Saturday, 13 September 2014

Beaches & Beasties...

Whilst I went straight back to work after our brief holiday, I have had time to start a small watercolour.  This is of Corblets beach in Alderney, the beach that has the biggest waves.  I took many reference photos of the waves, but not many of them turned out as well as I had hoped!  I feel very rusty painting again - I have not done much lately and it shows.  However, it is very enjoyable to be painting somewhere I love and I am slowly getting back into the swing of it.
I've also knitted another one of these - I had a brief hiatus from the animation work and a zombie was what I wanted to make.
This pattern never fails to amuse me!

I am currently crocheting another monster, quite difficult when using fluffy yarn, I can't see what on earth I'm doing!

Monday, 8 September 2014

Things You Do When At A Loose End...

With the knitting for the animation all but finished (one last creature to be made), I now have quite a bit of spare time on my hands.  Last week I tried another pattern from my Mini Mochi book - this has to be one of the cutest armadillos in the world!
He's only about an inch and a half long - I have no idea what to do with him now, other than look and go 'ahhh'.

Time to start adding stock to my Etsy shop - there is a pull-apart zombie on the needles, and a painting on the board.

The animation is just about finished and will soon be out there - watch this space, it's all very exciting!

Sunday, 7 September 2014

No Crafting, Just Chilling...

Anyone who reads this blog on a regular basis will know that I have been very stressed this summer - constant building noise was driving me to the brink of insanity.  However, just before having to go back to work, we took a few days off and caught a plane....a very small plane!
To a very small island - this is Alderney in the Channel Islands, just off the coast of France and where I spent my teenage years when my parents retired there.
Not much has changed, the beaches remain the same.
No-one there but us most of the time.
Stacie's favourite pursuit, assembling a sandy Dalek army - she also did more sketching than I did!
I was too busy collecting shells....
...collecting photos for future paintings...
...or freezing myself in the sea!  Going swimming was a bit of a mad thing to do but when you are challenged, you have to step up.  It was COLD!
We also bird watched at Gannet Rock,
and explored various forts and German fortifications left over from the war.
I have often reminisced about how awful dental checks were when I lived in Alderney and that it was pretty antiquated at the time.  We as children all dreaded the visit to the school of the local dentist, it was not a good experience.  In the museum I found the actual chair we all had to sit in and it was so much worse than I remembered!  Zoom in if you can to read the wonder we all had problems with our teeth in later life!

I have been crafting since I got back - more on that in another post.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Hitting The Ground Running...

Back from a holiday of rotten weather, crowded beaches, bad, it was a fantastic few days in Alderney, with Mediterranean temperatures, deserted sands, bird watching, shell collecting and generally lazing about.  The only thing wrong with it was that it was far too short and I have to go back to work this morning.

I have lots of photographs to keep me busy painting sun and sand over the winter months - if I can get through today that is!

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Counting Down....

Everything this weeks seems to be on a clock, counting down.  I'm coming to the end of the work for the animated film, just one final thing to make.  These little bits and pieces are part of it, as is this:
Each square in this mini patchwork is just over an inch - fiddly work!  It is all hand sewn, and now needs a backing.  As I am obviously unable to sign my name on anything I have made for the film, there is a tiny reference in the border...I know it represents the name of my shop, even if no-one else does!

The school summer holidays are drawing to a close - I don't feel that I have had the chance to relax at all, what with the crashing and banging that has gone on in the plot next to our house.  In fact I feel more stressed now than I did six weeks ago!  However, we are planning a short break very soon and hopefully a few days on a beach at one of the remotest parts of the country will re-charge my very run-down batteries.

We have had some rather nice dog walks lately - came across this large fellow the other day.  It's the caterpillar of an elephant hawk moth.  In fact, we found several.  This is what they do when you annoy them by taking too many photos, they puff themselves up and rear up to make themselves look really scary - this caterpillar is a good three inches long.  We're keeping the location to ourselves though, it's out of the way and I think these amazing creatures need to be left alone to do what they do.

And that is August nearly over - I can't believe how fast this year has passed by.  I hope you enjoy the last few days of summer!

Monday, 25 August 2014

Exhibition Time!

It's taken me many years to pluck up the courage to join the Marwell Art Society, but I finally did it a few weeks ago after some persuasion and managed to just squeak a couple of entries into their annual exhibition.  Drop off day is today, so this handsome fellow is off to try his luck along with this one:
Wish them both luck - it would be nice if they didn't come home again!

Friday, 22 August 2014

Feelin' Good......

Day 2 of peace and quiet - for some reason the builders have left us alone since yesterday.  I'm not complaining!  And it's a Bank Holiday weekend, so three more days of blessed relief to come.

With the removal of noise pollution, it was amazing to feel normal again and ready to get on with some work rather than wanting to curl up in the foetal position and cry for ten hours.  I'm building a television, to be covered in fabric and wool. After searching the whole of town for some polystyrene sheeting, I eventually got given an offcut at a builders' yard by a nice young lad called Luke - thank you Luke, you saved my bacon!  Now the structure is done, I can get on with covering it.  Hopefully today the dog won't find a pile of rubbish in his dinner bowl...