Three new handmade books made it to my online shop today. Finally! Progress is so slow round these parts at the moment and it’s hard not to get frustrated with myself but…I’m really happy with them. A benevolent neighbour gave me a huge stack of old sea charts and maps and I’ve been happily looking through them to see which ones can be given new life. These old maps have such a nice texture and character so expect more to appear when I get the chance.
So just in the nick of time I managed to finish August’s Library of Inspiration book. This is a little project where I am making a mini book every month featuring one of my favourite quotes, the idea being that I’ll end up with a beautiful wee library from which I can chose in inspirational quote to start my day with. Not quite sure how many I’m going to make…maybe I’ll go on making them forever! You can see them all here.
I’m trying to practice my Coptic Stitch at the moment with many failed attempts in the last week. Every time I think I’ve got it I realise I’ve done something different (and wrong!) every time. One day I’m going to be as good at Coptic Stitch as Ruth Bleakly. I’ll keep you posted.
New in my shop this week are these lovely little notebooks which use vintage maps of Scotland as their covers. There is more mappy loveliness inside too with the end papers being bits of maps and each one has been hand sewn and had a mappy closure added to keep everything neat and tidy. A LOT of fun to make and perfect for your traveller or Scotland loving friend.
This paper sculpture (top pic) titled ‘Bloom’ is now available in my shop. Go take a look. It’s inspired by big lovely summer flowers as I can feel summer just round the corner.
I’ve also been working on some new pieces for an exhibition at Calgary Arts with Lisa McKenna. It’s all gone a bit colourful and mixed media-y, most unlike me! This is always an exciting and terrifying moment, putting your ‘babies’ out there in the public eye. Wish them luck!
Kids know how to have fun, like wearing a cape just ‘cause or painting in your underpants. I’m constantly amazed at their enthusiasm, positivity and energy. Where did all mine go?!
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately. I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself to have a Mega Super Successful Art Empire IMMEDIATELY and somewhere I forgot about the fun bit. So must try harder to give myself a break, be a bit nicer to myself and not panic when I’m not the world’s most famous artist by Monday. I’m still learning, still working out my direction.
If you sometimes think about things like this you might like to have a little read at these articles by some lovely ladies - Meet Me At Mikes and Do What You Love.
April is disappearing! I always crave springtime in the depths of winter then all of a sudden it’s whooshing by. There hasn’t been much creative work going on lately, life has been more about kids and chocolate recently. But whilst enjoying the benefits of a mainland internet connection during the holidays, I did a bit of behind the scenes tweaking of this website and my shop. Since I got back home I have managed to complete my latest Library of Inspiration book and do a bit of painting on lovely watercolour paper for my next exhibition.
Wishing everyone the joys of spring!
Thought I’d give you a little How To this week, using the Turkish Map Fold to make a book. This was the style of book I used to make my first book in my Library of Inspiration Project (making a personal library of mini books containing my favourite quotes). It’s very easy to do but looks pretty impressive when done. For my book I used one fold as I just needed one page, but when you glue a few together it looks great. I used origami paper for this tutorial because it makes it fairly easy to see what I’m doing but you could use any, fairly thin, paper you like. Let me know what you think - it’s my first tutorial! And if anyone wants to create their own Library of Inspiration I’d love to see.
Here’s my month of March in pictures. The sun came out, I framed up some recent work and delivered it to some local venues and I popped a new Teacup papercutting in my shop. Hope March has been treating you well where you are.
This little book made it to my online shop this week. Not blowing my own trumpet but I do rather like it. I’ve been doing bucket loads of paper cutting recently which I do love too but felt the Urge To Make Book. So make a book I did. Thinking about books has spurred me on to get started with my Library of Inspiration project so I’m going to make a mini book every month, filled with a favourite quote or poem, until I have a unique collection. I’ll share my efforts with you here and on social media with the hashtag #libraryofinspiration .
The sun came out! 3 whole days of it! My eyes and my skin almost couldn’t cope it was so awesome.
Speaking of awesome, the PaperLove Blog Hop that we did on Monday was super cool. I had a very pleasant evening reading through all the posts and it was great (and reassuring) to see all those overflowing paper stashes in various studios and craft rooms around the world. Click through the links if you get a chance to discover all sorts or papery goodness.
I managed to get two new paper cuts in my Etsy shop this week too - Red Lovebirds and Home Sweet Home. And I have been busily framing up lots of pieces for some local galleries. My challenge for this year is to have my work displayed in more places, possibly even on (da-da-daa) The Mainland.