Monday 28 December 2015

PaperArtsy - Deconstruction, Miniature Art and Altered Grunge Paste

Hello and Welcome! It's great that you could drop by when the Season is probably still so very busy! I've been having a wonderful time looking back over the year's beautiful projects at PaperArtsy. The lovely folk at PaperArtsy have given me the opportunity to curate a little collection of my favourite projects on the themes of Deconstruction, Miniature Art and Grunge Paste from their blog, which was the very first craft blog I ever saw and remains my favourite source of inspiration in Blogland. It wasn't easy to select from all the amazing work over the year and I would love to have included every one of 2015's fabulous projects. If you would like to see my choices, please do hop across to PaperArtsy's blog.
I was also challenged to create a project of my own, combining the 3 themes and you can see this over at PaperArtsy too. I've reversed a box canvas and de-constructed it using liberal amounts of Grunge Paste blended around the edges of Rigid Plaster Wrap for the waves; PaperArtsy Crackle Glaze and Rusting Powder. I used Fresco Finish Paints in Captain Peacock, Granny Smith, Teresa Green, Hey Pesto, Limelight, Snowflake and Inky Pool. For 3D effect, I just had to add one of the little MDF houses I've become addicted to creating this year!
I like to de-construct and mix stamp sets with my own art work too, so there is a combination of Sara Nauman; Lynne Perrella; PaperArtsy Mini and a little face of my own here. The Lynne Perrella town in the background was stamped onto painted tissue and fixed to the canvas with Satin Glaze.
I am truly indebted to Mary Jane Chadbourne of Desert Dream Studios who taught me so much about creating miniature art last summer. PaperArtsy paints, stamps and Grunge Paste worked so well together with all that I learned on her Artful Gathering course. I used Grunge Paste here to blend with moss for the grass and Treasure Gold gives an aged look to the edges of the canvas. Once again Thank You for taking a peek into Magpieheaven today, and for all your support over the past year. May I take this opportunity to wish all my dear, inspiring friends and followers in Blogland a Happy, Healthy and Creative 2016!

Friday 18 December 2015

Show Your Face on Friday with Kim Dellow - A Last Few Faces!

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven! I think this is going to be my last link up with Kim Dellow's fabulous Show Your Face here! This is such a busy time, but Kim has created a great, last face for 2015, full of texture with a touch of gold, so please do take a look, even if you don't have time to create a face yourself. She's keeping the link open for the rest of this month, so if you do have time over the Holidays, why not pop across and add a face of your own? I've working on lots of projects - some completed and some still WIP, but all of them feature hand-drawn faces. If you have a moment to take a break for maybe a cuppa or a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie, I'll show you what I've been busy with!
Please meet The Owl Princess! She is a mixture of my own artwork and collage with wood, sequin and copper foil embellishment. She is part of a commission to create a brooch especially for a lady's niece who lives in Bogotá and who will be with her for Christmas.
And this Tiger Woman is for the lady herself. The brooches are now on their way. I added a little gilding around the edges with Treasure Gold to complete them. If - after the Holiday Season - you feel you would like to commission a brooch, ornament or canvas on a theme or story that means something special to you, please convo me at my Etsy shop, Magpiehaven. There's a link at the top of this blog. I've also been making some brooches for gifts, to list in the shop, or just because I really love creating these little face houses!
These 2 are wood-burned works in progress, waiting to be completed and then sent to a friend in Kenya and one in the US.
A little minstrel work in progress, which I hope to list in the New Year.
A young wizard is almost ready to ride to new and undiscovered lands!
This Christmas I've thought a great deal about all those who set out in search of peace, freedom from persecution or the right to life itself. I'm keeping this face to remind me to spare a thought and a gift for the homeless - those who are cold and hungry this winter - and those who have lost all that they had.
I hope that this Christmas will provide the 'Happy Ever After' for young and old who might have felt lost, frightened and alone in 2015 and that the doors of new homes and new opportunities will be opened to them...
Thank you so much if you've stayed with this post when you have so much to prepare! This will probably be my last 'link up' to Show Your Face on Friday until January 2016! It comes with Every Good Wish to you for a wonderful Christmas with - I hope - some time to create!

Saturday 12 December 2015

Show Your Face on Friday - Christmas - it can't be!

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven! I'm arriving a little bit out of breath and dishevelled to Kim Dellow's 'Show Your Face on Friday'! Please click here if you would like to find out all about Kim's great rendezvous for anyone who wants to try their hand at drawing, painting or making a face in any medium! I knew it would happen - Christmas has caught me out again! Never mind, I'm telling myself not to panic and all will be well because, after all, Christmas will happen whether I think I'm ready or not! I have a little gift to share with you this week. It's a tiny wooden house I've made for a very old friend of mine. It features faces burned into the pine wood and then coloured with PaperArtsy paints diluted with Satin Glaze. On this side my portrait is of one of my friendly trees!
The house itself is about 2 inches high and stands on tiny blue bead feet. My friend loves robins, so I've given my tree with a face a robin companion who might just have warned him about that very slithery icicle melting close by!
Whatever the weather the companions are determined to be merry because there is nothing more cheering in a sometimes chilly world than friendship!
Santa has made an appearance around the back of the house. He's looking decidedly flushed and cross-eyed - probably from delivering all those presents - and he isn't getting any younger! After burning his features onto the house, I thought he looked a little like Albert Einstein! And what could we need more for Christmas cheer than Energy! Perhaps I should have written 'Merry E = MC2' over the door and described it as a portrait of Einstein in a Santa costume!
The roof is bead gel with a good slathering of Snowflake Fresco and Distress Glitter. I do hope this little ornament will make my friend smile this Christmas.
I also just had time to make another little angel brooch with a heart-shaped face for the tree. Which reminds me - I have to start decorating our tree right now! We have a tradition in our family that the tree is dressed on the Saturday before Mr Magpie's birthday on the 15th December! Thank you so much for stopping by today. I do hope your preparations are all going well and that you will find some time in your busy schedules to show a face of your own on Kim's blog! Enjoy the coming week everyone!

Friday 4 December 2015

Show Your Face on Friday - A Finished Canvas?

Hello Followers and Friends and welcome to Magpieheaven! I'm not finding a great deal of time to blog at the moment, but today I wanted to link to Kim Dellow's 'Show Your Face on Friday' and give you a bit of an update on a canvas with three little faces/houses I began last week. If you haven't done so already, please do link up to Kim's blog. You'll find all the info and guidelines here along with Kim's great inspiration for this week and some inspiring work from the other artists too. Last week, you might remember, I had the idea to put these 3 little houses onto a canvas.
 I just wasn't sure about the best background for them. I was thinking in terms of Scheherazade and Kay Nielson's beautiful, midnight blue background. I could imagine them under starry skies and then a change of direction happened! Maybe it was because there are three of them, I started to think of the story of sages come from the East to visit a new Messiah, bringing symbolic gifts. I was reminded of T. S. Eliot's poem 'Journey of the Magi', which you can read here.
 My canvas now began to represent 3 Wise Women bringing gifts in the form of silver birds  symbolising peace and freedom - the best gifts we could receive at Christmas. I couldn't help thinking about all the refugees undertaking hard journeys 'at the worse time of the year', looking for a new start. Eventually, I made the sky the colour of early evening with a single, cheesecloth cloud. The background was created with torn Christmas napkins to suggest faint writing in the sky. The land itself is composed of napkins inspired by old maps and fragments of tea-bag paper.
Often the journeys we take, whether they be physical or metaphorical ones, start out full of hope, which is severely tested along the way. Few of us will know in our life-journeys the pain and anguish of those forced to flee their homes through fear. I was so moved the other day by an account of one Syrian family who had kept up a correspondence with a young journalist as they attempted to make their way to a new life in Germany. The ordeal of that journey was almost unbearable to hear as the family encountered appalling conditions in the camps and sometimes brutal, inhumane treatment. But then - arrival in Hamburg and a welcome from the German people. I have never heard anything quite like the joy in the wife's voice as she was re-united with the young journalist who had told the World the story of this one family among many. Here at last was a place to settle, to be at peace and see their children educated, warm and fed - basic human rights we all take so much for granted.
This woman's joy in the midst of so much suffering made me think! The run up to Christmas is such a busy time, often with trivial frustrations, but I'm going to try to stop this holiday and think about the joy there is hope, peace and freedom and not take those precious gifts for granted.
This was a chunky canvas, so I was able to extend the tea-bags and napkin paper right over the sides.
I also highlighted the edges with a little Treasure Gold. I do hope that you will be able to stop, re-charge your batteries and gain a little art time over the Holiday Period and that this will be a time of hope, peace and joy for us all.
I also set myself the task of creating some little angels for the Christmas tree last week and here they are - the first 2.
Their faces are my own art work, collaged onto little masonite hearts and the tiny pine cones were gathered on a walk last winter. Have a great week everyone!