Saturday, 28 August 2010

Spotty Leaves

I thought I would show you a series of drawings to show the development of the two spotty leaves. I used acrylic paints and wanted to capture the fresh greens of the sycamore leaves which I picked off the tree.
First my pencil sketch and using a mix of green, yellow and brown paint I added the colours. Then the progress as I painted to the end result with the shadows. Another page in my square book. This was completed in around 6 hours.
Yesterday we had a beach walk and I collected some pieces of freshly washed up seaweed and feathers and shells. I hope to find time today to record something as a reminder of the beautiful sunny day, because today is grey and stormy and very windy making the sea rough and angry looking. So I am off to sort out my salty sea smelling bag!
Hope you like the two spotty leaves. Press for close ups.
Thank you for your comments about the Butterfly Sheet. Millyx

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Festival of Quilts NEC ....My Butterfly Sheet

Photographed before I posted it.

I went to the Festival of Quilts at Birmingham NEC on Thursday. It was a lovely day, so much to see and be inspired by. The Quilts were amazing, so much variety and colour and skill.

Then there was my own quilt. I made it by hand printing the butterflies with rubber stamps and fabric paints. I used an old recycled white sheet, added the original label and kept the actual top and sides showing, see the fine yellowy woven stripe in the weave. This was the first time I had ever been to this huge show or entered a quilt. The quilt was pure fun to make, mixing up the fabric paints and printing the images and seeing the sea of butterflies appear on the huge white sheet. It was like starting a drawing, every mark and shape and colour was made by me. I had fun with my new sewing machine and used lots of coloured cottons to embroider the grass at the bottom and the tiny circles of colour. I spent hours hand quilting the grid pattern, which you can see on the back of the quilt. I loved the finished result, making it and achieving this beautiful coloured quilt.

It was exciting to see it hanging at the show, although it seemed to be a little crushed, hadn't travelled too well as a parcel. The backboard was white so my vintage white sheet appeared a little dull , even grey. It wasn't lit too well down the display aisles and the colours didn't glow like at home in my sunny room. But I saw so many people stop and look, go nearer for a closer inspection and many even took lots of photographs......already seen two on Flickr. It was my intention to share my quilt and to hopefully inspire others, so I hope it did. It was a simple idea inspired by collections of butterflies and colours. I like simple. Drawings from Nature is all about seeing beauty in nature in ordinary simple natural objects. Hope you enjoy looking more closely.

As this is my100th blog. Guess how many butterflies are printed on my quilt. The nearest will win a prize, something butterfly related. I don't know the answer myself yet as I will count them when the quilt arrives home, in a week or so. Millyx The answer after a double count is 777 and as Teresa guessed 778 she certainly deserves to win.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Beach collecting

Last Thursday we went for a walk on one of the local beaches. This one is fifteen minutes by car from my village. It has a long sandy beach and sand dunes, now owned by the National Trust. The tide was coming in and although the sky looks stormy it was a beautiful bright day. I love it here and take along a bag to collect beach treasures. We walked for over an hour and on our return this photograph shows the tide line on the right where the sea water reached, covering this huge sandy estuary.
The sea washes up hundreds of little shells and sea weed. It was like a "pick and mix" version of
the sweet shop, so many to choose. I arrived home with shells, seaweed, feathers, a mermaids purse, rope and a sycamore seed. On Sunday I sorted and washed them all. This is what I selected for my page. I decided to use my acrylic inks, exploring the colour mixes, as I sat on a cushion outside in the sunshine. After about four hours, a huge red insect bite, an overturned water, ink drying too quickly, a lovely ice cream.......this was the result. Hope you like it.
Thank you for your lovely comments. My next blog is my 100th.....a giveaway coming.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

So Delicate

I collected these little seeds after a very windy night. They were scattered across the road. As I picked them up I slipped them into my bag and I didn't think they would make it home in one piece. To my surprise they survived intact. They are very tiny and have such delicate stems, like young children not yet fully formed, and yet a miniature replicate of their adult. They will never grow any more but it means I can admire their beauty at this stage.
As I drew them I was influenced to make such fine lines, to use soft watery colours and paint with a slow and careful manner. I just wanted to capture the tiny fragile shapes exactly as I saw them scattered on the ground. It is a simple little page in my square book but to me a very beautiful page.
Hope you like it too.