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Monday, July 29, 2013


I had a little epiphany while we were on holiday.  I decided that I would resume an 'artistic practice' of some sort when we returned home.  One with no pressure, no deadlines, no concerns about saleability.  Just for my own pleasure and mental health. George was delighted with the idea. (There is also a project coming up which I anticipate will take one or two days a week for about a year, not artistic in the same sense but sort of literary/historic, but more of that in another post).

Well, I've only done only thing from scratch in the three weeks since we returned, as I have had catching up to do with a variety of things. (Including taking Wombat to the movies twice a week, for three weeks, to catch up with the lost time while we were away.  I usually take him once a week, and it is a ritual we both have come to value greatly).

I had so much fun with my dot painting workshop in Uluru that I wanted to do more dot painting, but not in a traditional way.  I wanted to put my own stamp on the technique, and besides, it would be inappropriate in any way for a white British person to use the symbols sacred to another race.

This is my first pass through of the various ideas I have had.  I took a dark turquoise paint and gradually mixed it with white to do the various shapes on the small canvas, and then just used gold paint to do dots on the borders of the shapes.  It was sort of inspired by quilting in the ditch in patchwork, I suppose, if you imagine it done with beads.

It's far from brilliant, but it was fun, and it made me get my paints out and actually DO something without caring whether anyone else liked it or not.  I have other ideas which will be experimented with in due course.

This next piece is something I actually made during the summer and finished well before we went away, but left it in a crumpled heap until a couple of days ago.  When I decided to block it, I was annoyed to discover a nibbled hole in the exact centre.  I don't know what ate it - we don't seem to have mice and we pest bomb the house every few months because we have a slight cockroach problem (most people in our area with lush gardens seem to have one, so I don't think we are unusually grotty) - but I had to brush up my long-neglected darning skills to cure the problem.  It's far from invisible, sadly, but I will still wear it.

The pattern is Bigger on the Inside, modified to get rid of the lace body because I couldn't be bothered knitting lace and I really only wanted it for the Tardises.  I also added an iridescent blue bead for the light on top of the Tardis instead of the stitch pattern.  I did have a go at the lace pattern but it was irritating me, and I wanted it to be a fun knit.  I am not very fond of knitting lace.  I knitted it with Shepherd Baby Wool Merino, 4ply, which is quite soft and nice.  It's a short shawl, which I like, more like a deep scarf.

Films I have seen since coming back from holiday - 

Word War Z - better than I expected. It inspired me to buy the book after several people told me the book is far better than the film.

Despicable Me 2 - bottom!!!!

Man of Steel - disappointing.  OK but not great.

Monsters University - really funny and enjoyable, and I loved the huge, colourful diversity of monsters.  And it had one of the BEST librarian jokes ever.  (Mostly visual, so not really worth describing).

The Lone Ranger - a bit too long but entertaining.  Johhny Depp is to be admired for keeping such a straight face for the whole film.

Tomorrow is The Wolverine, not sure about that...

Edited to add : Roxie left me a lovely comment this morning but I wasn't wearing my glasses at the time and I managed to delete it.  So here it is, copied and pasted from the trash folder in my emails!

Love the painting. And yes, by all means, wear the scarf. It's beautiful and real! If you want something made with machine-like precision, get something machine made. I prefer things showing the touch of the maker's hand. 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Coat of Arms Pizza

I have so many photos to go through from my Central Australian holiday that I haven't got round to blogging a fraction of them.  Not that I will inflict the whole lot on the public, but we did visit some very interesting places that I would like to share.

After spending over a week unable to choose pictures because of brain fog every time I looked at them, here is just one to be going on with.  This is a Coat of Arms pizza that we ate for dinner in Coober Pedy.  It has cured kangaroo and emu on it and it was DELICIOUS.  We ate quite a bit of 'bush tucker' on our travels.

About my last post - they are all photos of Kata Tjuta, formerly known as The Olgas, taken during the hour leading up to sunset.  None of them are retouched.

There will be more posts with more pictures as I get myself more organised.