Monday 27 March 2017

Spring Forward at Calico Craft Parts!

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven. I have a studio - at last! Much as I miss her, I'm very happy for our daughter, Matilda as she starts life in a new home with a lovely partner. Luckily for me, she is living only 10 minutes' from our home and her room has become my creative space!

I created this little shrine for Calico Craft Parts blog as my first project in my new space. If you would like to find out more about how I created it and my inspiration, the project is here.

Wherever you create, I hope your creativity is blossoming with the Springtime!

Wednesday 15 March 2017

Doors, Windows and Architecture for PaperArtsy

Hello and Welcome again to Magpieheaven. Tonight I'm lucky enough to be over on the PaperArtsy blog sharing a post about Doors and Windows into the Past. Please join me there if you would like to see this project in a little more detail.

 I do hope you'll also be inspired to join in the Challenge and that you will create something on the theme. If you do, why not link up your own project for a chance to win a prize of £50.00 of PaperArtsy products? Wishing you Good Fortune, creativity and joy!

Monday 13 March 2017

Wearable Art for Calico Craft Parts Blog

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven. Do you ever feel as if you could do with a friend perched in your hat or on your scarf, whispering words of wisdom to you? You might like to meet my friend Felicia, the wearable Barn Owl! She is making an appearance over on the Calico Craft Parts blog today! Please pop across and meet her if you have the chance.

Have a lovely, creative day wherever you are.

Saturday 11 March 2017

A Very Modern Mid-Century Tea Time with Relics and Artifacts!

Hello Everyone and Welcome to Magpieheaven! Over at the Relics and Artifacts Tribe there's a fun challenge taking place - Mid Century Modern! It was certainly a challenge for me because I tend to associate Relics and Artifacts with either mysteriously beautiful antiques with a story to tell, or the vibrant folk art of Mexico. I wanted to keep up that New Year Resolution to blog more and to participate in some challenges, though, so I put on my Mid Century thinking cap with its geometric patterns and journeyed back to the 1950s!

Once I had researched - lots of fun on Pinterest - I gathered colours with what I thought had a 'Mid Century' mood. I grabbed some Harlequin napkins; a stencil and some musical manuscript paper, along with a few scraps of tea-bags - I was ready to paint and collage!

I used acrylics diluted with glazing fluid to paint over my collage so that the torn scraps would be visible. To create the blocks of colour, I used masking tape to help me keep to really straight lines.

Building up layers with collage, paint and stencils, reminded me of tattered posters after a carnival.

Now it was time to add the Relics and Artifacts to the composition. I wanted to carry through that Harlequin/Pierrot Mid Century style mood, so I grabbed the masking tape again for an asymmetrical look to the ex-voto flaming heart.

The Mid Century I recall from my childhood was a time of such hope and excitement as we embraced the 'Modern' and looked to Science and Technology to re-build our world torn apart by 2 World Wars. Yet there was fear too, at what the Modern World might do to itself with the Nuclear threat. Influenced by the exquisite Picasso drawings that I love, I added the pure white wing of Peace to my canvas. 

I leave the interpretation of the face to the viewer. Is it the Moon glimmering over Venice at Carnival time? Is it a Pierrot behind an enigmatic mask, the wing a fluttering white lace ruff; or is it the Spirit of Uncertainty, half facing the 'Brave New World' and half completely blank as to what the future might hold.

On a less serious note the colours of my canvas reminded me of my china collection, which I seldom use, so I thought it was time for a Very Mid Century Modern Tea Party!

Now all we need are some little Harlequin cakes with pastel icing and some Batten berg with its pink and blue squares of sponge cake and bright yellow icing! Have a lovely creative weekend and a great week! 

Friday 3 March 2017

Mossycoat - Infusions Challenge at PaperArtsy

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven. Do you ever start working on a project, have no idea where you're going and find that the substrate and the materials speak to you? This doesn't always happen. Often I start with an idea of what I want my final piece to look like, but this time my project dictated the story! Over at PaperArtsy all this fortnight the topic is Paint with Infusions. These little bottles of coloured grains are so much fun to use and working with them really does remind me of casting magic spells with colour! Over on the blog you'll see all kinds of projects, videos and tutorials to help. I just had fun experimenting and story-telling.

For this mini hemp-wrapped 'canvas', I applied Emerald Isle, Royal Blood and Sage Infusions over stencilled script in Fresco Snowflake and sprayed with diluted Fluid Matte Medium. There's some stained and frayed, wide linen ribbon just above the Relics and Artifacts heart. I dripped Ice Resin over the heart and into the well at the centre to create the impression of clear forest, spring water, adding some clear, glass-bead gell.

The canvas fits into the palm of my hand like a little book. I knew that I wanted to play with Relics and Artifacts on this piece, but before I added them, the colours and initial texture of the canvas recalled rich, green moss deep in the forest and I knew the direction this project would take. Some gold embossing reminded me of golden threads and the story of Mossycoat.

Mossy Coat lived with her widowed mother in a cottage, deep in the dark woods. Like a wild flower, hidden among the ferns, she lived her peaceful life. Until the Hawker came by the cottage, selling his wares and asking for her hand in marriage. Little Mossycoat didn't want to spend her days tramping the world with the Hawker. She wanted to marry for love. Here is my miniature portrait of young, Mossycoat.

Her mother instructed her to tell the Hawker she would marry him only if he brought her a gown of fine white silk that was an exact fit. Meanwhile she continued to spin a coat for her daughter with magic woven into its fibres.

When the Hawker returned with the perfect dress, Mossycoat's mother sent him away. Now he must fashion her a gown the colour of all the birds of the air. Still she worked at her spinning. When he returned with this dress he was sent away again - this time to create slippers of silver for the young girl's tiny feet. When the Hawker returned triumphant with the silver shoes, he was sent away and told to come back tomorrow for his bride. But the Widow had been working on a magic coat of moss, woven with threads of pure gold that would take Mossycoat anywhere she wanted by wishing.

Through the Forest she flew to the Prince's grand palace, where she became a scullery maid, working among the pots and pans and where the servants mocked her. But she used her treasured mossy coat to conjure the white gown and slippers and wore them to the Ball where she captured the Prince's heart. He could think of nobody, but the mysterious young woman in the silk dress with her dainty, silver feet. When she made a second appearance at court in her bird gown, he tried to take her hand to prevent her escape, but she fled, leaving behind one silver slipper!

Of course the Prince tries the slipper on every beautiful young lady's foot until he has almost given up hope of finding his Love. In despair he takes the slipper to the kitchen and Mossy Coat comes forward to slip her tiny foot neatly into the silver shoe.

 Let's hope the match is a happy one - if not Mossy Coat can always wrap herself in velvety moss and fly away silently back to the Forest! Thank You for stopping by taking a look at my little project. I hope you find some time yourself to play with Infusions, to discover their magic and to link your work to the PaperArtsy Challenge! Have a wonderful, creative week.