I taught a class at Pickleberry today then had some time to play afterwards (rather than come home to watch the football) so tinkered around with my art journal. I'm quite pleased with this page so far, I may come back to it and add something else at a later date.
The photos are image transfers, I was quite pleased with the way they turned out. The page didn't go the way I had planned but I was quite tired after the midnight crop, 2am bedtime and up to teach this morning.
A lazy day at the beach tomorrow, to recharge my batteries for next week.
My copy of Scrapbook Inspirations came yesterday, I haven't had chance to read it yet but it means I can share a couple of layouts now that they are published.
This first one is about the shock I had when I went to pay for a few cakes and tarts from the Avoca deli counter, what made it worse was that the banoffee pie was awful, I carefully carried the fruit tarts all the way back home, making sure they didn't get squashed during the flight and they tasted awful. Next time it will be one piece of crispy cake! I had put a lovely bag back because I thought it cost too much and it wasn't much more than the cakes.
I love this one because it reminds me of a great day out. I drove up to watch Alex play rugby and was so proud to see him with his friends, it was lovely to see how popular he is. It was sunny, snowing and freezing cold but well worth getting cold for the photographs.
This one makes me realise how lucky we are to live close by to the beach and the lovely nicky nack shops in Whitstable. People drive miles to come here on holiday and we are just 5 minutes away and can go any time we please.
I spent the day in my studio on Monday and completely lost track of time. I prepared my art journal pages ready for the class I am teaching in June at Pickleberry. With gesso, acrylic paints and some collage I was very messy when I had finished but over the moon with the resulting backgrounds. I had some ideas as I went along and they turned out better than I thought they would. I have 30 double sided pages prepped and ready to play.
This was an experiment with gesso and paints over an altered photograph, not too sure about the hair though! Still, it has less grey than in real life. Kate and I ordered the class supplies yesterday, scrummy Jo Sonja's paints. I've been using them for five years now and haven't found anything to rival their quality.
I'm struggling with time to play this week, my friend's children are with us every day while she goes to work this week so it's not as easy to slope off to the studio but I'm taking them shopping to the The Range today to see if there is anything crafty they want to buy. Hopefully they can get on with what they choose while I play with my things.
My classes for Scrapagogo are finished, PDFs sent and samples all done, although I missed my deadline by 40 minutes. I'm quite relieved that I have a couple of weeks before any more work is due. I took advantage this afternoon and went to the studio to play for a few hours.
I finished a sample page for my art journal class and was quite pleased with it apart from discovering that the pen I was using was not very good when it came to writing over the spray stuff I used (sorry I can't remember the name of it and I'm at home so can't go and look). I'm pleased I learned now rather than wreck any pages during the classes.
I'm hoping for some 'me' time over the weekend, Alex is home after the rugby 7s on Sunday night, Steve has his new RC helicopter to play with. It was his birthday yesterday but as he was about to play with his new toy he discovered that one of his pet snakes (yuk) had laid eggs so spent the day building the incubator. It will be two months until they are due to hatch, I don't particularly like them but I suppose it will be interesting to watch them coming out of the eggs. Georgina is now well enough to go out to play with her friends so I hope to escape to find a quiet spot on the beach to read and sunbathe.
I'm teaching some new classes at Pickleberry, a four week art journal workshop on Tuesday evenings through June, ATC's, home decor with more classes on their way. It's a busy time, designing them and sourcing supplies but very exciting too.
The studio is fab to work in, I've lost a few things in the move and still have loads to sort through but I'm getting there.
The last week has been quite taxing, Beau, my five year old GSD, has a couple of lumps at the base of his neck. He was due for castration anyway so while they did that he was xrayed and they took a biopsy from each lump. The good news is that the xray didn't show any mass inside, we're still waiting for the lab results and the bill for him so far is a staggering £937, not what we wanted at the moment (or any time really!)
Georgina has been off school for 2 days last week and went back not 100% but well enough for lessons. Unfortunately she has been sick during the night so I have been clearing up the 'fallout', she has a high bed over a desk and chair so the spread pattern is rather a large area. Without going into detail there has been a lot of clearing up to do and I gag at the thought of it. 1am with a tea towel held over my face while trying to clear up one handed was probably a funny sight but I wasn't laughing. I have not inherited a single one of my mother's nursing genes.
Elina emailed me yesterday, she lives in Athens during the winter and helps to run her family hotel in Mykonos for the summer. She is an experienced scrapbooker, one of a very few in Greece and is entirely self taught from magazines and the internet. She sent me a very generous invitation to visit her and stay in her hotel on Mykonos for a week so that we can scrapbook together! I didn't need any persuasion, I booked flights this morning and will be heading off for a week in July armed with scrapbook goodies and class kits.
I can't believe how lucky I am and am so grateful for Elina's generosity, I have never been to Mykonos but have had it on my list of places to visit since watching Shirley Valentine. Can you believe I will be spending a week of days in the sun, sightseeing and taking photographs then evenings scrapping. What a perfect holiday.
The icing on my cake was Newcastle's result last night, I was on the edge of my seat and have to admit to a lump in my throat when I heard the Geordies in full song. With some more luck we may stay up in the Premiership and Alex will have his season ticket for The Toon when he goes to uni in September.
Life is so full of ups and downs, but with 'ups' like a new studio and a trip to discover another Greek island, the downs are pretty easy to deal with.
I started work on an art journal yesterday and spent the afternoon painting all of the pages with gesso. I tried drying them on the open window sill but they kept blowing away so I had to be patient and wait overnight.
This morning I went up to the new Range shop at Chatham dockyards, there wasn't much to tempt me, I bought a pink paint tray, a few stamps and stickers from the Smirk range and some bits and pieces from the homeware including three new beach bags for the summer. After lunch at an Aussie cafe I called in to the Scrapbook Sisters to collect the kit for a class I am teaching on Saturday afternoon then on to the studio.
I painted my pages with acrylics and left them to dry on a makeshift washing line ready to apply more coats in different colours tomorrow.
I have to be there very early in the morning, my delivery from Ellison should have been here yesterday but I am still waiting. They can't explain why it's been on the van for two days without any attempt to deliver but said they could bring it on Monday. I stamped my feet, said it wasn't good enough so the good news is that they will bring it tomorrow. The bad news is that they will deliver between 8am and 10am. That will teach me, bang goes any hope of a lie in.
I've been just ticking over since the weekend, very tired and suffering (quietly) from a horrid head cold but I'm slowly catching up.
It's amazing to work in my studio, I have current projects laid out on my coloured shelves, one for planned stuff, one for completed and one for assignments in progress. I can see at a glance what I still need to finish and have my memory jogged about future plans. Instead of struggling to come up with an idea for a technique to fit a particular layout I find myself inspired when I look around and see my supplies on my shelving, ideas are flowing more easily and I can tidy up afterwards because everything has a place to live.
I'm currently working on some classes to teach in the Pickleberry workshop but first I need to finish my magazine projects.
I was teaching a class at Chepstow in Wales yesterday and had planned the travel details a couple of months ago. I booked advance train tickets and the hotel with plans for a bit of sightseeing on Friday, dinner on Friday evening and a lie in before the class on Saturday.
Train journey was impossible when I had to be in two places at once, 10 miles apart at the same time as catching the train so I decided to drive instead. Plans for sightseeing and dinner fell through, the sun came out at home, Georgina wasn't very well and Alex was due home for the weekend so I decided to drive there early Saturday morning and spend Friday reading in the sunshine and the evening at home.
Armed with the new TomTom that Steve bought me last week I set off for Wales, a 400 mile round trip. I think the last time I was over that particular border was for a break in the Brecon Beacons eleven years ago. I remember it raining every day bar one, Georgina crawling in the mud around the caravan and spending the best day in Hay on Wye searching for a first edition of Shadow the Sheepdog by Enid Blyton.
I crossed the old Severn bridge for the toll fee of £5.40 (!!) for that price I wanted to stop and take photos but I had to make to with waving my phone around, taking pictures as I drove across, hoping that one of them would turn out well - it wasn't too bad and I even caught the reflection on the car bonnet.
The class was at Chepstow rugby club, just over the bridge so I didn't get to do any sightseeing at all. I have to thank Louise for her hospitality, I was treated like royalty for the day. Posh lunch, drinks, a lovely card and a special gift tied up with a huge pink balloon. I think the class went well, I didn't get to see any finished projects but they were all looking promising. I left about 3pm to drive home, by which time I was definitely getting a cold, my throat was on fire and my head was blocking up. I had to stop to sleep for an hour on the way home but made it back in time to watch Britain's got talent with Georgina, she loves snuggling up each week with me to see the auditions. Last night there was a lovely man called Jamie Pugh who sang a song from Les Miserables beautifully, I could have listened to him singing all evening.