In the last month or so I've been secretly playing with Zazzle. It's a print-on-demand site where you can set up a store and upload your own designs. If someone likes your work on various products, they can buy them online, directly from the site. I've read mixed reviews - it's big, it's unwieldy, there's a lot of rubbish in great quantities etc etc etc...but I have been having a great time creating designs from some of my old drawings and illustrations. For some reason I really really love putting things together into collections and seeing how they look. It has become a slightly obsessive hobby...but I'm having fun, even if I haven't sold a thing.
June 28, 2010
June 25, 2010
Huntly Power Station, 8.15am. It's a cold winter morning and we're on our way to Hamilton for the day to teach a theatre workshop. The light is intense and glowing, but all colours disappear shortly afterwards under a grim blanket of rain. Pukeko trot around on the river bank. The air smells of dampness and smoke. We're going to work, but just being on the road feels like the start of a holiday. Roll on July!
June 21, 2010
I am of course good at giving advice to other people. I don't of course listen to the sometimes-sensible voice in my head that tells me I need a break, to step away from the computer now, that winter usually means discontent, and that the only way round it is to plan an escape. Escape in July means to run away from the plodding rainy sameness of everyday life. This time I'm going to listen to the voice. I'm taking L and we're going away somewhere, anywhere. Fiji or Paris would be marvellous, but anything more than half an hour away will do. The school holidays are looming, and it's time to flee our tiny little house and escape into the wilderness. Or somewhere. I'm excited.
June 17, 2010
The sun has come out after weeks of endless rain. It is warm enough to wear a T shirt, although this morning the grass was crusted with ice. Fifteen years worth of washing is now flapping gently on the line, and a baby breeze is wafting through the window. My mood has suddenly lifted a couple of notches, and I even feel like baking biscuits. Amazing what a little bit of sunlight can do...
June 14, 2010
This week's Illustration Friday theme is 'ripple'. It comes from illustrator Kelly Light, who has set up the Ripple project to raise funds for wildlife affected by the Gulf oil spill. The artworks are each available for a $10 donation, which will go to either The Institute for Marine Mammal Studies or The International Bird Rescue Research Center.
Here's what I'm donating - it's an etching I did a while back, but it seemed to fit the theme. I like the idea that little acts from a lot of people can add up to make a big difference. You can see all the work, submit your own, or make a donation here, at the Ripple blog.
June 9, 2010
I love getting letters. Real ones, inside envelopes, sitting in the letterbox like little treasures. I used to love sending them, and when I was a kid would spend ages decorating the envelopes with complicated drawings and blobs of sealing wax with my initials stamped into them. I still go on about how much I love letters but I don't send them, hardly ever, and usually only if I'm sending a birthday card. Every year I write on my list of resolutions: I will write more letters. And I never do. What will I have to reminisce over when I am 84? I don't think I will be spending hours looking at my old email archives.
The other day on our walk to school, we met an elderly man, clutching a letter. It had a stamp on it, ready to send. He asked me where all the mail boxes had gone. "There just aren't any!" he said, and he was right. They have started to disappear from the neighbourhood, mysteriously and unannounced. Today, NZ Post have said that they will be cutting down delivery days, because there isn't enough mail to deliver.
So, to boost the revenues of NZ Post, help me be a better person and rediscover my old love of letterwriting, I'm going to take part in The Envelope Project, set up by Pip at Meet Me at Mikes. The idea is that you create a decorated envelope, fill it with some tiny crafty or handmade non-heavy things, and send it to Pip. The contents of all the envelopes will be posted on Flickr, and at the end of six weeks one lucky person will receive the lot. Anyone, anywhere in the world can take part! L is going to do it too. Results to be posted here soon...
June 6, 2010
Illustration Friday theme this week is 'trail'. The Continuing Adventures of... at the moment, the boy without a name. He seems to live in a land where it's always snowing and there are no other people. It's not snowing here, but it's raining. Again. Rain, however, is very good weather for drawing, endless cups of tea, and staring out the window.
June 1, 2010
I don't really ever get tired of it. Well I do, but it takes a long time and meanwhile everyone else is probably hoping I'll forget the recipe. It really is the best soup for rainy days, and no child would ever guess that there was a lentil in it. I lie and say it's tomato soup, just like out of a tin.
I'm practicing illustrating recipes at the moment. Have a look at this site - They Draw & Cook (Recipe Renditions by Artists, Illustrators & Designers). Soup again tonight! It is officially the first day of winter, after all.