Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Flickr collages

The lovely and talented Renee of Playing With Brushes (Flickr) has been playing with Flickr Toys and made this beautiful collage of images created by members of her texture-users pool, including the one in the middle, by your's truly. I love how beautifully the images, textures and colours work together. and, of course, the ragged edge.
For those of you who don't already know about Playing With Brushes,
it can be found here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/playingwithpsp
Thanks Renee!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Art journaling: soap gets in your eyes

digital scrapbook layout
12ins x 12ins

It may be that I am missing out on some the most culturally important dramatic works of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries but try as I may, I find watching television soaps considerably less interesting than waiting for paint to dry and therefore, I can't follow them. However, I do recall that a few years ago, in an attempt to boost viewing figures, producers decided to wake-up residents of the sleepy, sudsy world that was Emmerdale Farm by crashing a plane into the village. Ever since that momentous event, Emmerdale would appear to have been in dramatic free-fall. My dad is devoted to the show and so I turned to him when I wanted to identify the characters featured in a photograph that I'd torn from a copy of The Mirror: for some inexplicable reason, it had screamed out "pointy hats and wings! Pointy hats and wings!". Anyway: on the right of the photograph is the lovely Laurel whom my dad adores. Her first appearance in Emmerdale was at Marlon and Tricia's engagement party, when she was dressed as a bumblebee. A few years later she married the local vicar (I am supposing, having first divested herself of the said bumblebee costume) who is named Ashley (pictured in the centre of the photograph). You may be interested to know that Laurel and Ashley arrived home for their wedding night to find Ashley’s estranged father Sandy in their marital bed. Laurel subsequently helped her husband to bond with his father: not, I assume, whilst all three of them were in the marital bed together. According to my dad, the lady on the left of the photo is another vicar's wife, who fancies Ashley. At least, I think it's the wife, not the other vicar, who fancies Ashley and I don't think either of the vicars wears a bumblebee costume but do please feel free to use this idea as a journaling prompt and link back to this page so that I can enjoy your creations.
My dad was explaining all this to me whilst suffering from a bad head cold and so I thought that perhaps he was getting the plot lines a little muddled-up. But a quick inspection of the Emmerdale web site revealed that my dad was actually in Emmerdale For Dummies mode. Here's a just short extract from Laurel's Wikipedia entry:
 On 23 January 2009, after talking to Jasmine about Shane and after voicing concern that she thought Jasmine was pregnant, Laurel learned from Jasmine how Shane had tried to rape her and that she had murdered him. Laurel told Jasmine that she must go to the police and confess as, if she explained how Shane had tried to rape her she might get let off as it may be been as self defence. Jasmine, however, explained that it was not in self defence and that she would go to the police in a few days. However she and Debbie decided to flee instead.

If Emmerdale is on the GCSE syllabus, then I take back everything I might have said about exams being dumbed down. This is FAR more complex than any of that Shakespeare and Marlow stuff that I studied for "A" level English. 

This week, I'm blogging this from Holland where I've come to visit my brother. You may well enquire why I've been wittering on about Emmerdale when I could be sharing all the lovely things that I'm experiencing here. It's sad, I know, but ever since I found the Emmerdale photograph, I've had that inexplicable urge to do the pointy hat and wings thing and I could not move on until the deed was done. Brace yourselves: I have so enjoyed this diverting little exercise that I'm considering embarking upon the Zettification of other great dramatic moments. A collection of Market Harborough Amateur Dramatic Society photographs, taken in the 1950s, beckons...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Art Journaling: One Little Word

Digital Art Journal page
12ins x 12ins

ONE LITTLE WORD (unedited)

As a person who doesn't cope well with hidden agendas, it's my natural inclination to say what's on my mind, get it out in the open and then move swiftly on. This doesn't always go down well with other people and dealing with the fall-out of my honesty is certainly one of my life's greatest challenges. Being assertive and adult during interpersonal communication works best when both parties behave as adults and how often does that actually happen?
In the company of fellow Digital Art Quirks forum members, I'm currently rambling along The Artist's Way: a self-help manual for those who feel in need of creative-rekindling. The book challenges us to re-examine our lives and the things that have led to us getting "stuck". When I found the "please all and you will please none" quote in Lynne-Marie Favreau's excellent Creative Word Art kit, it completely chimed with one of the issues I'm examining. The words I'd typed on the card originally read "I am sick of worrying about what people think or are going to think" but that made me feel like a pathetic victim, and so I thought hard about what I really want to say, right now, to all the people in my life who have tried to knock me down for being straight and honest. In the end, it came down to two little words and boy did it feel good to type them. There they sat in the middle of the page: tiny...tiny, but effective: poking their little tongues out at any unsuspecting viewer who might be charmed to take a closer look at the small print, potentially capable of upsetting a large percentage of the scrap-booking community. Following the Rude Tomato post on my other blog, wasn't I pushing my luck a bit? Had the "F" word ever been used on a scrap page before? Of course, I was fretting...I was worrying about what people would think, trying to please! I worried that I would be banned from the forums; banned from the CTs I work for and lovely Lynne-Marie Favreau would sue me for inappropriate use of her work. As for any submissions to Stamptington publications...
When a friend suggested that, for the sake of decorum, I should blur the offending word out, I experimented with scribbling over it, thus making, I think, a further point about self censorship, but the page
is funnier and I believe, more effective with the word left visible and it makes me laugh and cheer out loud. In fact, I would go as far as saying that typing "fuck off" on a scrap page is one of the most exhilarating things I've done in a long time, which could indicate that I need to acquire a life, or possibly, that I'm teetering on the edge of getting mine back.
I would be interested to hear your views on the subject of creative self-censorship. The scrapping world is such a cosy, family-orientated place, but many of the things that I want to explore are not cosy at all. A number of scrappers tackle challenging subjects but how far can we really go? Does the community we're part allow us complete freedom of expression? Are all of us
really saying what's really on our minds when we create our scrap book and journal pages, mindful that we'll be sharing the with the whole world and her dog?
Moving swiftly on: this week I have received a lovely little package from my beautiful, clever and talented friend LaWendula. At the moment, I can't transfer photographs to my Mac, so I have nicked LaWendula's images of the gorgeous goodies. Thank you, kind lady, even the stamps were beautiful!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Three Muses: Zlightly Zetti

"Run mad as often as you choose, but do not faint"Jane Austin, "Love and Friendship"

Prompted by marvelous Marie over at the Three Muses challenge blog, I have, this morning, been engaging in of the gentle art of Zettiology. Indeed, so gentle is my Zettying, methinks it might not make the Zetti class. However, it is my first ever offering to contain wings, pointy hat and fairy wand and has kept me quietly amused for a several hours.
The lady, said to be a member of the Dundas family (what? You've never heard of them? where have you been?) was painted by Henry Pickering in 1754. In 1989, Christies of London described Ms. Dundas as an important British picture: "the property of a gentleman" and estimated her worth at between 10,000 and 12,000 pounds. Now, somewhere. she hangs on a wall, in the house of a rather well-off person who is completely oblivious to her "other life" as an aspiring Zetti model.

I have just discovered that his week's Theme Thursday challenge is WINGS
and Illustration Friday is Pattern, so, as Ms. Dundas is in an exhibitionist mood, we're going to fly over there.