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Monthly Archives: February 2012

Today I hit the calligraphy ink and have the black fingernails to prove it. I may also have proved it by dropping my brush on an expensive looking leather bag someone thoughtfully put under my easel. It wasn’t a black bag. But let’s not dwell on that while the owner isn’t.

I haven’t painted in, well, a long time. It was nice to get a feel for the fan brush again (I used a 1″ fan brush for these). Next time it’s bigger paper or a smaller brush for a little more control.

Mayhem, mess and mistakes. Ce la vie.

In January I acquired a new craft book called “Pictures with Pins”. I had some grand visions of incorporating this “art” into some new pieces but was too busy with The Sketchbook Project to explore. But the time has finally come, the 70s live on and I have started on my pin art journey.

Originally I thought I could just fake it and just used foam core and pins while testing out the technique. But no, you cannot cheat on 70s craft. It’s wood and nails all the way. The foam core does not hold the pins tightly enough to keep the string tight, and nobody likes flacid string art. This seriously limits what I intended to use this technique for but i’ve still got one idea up my crafty sleeve…

Despite the issues, I played around enough to get a feel for the process and in desperation, used the back of an old picture frame to try out the pins in some wood. It made the process a hundred times easier. Lesson from the 70s, pin art may be frugal craft but there will be no skimping on the wood.

For these trials I used 16mm long Brass Sequin & Bead pins and general sewing thread.

Pin Art

When I was a kid, I couldn’t understand why none of the other kids liked black lollies. Whenever a birthday party lolly bag time came around, I made the most of my penchant for aniseed by trading my ‘Mint Leaves’, which I detested, for a bucketloads of ‘Black Cats’ and black jelly beans. Looking back now, I can see I was destined to become a Melbourne Designer (famed for our love of black).

A few weeks ago I visited Porter’s Paints to pick up some paint for a bit of DIY action. I requested black and was presented with a few colour cards. Aniseed won hands down, mostly for the sentimental images the name conjured up, but also for being the perfect matte “almost black”.

In January I was lucky enough to have a drawing board custom built for me by my dad. It’s sturdy, the perfect size and can be folded up and put away. It’s pretty darn ace but the deal was, he builds, I paint.

So this weekend it went from this:

Via this:

To a very handsome shade of almost black (don’t you just want to eat it up?).

If you, like my dad, are wondering why on earth i’d paint it black, you need only visit this Manhattan Nest post. If I wasn’t renting, my doors would be black now too.

I’ve been lusting after other peoples studio spaces online for awhile now and thinking that it would be so nice to have an art studio. That aren’t those people so lucky? And then I thought, well I could just make myself one. So with the new drawing board and a few new *cough*Ikea*cough* bits, I cleared all the art making debris from my dining table/ kitchen bench/floor and created my own little studio space. Fresh and ready for action.

I’ve been pondering my life drawing, feeling like it’s not where it should be. I’ve been looking at old drawings, thinking about my Sketchbook Project and wondering how it all fits or doesn’t fit together. So I thought it might be a nice pause, between The Sketchbook Project and what’s next, do a short history.

In 2011 I started attending a class that I really like but unfortunately has some space restrictions and no easels. So no big ink paintings for me. I wasn’t exactly what you would call regular. I slowly lost direction and wound up here in 2012, drawing just the way I was at home on The Sketchbook Project. Which is fine, but why go? Time for a kick start again.

So i’m packing up my ink set and heading out to try some new classes, mix them in with the old one and see what comes out. Buckle in and keep your eye out for progress shots, i’m not sure where it’s headed but that’s sort of the point.

I’ve been pondering my life drawing, feeling like it’s not where it should be. I’ve been looking at old drawings, thinking about my Sketchbook Project and wondering how it all fits or doesn’t fit together. So I thought it might be a nice pause, between The Sketchbook Project and what’s next, do a short history.

2010 was much of the same good time, ink flying action as 2009 at Dynamic Drawing. Going to work in corporate office land with black fingernails is just my kind of subversive and 2010 had plenty of black nail days. The fun didn’t stop, until it did, when Ron the facilitator move back to Northern NSW.