Thursday, 31 May 2012

Feeling Exposed

Oh. My. Goodness.

Can I just say that today's post would have to be one of the most scary artistic endeavours I think I have EVER attempted?  I'm sure it was good for me, just like eating my vegetables, but by-jimminy, I'm not sure how long it will be before I'll try that again.

In case you aren't sure, today's post is meant to be a drawing of a little boy.

I'm sure you're wondering, Kate, pretty simply line drawing, so why the dramatic title?

Well, it's like this.

By using pen I am putting it all on the line (pun intended) to see if I can draw a child that actually looks semi-human.  That's scary.

And then imagine upping the stress levels by drawing away knowing that there is no "Mister Rubber" to remove any slip of the pen and the use of "Miss White out" would be well and truly cheating.

And then finally consider that you decided to make life even harder on yourself by not using a ruler to measure the distances between spaces. So you are not sure whether your child is actually going to end up looking like a gorilla.  Or a goldfish.

Honestly, after all that, is it any wonder I'm now thinking I need someone to come and peel me some grapes, pour me a glass of wine and gently rub my shoulders (which are up around my ears).

And finally, can someone please tell me how to get that song "Barenaked" by Jennifer Love Hewitt out of my head.  It is really starting to annoy...

See you soon!


Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Question: What Kind of Bird Always Succeeds?

Answer: A Toothless Budgie.

What a Tweet.  Kate used charcoal for the first time in *ages* today!

Get it?!

If you don't, try saying it out loud. [And yes, obviously, I do mean say the post title out loud, not the bwa-ha-ha-ha bit.  Although I give you permission to say that out loud as well if you insist.];-)

Today's post was inspired by my favourite joke from when I was eight years old. At the time, I truly believed my budgie joke was utterly the funniest joke *I* *had* *ever* *heard*.  Oh yes, I'm sure you can tell.  I knew all the oldies and goodies back in the day.

However, the sad thing is that now I'm an adult, for some strange reason whenever I tell this joke no-one seems to laugh.  Sometimes there's not even a corner-of-the-lip twinge.  Hubby believes that one possible reason could be that this joke is not funny. Particularly given that budgies do not have teeth.

Personally, I find the notion preposterous.  (The fact that my joke isn't funny.  Not the fact that budgies don't have teeth.  Of course I know that.  I mean, otherwise we'd see "budgie seed-flavoured toothpaste" and teeny-tiny toothbrushes for sale at the supermarket, right?  Or have I just come up with an inspirational idea?  Hmmmmmm...?)

Oh well.  As long as it makes me laugh, right?

My little finch was drawn on a piece of brown paper using my charcoals for the first time in ages.  I'd forgotten how fun they are to use.

And yes, for anyone who feels compelled to write and tell me the error of my joke, because the featured bird in this picture is not a budgie, I have to say to you yes, I'm totally aware of the discrepancy.

The thing is, I wasn't in the mood for a budgie today and I wanted to capture a little finch that I keep seeing zipping about the tree in my front yard.  And you have to admit "A toothless finch" does not have quite the same ring as "budgie" for my joke.  I'm a purist joke-teller at heart.

Anyway, thanks ever so much for stopping by and seeing what I've been up to.

I hope to see you around soon!


Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Introducing Psycho Kitty

Hi There!

Q: What do you get if you cross a sick cat and your three children going feral simultaneously with  watercolour, gouache and a sharpie pen?

A: Psycho Kitty.  Seriously. Do I need to say anything else to explain my mental state when I created this? ;-)

Hope you are having a great week and this makes you smile (if wonder slightly about my sanity).

See you soon!


Sunday, 20 May 2012

Blue, Blue, Jo Beans Is Blue....

Does anyone else remember that song from the 1960's, "Love is Blue?"

Well, it has been stuck in my head these past four hours as I've tried yet again to do beautiful little Jo Beans justice.  Can I just say (yet again) that trying to draw a dog with black fur is *really* "Oh my goodness(!)" hard?  It made having the song whirl around my head seem kinda appropriate given the circumstances. (Go on, reminisce by clicking on this link to the original song which I've included here just for you, and recall the heart-felt passion from years gone by.  <Sigh!>)

Now, given my brain works in all sorts of mysterious ways, it just wouldn't be me to not give you that "something a little extra" to explain how this painting has affected my mental processes.  As such, I thought I'd explain it through music, by dedicating my own special version of the lyrics of Love Is Blue especially to you, gorgeous little Jo Beans:

Blue, blue, Jo Beans is blue...
You think she's Black,
But she's blue [yes it's true]. 

Grey, grey, what can I say?
Painting puppy dogs
Gives both pleasure and pain.

Red, Red, my eyes are red,
Drawing Jo Beans made them [sometimes]
Roll back in my head.

Green, Green, Oh I love my art...
Drawing Jo Beans
Has been a blessing for my my heart! 

Jo Beans isn't quite finished.  However, please tell me....  Is she getting there?  Or do I need to go back to the drawing board yet again?

Hubby says she's looking good and Mister Twinkle Eyes says her eyes are no longer "wonky" (love the scientific analysis of a seven year old), but it is up to all of you to tell me if I'm getting her right at last.


Am I?

Let me know!


Friday, 18 May 2012

Useless Things Have Value Too

"Remember that the most beautiful things in the world are the most useless; peacocks and lilies for instance. " ~ John Ruskin


You know what?  I like this sentiment.  

I don't know about you, but I really like the fact that something completely useless, something that's there "just because", can still be valued precisely for the reason that it is, in actual fact, something that is completely and utterly useless and serves no real purpose.

And I like this quote even more when I extend the notion of it a little further and consider that when I like a particularly useless thing, that "just because" I like it, it actually, is no longer useless, but serves some sort of a purpose.  That sometimes liking something just because you do, even if no-one else does, can be enough. Yes.  In case you are wondering, I'm still trying to work out if that makes sense too!

In light of my quote, I present to you today's offering.  It's titled "Useless - but I love it anyway."


This little study isn't finished yet, but I have to say I am feeling quite pleased with the initial concept of the painting.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend, I look forward to sharing more of my artistic exploits soon and hoping that when I re-read this post in a couple of days time, I actually do make some sort of sense!

Uselessly yours, 


Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Dear Boys

Dearest Children of Mine

I just wanted you all to know that as the days rapidly head toward Mother's Day this Sunday, that I love you all very much.  I know I truly am the luckiest Mummy in the whole wide world.

I can promise you all that whilst you sometimes may wonder, I most certainly do not love Blobber the goldfish more than you - although I confess I admire and envy his capacity to forget things very quickly.

Now, where was I again?

Oh yes!  I want you all to know that if you happen to buy me a face-washer that, through a few dexterous twists and  rubber band magic, is transformed into the shape of a rabbit OR if you purchase me an acorn seed with attached googly eyes and big feet from the school's Mother's Day stall this week, then I shall will treasure it always as being the best "rabbit-washer-googly-eyed-creature" I have ever, EVER seen! (Until next year.  At which point, that critter shall become the best "rabbit-washer-googly-eyed-creature" for 2012 I'd ever seen.)

Finally, if Daddy should happen to also consider splurging and decides to buy me a little something in order to thank me for destroying my "young-girl" youthful curves by bringing you three beautiful boys into the world, could you all be a dear and tell him that Mummy wants something sparkly that goes round her neck.

And just to be sure there are no misunderstandings, no, dearest darlings, I do not mean a stick of dynamite - you really have been watching too much TV lately, haven't you?

Here, I'll help you all - Mummy is going to teach you all how to spell a very important word:


Got it darlings?  Written it in your Spelling Book for the week?  I can tell you that it spells "very happy mummy!".

Anyway, I'll end here by thanking you, my darlings, for taking the time to read my letter about how much Mummy loves you.

Truly, each and every day is Mother's Day with all of you around,

Kate (Mummy)


PS:  Yes, I promise I WILL draw Blobber to go in my blog one-day.  Just not today. 

Friday, 4 May 2012

More Work on Jo Beans...


I hope this finds you all well and happy out there in blog-land.

I'm sorry I haven't been able to post as often as usual these past couple of weeks, my life has been incredibly busy with a lot of work needing to be completed in a short amount of time.  Worse, my life is not going to settle down any time soon.  Don't worry - my life is wonderful, but it sure is hectic!

I kept putting myself under pressure thinking "Come on Kate, you have to post something - everyone must be waiting!" and I was starting to get myself really worked up about the passing days.  Anyone who knows me in real life, knows that I have this skill honed to a fine art - anxiety and I are uneasy best buddies.

Then, around two days ago, I realised that this mind-set was counter-productive.  I post here  because I post artworks that have been created through a feeling of love, joy and inspiration.  I post on here to inspire YOU to try the same.

I realised that if I start posting out of obligation, rather than a desire to share and inspire, I consider I've lost the whole rationale and intent of creating this blog in the first place.   So what if my "number of hits" drops?  I'm not doing this for glory.  I'm doing this for me and for you, whoever you may be who stumbled across this post and my blog.

Realising this gave me the freedom to get the things I needed to get done, done and then come back to art when I had the time and the energy.

As such, it felt wonderful to be able to snatch a few hours today to finally get back to my love of all things visual, and work on my latest little commission, Jo Beans.  Here she is again, Take #2:

She's not completely finished, however I do think that she is an improvement on my last effort. Her fur needs to be worked a little more, but I feel that I have managed to create more "sheen and movement" and I think I prefer her eyes.  Do you agree? Be honest here.  You can say no!

Anyway, thanks for stopping by and seeing what I've been up to.  I'll be sure to post the final picture of Jo Beans when I'm done.

Enjoy your weekend!