Chapter Next: Mirage


Some the pages in my altered book are already conveniently titled. The book began as an orphaned volume of short stories, and some of the tales’ titles just appealed too much to cover up.

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Doesn’t Mirage just conjure such magic?

I haven’t embarked on any of these pages with a plan. Planning just isn’t in my spirit. I didn’t get that gene.

So to begin I just do something, and let that define where it wanders next. The first something that happened on this page took the form of sprinkles of Brusho swept about in circles with a wet brush. IMG_41541

Oh my how I love how these dusty crystals explode with colour. This stuff is the definition of less is more. More than a wee bit makes for a super rich gravy of an ink, which is gorgeous, but when you use an imperceptibly itsy amount each tiny trace of this magic erupts into zingy pigment on contact with moisture.

It is more than gorgeous. It is actual magic.

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Another early layer was gesso scraped through a stencil, then extra messy gesso scraped haphazardly. If you’re a fellow scraper of gesso you’ll recognise those characteristic windshield wiper patterns of clearing excess off the scraper ๐Ÿ˜‰

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In the years preceding this project I accumulated a shed load of design magazines, rich full of the most gorgeous graphics and illustration.  Just lately I embarked on transforming the knee high heap into 4 boxes of delicious collage ingredients, and a small mountain of recycling.

Thing is, I don’t know who this half a face belonged to, and as an artist I’d like to credit the creator. Any reference to the inventor got lost in the snippings. If it was you – thank you  and I hope that you like the new other half I made. In the spirit of self-portraiture I’ve mismatched the eyes for a familiar wonkiness!

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this little trip through the putting together stages. Here’s how the page developed as a whole………

Water In Parallel (part 4)


The story so far, has lead us to this point

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Now, if you know me at all, you’ll understand that I need colour like I need coffee, sleep and oxygen.

So while the peeling back process had restored some of the original brightness, it’s not enough for me. I’m getting hungry for colour and there’s only one remedy there: throw some ink at it:

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Swished with water as well (yeh – Water theme – Water literally. It’s the method acting school of artistry)

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Plus some black for more contrast, and some lime green and chartreuse for good measure (and for the fact they’re colours I adore)

If I were to try and define my process as a shape, it would be zig-zag: No sooner had I reinstated the brightness, I felt a call to white a load of it out. I know – don’t ask – I’ve stopped trying to second guess where I’m going, I’m just hanging on for the ride now. So I feel like wavy shapes will bring in more Water-y feeling (that I just can’t see now it’s ink drenched). I neeed more wateryness!

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This is a 50-50 mix of white acrylic and matt medium for a semi-transparency. painted on and dabbed about with a cloth for a dabbled bubbly sea wave froth look.

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Yeh? maybe not so, but I still like the effect. On a roll with the wave shapes, along came some more collaging from scraps that got in the path of the flying ink a few days earlier. (No paper ever goes to waste here!)IMG_4014

I’ll leave you here for now. Next post coming soon……….

wishful painting


the wish book continues
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the modelling paste and stencil thing has been a recent obsession so my pages are getting lumpier, but in a pleasingly ordered, symmetrical way!
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Mmmmm, snippy paper bits too. Lots of them.
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and as though to reiterate.
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(Yes, that H does look upsidedown, I thought that too)

a quick flurry!


Hey folks, I’m back! Not that I’ve been anywhere else, I’ve been right here inside your computer, I just haven’t been getting the words and pictures out to you for a few weeks ๐Ÿ˜‰

So here’s a little round up since I last posted……….

Looking back over the last few weeks I can see it’s been centred a lot around stencils and ink spraying
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I treated myself to a bunch of bargain stencils a few weeks back. They were 1/2 price, it would’ve been sheer madness not to.
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I also started making some of my own, cutting from acetate sheets, paper and card.
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The paper/card ones are getting recycled into collages as (or before) their edges n corners begin to disintegrate!
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Ooh and stapling! I seem to have about a gazillion boxes of staples… so naturally they’ve joined the art ingredients
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This is just scuffing the surface of the iceberg of things I’ve been busying at – more pics to follow soon! ๐Ÿ˜‰
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hooked on stencils


well, one stencil in particular, is obsession de jour.

Day 17 was full of color and torn dyed paper shapes. And then…
Day 18, manic stencilling recommenced!
Day 19 …and on…
Day 20.

Today is Day 21. And I’ve resisted stencilling!! Too dark to get good pics now, so you’ll have to take my word for it! ๐Ÿ˜‰

as one book closes, another opens


On friday I came to the final page of the page a day project. And the first page of a new book!

I’ve downsized for practicality – but every day has a double page spread so in terms of square inchage I have a little more area to cover daily.

Page 1/day 1 came with it’s first happy accident: doodling initially in yellow rollerball pen (effectively invisible in artificial light) sprayed ink through stencil and finding the ink running round the doodled lines.

Mesh Mess


Y’know that sticky mesh tape stuff you stick plaster board together with? Yeh, sure you do! Here it is It’s meant for healing up wounds in walls n ceilings, but I have a much better use for it.
Made from fibreglass it’s super-tough and water resistant, and the tape has just the right ickiness to it. If you’ve seen my last few posts you’ll know where I’m going with this…


It makes for excellent griddy stenciling and painty fingers!



Close ups….

Sat urday


With the rest of the alphabet stencils cut (ok… v, w, x, y, z aren’t done yet… it’s a bit fiddly and I wanted to get on and play!) today’s page is all about sat sat saturday…


Layering up the letters, positive and negative cut-outs

Using a mix of acrylics, glazes, watercolors, gouache, pastels and charcoal to see how they work out

Frisket stencils part 2


I left the Frisket Stencils overnight, and yesterday morning I unpeeled the results…

See what I mean about the deckled edges? See close up, there’s the trace of an outline where the colors bled under the stencil.

At a midway point in the process I added more stencils over the already colored page, it’s made a ghostly image

I also began cutting an alphabet stencil. I was playing about with the cut out letters……

The letters placed at the edge of the page were on flatter paper so weren’t so prone to under-bleed of the ink – slightly crispier clean edges!