Friday, 29 April 2016

Wagtail & No Wag Tail

 I completed this little commission yesterday, a small watercolour of a wagtail.  There was a point the day before where I thought I'd ruined it when I started to darken the background behind the bird, but I think I saved it in the nick of time. The gentleman who commissioned it is very pleased, which is what counts.

 It's been a terrible week, with poor old Clovis having to be put to sleep on Tuesday after his condition deteriorated severely.  I won't go on about it - mainly because doing so starts me off crying again - but it has been really hard to come to terms with as he'd been with us for nearly 14 years.  Painting provided a little respite as I can lose myself for a while.
After the deed was done, the next day we decided to get in the car and escape for a few hours to the Weale & Down open air museum in Sussex.  It was a funny old day, part bright sunshine, part snow flurries (in April!) but we had a good walk in the gorgeous countryside and were able to re-charge our batteries a little.
 Not many photos - wasn't really in the mood.
Still, life goes on, and now that my days are no longer filled with nursing a very sick dog there will be more time to spend on other pursuits, and thankfully I have plenty to be getting on with.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

A Time Of Sadness

I lost my best friend this week.  Goodbye sweet boy.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Willy Wagtail...

My first commission of 2016 - a good start made, which is encouraging as I was a bit worried about paiting a black and white bird.  Let's hope it continues in this fashion.

On the needles: you don't want to know!

Friday, 15 April 2016


I completed this little watercolour of a sparrow yesterday - the working title is 'Psychopomp', for reasons best known to myself.  I just love sparrows - they exude personality despite their dowdy plumage.  Actually, when you study them while painting, they are not dowdy at all!

Painting this little bird has led to a commission to paint another type of little bird, a pied wagtail, which I am looking forward to immensely.  It's been far too quiet since Christmas as far as painting commissions go, time to get back to work!

*This painting is now sold.

Thursday, 14 April 2016

Progress Report

This little watercolour is nearly finished, should be done by the end of today.  After this, I have a commission (Yay! First one since Christmas!) to paint a pied wagtail - looking forward to it.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Sunshine & Sparrow...

The sun finally came out of hiding and I managed to photograph this lace shawl in daylight - now you can see the colours to their best advantage.
Despite being a relatively simple repeated pattern, this was a tricky one to knit.  It seemed to go on forever as the yarn is so fine, but the colour changes added a bit of interest as the work progressed.

It is now for sale in my Etsy shop.
I've started this little watercolour of a sparrow - sparrows have to be one of my favourite birds, despite their subdued plumage they have such cheeky characters.  I'm taking my time with this, concentrating on the detail - it's very therapeutic!

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Lots of Lace...

I finally finished this lace shawl last week - it has taken a very long time, not only because I kept getting sidetracked with other projects but also because it is rather large!  This photo does not do it justice, but I need a day of sunshine in order to get some decent pictures which show off the vibrant colours to their best advantage - it's Britain in April, that could take a while!

This shawl was knitted in two parts and joined in the middle - not sure why; I initially thought that it was to ensure the ends both had a wavy finish to the edge, but after blocking, this is not the case.  The pattern called for the pieces to be joined using the Kitchener method, but after doing this, it looked really clumsy and ugly against the delicate lace, a thick raised seam.  So it took me 2 hours to unpick that - couldn't afford to lose any yarn as I only had about a meter of it left.  I tried joining it with a double cast off - ran out of yarn and had to unpick that too.  I ended up simply sewing the ends together - it's not great, but less obtrusive at least.  I hate it when a lot of work is spoiled by something like that - if I had known, I would have just knitted one long continuous piece.

On the easel - a small watercolour of a sparrow.  Not feeling very creative at the moment, having a rough time caring for Clovis whose health is up and down like a yoyo.  I think I might be putting our vet's children through university...

Monday, 4 April 2016


Yesterday was busy as Mondays always are, but I made time to do this little watercolour painting.  A little ambitious to attempt in the space of an hour or so, but I'm quite pleased with it considering.  I like the way the tail came out, which is funny as that was the bit I was rushing before teatime!

That's enough farmyard birds for the time being, the novelty has worn off.  Not sure what is next - life is pretty chaotic at the moment, so I'm a bit lacking inspiration - the farm birds were an exercise in keeping my hand in.

On the needles - still the large lace shawl in the brightly coloured yarn.  It's taking forever, but there are only a couple of inches left to knit.

Still struggling with Clovis - his appetite is sadly lacking and I can't get his pills down him in any shape or form now; he's worked out what they smell like and there is no disguising them!  Another visit to the vet today for a bit of a check up and find out if there is anything else I could be doing.  This is a very difficult time indeed, seeing my best buddy's health failing and feeling totally impotent.  Ah well, such is life I suppose.

Friday, 1 April 2016


Another little watercolour, using photos from Millers Ark last week as a reference.  I'm quite enjoying these small farmyard themed paintings, although think I might be ready for something a bit more ambitious next!