Monday, 27 September 2010

Two Versions.....

I spent a happy hour this morning playing with some new bits and pieces from Paper Whimsy.
This my digital collage..........
These are the elements I used ........

And this is a version I made from paper, card, metal studs and a pressed flower.


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So did you watch Downton Abbey last night? I'm not normally a fan of  period dramas but I was so enthralled by the trailer, I couldn't wait to see it.

 

(Is it because I have a 3-column blog that video clips aren't complete? Can anyone help me with this? Ah well - you can see the proper version here at YouTube.)
Update...thank you Kit and Kaboodle. I've reduced it down to 300 by 193......much better!
BTW the brilliant choir is called Scala and you can hear the full version here.
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A while back I took a photo of a friend's daughter who was a bridesmaid at a wedding. I made a scrapbook page at the time but last week decided to do something digital with it. The clipping mask is one of my favourites; its by Anna Aspnes at Designer Digitals .


The text is from a kit by Natali at Scrapbookgraphics. I also used various brushes and textures, plus a free background from Oscraps.

OK.....time to drag myself away from the computer and do some ironing I think :-(

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Catching Up.....

We've been making the most of the last days of summer this year and decided to visit some more National Trust properties. First stop was Hidcote Manor Gardens in Gloucestershire......designed and created by the horticulturist Lawrence Johnston in the Arts & Crafts style, it is made up of exquisite garden rooms, each one possessing its own special character.
 


We stayed overnight at a wonderful B&B called The Kissing Gate in the nearby village of  Ebrington. It's one of the cleanest, most beautifully decorated places I've ever stayed in. (If you're interested you can read my review on Trip Advisor). The house is fairly new but Ebrington is a traditional Cotswold village with many beautiful thatched cottages. We had dinner at the Ebrington Arms...gorgeous place!

 
The next day we visited Chipping Campden and Broadway.......
 
 and finally Snowshill Manor....my favourite place of all. You can read about it here.

I haven't forgotten about 'the mystery photo' from my last post :-)
Heather was absolutely right when she guessed waterlily seed pod.
We spotted these little green 'bottles' bobbing around on our local canal ......


I found a picture of the flower on Wikimedia Commons....you can see the seed pod starting to grow in the centre.
So there you go...well done Heather!

I taught a mixed-media collage class last week at the Beetroot Tree and met a new blogging friend there called Donna. We've 'known' each other for a while through the Suzi Blu classes, but only recently became aware that we lived fairly near to each other. You can see the scrummy collage she created on her blog here.

I showed some of my examples on this blog post...here's another I did for the class; this one is mounted onto wood so is actually finished!
The others are waiting patiently for DH to get his special electric saw out and cut up some more wood......

 

And FINALLY (are you still here?) .......a Peachy update. He stayed with us last weekend -
and he's growing too quickly......

"I'm sure I fitted into this box last time I stayed here......."

Saturday, 11 September 2010

I Love Photoshop

I did a bit of Photoshop fiddling with my 'Born to Reign' painting (see sidebar left), using the photograph I took when it was half done.......

 .....then I changed it again.....

....and then I realised it reminded me of something I'd seen on a friend's blog recently.
The lovely Jo at Tanglefrost (who is talented with words as well as her hands) makes fantastic creations with leather and beads. She has made leaf brooches and pins for a while now but has just recently begun making flower crowns. I would LOVE one of these ......how wonderful to look as beautiful as Jo's daughter.
  
They are so original and would be perfect for weddings and special parties...have a look at the gorgeous photos in her etsy shop.

Speaking of friends.....Corrine at Dosfishes did a postcard swap with me and this is the great piece of art I received from her.....
Her blog is full of interesting photos, great collages, digi-art and recycled art....another recommended visit!

Back to Photoshop - I love using it for creative stuff  but also appreciate its value when it comes to repairing old photos. My mum recently gave me a picture of her and dad on honeymoon; it was badly damaged but it means a great deal to her so I had a go at repairing it. This is something I need to perfect my skills at, but mum was really pleased with my attempts. Here's the before and after......

(Please click on photos)
Then I had a go at a photo of my grandma (mum's mum) when she was a young woman (she's in the centre). I have a feeling the photo was cut up many years ago when they had a family dispute!!

That clone stamp and plaster...such amazing tools :-)

Have you guessed? I love Photoshop!!

Ooooh I nearly forgot - I went for a walk with DH (the Brown-Eyed-Boy) this afternoon and found these...

...any guesses what they are? They are 7cm long. (The place where I found them is a big clue.....but I won't give that away just yet :-)

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Peachy and Bess......

This is one of a series of mixed-media collages I've been making over the last couple of weeks in preparation for my class at the Beetroot Tree on Monday. I've used images transferred onto fabric, lace, text, organza, dyed silk, pressed flowers, background papers, beads, silk paper, sari silks, machine and hand-stitching.
I'm looking forward to this class; it should be fun......

I've also been scanning all my inky backgrounds into my PC so that I can use them as layers in Photoshop. Here are just a few......I've got dozens! The great thing is you can enhance the colours and improve the look of them in PSE.
I used this one.......
with this photo I took in the gardens at Hardwick Hall....
to created this.......

I think I'm going to print it onto silk fabric.

We visited the beautiful Hardwick Hall last weekend.....it's about 25 miles north of us near Chesterfield. The house was built for Elizabeth Shrewsbury (hence the ES on the roof) but she was better known as 'Bess of Hardwick' - quite a formidable lady and the richest woman in England in the 1500s after Queen Elizabeth. She had 4 husbands and her wealth increased with each marriage. She left behind the legacy of a 400 year-old collection, known as the Hardwick Hall textiles; the largest collection of tapestry, embroidery, canvaswork and other textiles to have been preserved by a single private family. I did a special study of these for my A-levels many years ago.
There are some fabulous paintings in the house; I love this one of Bess.......

Here's her wonderful Elizabethan house.... (she also owned Chatsworth)
and the typically English pub at the edge of the estate where we had our lunch.

We looked after Peachy whilst my daughter was in Zante last week. He was quite a handful and LOVED rummaging around in my studio. He soon found the felt bird I'd made (and pretended it was real :-) and after causing mayhem fell asleep in my box of silk papers every day........
Liz collected him on Monday; its very quiet here..........