Saturday, 25 October 2014

The case of the wounded paw

Well it has been a dramatic week.  On Tuesday night Harvey was attacked by another cat.   I heard a commotion, and Harvey came flying back in,   with his fur on end.  He seemed okay so I assumed he'd had a fright.  The next morning it was obvious that something wasn't right,  he looked very sorry for himself and was limping.   I checked him over but couldn't find anything,  so I kept an eye on him.  He got worse so checked him over again, this time I found a bite wound,  so it was off to the Vet.   They found four wounds on him,   so he had been beaten up essentially.    He had a painkilling injection and some antibiotics, plus more to take in tablet form (oh joy!).   This was the patient that night,  taking it easy,  he wasn't in as much pain, but still in shock.  He's not been too bad at taking his tablets,   I've rewarded him with a treat each time so he will associate it with something nice.   He's on the mend, still has a limp, but only if he does too much jumping around.   Not letting him out at night,  there is obviously a neighbourhood thug, and of course the fireworks have started.   I found it very upsetting,   because he seemed to be so poorly.  

I didn't have much time to paint,  and was waiting for some new books to inspire me.  I've spent some time learning a few techniques, like how to apply a wash,  and blocking in the painting.   So I tried to apply what I'd learned in this painting.     My first task was to put in some clouds,  and I have to say I do like this sky!   Next up was to start applying washes to the mountains, hills and shore line,  then start to add detail.   I did cover up a mistake!   There was supposed to be a wave, but it went wrong,  so it got turned into rocks. 

There should be more pictures this week,   need a break from the exercises. 

Oh must also remember that the clocks go back...    enjoy the rest of the weekend :-)

Thursday, 9 October 2014

The Carer

I did this yesterday,  I love boats and water,  anything relating to the sea in fact.  This was an exercise, but the way I see it, I have to put the paint on the paper and turn it into a painting.   I will revisit this,  I rushed some parts, which I regret, but I did use a looser style of painting and enjoyed it.    I've just ordered another watercolour how to book,  more seascapes but in a different style.   I've just sketched out the next painting,   and I've noticed I have more confidence - my straight lines are straight! 

I think really I should change the title of this blog, or start a new one.   I'm not crafting anymore, maybe I will again one day.   I rearranged the craft desk, so now it is my art desk.   It has my desk easel,  so nice to have it,   it has made a difference.   My paints are now to hand, as are my brushes.  The beauty of watecolour is that you just need water,  and when it comes to the clean up, well it is easy peasy, no need to worry about paint clogging up the pipes, or having to clean the brushes right away.   

Today I hoped to get an early start on the painting, sketched it out,  then put the first wash on,  left that to dry while I had a well earned cuppa, then blow me Harvey comes in and demands some fussing!   So we had head butts,  lots of purring (from him),  tummy rubs (me rubbing his tum),  tickles under the chin (his chin),  before he finally decided he needed his afternoon nap!  At which point I could return to my painting.   I was engrossed in it, then suddenly came this unearthly howl, it was Harvey, to remind me that he needed his dinner!   I looked at the clock and realised he was quite right, it was time for dinner. 

I'm also missing my mum,  really badly at times.  I know that Harvey would cause her to smile, and also curse!   There is no sense to grief,  a web page I visited recently split it into three phases - as if!   Grief does its own thing,   there are no set phases,  nor does is follow a time frame.  This web site, it shall remain nameless, was for carers, it was largely rubbish.  I think that whoever is responsible for it had a straightforward experience, well not all of us do.   Carer's suffer more I think,  they grieve twice over,  firstly for the mother/father/loved one, they are losing but are still alive,  they have to deal with their own guilt,  plus depression.  Then when that loved one dies, the grief starts over,  there is the aching sense of loss,  the space that cannot be filled,  and the guilt: could I have done more, should I have done more?    The anger, not at those that died, but those that could have helped and didn't, who stayed away for often petty, or selfish reasons.   I am angry at my family,  they were not there for me or their mother,  they stayed away, when they did appear it was to insist that they knew better, that they had the answers - if only they had bothered to listen, and made the effort to 'hear'.  There are thousands of carers out there right now, feeling resentful,  feeling angry,  put upon and yet doing their best while feeling deserted by the family.   If you are related to a carer, if it is your sister, brother, whoever, is now looking after 'your' loved one, then go help them, stop sitting on the sidelines and hoping the problem will disappear. 

Yep it got heavy, do I care, not anymore.   Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, 6 October 2014

A rainy Monday

This is what I got up to at the weekend.   Like the cliffs,  grass, river, bridge, bushes - but not the trees!   I had painted this previously as a winter scene, 

I had a very early start today - 3 a.m.!   That was when Harvey decided to wake up and make his presence felt.  He turned his little nose up at his food,  wanted to go out, but since it was windy and teeming with rain he soon changed his mind,  but decided to annoy me.  Not amused.  In the end I took his food up from the floor,  and tucked myself into bed, ignored him, and somehow managed to get back to sleep.   When I did get up, at a more civilised hour, I put his food back down, he duly ate it!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I did manage to tidy up the craft/art desk and area.  I've carefully stored the craft stuff, inks, stamp pads etc, and put all the paints out.   I can now find things!   Now working on a seascape,  and planning another painting.  

Hope the weather is better tomorrow.  Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Brrr, it is a bit chilly

Just one painting today,  more exercises - it is the only way to learn.  This brought in the tree exercise and water,  but this time it had to be a waterfall.

The trees took an age, but it was worth all that dabbing.    I was also lifting out colour so as to form contours.  I left the waterfall bit to the end.  I used a rigger brush for the very fine lines, and a texture brush,  it has to have a lot of white as the water is falling, this is why I use a watery white acrylic.   At the very end I decided to add a figure,  I've not go much confidence in drawing, let alone painting figures,  just about managed to make a fairly good fist of the man, not so sure about the dog! 

I'm revisiting a few of the exercises, but this time round I'm doing my own thing, colours,  adding other things,  or changing the seasons.   I keep making some basic mistakes,  so they have to be ironed out. 

Harvey - is driving me bonkers!   The other night, early hours in fact,  4 a.m to be precise he woke up.  Normally he is happy to have a feed and then go for a wander outside.  Not this time, nope, he howled and howled,  he didn't like his food,  didn't want to go out, didn't want to be alone!   Think I dropped off back to sleep around 6 a.m.,  then he started again.  He wasn't in any pain,  he was hungry but that was his fault for turning his nose up at food he'd liked only the day before.   So I took the food dish away,  and ignored him.  At lunchtime he got fresh food, I put it down and left him to it,  he walked away, moaned and then realised that I wasn't going to budge, so he ate it all.  We've had quite a few clean dishes this week.  Now it's getting colder, well it is here, he's decided to cuddle up with me.

The weather has turned autumnal,  woke up to rain,  and a definite chill.   I've got out the winter curtains,  washed them and they're ready to be hung up.  I may as well put all the T shirts and summer stuff away now,  the duvet is on the bed,  and the clocks will go back soon.    Just no-one mention the C word!  

Enjoy the rest of the weekend, thanks for stopping by :-)

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Talking trees

I did some exercises on trees today.   I am okay on the body, branches, but less confident about the foliage.   I'd decided to buy some texture brushes, but knew I wasn't using them properly.  So back to my book! 

This is tree number one,  and looking at the photo I am quite chuffed!   I did as the book suggested, built up the tree slowly,  and remembering the light source!    I mixed the green, well some of it, I used Hookers green and added some yellow to it, used burnt umber for the trunk.

Tree number 2.  My excuse for this tree leaning is that trees don't grow straight!   In the book they called this a spring tree,  the idea was to form the trunk with the medium texture brush,  and a few 'branches,  then add the brown branches using a rigger brush.   It was a lot of work,  and it needed a thicker mix of paint,  I've realised that was were I was going wrong before, my mix was too watery.   The foliage was built up very slowly,  and I remembered which side the light was coming from.  These are only studies,  so I'm not that bothered about the wonkiness.  

Next excersise for me is figures,   really need to nail the skin tones, and shape.   Then the challenge will be - first to not get too stressed while my car is having its MOT, and to attempt to paint the Giant's causeway!   I may end up tearing my hair out. 

A slow day,  I'm seriously lacking motivation,  takes me ages to get going in the morning.   Harvey now realises that I need my two cups of tea before he'll get his play time.   He loves diving into newspaper,  so I put two pages down, then drag the ribbon, and he's off, diving around, attacking the paper, pretty soon the living room is awash with bits of paper.  He still has a lot of kitten in him,  so he's on the go most of the morning,  doing stuff he shouldn't like attempting to get into the airing cupboard, or onto windows.    He gets upset if I go out,  on my return I am greeted by his loud miaows,  think I'm being told off! 

All for now...  thanks for stopping by.