I think this will probably end up being quite a big body of work made up of many components. I’ve carved a little lino block and printed it up today – there’s my workstation (above) ready to go.

isolate 2

I tried printing the block onto paper and then onto some white cotton fabric, using Cranfield Caligo Safe Wash Relief ink in black with a traditional Japanese baren.

isolate 3

Here it is – my first word of the pandemic – isolate. There will be more …..

Swansea Jack

Husb and I are not in the vulnerable category so we’re sometimes out getting essential supplies for our family. Today was a walk to the Uplands area of the city, to the pharmacy. While we waited outside (the restrictions are, rightly, very strict) I spotted a wheatpaste artwork of the new Swansea Jack.  I first spotted this little fellow a few months ago in a different part of the city. He’s on Instagram – @theswanseajack and #theswanseajack . Husb and I are reflected in the window.

 

 

My Mojo Is Back

6 Apr

isolate 1

Today I started what I hope will be one of many small linocuts inspired, if that’s the right word, by the Covid19 pandemic and the extraordinary times we are living through.

isolate 2

I’m using the hard brown lino with a hessian backing. It’s very, very hard and I should have popped it into the oven to soften it first, but I was too impatient to crack on. It was okay, just a bit tough on my fingers.

isolate 3

Week one of lockdown put me into survivalist mode; cooking, preserving, shopping for relatives, getting the allotment into shape, DIY around the place, but no creative impetus at all. Week 2 and I slumped, hard to motivate myself to do anything. Now at the beginning of week 3, my arty mojo seems to be back! Tomorrow I print.

 

 

Ideas And Fish Pie

5 Apr

masks 2

I’ve been thinking a lot since the lockdown started about doing some artwork based around the Covid19 virus and the way our lives have changed. But I’m not someone who can force it and it’s had to mull around inside for a while and now the ideas are creeping out from wherever they come from.

masks 1

I had a spare cotton sheet hanging around, I bought the wrong size and I’ve been wondering what to do with it since. It’s a fitted sheet so I cut off the elasticated bits – they’re useful – and then cut a number of rectangles, 15 x 22 cms. The next stage is to carve a small lino block …… tomorrow probably …..

fish pie

And I made a classic fish pie for tea. Proper comfort food. Suits the times we’re living in. There’s enough left over for tomorrow too. I love eating leftovers – waste not, want not as my Nana used to say xxx

 

 

 

Clean Green Space

4 Apr

allotment 1a

We’ve just had our letter from the local council giving us permission to go to our allotment during the lockdown. We’re so lucky. We’ve had the plot about 12 years and it’s not been easy – a very heavy clay soil, surrounded by woodland. A few times we’ve considered giving up but I’m so glad we stuck with it because now it’s a godsend. We were there for nearly 3 hours today, getting exercise, fresh air, sunshine and growing food. It’s just below Oystermouth Castle and you can see the castle behind the trees in the first picture.

allotment 2

Because we’re overshadowed with woodland at either end, it’s hard to grow crops in those areas so I’ve created a small woodland garden between the shed and Compost Corner. The hellebores and primroses are in full bloom but the little daffodils are dying back. The wild garlic is about to flower and the arums are flourishing. The apple and plum trees are just budding.

allotment 3

This is the view that greets us. There’s a wooden shed hiding behind the greenhouse. There’s loads of wildlife here too. The birdsong was beautiful today and we’re visitied by foxes, squirrels and badgers, who are very fond of sweetcorn. We’re so lucky to have this space at the moment. I really feel for people who live in the larger congested cities with no access to clean green space.

 

The Edwardian Singer

3 Apr

corona 1

So I’m finally getting some creative ideas from the pandemic lockdown and I’m getting my kit together to make a start this weekend. I’ll be starting with some sewing, using my lovely Edwardian Singer machine. I love it and use it a lot, it’s better than the electric machines I’ve had over the years. Singers have a metal plate with a serial number and you can look it up online to find the date. This one is from 1904, in the middle of the reign of Edward 7th.

3 Blurry Cats

2 Apr

 

Husb and I have been taking daily walks to get our exercise during the Covid19 lockdown and have been seeing a lot of cats out and about, more than usual. I guess they like the peace and quiet. I do, it’s lovely. I’ve been trying to photograph the little furry ones but they don’t like me coming in close so the photos are a bit blurry. The gingers have beautiful markings and the little tuxedo is so sweet.

 

 

Look What I’ve Got ….

31 Mar

press 1

I’ve got a brand new portable printing press. From the Portable Printing Press Company. It’s lush.

press 2

I’ve put it on top of my antique mangle, which isn’t in good enough condition to turn into a printing press itself, but it’s really solid and sturdy so it’s a good base for my new  press.

tree

Husb and I went for our daily exercise walk this evening and saw this weird tree with a lovely frill of fungus on it. It’s very, very quiet out walking during the virus lockdown. We saw very few people but a couple of sweet cats crossed our path.

Cheesey Baconey Comfort Food

29 Mar

bacon bread 1

More pandemic cooking today – comfort food to the max! Here’s a yeast free Cheese and Bacon Bread recipe by Gwynn Galvin on the Swirls of Flavor website  that my mate June sent me on Facebook. It’s an American recipe which gave me a chance to use my fancy schmancy set of Joseph Joseph measuring cups.

First, preheat your oven to 180C, 350F or gas mark 4 and grease 1 large or two smaller loaf tins with vegetable oil. Snip the rind off three rashers of streaky bacon and cut them into small strips. Fry them until crispy. Put 2.5 cups of plain flour into a mixing bowl and add 1 tablespoon of sugar.

Add 4 teaspoons of baking powder and a cup of grated strong cheddar. Meanwhile melt 4 tablespoons of butter.

It’s wild garlic season and although the original recipe calls for 1/2 teaspoon of garlic granules, I substituted this with half a cup of snipped wild garlic leaves and added these to the dry ingredients and mixed them in with my hands. Beat one large egg and measure out a cup of milk.

Pour all the wet ingredients into the mixing bowl – that’s the melted butter, milk and beaten egg and mix them in gently with a large metal spoon. Don’t overmix as this will make the bread denser. Put the mix into the loaf tin/s and sprinkle some more grated cheese on top. Bake for about 45 minutes for a large loaf or 35-ish for the two smaller ones. They should be golden brown and if you stick a metal skewer into the centre it should come out clean. Leave them in the tins for about 5 minutes then remove them and cool them on a metal rack – the one from your grill pan will do.

bacon bread 4

I served the bread still warm in thick slices with home-made root vegetable soup. It is LUSH!

You can find the original recipe here

 

 

 

 

 

Comfort Food

28 Mar

nutmeg

Comfort food tonight. Rice pudding, made with coconut milk and agave syrup rather than the traditional cow juice and sugar, but nutmeg is a must. I grate it fresh and stir it through the pudding before I cook it. I microwaved it for 30 minutes, which is a lot quicker than in an oven, but it doesn’t seem to get a skin this way. Lot’s of people don’t like rice pudding skin but I love it.

On the left, the ingredients mixed and ready to go into the microwave at full power for half an hour. Then served up hot and creamy with a dollop of home-made jostaberry jam.  It was lush!

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: