Tuesday, 31 December 2013

New toy!

A little while ago my husband discovered Kickstarter. He decided to support 3Doodler and about a month ago our parcel arrived. With the build up to Christmas it sat in the cupboard, but this week I pulled it out to give it a try.

So what is 3Doodler? you ask. Well, it's a machine that lets you draw in plastic in 3 dimensions. Cool, huh? You can find the website here. There are some fantastic creations.

I thought I'd make some parts for a necklace as my first try. The first ones were very wobbly as I was learning to control the pen. By the third stick of plastic I was beginning to get the hang of it. I can see more plastic jewellery in my future. However, my daughter has snaffled this one :)

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #32

The final prompt in this chapter about dreaming and visioning is Visions of Myself.

I look at the prompt now and wonder how I got to where I ended up with this page! Then I go back to the questions that go with the prompt. The part that led to this page goes like this:
We have a clear picture in our minds of ourselves, but unfortunately that picture is often distorted by self-talk, doubts, fears and personal mythologies. Interrogate these visions of yourself to see if they hold up to scrutiny. Stop getting in your own way, and start visualising yourself living the life you dream about.
How often do we get in our own way? We talk ourselves out of our dreams; pussy-foot around, worried about failing; underestimate what we are capable of.

But I am coming to realise this: it is better to try and fail than to fail to try.

Where are you going to get out of  your own way this year?

Friday, 27 December 2013

New furniture

Two days before Christmas the shelves collapsed in my art room. There was a creaking and suddenly I was holding up the shelving unit and calling out, 'A bit of help here!' to my family. They rushed to my rescue and helped to push the unit back upright, but there was no way it was going to stay that way. So started the rapid removal of books and art materials until the shelves stayed almost upright while my husband rushed off to Ikea to buy new shelves. We've gradually been replacing our shelving as it is going on for twenty years old and has been moved around a lot, taken apart and put back together in varying combinations, and basically is nearing the end of its useful life.

Now I found myself surrounded by all the giveaway bags for the Christmas Eve service, books, and crates of materials. There wasn't much room to move. But soon the new shelves arrived, were put together, and filled again. A little rearranging in the cupboards and everything is cleared away now.

So I have gone from this:

To this:

Hope you had a great Christmas!

Sunday, 22 December 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #31

This week's prompt is dreams and nightmares - what are the dreams you have and what sort of nightmares do you have about your dreams not coming true? I interpreted this as dreams and fears - why and why not.

It is easy to dream.

But it is also just as easy to talk yourself out of your dreams.

How often do you and I dream things, looking to a could-be, only to then come up with 27 different reasons for why it won't happen?

It's time to grasp the dream with both hands and talk down the fear.

Resolve to step into the could-be in the coming new year.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Art Journal Journey

This page started out with brayer rollings from loading the gelli-plate for the previous post. There ended up being quite a bit of black on the page - not something I usually do unless I'm going for a completely black background. It definitely needed some lightness to balance it, which reminded me that Art Journal Journey's theme this month is dark and light. 

So I got to thinking. And a few things have happened recently that made me wish that I was one of those people who can think on their feet. Unfortunately I'm just not like that. It takes me time to process, for the light to go on in my head and realise what I've heard or seen, and what I should have said or done. I'm the one for whom the witty retort comes a couple of days later, who lives with the regret that the darkness isn't illuminated that little bit quicker.

So how about you? Are you able to think on your feet? 

Monday, 16 December 2013

Gelli-print party - December

In the midst of Christmas preparations I needed a break. As the weather heats up I need something new to clip my hair up with. I have a drawer full of leather in my filing cabinet so decided to make a hair clip with that. 

I wasn't that excited about the colour of the leather - a pale yellowish pink - so I went to the gelli-plate to jazz it up a bit. Now all I need is something to go through the holes...

Now I'm off to join Carolyn's gelli-print party.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #30

This prompt was daydreams. Something I haven't had much time for just lately with all the Christmas preparations. So this page was thrown together in short order - a bit of collage, some stamping, a little washi tape, and done.

As a clergy family we are given a house to live in. We are very grateful for that… but it isn't one of our own choosing. In my daydreams I design a home that would have all the space we desire to do everything we love doing. With our home also being our workspace, it is fun to let the imagination run and design something that fulfils all our requirements.

It is fun to dream...

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Busy, busy, busy!

I normally like to post Monday, Wednesday, Friday, but this week I haven't done a lot of journalling. I haven't even looked at the next Journal Fodder 365 prompt which I should be posting on Monday.

So what have I been doing instead? (Because you know that I have to have been doing something creative.) Well, at the Christmas Eve church service my husband likes to give away a gift bag. One year we had 'Advent in a Box' which was a Chinese takeaway cardboard box with a whole bunch of lovely things in it that you could use to tell the Christmas story. This involved me cooking 400 cookies in the week before Christmas when my cooker broke down…

This year the Christmas decorations above will form part of the giveaway (they have since been given loops of silver thread to hang them on the tree) and I'll be using the hand-cut stencil below to decorate the bags.

Keeping in mind that there are 100 bags and (so far) 6 different items to design/make/fold or whatever, you can see that I've been pretty busy! 

What special crafts have you been doing this Christmas?

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #29

This new chapter of Journal Fodder 365  is all about dreams. The first of the four prompts is dream journal.

Sometimes I note down my dreams because occasionally they have something useful to say. At the moment I must be slightly anxious about something because I'm having my usual recurring dream about being late - usually for school or university or some sort of teaching event. The dream isn't exactly the same every time but the theme is: I'm running late and have forgotten something or don't know which room I'm supposed to go to, or something happens that just makes it difficult to arrive in the right place at the right time and properly prepared. I'm a punctual person, so the thought of being late is distressing.

Do you have a recurring dream?

Wednesday, 4 December 2013


Whenever I've done faces before they've been outlines - no shading. But I've seen so many fabulous faces on blogs shaded with wild colours and looking gorgeous. So here's my first real attempt using oil pastels. The thing I learned was that more colour was better. When I was tentative and only applied a little colour, there were gaps. Once I started to be bolder, the colours started to blend and look better. It's still a little blocky, but over all I'm pleased with it.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Shine your light

Art Journal Journey's theme for December is Dark and Light.

I thought about all the dark items that have been on the news in the last couple of weeks and how I can feel so small amongst all the wickedness in the world.

There are times where we feel that anything we might contribute is so small that it isn't worth it.

But when the darkness is at its darkest the smallest light shines brightly.

Shine your light.

Together we can scatter the darkness.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #28

Letting Go is the latest prompt in Journal Fodder 365 by Scott and Modler. 

The page ended up being incredibly simple. I wanted an open hand so I drew around mine to start with. But it needed a little more, so I re-entered childhood, painting my hand and printing with it :) That was better. 

But what was I letting go of? A balloon seemed to fit the bill, so on it went. Voila! Page done. 
I have only recently done a page on this subject which you can read here so I won't go through it again. Suffice to say that I am trying to let go of all the things that stop me from doing what I should be doing.

What do you need to let go of?

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Thresholds and making a mess

My husband and daughter visited a chocolateria on Saturday while I was taking a class. They came back with napkins with a great sentiment on them:

It is perfect for an artist, though my hands don't become so artistically messy as this. Though the time when I was dyeing a T-shirt and developed a hole in my glove left me with a beautiful turquoise hand up to the wrist…

And this one just slips in to the Art Journal Journey challenge of 'doors' before December and the change of theme.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Noticing the difference

On Saturday morning I led a class in Biblical Meditation and Imaginative Prayer. It was only a couple of hours, but they were quite intense. This is the fourth or fifth women's retreat event I've led and I can feel the difference now.

At the first retreat I was nervous, I felt anxious standing in front of everyone, even though the group was fairly small. I could feel my voice shaking and I cut short the things I wanted to say because I felt so intensely uncomfortable. All I could think about was sitting down. I felt terribly exposed.

Through the progression of different events that I've led I have learned what I find more comfortable. For example, I prefer to sit with people around a table as I teach, with my laptop at an easy glance. I feel more confident if I write myself a whole script, even if I don't stick to it exactly. Smaller groups suit me better.

I wouldn't say that I don't get nervous anymore, but I am certainly a bit more laid back in that situation now. Through persevering in being obedient to what I feel called to do, I have grown. I have faced the fear and it has grown smaller :)

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Journal Fodder 365 - Prompt #27

This week's prompt was 'Bury the Doubt' but it didn't sit well with me. 

I didn't want to bury the doubt.

Not that I have no problems with doubt or that I like to wallow in it. 

No. I just think that if I bury it, I can go back and dig it up again. If I bury it it might rise again, zombie-like as my daughter remarked. If I bury it it might act like a seed and grow in to a whole plant and then be difficult to uproot.

I don't want to bury the doubt. 

I want to kill it.

If I kill the doubt I can move forward. 

But what can kill the doubt?

Well, how about the truth? If I remember the truth - that I am made in the image of the Creator of the universe, so how can I not be creative? - then the doubt starts to fade away. I'm not saying that it's easy, or that doubt is killed outright once and for all, but the more I listen to the truth, the more I start to believe it, and I can be freed from the doubts. 

I start to leave them behind.

Their voices cannot reach me.

What do you do to silence the doubt?