My first VLOG!!!!

Exclamation mark city, because taking a video of yourself and putting it out there is just scary.

And it is one of the most infuritating things to keep recording video to have it disappear into thin air.

Thankfully I have had good comments from the first two people to see it, so I have not pulled the video and pretended it did not exist :)

‘Bravery’ is my word for 2011, and this definitely felt brave.


Street Art Exhibition Inspiration


We went away for the weekend, and while reading the local rag I discovered that there was a street art exhibition on, where they had brought street art artists from all around New Zealand to paint the backs of buildings and you could walk around watching them work.  We went around on the first day, and I really thought I had taken more photos, but clearly you will see I didn’t!  I know on a couple I felt a bit embarrassed taking photos, so maybe that was the case for more than a couple as it turns out!  And some had not yet been started when we first went around.  But still this post is chocka full of photos as it is.

Before Photos:

I persuaded my beloved into going back on the second day to look at the progress, and oh my gosh.  Some of the works were just knock your socks off inspiration that took your breath away.  Some of the artists were really happy to talk about their process and I was so filled up.  I was looking forward to the weekend away, but this just made everything perfect.  Such a well organised exhibition on the face of it.  A map was produced with where the artists were going to be, and you just wandered around.  Looking and feasting on the visuals.

Such differences between all the artists.  I loved it.  The children loved seeing the progress and Sebastian especially was quite excited about how far the pieces had come.  And somewhere I have the pamphlet with all the artist’s names, and when I hopefully find this, I will match names and photos on this post.

And now I am going back to work, felting and making cards and tags and sewing and making mini books, and plaster and burlap magnets, and mini art works ready to be framed and getting things ready to package up and send up to be sold.  Why I leave these things to the last minute I will never know.  A lot of it has been the thinking behind the projects and the preparation.  Now it is starting to all come together.

Masks and bookbinding…

The last week of the school holidays have gone flying by, as Friday is nearly upon us, and Labour weekend beckons, with some sunshine scheduled which will be a welcome treat.

I have been bookbinding this week.  I made two books, one will be an art journal for this, the other a traveling sketch book.  They have been a learning curve.  And swear words have been muttered as careful measurements were taken and then I discovered that they were taken from the wrong place.  But next time I bind books like this, I will know somewhat what I am doing.

But I am happy with how they came out overall.  And they look so professional, and should be able to be thrown in a bag and carted around and I love the way they feel so robust ready to be played in.

And I have worked on this painting for the Butterfly Effect

The Masks We Cling To

I love all the texture and I am very happy with this, despite having another idea about how this was going to look when I first started.

I read this week, where another artist (I can’t remember who) mentioned in passing how much more confident they felt as an artist having the skills to bring their vision to life and make the painting look how they mean it to look.  And I thought it was interesting given I feel I have gained more confidence as an artist by letting my original vision be changed as the painting develops and comes through on to the canvas.  And how I love all the differences in this art world that helps us all develop our own styles and bring our pieces to life in a way that satisfies our muse.  There is no right way or wrong way or one clear path to follow.  I love that.  The sameness and differences for all of us.  All following our muse where ever she leads.

And I made a commitment this week to something that both terrifies me, and excites me to goosebump level, so will be some exciting news on the horizon.  One of my big  dreams is on the cliff top of happening thanks to connections on this huge small interconnected world online.

And I am linking to Paint Party Friday in advance as well.  :)

Have a good weekend everyone.

Busy, busy, busy

I have been so busy today.  Playing with burlap and plaster of paris and paint and beeswax.  Making magnets.

And card making.

And applying for exhibitions for next year.

And doing some more tinkering with this blog.

And finishing this painting..well working more on it at any rate.  I haven’t signed it yet, so it possibly isn’t finished.  But it is finished for today.

And I am linking it to Paint Party Friday.

I first posted the start of it here. The wing is book text covered in paint. And the rest is a mixture of paint and oil pastels.

And now I am going out to round up the children and do something before the rain sets back in, two weeks of holidays and the first week has been rain…good for the oldest who has had chicken pox, but I think cabin fever is setting in…

Discovering what isn’t our style…and the power of the redo

Last year? I did a course over at Willowing on Mythical Magical Makings, and this picture was the extent of what I did.  It has sat unfinished all this time, because though I LOVE art classes, I love art classes to learn new things and for inspiration, not to make what the teacher is making.  And though this was not based on Tamara’s work at all, I just didn’t feel it.  It didn’t feel like me either, and so it sat there.  Just taking up room and annoying me.  Completely unfinished and not looking to be finished anytime soon.

And this week over at the Butterfly effect the theme is wings.  And I thought about this, but did not have a way forward.  So I had another idea I was going to do.  And then just before I went to sleep last night I wondered about scraping the wings and dripping sumi ink all over it.

And I did not get up immediately to do it, although I thought about it, because it is school holidays and I don’t need to add tiredness to the mix.  But this morning, before sorting out the children’s breakfast I tried scraping the wings.  And though I did intend to scrap all of the modelling paste off, I was done just roughing it up a bit.

And then I put masking fluid on her face and skin.

After that dried I dripped sumi ink on it, and then got lost in splattering and smearing paint.  Just playing, because frankly it was hard to wreck something I disliked so much.

And after I had finished smearing paint around I peeled off the masking fluid, and did some more work on her.  And I am so much happier…so much happier that I took multiple close ups!

She feels a lot more like me than she did before I started this morning.

Interview questions and ramdom photos

Amy posted a series of interview questions and people are linking their answers in her comments.

This is late, but better than not doing it at all. The intention had been to get these done before now, but distractions have abounded this week…chicken pox children, painting planners (see previous post!), and setting up my online shop…equals lateness…but here now.  And interspersed are random photos :)

One of my favourite camping photos

1. what is your name and stuff? and any other good information. like bank account details.

My name is Natasha.  Backwards it is Ah Satan.  That was pointed out to me about ten years ago.  Unfortunately my beloved was there when it was pointed out to me, and so Ah Satan I have been looking for you was a catch cry for a long time.  I started going by Tarsh for a long time.  Now it is only remembered when the children play up…as in…what would I expect from Satan’s spawn…

My middle name is Ann without an e.  I always hated it, it is so boring,  Maybe because I also loved Anne of Green Gables.  But there are 6 generations of women in my family who all have Ann as their middle name.  When I was younger I thought I wouldn’t use Ann.  Or if I did I would slip an “e” on it.  But I had a daughter and Victoria Ann Josephine she is…And now there are 7 generations of women with Ann as a middle name.

I have been admitted to the bar, and worked as a lawyer, but I lost faith in the system with my own legal battles and can’t imagine doing that again. But I specialised in criminal defence.  I left law school very idealistic still.  My values and sensibilities remain as strong in the justice system even now.  I seem to have an opinion that does not run to mainstream views.

And for a while I worked in policy and research.  But internal politics are fricken awful.  And work that is supposed to help and make a difference gets lost in amongst egos.  And I may have had rose-tinted glasses, but I didn’t expect it to that extent.  But I loved the potential of what could be achieved.  But now I am an artist.  And I love that.  And I am sure my other skills will find their own way into the world in they way they are meant to be used.

I have one cat, and until earlier this year we had a frog.  Called BJ Bear (named courtesy of my daughter).

My favourite photo of my daughter

2. what is super hot about you?

My hair and my eyes, and I like my breasts too.  And I have good lips.

3.  don’t lie or cheat: what is under your couch right now?

A bead and a hair clip

A recent photo of Sebastian posing...

4.  when was the last time you shaved your legs?

This morning

5.  what did you have for breakfast?

:) Thyroid drugs, tonic, stove top expresso, cod liver oil capsule, vitamin c, vitamin b, green smoothie…supplement and drug city around here  and now it is nearly 9 and I am drinking lemon grass and ginger tea.

6. if you could choose a new name, what would you name yourself?

Apart from the Ah Satan period I don’t mind my name but I used to really want my name spelt with a “j”.  At 9 I even wrote my name like that for a while.  With a “j”.

7.  have you ever had plastic surgery?

No, but I am not opposed.  I sometimes think I would be a botox person, but needles on my face scare me a little.

Children indulging their mother...if begrudgingly

8. are you afraid of the dark?No, except I once saw part of the Omen movie when I was 17 and for two weeks I kept hearing noises and sensing things and slept with a bible under my pillow.  Just in case. But otherwise not scared.9. are you a hermit?I am not a true hermit, but I can have hermit tendencies because some people annoy me and I don’t mind my own company.10.  why do you blog?So I can see how far I have come.  And so I can meet like minded souls.

I have a new planner…sort of…

In the midst of going through all my stuff last week I found an old planner I had, that I had never used, except for a couple of days. And two addresses that were in it. It was black and impersonal and very not me. And while I intended to use it to be more productive and professional, I never did. And I was going to gift it to the one of the children. And as it sat on my dining room table I glanced at it and wondered what would happen if I painted it.

Because if I am going to give it to the children then it wouldn’t have mattered if I wrecked it, so I grabbed my paints.

And oh my freaking gosh. I love this now!!! It was the first time I had embossed and it isn’t perfect, but I love that anyway.

I also painted the inside. And all of it has had a couple of coats of polyurethane.

And I gutted the inside. I threw away the professional, impersonal insides and made new dividers that I painted. And so far that is where I have stopped. Because it was getting close to procrastination of other things that need to get done this week.

But all the dividers were painted in a colour of the rainbow, and then a pink one. And they are all in rainbow order – ROY-G-BIV. And while nothing is fixed yet I have roughly decided the folders will be:

1. To-dos
2. Routines
3. Planner
4. Business
5. Dreams
6. Money
7. Address details
8. Snipperts/notes/ideas

Though I will just try these out for a while. See what works and what doesn’t before any labels get attached, because more than anything else I want to actually use this.

I am thinking the dividers will all end up as a mini work of art with a pithy quote of inspiration, but we will see.

I wanted to get on with the doing, rather than the prettying up and getting it perfect, because if I wait for the perfect, it will never happen.

So far I have just clipped some holes in paper from to-do pad I had and slipped those in. But I have ideas for the planner etc, and how I want it to look that I will actually use it, so that will be my job over the next wee bit. Getting my crap together.

As I begin to make this thing I do my business, and make business plans and all that other grown up stuff…I have somewhere to put it all, even if in my perfectionist OCD-ness I end up redoing it five times, it is time to make a start.