Saturday, February 23, 2013

dc94: Glass

A LITTLE LOOK AT GLASS There were a number of ideas that I've been dreaming about recently, and I decided to try a few of them out together for this drawing challenge. We were given the theme GLASS by a great artist friend Susan, who is the host for this challenge. It took me less than a nanosecond to think of Dale Chihuly for this theme, and so I began. I made a little book with a few views of glass I liked. I wanted to try a sewn pamphlet binding. It worked splendidly. Above you can see the center of the little book with the sewn binding. Dale certainly is a man of ideas. Here, we see one of his team working on a very large piece. This guy has charge of the flame. And here is the man himself, the Master, the genius Dale, in full working action mode. Notice the guy in the suit standing to his left. This is hot work. And here is another view of one of his pieces in situ, shown on the left page. On the right you see the inside of the back cover. This is a view of glass door knobs. Oh how I love them. They are commercial items, and not Chihuly's work.
The cover of the little book shows a modern style glass chandelier.
This book measures 1 and 3/4" wide X 2 and 1/4" tall when closed. I played with colour image transfers, and was especially interested to see what a human face would look like, and if glass could be clear and translucent. It is. On the transfer of the door knobs, you can see and read the writing underneath. I find this amazing. I tried doing a transfer on vellum, but, oh hello dear, do not get vellum even the tiniest bit wet. That was a no go. I love the vellum though, on its' own and that is why it got center spot in this book. Dorland's wax medium basically saved me on more than one image transfer, for this challenge, and I would be helpless without it.
To see what others did for this GLASS theme drop in to Susan's blog and get linked up to an interesting variety of takes on this theme. Thank you for dropping in, and I hope to see you soon, hugs Norma, x

Friday, February 15, 2013

dc93: Lighthouse

Entitled 'Lighthouse Watcher' this piece is a mixed media collage, done for the drawing challenge this weekend, and hosted by the talented Renilde. I have been influenced greatly by BarbaraBee!!! Renilde as host, chose Lighthouse as the theme for us all to have fun with. To see all of the offerings by the players in the challenge this week, just drop by her blog where she has us all linked. That way it is easy to visit our blogs.
Thank you for visiting today and I hope to see you again soon, *smiles* Norma, x
p.s. I've posted a day early as I have a full weekend ahead. p.p.s. Have a look at BarbaraBee's work here.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Just Because

Two of the sweetest words in the English language.
It's raining sheets of water here in Vancouver today and I simply had to go check out our local thrift department store (dare I name it? *finger to mouth* Value Village) because there is a sale on today. I was all loaded up with extra layers and an umbrella, et. al., and decided at the very last second to check the mail. It was a hassle in a way because I'd already locked the door, but I peeked in the mail room and saw something in my box, so had to go back to unlock the door to get the mail key. You get the picture.
There was a solitary item sitting the the box, of a very intriguing and exciting brown colour. I pulled it out and saw Kim Henkel's postmark on it. Well...Haines's Junction anyway...and Kim is the only one I know who lives there. You know I had to come inside and completely undress and undo the umbrella and take off the boots (well not really, but you get the picture.) I carefully sliced it open with a letter opener and inside was a piece of exquisite jewellery made by Kim. It is a pin (rustic pin it is called), made of scraps (it says on the back of the card holding the pin.) It is metal. Here it is on the card:
The card holding the pin is a hand drawn tree image as you can see. Drawn with a pen so thin you can't hardly think it. That alone is a work of art. Here is a very close look at the pin itself:
The pin measures about 11/16"Wx1&3/16"H. So you get an idea of just how small the wee bird is. It's exquisite and delicate.
Some days are quite a lot more special than other days and THIS day is one of the special days. I'll mark it on the calendar of my heart. Thank you Kim for your generous spirit, your friendship, and ... thank you just because. Hugs, Norma, xo

Monday, February 11, 2013

Learning curves...

So I was about to do a post full of an excited show and tell about the virtues of Dorland's Wax Medium and actually the post truly expounds the fabulousness of this medium. But truth be told, the photograph doesn't back up my claims so you are going to have to take it on faith. Here is the photo:
I'd been preparing an envelope to mail to Helen, and the gel transfer worked pretty darned good considering it was such a large area and maybe it was beginners' luck as I've not done a lot of these transfers and never anything this large. But then my finicky old typewriter bunged up the carriage returns and it bothered me enough that I abandoned that envelope and made a new one. This time, I wrote the address in script (learned that calligraphy ink is the way to go and NOT india ink which runs like mad) and then spayed it with matte finish so that the water I apply to the image will not run into the ink and ruin it. So far so good. I dried it thoroughly and then painted the gel medium to the image and applied that in place to the envelope. I took a bit longer and used a bit less medium this time and I think this is why the transfer itself was not quite as successful. This needs tweaking and a lot of experimenting to get it right. But the transfer image is pretty okay. I stopped rubbing because parts of the image were lifting off and so there is a very fine layer of paper fibre which reads white. This is where Dorland's Wax Medium comes into play, or in this the rescue. I rubbed the completely dry image quite firmly with the wax and then buffed it with a dry cloth. It is beautiful. In person. The image is soft and matte and with a slight sheen.
But here's the rub. The envelope on top looks better on camera. Oh well, can't win them all hey? Thanks for dropping by, and I do hope to see you soon. *smiles* Norma, x

Saturday, February 9, 2013


dc:92 Postage Stamp
Our wonderful friend Helen, is the host for this weeks' drawing challenge. She chose postage stamp for the theme, and I knew instantly that I would utilize the snake stamp that Canada offers for this year for the celebration of the 'Year of the Snake.'
So, I found a snake image to do a gel image transfer onto an envelope. I did that with mostly success, but then when I typed in the address, my old typewriter got finicky about doing a carriage return. I should remember to help it by partially 'feeding' it as it manually scrolls up to the next line. As a result, this envelope is a bust and I didn't bother affixing the postage, but really, I learned a bit by doing this one, and so hopefully the next one I do will be better. Helen, you can look for this in the mails fairly soon (I hope.)
To see all of the participants in this drawing challenge, drop by Helen's blog where you will be linked to see all kinds of fabulous offerings. Remember, all are welcome to join in these challenges.
Thank you for dropping in today and I hope to see you again soon. *smiles* Norma

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

WOYWW192 A small painting...

This small painting is called "Frangipani Morning" as it reminds me of frangipani flower heads floating in a round tray filled with water and resting on the floor which brings joy to one's life. The painting in the background of my small painting is of the tray of flowers floating in water. Here is how I got there:
And again, the finished study:
I came across a photo in a blog yesterday that nailed me to the spot. It was of an interior showing a desk and chair and a wall with paintings behind. One of the paintings grabbed me so that I had to see if I could replicate it in some small way. That is what made me grab some paint and a small canvas. Now that it is done I realize that I do like it and will now try to paint it for real. Wish me luck! Thanks for dropping by today, I hope to see you again, soon! *smiles* Norma
To see more workdesks from a bounty of talent from all over the place drop in to visit Julia, the brilliant creator of the blog STAMPING GROUND. There you will be linked to be able to see all kinds of interesting things...

Monday, February 4, 2013


dc91: Discovery and dc87: Shelter
I came up with an idea for the drawing challenge this past weekend, and my results, after a series of unfortunate mishaps, are less than satisfactory, but nonetheless are shown here. This is a puzzle purse that we will discover...
...shows us a poem that slowly presents itself as we open the puzzle purse:
And reveals more as it is fully opened:
There are two layers of discovery for me personally. One is how I handle it when things go completely wrong (with the realization of my art idea anyway.) In the end, I willfully forced myself to complete the purse. I'd spent two days designing it; one day learning how to fold it; one day trying to make a nice finished one which I had to abandon; and one day trying out another nice finished one which I realized that was NOT going to work (once again). I decided to finish that last one to the final and bitter (on my part) end. Here is what I had to work with (or against):
1. every single type of paper I could find around here (I have lots) would NOT accept the india ink without bleeding; 2. my favourite nib pen was dropping the nib and was so loose the nib would fall out on its' own and would not allow me to make a line in an upwards or even sideways motion so that absolutely every mark was made in a downward direction; 3. as I was making a mark the nib was so wobbly it wiggled from side to side every step along the way; 4. the nib finally crumbled right onto the work surface; 5. my only other choice was a huge nib meant for poster work. You can see the change in the mark-making. 6. my earlier designs were too fat and would not fold:
Here is my original design plan prototype:
The puzzle purse is a poem and meant to be carried as an amulet or a prayer. I plan to carry this with me even though it is a dog's breakfast of ugly. Here is the poem:
GOD SEND US A LITTLE HOME God send us a little home to come back to when we roam- Low walls and fluted tiles Wide windows, a view for miles- Red firelight and deep chairs; small white beds upstairs, Great talks in little nooks; dim colours, rows of books, One picture on each wall; not many things at all. God send us a little ground- Tall trees standing round, Homely flowers on brown sod, Overhead, the stars, O God! God bless, when winds blow, our home and all we know.
What I discovered personally, was the kind of home I would like. I want a small orchard, and chickens, and a strawberry patch, and flowers. I want my home to be kind of exotic.
As this lends itself to the theme SHELTER, I decided to combine two drawing challenges in one. I am very late for a few of them it seems.
Thank you for dropping in today and to see more work with these two themes drop by to see Emily who is the host for DISCOVERY, and Renilde who is the host for SHELTER.
See you soon, I hope! *smiles* Norma*


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