Monday, 30 April 2018

New studio!

Finally our stuff has arrived from Australia! On Thursday our 322 wrapped and boxed items were delivered and the unboxing began. Now it's Monday and there are only two more boxes to empty. All the books are on shelves, although it will take a few weeks to sort them all out. A lot of the art is on the walls, but there are still many items to find a home for.

As you can see from the photo above, I have a tall table set up with an easel, and yes, there is a journal on there :) The natural light from the skylight is wonderful and makes up for the reduction in space.

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Getting out of the chrysalis

The green swathe across this page could have been a path, but it kept making me think 'caterpillar' so I went with it. So why did I have caterpillars in mind?

The caterpillar can't stay in the chrysalis forever.

There is a time of waiting; a time of transformation.

Eventually the waiting comes to an end and it is time to emerge... or die.

If the butterfly doesn't emerge, what was the point of all that transformation?

It feels as if a long period of waiting is coming to an end for me. It is time to emerge and fly; to take risks and move forward.

I doubt that I will be posting anything on Friday as our shipping container has finally arrived and cleared customs. Yay! Delivery is Thursday and Friday, so I'll be a bit busy...

But after that I'm hoping there will be a return to some more inspiring pages. I'm so fed up with what I've been producing with a minimal kit. It just tells me what the bare essentials are for me: more than I packed in my hand luggage this time :) I'll share pics of my new studio once I've shoe-horned everything in.

Monday, 23 April 2018

How to bloom

Working out how to bloom here. What can I contribute? Where can I fit in?

It's always tricky starting in a new place. How can you contribute while avoiding stepping on toes? I vacillate between waiting to get to know people better before offering something, and just jumping in and seeing what happens.

We all have something to offer. Sometimes you have to fail at a few things to find out what works.

Friday, 20 April 2018

Waiting for a Breakthrough

There are just a few things that need to fall into place for us to properly settle and move forward.

I'm getting antsy waiting for my art supplies. By the end of next week my studio should be full of boxes. I can see a lot of sorting in my future for next weekend, and after that, lots and lots of layers!

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Crossing paths

I find that I'm thinking about getting to know people. It must be on my mind because it's turned up twice in my art journal now. Let's face it, when you move to a brand new place one of the first things you want to do is connect with like-minded people and get involved in some sort of community.

How is 'crossing paths' about getting to know new people?

Well, the more I put myself out there and cross paths with the same people, the more I get to know them, and they me. Sometimes these crossings will happen naturally, like at church on Sunday. But other meetings will need to be orchestrated. In other words, you have to work at it.

Monday, 16 April 2018

Forging new links

Forging new links. Now begins the hard work of heating, annealing, shaping, forging, soldering.

It always takes time to get to know new people. It's hard work but worth the effort. And there are so many people to get to know!

Some people find it easy to make new friends. For others it takes time. I'm one of the latter. I know it will take me a while to find my feet and open up. It always does. But I have learned over the years how I best get to know people, so there will be a few choc 'n' chat nights in the coming months. I've found that gathering a small group of women around a table with a plate of home made truffles is one of the easiest ways for me to learn and share with others.

How do you plunge into the hard work of getting to know new people?

Friday, 13 April 2018

Looking forward

Just a couple of weeks now and I'm itching to set up my new studio. I won't know what to do with myself when I have paint, stencils, stamps, pens, a gelli-plate.

Well, actually I will. It will be a case of what to do first...

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Male faces

I've been trying to do more male faces recently. I have a little sketchbook with me - smaller than I'm used to so it has sometimes been a challenge to draw small enough. That's why some of the faces aren't complete :)

These are all done with coloured pencils and using magazine photos as references.

Sunday, 8 April 2018

Distant connections

The distance may have been great, but the connections still hold.

Though we were in South Australia for eight and a half years, we still kept up friendships in the UK. This week my husband will be installed in our new church and lots of lovely people that we haven't seen for all that time will be travelling to join us. We are so looking forward to seeing those old friends who didn't let the vast distance become an excuse to drift away.

Friendships take time and effort to get off the ground, but those that have been going for years can be kept fresh and alive with a text, a tweet, a short email or postcard every now and again. How lovely it is to meet up with people you haven't seen for ages when it feels like the time between falls away and those connections are still strong.

I am steeling my introvert self for Thursday, but looking forward to all the reconnections.

Friday, 6 April 2018


Wishing doesn't make it so.

Following on from my bureaucracy rant in the last post, there is nothing I can do to make things happen. You just have to jump through all the hoops and wait for the wheels to s-l-o-w-l-y turn.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Does it have to be so hard?

Silly me. I thought computers were supposed to make things easier, but it is not always so. Sometimes people don't fit the boxes.

Our move across the world has necessitated lots of paperwork. A lot of that paperwork is designed to be done online. Some of it has worked with no problems. Other parts of it have been like pulling teeth! Sometimes you just want to walk into an office and talk to a real person because you just don't fit into the boxes. For example, a lot of the paperwork we have had to do requires you to put in your last address. Of course, we last lived in Australia, but the computer form doesn't allow for a foreign address. It wants to look up the address using the postcode and deems our perfectly legitimate Aussie postcode as invalid. And there's no box to write an explanation, so we're back to snail mail (which I'm not averse to), but the bureaucrats want everything done online, so everything now takes three times as long.

Whoo. Rant over.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Heat, light, water

Heat, light, and water are necessary for growth.

Where do we get them from?

Who in your life provides you with these necessaries? There are people who bring refreshment to our lives like a cool drink on a hot day. They allow us to take in the light, not shading us, but standing alongside. They bring warmth into our lives and cause us to grow.

Who blocks out the light, sucks up the water, denies the heat? We all know people who are the opposite of those growth-promoting people. They don't like others to be in the limelight and will do anything to overshadow them, seeking all the attention. They suck you dry instead of watering you. They deny you warmth, turning the cold shoulder when you don't fall in with their plans.

Seek out - and be - growth-promoting people.