I’ve been busy sketching again – on screen and off screen
I’m trying to find a way of working which combines both watercolour and digital media. I don’t want to work purely in the watercolour medium as, although this will give me something tangible to sell, it is the digital aspect which is going to allow me to promote my work. It will allow me to offer animation, based upon watercolour to prospective Patreons.
This is important, moreso as we move onto our narrowboat – very soon. The sketch above is one based in the garden where we currently reside, sketched on screen and off and features a bucket – I see it as easing me in to being by the water – one bucket at a time 🙂
Attended Upholstery Class – Session 4 last Tuesday
No more staples – hurray!
So I worked out the knot for my springs (see Upholstery Class – Session 3) and managed to obtain what I hope is a comfortable platform to sit on. Just like before, time flew past so as Tuesday comes around again, I will have to get my skates on.
I’ve been spending some time thinking about fabric. I have a length I am going to use for a cushion
It’s the Star Wars Build Your Own R2-D2 from DeAgostini. I’ve been collecting the weekly published magazines (I wasn’t aware they were weekly when I started <emoji>). I’ve bought up to Issue 60 and I finally started the build last week.
The reason I waited so long to start building is that I didn’t have episode 6. I eventually had to purchase it from ebay – and then I was off.
The robot is a 1:2 scale replica of R2-D2 from Star Wars with electronic components and it can be controlled from a smartphone or tablet! And it’s a movie accurate representation.
I love getting to see the inner workings and it ties in quite nicely with the robots I’ve painted for card designs. I’m going to expand this.
Once again, I seem plagued by staples (see Upholstery Class – Session 2). I have a steadily building pile from opening the magazine bags so it’s not the most earth-friendly
It’s a fascinating challenge and I’m enjoying the process. It’s building into something spectacular. The only problem is – what do I do with it once I’ve completed it? There won’t be room on the narrowboat for it!
Attended Upholstery Class – Session 3 this Tuesday
I got to the session this week but guess what? I forgot my glasses! I had to feel my way around the chair via the staples, by hand. Yes, there were still more to remove (see last week’s blog). Will this ever end?
Spring is in the Air
The weather was better and it almost felt like Spring was in the air. Just for a few hours, then it had gone again. Chased off by the Beast from the East’s younger brother no doubt.
Talking of spring, that was my next task after I had finally pulled the last staple. I had to start lashing down the springs which involves untying and re-seating them. They are a bit lumpy. They are however, tied down with a complicated knot, which I tried to fathom out but it got the better of me (especially without my glasses). Even a bit of internet search afterwards did knot help this time.
Anyway I left, knot knowing whether I would be able to lash the springs down. A thorny problem I’ll leave until next week.
Now, where did I put my glasses?
(They were in my bag the whole time – I never actually forgot them 😖*)
I’ve been working on the idea of murpworks Afloat and it’s developed a little further. murpworks Afloat combines our move to living on a narrowboat with being creative.
The porthole was inspired by a photograph taken in the narrowboat we’re buying.
The idea is to use the round porthole window as a view on our world and incorporate images and scenes; real and fantastical. The porthole will capture images we see, when we glance out and also scenes that pass by. It will combine the use of stills & animation, watercolour & digital media. The image above is the first output from this, entitled Porthole Reeds.
The image mixes both watercolour and digital manipulation to convey the serenity of a green world. There, that almost sounds arty 🎨 😉
Attended Upholstery Class – Session 2 this Tuesday
Well! What can I say? I’d heard of Deja Vu but this was ridiculous! I went down to the shop/studio at Sweetman and White Tuesday morning, all keen to get stuck into the upholstery. I was greeted by the lovely Claire, met my fellow upholsterers, picked up where I had left off from last week, stopped, looked around and the session was finished! And guess what? I was still removing staples from out of the chair!
It turns out that the chair I am re-upholstering is built entirely out of staples! I don’t think there is any upholstery in it…
Time just flies. That was Session 2 over! However, with this in mind it was suggested I take the chair home this week and remove 1 or 2 staples in readiness for the next session. If I hadn’t, the course would be over and I would still be taking staples out 😉
I purchased a staple taker-outer and I’ve since removed a lot more staples. I should have it licked into shape in time for next week’s session. Then, I can hopefully get onto something a bit more taxing and interesting.
I’ve chosen and purchased some material for a cushion that is going to take pride of place on the chair. I have an idea for the fabric I want to cover the chair in but I’ll leave that until my next post. It can be the big reveal.
They say a new brush sweeps clean but who are they? Anyway, I’m hoping these new brushes help me continue to develop my watercolour painting.
They’re Daler <> Rowney synthetic Aquafine watercolour brushes, three Round; a 0, a 2/0 and a 2 and one Liner; a 10/0 (it must mean something to someone 😉 )
They bristles are synthetic, so no animals were de-furred in the making of them. I hate the thought of squirrels or boars running around with parts of their ‘coat’ missing. Especially in this cold weather 🙁
The brush heads – bristles are very small, which is fine as all my work tends to be tiny – no big swathes of canvas to cover.
I’m currently thinking about what to paint with them and I’ll update on how I find them once I’ve had a chance to use them in earnest. I need to start something soon as I’d hate to be thought of as someone with ‘all the gear and no idea’ lol!
I have signed up for an upholstery class, locally in Warminster at Sweetman and White with the lovely proprieter Claire Matthew, who is passionate about upholstery. It’s a ten week course, of ten sessions and I’m going to use it to re-upholster a chair I have.
The chair in question is a small Laura Ashley Slipper chair, bought in 1987 in Bath. It’s currently covered in a Sugar Pink/White striped fabric that’s quite jaded and so needs a new lease of life. It’s currently deeply buttoned, piped and has got a valance.
The smudges you can see on the seat are the children’s hand prints from when they were very little. They used to pull themselleves up by it and balance, eating a rusk or two. So it’s for treasured memories this chair makes it aboard the narrowboat 😉
Today being my first session and I had to transport the chair down to the shop premises. Luckily, I can leave it there for the period of the course , so I don’t have to keep bringing it backwards and forwards (which is good, as it’s quite bulky to carry).
It’s going to be a long process, today I spent most of the time removing the staples that had been used attach the valance and hessian underneath the chair. I did however find an original ticket detailing the chair’s details.
I’m going to add it back where I found it when I cover it in the new fabric
The chair is going to live aboard our narrowboat. It’s going to be part of the Upcycle – a re-use of things we own, re-purposed for life afloat 🙂
I’m currently thinking about what type of material to use (it needs to be a bit thicker, more hard-wearing) and what colour it should be (the pink is too twee, I need something less bedroomy) . I’ll leave that for another update though, when I’ve made up my mind.
Well, that’s all for this post but don’t forget to check back each week to follow my progress.
Now where’s that material catalogue…
Did you know that the word upholstery comes from the Middle English word; Upholder and points to a repairing of furniture rather than making from new – thank you Wikipedia
I’m currently working on a porthole illustration for murpworks Afloat
My inspiration is taken from one of the portholes on the narrowboat we’re going to be living aboard, with a little bit of artistic licence thown in. I want to use the porthole as a window on the world we’ll be living in, looking out into imagination.
murpworks Afloat Animations
My aim is to have a series of animations play in the window. I’m currently throwing ideas around and trying to come up with a list. It’s exciting to be at the start of a new project. I’m going to continue using Smith Micro‘s Anime Studio 11 for the animating bit.
I’m also updating the murpworks logo and it will also incorporate the porthole.