Saturday, February 26, 2011

Details from today

I didnt manage to sketch any boats today as it was far too hot but in the cockle train going over to the wooden boat show at Goolwa we were in the beautifully decorated centenary carriage and this is a detail of the light fitting. The little train rocks and rolls along from Victor Harbor to Goolwa, a lot of it next to the beaches we walk. Sketching is not easy.
When we arrived we caught up with some friends and had a morning coffee and then wandered off to look at all the things that were there, a zillion wooden boats, river boats, sailing boats, steam boats and a paddle steamer.
While waiting for the others to find us we found a table and I sant and sketched those who were around us, very quick ones but I still managed to sketch.
I now think I have a sun burnt back of my neck, it was very hot and sticky and not at all nice when the sun came out from behind the clouds.
Came home to find dear old Jake, my rescue home kelpie cross had died, I have been expecting it but he has defied the odds before but not this time.
May you manage to find lots of lunches you can steal in dog heaven. He was the best dog. I will miss him.
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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Using lines, shells

In my on line sketching class with Alisa Burke this weeks lessons is about using lines and no colour in your sketching.
I sat with three shells I had found using a pen, a 2b pencil and an H pencil, all I had with me.
It has been fun and quite easy to do, which at the moment is what I need, it is getting warmer and I dont like the heat.
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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Morning Glory

I love the name Morning Glory, but the dreaded name convolvulous sends shivvers down ones spine.
We passed a fence of these the other day and I did a quick sketch, I love them but in the garden they are awful you cannot eradicate them.
I am busy this week catching up and so this is just a quick post to say that I am in the land of the living, just catching up on a few things.
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Friday, February 18, 2011

The old shed

I went to painting class yesterday and this is what I came home with, I am pleased with bits of it. In fact I may have another go at it another day, when and if I have time~! I found a whole day very tiring, (especially after a few days with Mason) although the bits where we played with our brushes to see what they could and couldnt do was very instructive.
Yesterday the decision was made to put down one young mare with a terrible cancer, her foal was only 3 months and we were hoping she might last a bit longer but it wasnt to be, with her we put down her sire, a lovely little stallion I am very fond of but again, he had developed terrible arthritis in his knees and we knew he wouldnt go through another winter so they are buried together.
Thank heaven Gaby didnt have to do too much today as it has been pouring with rain and John had the financial adviser here so Mason didnt have to be entertained too much in the kitchen while they were in the sitting room.
So I have done the weeks shopping, collected the mail and the paper and now I hope to have a bit of time to go through blogs, which I havent done for ages.
Tomorrow is going to be full on, I am beginning to wonder when it isnt! I have to go and inspect some Connemara ponies and we have to travel a reasonable distance to do that.
With any luck I will be back to painting at least once next week.
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Tuesday, February 15, 2011


I havent had a lot of time to do anything lately, but here are a few hasty sketches. Mason has a spotted rabbit who is called Racket, Mason couldnt say rabbit! so Racket he has become. He has been feeling the heat a bit.
The other night there was a very interesting bit on 'Coast' about the herring boats off the east coast of Scotland, lovely large sails and a very broad beam, these were my not at all good efforts at sketching them.
Then today I felt I needed to do a bit more sketching and sat in my workroom and did these fuchsia flowers that I can see from the window, they are small and very elongated, a much more primitive, but also hardier type than the big blowsy ones you can get in the shops.
I am supposed to be doing two sketching things, one an on line course with Alisa Burke and one the sketchbook Challenge so I should get on with doing something.
Mason and I have been sort of entertaining each other, although I really do find that 10 years makes a difference in how much I can do with him, I feel a bit of a failure, after all I used to have Celina for a day or so a week and this is only two hours, but then small boys were always more difficult to entertain than girls! Also a 2 year olds attention scan is not terribly big, he flits from one thing to another and never the same thing each day.
It is also heating up with threats of rain and thunderstorms for the rest of the week, it will be interesting to see what we get, there is another cyclone forming off Western Australia and that usually means rain for us, there is still a lot of summer to come.
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Friday, February 11, 2011


The sketchbook Challenge for this month is Contrast. I have had a lot to do lately so havent really got into this one but here is my 'contrast doodle' which just emerged as I was waiting for John to come home last night. I rather like doing these, they dont have to be perfect, and there is a design within a design.
I have the week end off from child minding, thank heaven, it was terribly hot and humid last night so I didnt sleep terribly well, and then at one stage I found a cricket in my bed! It was tossed out and I cant find it this morning. My hip has not been comfortable in bed and I toss and turn and worry about waking poor John who on top of 8 hour meetings and long drives has a low grade sinus infection so is on antibiotics.
I now have my new computer, well it is a laptop and is much faster than my last one, but I am still using the old seperate keyboard and screen as I like that set up better. So much more to learn on this one.
The shopping is done and put away and I think I will have a half hour granny nap, probably more like a read as I hate sleeping during the day.
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Thursday, February 10, 2011


I am doing Ailsa Burke's sketchbook on line class and one of the exercises is to find as many types of sketching tools you have and try them out, see if they are waterproof or not and how they all react using the same sample , in my case a flower with a leaf.
I found it very interesting, and also found I had far more "stuff" in the way of pencils and watercolours than I thought. Not much in the way of sharpies and other pens of that type.
I do prefer a waterproof pen, aqua pencils and watercolor but am finding black and white pencils rather lovely as well.
I have a lot of odds and ends from my childrens school days, some of the pencils etc are very old and really rather nice to use. I loved the Derwen Cumberland ones, soft and buttery, not like some of the more modern ones I have. Some of these have my eldest sons name on them and he turned 50 today (Happy Birthday Simon) so they would have to be at least 40 to 45 years old.
Busy with small great grandson Mason as you can see if you go to my other blog (on the side bar) he is gorgeous, so not feeling like doing much.
Some one asked how I did so much or perhaps it was why, perhaps at my slightly advanced age I now worry that there is not a huge amount of time left and I want to do a hell of a lot more!
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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Mundoo Channel

I painted this with a hake (large brush) after John and I went down to see the River Murray at Mundoo on Sunday. I was really quite pleased with it and may do more in this style.
We had a lovely lunch yesterday and probably too much bubbly but it was a good day to celebrate.
I am finding my 2 year old great grandson rather tiring to look after, I am up early to go and collect him and his mother and then entertain him for 2 hours, thank heaven it is no longer.
Then the rather hair raising (not really!) experience of driving with my L plated grand daughter, she has been very slow at getting her driving licence now her partner is working in the mines in Western Australia she certainly needs it so I am the one who is driving with her at the moment. She is actually rather good.
I think the suddenly cool weather after the heat is also getting at me, also I am trying to do far too much at the moment which is pretty typical, I have this awful feeling that the days are rolling by rather fast and I want to get so much in before I am history!
Silly and sad but true.
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Monday, February 07, 2011

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Cyclone Yasi, category 5

The largest cyclone in living memory is bearing down upon the North Queensland coast, expected to cross the coast at about 10.30 our time with winds of 300 km /hour, at least 700 ml of rain, my heart goes out to all who have to go through 10 to 15 hours of the relentless winds, possible catastrophic loss to homes and businesses.
As if Queensland hasnt had enough.
My very poor sketch and notes will remind me for ever.
I wonder what we will wake up to tomorrow.
I am glad I live where we have devastating fires, but not this.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Using pencil

From my sketchbook using an unfamiliar substance, 2b pencil. I normally sketch with a pen and dont like using pencil as it is something I dont use very often.
Silly, so many people only use pencil as with a pen they cant rub out. I like the fact that when I use a pen I cant rub out.
My lines are a bit wonky here, but this a composite of a few things I could see while sitting in my chair watching tv.
It has finally cooled down after two horrendously hot days.
Now poor North Queensland is having to cope with one of the largest cyclones for ages bearing down upon it. I think when Tracy hit Darwin we didnt have the vivid images in lurid colour of what it looks like as we do now. I think it makes it look all the more frightening and I hope all who live in that area and who will be affected will be safe.
I think it will even affect our weather eventually, although of course you never know with cyclones, they are very unpredictable things.
Now it has cooled down a bit here it makes you sleepy, but things still have to be done so the hoses are on as the garden is terribly thirsty, my deep sand is not terribly good for the garden but at least we have our own water, from so far, nice and full dams to water it with.
Adelaide was very hot this morning when we were up there, it is so nice to come home and find cool breezes as the house had warmed up and the air conditioner doesnt work well over 38degrees C and we were over 42 for two days.