Friday 29 January 2016

Telling my story

I am doing a class with Jeanne Oliver called Reflections: Paint your story.  You can join in if you wish.

One of the exercises was to cut out words and phrases from magazines that stood out to you and make them into a poem.  I painted the background first then stuck the words on.

In another exercise we were asked to collect together lots of photographs of our lives plus bits and pieces about things we like and create a storyboard.

I used the back of the dining room door to put this together.  I had a lot more photos than this to choose from but they didn't make it to the door.  Plus there are thousands of other photos that I didn't even look through.

When it was finished I looked at it and realised vast swathes of my life are missing from the storyboard.  There's nothing up there about my education or my working life.   So what is there?  Some family and various elements of my creativity - art, textiles and photography.

The photos didn't last long on the back of the door - some of them were pulling other ones off so I took them down and put them into the groups they seemed to belong to.

It is very interesting to me to look at these photos and ponder on why I chose them and what they represent.  And how much was left out and why.

And then from this storyboard I painted a timeline picture.  If you want more details on how I did that you will need to sign up for the Jeanne Oliver class.

Here's how I started.

 And here's the finished piece.

Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday 27 January 2016

Glimpses of Jesus 4

Glimpses of Jesus in the Old Testament is a year long bible study written by Simon Clay of Jubilee Church Solihull.   You can join in at any time.

This week's study is looking at Melchizedek who is described as the king of peace and righteousness in Genesis 14:17-24.

I decided to make a collage in my journal this week - but I didn't take any photos whilst I was making it.

I have some beautiful paper napkins that have wine bottles and glasses of red wine on so I cut those out and peeled off the top layer and glued those to the page.  I found a magazine photo of some bread - of course none of the elements are in proportion to one another.

I found a chipboard crown which I painted with gold acrylic paint and glued to the page.   The page had previously had gesso painted on it and I had smeared the whole page with Gel medium when I glued everything down.  I used watercolour paint to paint the background and then wrote the words.

Thank you for stopping by.

Tuesday 26 January 2016

M.I.A. again!

I haven't blogged for several days.  Instead I've been really busy creating things I can blog about, keeping up to date with online classes and doing a mega tidy of the dining room that is my craft space.

So here are the before and after photos of the tidy up.






Of course, the issue will be whether I can keep it like this!

More about the class work later in the week.

Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday 20 January 2016

Glimpses of Jesus 3

Glimpses of Jesus in the Old Testament is a year long bible study written by Simon Clay of Jubilee Church Solihull.   You can join in at any time.

Today's study is about Abraham in Genesis 12:1-3.  The part that stood out to me and inspired my journal page was later in the story in Genesis 15:5
He took him outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count the stars - if indeed you can count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” 

I thought of the numerous stars in the sky - too many to count - and that one special star that led to the stable when Jesus was born.  And that led to this page.

I put a thin coat of gesso on the page and then used a snowflake stencil for the large star and a star stencil for the other stars.  I used Transparent Texture Paste through the stencil.

I put a thin layer of acrylic paint over the page and you can see the texture of the kitchen paper where I dabbed it off.   I wiped someo f the paint off the stars.

I put another coat of acrylic paint over the page.

I used some white acrylic paint through the stencil to make the large star show up.  It's not as neat as I would have liked it to have been.  The paste had spread under the stencil.  Then I wrote around the edge of the page.

You can join in with the Bible study without doing a creative response.  I do hope you will join me.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday 18 January 2016

Driving through Texas (part 3)

This is my last post about our holiday in Texas.  After we had taken Andy, Naomi & Crusoe to the airport we checked into our hotel which was next to the terminal.  It turned out to be an historic building!!!  It was built in 1968 as the Bergstrom Air Force Base headquarters - commonly known as the 'donut'.  It is a circular building with the rooms around the outside and a large atrium in the middle.

We took a public bus into Austin and walked around 6th and 7th streets.  We eventually found a Greek restaurant to eat in.  During our trip we had rather overdosed on Mexican food and as great as it was we were desperate for something else.

The Capitol Building

We found some old houses in amongst the high rise buildings.

And found these horse drawn carriages waiting outside a hotel on 6th Street.

We took the bus into Austin again as we weren't sure about the parking.  We needn't have been.  I have never seen so many multi-storey car parks in one place in my life.  Every block along one street was a large car park!

We went to the Capitol building Visitor Centre and looked round a display there before taking a tour of the Capitol itself.

The lady in the Visitor Centre had recommended a German Bar for lunch and it was great.

It was quite close to this stadium - the home of the Texas Longhorns.  However not the animal that I was still trying to get a photo of.

We went to The Bullock Texas State History Museum for a couple of hours.  The displays were great.  However I became all-Texas-historied out by the end.  This was the fourth time we had read or heard about the history of Texas.

More of the old houses as we walked around.

This one looks a bit French.

We had dinner in the city centre and then returned to the hotel.  Although the sun had shone all day there had been a bitter wind and a very low temperature.  We were glad to get back to the warmth.

Another sunny but cold day!   We drove across country to Elgin, then to Taylor and on to Cameron.

Much to our amazement we found a lovely little Italian place that served super food.  It was obviously where the locals went for lunch after church.

It had an historic downtown of course!  By now they are looking the same!

I couldn't resist this plaque about the first girl's Tomato Club in Texas!

We drove to La Grange specifically to go this Quilt Museum.  It was set up by the person who runs the International Quilt Festival in Houston.

Photography wasn't allowed of the quilts but I asked permission to photograph the interior of the building which I thought was beautiful.

However we were allowed to have our photograph taken in front of a quilt of our choice.

There was an exhibition by a British Quilt group in one room of the museum of the Magna Carter Quilt.  If you got to this page and click on the pages listed under Quilts you will be able to see the very impressive quilts.

There just happened to be a quilt shop next door.  And yes! I did give in and buy some fat quarters.  To stroke of course.

This was the rest of the historic downtown.

We drove on to Burton where there was a station and an old stage coach.

We unintentionally drove past Lake Somerville - we were lost at the time.  I do not recommend using maps that have a scale of 15.5 miles to the inch when you are used to using British Ordnance Survey maps (1.25 miles to the inch!)

We saw these white tailed deer who posed for a photo.

We saw this amazing sky.

Eventually we ended up in Brenham where we ate at the BT Longhorn Saloon and Steak Bar.

As we set out this morning we had 7 hours until we needed to be at the airport.  So only 7 hours left in which to photograph a Texas Longhorn!

But let's go look at another historic downtown: Brenham

From Brenham we drove to Independence - no historic downtown just an historic village of buildings.  Well worth visiting the village's website.  American's call them towns but they are villages.

This area was supposed to be the town square with the rest of the town built on a grid system around it, but it didn't happen.

Mrs Sam Houston lived here.

A cotton gin

The General Store

A plantation house

Our last tourist stop was at Washington-on-the Brazos State Historic Site where in the building below the document was signed declaring Texas as an independent state - leaving Mexico. 

The river Brazos

We visited the farm on the site - one which had been moved here from elsewhere.

The farmhouse.  The bedrooms were the two rooms on the left and the rooms on the right were a living room and a dining room.  The children's bedrooms were in the roof up a very steep ladder.

This was the kitchen in a separate building.

And these small huts were where the slaves lived.

And with 3 hours to go we saw some Texas Longhorns.  Yeah!

On the way to the airport we stopped in the small village of Chappell Hill for lunch.

Most of the village was made up of historic buildings!

So farewell to the Lone Star State.  A very slow journey through the outskirts of Houston and a flight home overnight.  And back to a country with proper historic buildings - pre-1850!

Despite the cold and the rain it was an enjoyable trip.  But next time we travel in January we're going somewhere warm like Puerto Rica.

Thanks for stopping by.