Through The Grapevine

Intertwining conversations

Get the creative juices flowing baby!!!

This year January began with a list of New Year’s resolutions, as January normally does.  The difference is this year I’ve managed to keep to most of them.  My first and most major resolution was to inspire myself creatively; to enhance my life through art.  Now those that know me will know, although I’m creative in a business sense, I am in no way (or was in no way) blessed with any art skills.  Just to give you a quick insight into how unskilled I am at drawing, ask me to draw a stick man and then try figure out which blob is the head and which blob is his foot.  And yes, I do know a stick man is a combination of a number of straight lines and a circle for a head.  But circles and straight lines are not my fortei.

I told myself that art wasn’t only about drawing, and that painting wasn’t only about creating exact replicas.  I am perfectly capable of using my two hands to create something that people would value.  So with those issues aside I declared myself an ARTIST!

So, to begin I needed some equipment and a number of ‘arty’ tools.  I didn’t want to restrain myself to one type of art so I decided that I’d use my house as a muse, and anything I wanted changed or done I’d do myself.  I decided I wanted a chandelier, cushion covers, abstract paintings and photo frames to make my house a warm and cozy place to live.  I bought myself a fresh-out-the-box sewing machine (I’d NEVER sewn before), some bits-and-bobs from the haberdashery store and paints, brushes, canvases, wires and beads from my local Hobbey Craft.

GOLD and Antique Bronze were to be my theme colours, complimenting my dark brown furniture and maroon sofa. 

Task 1: Frames

I found three pine frames and sprayed them each a different colour, one gold, one maroon and antique bronze and another just the bronze.  I filled them with gorgeous photos of my boys on holiday taken by a dear friend of mine from Third Eye Photography (feast your eyes on his work – the baby is mine).

Task 3:  Cushion Covers

I got two pair of chocolate brown curtains out of a box in the attic.  Hung one pair up, and tore the other into pieces I could use to make cushions.  Braving the sewing machine I managed to make 4 cushion covers and matching seat cushions for my diningroom chairs.

Task 3: Photo Tree 

I found a beautiful branch in my son’s school grounds, thin and windy, reminiscent of a vine.  I took it home and spray painted it in antique gold.  I threaded a number of long wire pieces with small orange beads and wrapped them round all the twigs and the stork of the branch.  I purchased some green silk leaves and tied them onto the tree at intervals.  I used some of the beads for my chandeliers to create hanging jewels which I hung on the branch.  Then finally I hung photos with small wire hooks all over the ‘tree’.  It now stands proudly in my lounge and visitors never fail to pay it compliments.

Task 4: Abstract Painting (my favourite)

Using a combination of metallic acrylics and enamel paints I’ve managed to create a few pieces which I’m really proud of, and happy to showcase on my wall.  One of my personal favourites is a print of my hand on a black canvas.  I made a thick blend using a number of metallic pastel paints, stuck my hand into the paint and transfered the print to the canvas.  The metallics on the black background give the hand print the same array of colours you’d see when you look at the inside of a clam shell.  I like!!

Task 5: Chandelier

So far this task is unfinished as it’s very hard to get a modern frame to hang my beads from.  I’ve done a lot of bead work and the finished product is going to be amazing.  I guess I’m going to have to teach myself how to weld!

So that’s it.  I’m constantly thinking of new challenges to add to my list of things to make.  All ears open to suggestions.

If you’re keen on this type of stuff, I recently found a gem for ideas and instructions, it’s called ReadyMade magazine, they also have a book and they’ve got some crazy retro ideas.  Very Cool.  If you can figure out how to do the balloon light shades in one of their articles please let me know cause I’ve tried and failed miserably every time.

My camera’s broken so when I get a new one I’ll post an update with some pictures of my work.

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