Thursday, 30 April 2015

#InMyStudio - #1FaceaDay - April you kicked my butt!

I'm not going to kid you - April kicked my butt good and proper.

I arrived here at the end of April, 2 days late.
I played catch up most of the month.  But I'm okay with it.  I have to be.
This project is a mammoth undertaking for the whole year.  And some months will be tough.
Did April throw me some curve balls - yes.  I started April strong with my hands, in class and everyday.  But half way through I had so much admin, sending out packages, post office wars, family visitors, events and the second half of April was brutal. Together with some days, where I had no desire to paint and actually just couldn't produce anything.    So I played with clay instead.
I considered including them here but then changed my mind.

But for now - goodbye April.  As tough as you were I still absolutely love what came through this month.  Some of my absolutely favourite pieces in this project.

#1FaceaDay - you continue to challenge me, mature me and push me to grow.

Thank you and let the journey continue.

Monday, 27 April 2015

#InMyStudio - messy play!

 My heart has been too heavy to paint.
But I needed studio time... I had this armature that Heather made for me about 2 years ago.
I was ready to play with it with my beautiful plaster bandages.
It was a good place to get lost in a therapeutic mess. 

I'm all hands.  It's awkward sometimes but I'm getting more comfortable with sculpture.
I need to learn more - this I know.  And the beautiful thing, is I want to.
I want to try do something weekly.  I really want to grow in this area.

I love this tender soul who showed up.
I love that her face is turned upwards.  I think I needed that.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Bank holidays, family time and heavy hearts...

I love cold autumn days at home!
I love this capture of my beautiful girl.
I think she's the one of the hardest working people I've ever met.
Her work ethic astounds me.

What a blessing to have kids that just get it... 
that in spite of gifting - it's hard work that will set them a part!

My family being so gracious and tender with me. 
The morning after hearing about Sweet Lorraine's passing away.
And the tears just kept seeping out.  It was a beautiful day in the city.
And it was good to go exploring with my heavy heart in tow.

Coffee and creme to soothe the woes. 

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Hard heavy weeks.... trying to show up in spite of life.

Oh my little darlings...
The past few weeks have been really hard and it's feel like we have been hit from all sides.

I keep asking myself, why am I so exhausted and I can't understand what's going on...   But I guess I do actually know what's going on.  Life is full on right now.

I'm trying to go gently as my sweet friend, Anne always says to me.
And make time for things that matter.

Deep breaths...

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Spending time with family was good for my heart...

My parents live about 1000miles away from me so making seeing each other a challenge.  Also for them running their own farm and dairy {Belnori Cheesery} doesn't give them liberty for long breaks or time away.  So when they get to come into my neck of the woods - it's such a treat.  And I always cherish our time.

  They arrived Wednesday in The Cape for the SA Cheese Awards.  I picked them up from the airport and brought them home with me and we spent the afternoon together with Kitty.  Corks missed them because she had a cross country meet.  We joined them for the Award event and Gala dinner.  Always a nice treat for us to get out to a gala event.  We had great fun with them.
 I'm always up for cuddles from my Pops.  Digs and my Dad raving.

Love these guys.  So proud of all they do and have achieved.

Granny always brings treats for her girls.
Well and for me.  I am allergic to cows milk so she supplies me with my Goats and Sheep products.  How spoilt am I.  Both those items cost much if I had to purchase them commercially.

One happy girl today!  Goats Milk Yoghurt.
Yummy much.

I took Thursday off too and we had coffee together before heading into the City to show them Bree Street.  Just a delightful trendy artisan food street.  And to take them to see a new deli that will be stocking their products.  (Good news for me) and then we headed back to the airport and we got to have lunch together.  And just spent a few hours chatting and really connecting with our hearts.  I can't tell you how much I needed it.  Was really sad to send them off.

Luckily for me as I was sending them off, my brother was arriving and coming to spend sometime with us.  I'm being spoilt!

Sunday, 19 April 2015

#InMyStudio - Playing with Clay...

I've been dying to play with PaperClay for ages now.  And because I don't have much space and capacity - paperclay is the beautiful medium for someone like me.  Because it air dries and I don't need to fire up anything for what I want to do.  Which really is just creatively play....

I pulled out my tutorial books of Misty Mawn, Stephanie Lee and Judy Wise.  I plan to work here quite a bit the next while. These beautiful books definetely help, together with some online courses I've taken.  Just so incredible to dabble with new mediums.  I know I want to use this medium more.  It's incredibly therapeutic and completely satisfying to walk away with an item....

I made my very first armature ever.  I had to keep shortening the body because it was too long.  I learnt a lot just in that process alone.

Applying the PaperClay - such a joy!

Ahhh man - he's so cute!  I love this pic of him in my hand cos you can see the size better. 

Sweet one

A crown to finish him off.

Next session I would like to play with plaster bandages and see if I can create something similar.  Two completely different mediums.  Can't wait to play some more.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Spending the day at Uni....

UCT - University of Cape Town
I think this university has the most incredible setting.
It takes my breath away daily and I get to look at it every single day.
Bringing our girls up in this part of Cape Town right under that incredible mountain and the university has instilled the notion that they are without a doubt going to university.  I know that sounds strange, as for most people that's a default setting.  But for many of us, it isn't.  Both Digz and I don't have tertiary education, we were brought up with the notion that it wasn't mandatory or an option.  So seeing my girls dreaming of this, to us is just such a beautiful gift.  I love how both of my girls are hungry for knowledge.  Wow - who knew.

We spent the whole day here on Saturday, finding out what our requirements are for intake as we are about to embark on this journey in the next year.  At least now we know what is expected of us for this year and for next.  It's pretty damn exciting.

Sometimes, I still dream of getting to go to university and maybe, just maybe that will one day become my reality.

Friday, 17 April 2015

#InMyStudio - Yay.... I reached #100!

The Courageous One - 16.5" x 23" CanvsBoard
I can't believe I've reached #100... eeeck!!!

Well if I'm totally honest - I knew I wanted my 100th one to be a special piece.  So I actually bypassed it and did 101, 102 and 103 and so on.  I had started this piece last week on the 100th day but I wanted to spend extra time on her.  I'm absolutely in love with this red haired girl that kept showing up on my canvas' and I knew I wanted to explore doing her BIG.

She superseded my expectations.

What I love about this piece was that I managed to take elements that I've learnt and been playing with over the past 2 weeks and incorporate them into this piece... this piece is a combination of 3 or 4 other paintings.  What I'm even more stoked about, besides getting so far in my #1FaceaDay project is that I was able to work and fix and rework those hands... and move the fingers right up without loosing my way or giving up.  I'm understanding the hands much more and the shading and painting of them... and doing fingernails in away that isn't completely creepy.  I'm really thrilled.  I have loved painting this series so much.  Waking up to such incredible love and support for this piece - man alive, it gives me such courage to continue on my journey.  Thank you all, especially my partner in crime, Anne - for journeying with me through #1FaceaDay.

Let the journey continue.

But today - I'm ready to dive back into ArtEntwined - week 2.

Lovely Friday, Beautiful friends.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

#InMyStudio... evolutionofworkingoutthatHand

So I drew up this piece in the AppleOrchards inspired by Oswaldo Guyasamin,
whose images are just permanently open on my browser for inspiration.

His paintings aren't by any stretch easy on the eyes, but the are deep with emotion.
And mostly all hands.  Powerful emotional hands.  And even though they are a bit grotesques and more masculine than my kind of art, one would think.  But for some or other reason, the emotion from his pieces (even though the style isn't my style) has blown me right out of the water.  And has completely moved me emotionally.  And I have to say, I'm a bit taken a back by this.

And his exaggerated hands have given me such a greater understanding on how to paint them.  And how to use them in pieces that they capture emotion as stand alone entities.  This version above, the fingers are too big for my liking although I love the composition, a lot.  I was too scared to share it like this, might scare people off.  I decided not to give up but knew if I could trim them back some - it would make much more sense to my style and piece.  And I have to say I'm thrilled with the outcome.    I literally spent hours working that hand and the details in each digit.  I feel like I have had a bit more breakthrough.  And I adore the elongate fingers and hand.  It's something I have always been drawn too.  I know I'm not into realistic hands but more an offbeat, a little quirky and completely artistic hands.

"I will hold you in the palm of my hand" 
So thrilled with this little journey and evolution of hands...
May I continue to expand in this area... I'm entering my 2nd year of working on hands... I know it's an area, I'm just starting to discover more.  I can't wait to to reach week 5 in ArtEntwined.
Eeckkk.  Craving more hours in my day.

My Beautiful week in Beautiful TechniColor...

We had a beautiful week, albeit hard too.  It felt intentional.
Sometimes to make things happen, takes effort... but so worth it when you do.

I did many work-work hours this week.  Which is always hard.  Working until 1.30am two days in a row, on my PC - isn't great for me, physically, mentally or emotionally.  But I had some insane deadlines.  We are in Tax filing season.  And getting those tax certificates ready for every person who worked for my clients - not an easy feat.  The world of freelance film accountant - isn't as glamorous as it sounds.  But I'm seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

On Wednesday night we took our beautiful girls with us on our date-night because they are on holidays.  And quite frankly couldn't stomach leaving them out.  I love spending time together.  It's still my favourite thing in the world.  So we went too our usual spot and we had lots of silly fun together.  My girls are taking their instamatics with them wherever they go... and we are finally having fun with them.  And capturing instant memories.

Cape Town was off the charts perfect this week.  I think April might be the best month of the year here.  I think it has an Indian Summer vibe... Calm, warm days and outstandingly stunning, visually.  I work in the City, so on one of the days after work, I popped across to meet Digz one afternoon at a beach spot with some work colleagues.  It was spontaneous and intentional and I'm glad I did it.  My inclination was to just head home but I'm so glad I made the effort to go.  Because we made a special memory.  I realised afterwards, it's like I have to give myself permission to have down time.   I'm so grateful, I took the time.  It was good to unwind from a hard week.

I took Friday off from work, all work.
It was the last day of the holidays.  And I wanted to spoil the girls.  We headed out to see a movie, The Theory of Everything.  It was one of the most moving movies we have ever seen, being a true story, touched something in all off us.  A powerful story of sacrifice and love... and to me, that is the ultimate Theory of Everything.  I cried a lot.  After that we headed to a small off the cuff place in town for Sushi - the girls favourite treat.  And we didn't go big but it was such a treat.
We headed home and had cuddle time on the couch.  A seriously beautiful day.

On our way out of the City this was the view of the harbour, it just took our breath away.
Cape Town has been so breath-taking all week,

Finding the emotion in those tiny hands

I didn't get to do as much art as I hoped this week because of work pressures.
But I feel like I had a bit of breakthrough on my hands journey.
These were some of the pieces from my time in the AppleOrchards, painted up.
My #1FaceaDay is still going well.  I have a bit of maintenance work to do that side.
  And homework from ArtEntwined Class continues.  As does making time to do my lessons.
Can you tell, I have an autumn vibe to my pieces... eeeeck the seasons are affecting me.

Corks playing with her instamatic and our SandyLove.
Holiday chill time.  Love this capture.

Yip, Cape Town still showing off this week.
On one of Digz early morning rides... The cloud cover high up, covering the city.
We are in for another gorgeous day today.
Making the most of them because winter is coming...

Monday, 6 April 2015

ArtistDate and CreativePlay in the AppleOrchards...

We have had a precious long weekend.  Yesterday we got to sleep in late and chat in bed.
My highlights are when the girls still come cuddle in the mornings.  We share warm drinks, chats and laughs, lots of them. We share beautiful stories and watch crazy YouTube videos.
With our busy schedules - these days are becoming sacred.

We rose early-ish today cos the peeps wanted to hit the mountain bike trails.
I wasn't sure I was going to join in the country today because I wanted to get into the ArtEntwined classroom.  But I'm so glad I did I did go in the end.  I got to make a little studio space outside under the trees and it was just such a visually beautiful day. Sometimes it's just so good to get out of my comfort zones and get new perspective and get new visual material.

My view for the day.
Beauty in every direction

My art desk this morning and my view to the left.

I know depth perspective is in our lessons... I made extra effort to photograph some.
I also see rhythm in this picture.  The repetitive bolts and planks.  And or course line... taking my eye out.  Part of my homework is to collect pictures of line and then draw them out - to give us greater understanding of drawing such things to ultimately incorporate them into paintings.

SelfCare - 6"x6" Graphite
For my homework journal - practicing hands.
Oswaldo is still inspiring me and I'm feeling a tad obsessed.
Finding ways to emotionally incorporate hands.

Today I packed in my Instamatic Camera - I've taken a few pictures at home but some of them have been such duds.  So I was a bit despondent and I've been nervous to play with it.  So we have been kind of avoiding each other since (as I usually do) when I'm uncomfortable with things.  

But today I thought "what the hell".
Taking shots of my people and capturing today instantly = priceless.
That top Instamatic of the AppleOrchards is so lovely and moody.  And of course, I love the picture of my riders.  The Instax spools are expensive but I've decided I'm going to carry my camera around with me and capture moments whenever I can.... feeling encouraged.

I managed to get in these 3 draw ups today.  Can't wait to paint tonight.

Got to feel Autumn between my toes today.
The winds of change are blowing.
Figuratively and literally...