Sunday, 28 October 2012

A Dream

For a number of years I have had a dream of illustrating my own children's story. I have two versions of the story – picture book for under 5 year old; and a chapter book version for under 8 year old. Finally, I am getting to the point where I need to pluck up courage and send the manuscript and sample pictures to publishers. Really scary to say the least. Anyway, I want to share with you some of the pictures. So, no matter what happens they have seen the light of day!

Melody is different from the other fairies where she lives as she does not belong to a flower family. So she decides to find her family On her quest she makes new friends who help her find out where she comes from. Gavin the grass snake leaves with her.

First port of call Straggly Witch, who tells her that Jeremy the Wizard knows. Straggly Witch's owl decides to go with Melody and Gavin.
Jeremy lives in a tree, can't do spells and gives her a map to the Singing Valley where she comes from. His winged cat Harvey decides to come as he is bored.

They met Amber the tiny red dragon, who flies them over the Red Mountains, and at the giant mushroom forest they meet Woggle the giant worm.

Finally they get to Melody's home and there she meets her mother a Melody Dragon. (I need to redo this picture as I am not happy with the wings)
That is the story briefly. I still have quite a few pictures to do, I am working on the one with Amber flying over the mountains with the others on her back, it is quite a complicated and difficult picture perspective wise. I will post it when it is done!

Here is the scripture I am taking with me into the coming week.

Have a happy Sunday Sketches and a creative week

Friday, 26 October 2012

Summer and Dreams

This week I started to work on my 'Angels in the Garden' oil painting and got stuck. I have a problem. When I am painting half of me wants to be bold and abstract and the other half wants to be detailed and lifelike. You might say why not do some paintings abstract and some detailed and lifelike. That is what I have done in the past. But with 'Angels in the Garden' I want to have cake and eat it too! But how to do that? That is where I was stuck. So I decided to work on another oil painting as I was all set up and ready to go
I have been working on this painting, 'Summer' for quite a while, it was mostly blues and yellows. When I pulled it out, “Magenta!” I thought. So in a flurry of 2 delightful hours, voila, it is finished. Yea! It is a memory painting of the summer of 1979. South of France, being in love, sunburn, sea, sand, boats and giant ice creams in cafes!
 Wonder of wonders, I was on a roll, I started a journal page and while doing it I realised I had the answer to my problem with 'Angels in the Garden'. If you know my journal pages you might guess. I do faces etc with abstract textured background, “just do that in your painting, silly!” I said to myself. Yeah, now I got to figure how to do that in oil as my journal pages are in acrylic etc. So guess what, I am going to have lots of fun next week.

Here is a thought:

'Do not fear to open
the doors that lie between
what is known
and what is unknown.'

Quite thought provoking, I will have to ponder that. Might turn into a journal page.

Happy Paint Party Friday everyone and happy dreams!

Linking to Paint Party Friday

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

What a Girl wants....

The prompt for Artists Play Room this week is 'The love of Pairs'. 
Lurking in my wardrobe, a pair of red heels
with a pretty bling bow.
Now I am not a girly girl.
My feet are wide and sensible.
I am sure I could not totter across the room
wearing these beauties.
But in my heart lurks a desire
to walk elegantly into a room
and twirl while people gasp and murmur,
what elegance, what beauty.
So from time to time
the lovely red high heels
sit in pride of place on my dresser
and I dream.

Have fun creating this week all you lovely artists and dreamers!
Linking to The Artists Play Room  at Just Add Water Silly

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Grab a Star

I have been a bit slow of the mark this week. I did this journal page for the challenge at Artist's Playroom and then forgot to post and link to it before the linky closed. So I am posting it for at Art Journal Everyday and Sunday Sketches. The prompt was 'celestial and stargazing'. I decided to scan the work in stages so you can see how it evolved.

First of all I started with this drawing.

Then I got my acrylics and painted.

 Next I used a variety of methods to make marks, one of my favourite methods at the moment is get cotton and glue it to the paper and then run a roller over it. Also I am in love with my white gel pen , which I like to use for writing. I brush some very diluted watercolour over the writing and it changes the tint. So here's the finished piece. I got to say hat I actually like the unadorned piece as much as the finished one. Maybe the final piece is too busy?

It has been said that for every person born there is a star! That star holds all our dreams. Shows us what we can be. We can stand out and be special. If we gaze up into the heavens we just might see our special star twinkling at us, saying reach out, grab hold of me. We all can be stars!

Have a wonderful creative week every body.

Friday, 19 October 2012

Fall, fearless and fly and WIP

FFF Challenge


The second challenge for FFF at Artists in Blogland is 'Taking a chance'. There are three prompts ; When did you take a chance or a leap of faith. Use a colour you like the least, (for me that is red) and the Quote you see in the picture above.

Red spells danger,
which creates fear.
Fear that I might fail!
Sometimes taking that step
into the unknown
involves a leap of faith.

In my art, fear comes upon me every time I start a painting, staring at that white blank canvas or paper creates a block. I have to consciously make a mark or two before I feel okay lets go! Who cares if it is a wild stab in the dark, its a creation!

Everyday we make a leap of faith, a belief that all will be good, a belief that we will succeed in our endeavours, a belief there is a purpose. If we don't have that belief we are stuck in the same place, spinning around in circles. So even if you know something might be a wild goose chase, go for it! Sometimes, its fun to fall of the spinning wheel. Did you know that wild geese fly in formation and take turns at leading, they are helping each other on the journey. So if we fall, there is likely another wild goose to help you on your journey!


This week I managed to spend two afternoons working on my large oil, 'Angels in the garden'. I have softened the greens and worked on building up the faces.

By the way thanks for all the kind comments last week, one good bit of news the police turned up with my lawnmower which I was very pleased about as it was only 5 weeks old.  And I am starting to love my new computer! 

Saturday, 13 October 2012


I needed calm this week!

Tuesday – My Computer crashed, it wouldn’t even switch on.  Wednesday – washing machine wouldn’t start! The computer techies said I needed a new computer do you realize that it is 7 years old!  Well I was going to update next year what the heck!  Thursday – Buy new computer ( I was getting very twitchy without one) which cleared my savings, so will have to wash clothes by hand, we don’t have Laundromats in my town!  You would think that was the end of it wouldn’t you?  Oh no, Friday my shed was broken into during the night – lawnmower, petrol can, tools gone!  And to top it all my lovely new computer doesn’t like my ‘old’ software and I have to update!  Oh well, I will download some trial versions which will give me a month to find some lolly to upgrade.
You will be very proud of me, I stayed calm and collected throughout.  My big Boy akka Bro smooched and lolled around. That I had to draw him!  Isn’t he cute!  Here he is in a tree.

Every morning I took myself to a local reserve to commune with nature and God. I had to draw the ducks, I love ducks!  On Thursday I managed to paint this watercolour, I found it very therapeutic! That’s sums up my creative efforts this week. Onwards and forward, it can only get better.
 Oh, my new computer doesn’t like my printer, but the strange thing is it likes the scanner, er it is a multifunction, so??????  So I can scan but not print.  Think I have to download some drivers or something grrrr.  At least it likes my camera, and I doing my editing on some of the software that came with it albeit limited.
Here is a bit of fun using a freeware programme called Funny Photo Maker.
Have a Happy PPF and a wonderful week of creating.
Linking to

Wednesday, 10 October 2012


In Jenn's Artists Play Room this week the theme is masquerade. We don't have Halloween in NZ, so I decided to portray the excitement of going to a Masquerade Ball. Romance is in the air! With a mask on, we loose our inhibitions, and perhaps we can be what we were meant to be.

This piece is done on A3 Card, with acrylics, pen, pencils, and homemade stamps.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Art Journal Every Day

I have become addicted to making journal pages ! After the 29 faces challenge I said I was going to challenge myself to do at least 2 journal pages a week. Well, I have been doing one a day! These two I did over the weekend.
The page above is done with the colours of spring in mind, I went for a walk on Saturday, and the fresh green and yellows and soft pinks were so uplifting and refreshing.

This one describes how my Sunday went. My sister phoned unexpectedly from Perth, and we had a beautiful time laughing and talking about the pearls of wisdom our mother showered over us.

Of course, now that I am a convert to journal pages I had to look for a place to link up with other devotees and guess what I found!

Art Journal Every Day at Balzer Designs 

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Sunday Sketches and journal pages

I have become hooked on making pages in my journal! The page below is done in acrylics, gouache, pencils and gel pen, oh and some homemade stamps. I cheated and changed the colour of the text on the computer, having it all white make the page flat. Also, as yet, I do not have the confidence of being able to place the text straight away, I need the computer to work out the layout.

This journal page has an amazing story behind it. A while back I was being bullied by a woman who made my life a misery. I couldn't figure out out what I had done to cause such behaviour. A mutual friend told me it was probably something she saw in me that she didn't like. I thought yeah oh well? And promptly took myself out of that circle. The amazing thing happened last week, I saw this woman up town, and was about to cross to the other side of the street, when she called out “Sharon, please have coffee with me!” I hesitated and looked at her, she was thin and hagged. I thought “What the heck, I can stand up to her.”

Then something glorious happened she apologized, it was done with her heart as she had tears in her eyes. Then she explained, like me she had been in a serious car crash and her life changed over night. She said she hated the way I dealt with it with a smile always on my face, and finding positive things about the situation, and using it to make a new direction in my life. She said she was so resentful and full of bitterness that she took to drinks and drugs. She ended up in prison, and there she finally started to turn her life around. Then she asked me why didn't I feel bitter. I was astounded. I explained to her that I had my share of bitterness and it was a battle for me, and that perhaps I was fortunate in that I had seen what bitterness and anger could do as my uncle was an alcoholic and my brother had experimented with drugs, and I knew at no cost that I would go down that road, and that in latter years my faith in God has brought about major healing. We hugged each other, and while we may never be friends, there is sisterhood, an understanding. 

Later that night the words on the journal page above keep resounding in my head. I am sure they are words to some song I heard somewhere. Anyway, I felt that they were appropriate. 

The scripture I am taking into next week I posted on my devotional blog, but, I will share it here with you guys as well. I used
watercolour and pencils, and yes I did add the text on the computer.

Have a happy week creating and God bless.

Linked to Sunday Sketches

Friday, 5 October 2012

Fall, Fearless and Fly and WIP

I have decided to enter the challenge Fall Fearless and Fly at Artist in Blogland, even though it is spring here. I am at a point in my life where I am reevaluating my goals and my life in general. I am shedding my old leaves and hoping to grow new ones. Yes reinventing my future. The best thing is I don't have to do it all at once, as Abe Lincoln says take it one day at a time.
For this journal page I used gouache, stamps and pencils.


As part of the shedding of my old self, I discovered that I can't carry on with my painting Up the Creek, I found myself putting off getting on with it, and it was only when I was doing this piece and wondering why I was itching to get to work on another large painting that I realized that I had indeed moved on, and I was not that person any more. I think having a large painting on a depressing period of my life would only make me dwell on the past and not concentrate on the future.

So, I have decided to do the series as a series of journal pages. I will post them as I do them.

Angels in the Garden

Now to the painting I am working on and am quite excited about. It is quite a different way of working for me as usually I have everything worked out before I paint. This is more intuitive. I have had the canvas below for ages, it was an attempt last year to paint flowers in my garden. I got struck and it has been sitting face against the wall until 2 weeks ago. I was changing the room around and left it face out. As I was sitting there and I could see faces, maybe because I was doing the 29 faces challenge I was seeing faces everywhere!
Here is a photo of it can you see faces?
This week I started to paint the faces I saw and as I was painting I realized that I was painting a childhood experience! I used to love lying on the grass and staring at the flowers I was convinced that I could see angels amongst the flowers. My grandmother had told me that fairies lived in the Buddleia Tree in the hen pen, so, why I thought, there couldn't be angels in the flower garden?

I think that I have too many faces, so might take one or two out, I also haven't decided how realistic to make the flowers and leaves, I will have to wait and see what develops.
Linking to Paint Party Friday


I got a commission to paint flower fairies - wisteria and lilies - by a good friend of mine. She wanted them done in a “grown up” manner! They were to be a present for her mother who is fairy mad. I love painting and drawing flowers, I love painting and drawing people, but fairies? It was pushing the boundaries for me, I kept putting the task to one side. I have just discovered this blog Just Add Water Silly through a link up from Tracey Fletcher King's blog to the Artists' Play Room. This week the challenge was Botanical.

Hmm, I thought, I wonder? So I finally got cracking and over the last few days worked on these two pictures. I am pleased with them I hope they fill the brief for my friend. I really enjoyed doing them, to the extent I am think of doing some more! Just shows it pays to step outside your boundaries from time to time.
wisteria fairy
Lily fairy

For these I used watercolour pencils, gouache, and a gel pen on A4 hot pressed paper

Linking with Artist's Play Room