A smack of jellyfish

redwork bird

As promised, here’s the finished redwork bird design from yesterday, done up as a mock kitchen journal cover using the font Asterism, and a woven fabric texture from Picmonkey, to sort of give me an idea of how it might look.

Also some very small (the size of a playing card) watercolors from this morning…just playing with ideas and stuff. I really wanted to jump-start  a big painting, but didn’t feel well…think I have picked up someone’s flu. It was bad enough to prevent me from heading in to work. So I consoled myself with these little things…they sort of serve as warm-up exercises for the large painting I had in mind; whether I use all the motifs or not is not important…what matters is that I’ve dumped my ideas somewhere for reference, and my mistakes on these teeny-tiny canvases will possibly save me from making the same ones on a larger scale in acrylics.

terrarium jelly

An idea that has been with me for a long time (too long!): a jellyfish that is also a terrarium. Because the two forms have always seemed to be crying out for each other, in my imagination.
There’s something very right about this combination.

muumuu jelly

A jellyfish like a pink silk muumuu with pleated ribbons.

crocheted jelly

Not happy with this one: Just. Too. Much.
Looks like the sort of horrible lampshade you sometimes come across at a Salvation Army shop. I like the tentacles, though.

beaded jelly

The Meh Jellyfish…every smack of jellyfish has to have one: kinda boring, lacks spark. That beaded curtain was a really lazy, unimaginative, clichéd way to finish what might have been an okay exumbrella. (That’s that outer, umbrella-looking part of the jellyfish. I looked it up just now.) Maybe if I transplanted the tentacles from the crocheted lamp jellyfish…


One interpretation of mangroves.

Speaking of mangroves, check out my accidentally fabulous tomato plant, growing like nobody’s business in the middle of a mangrove creek! It sprouted from some kitchen scraps thrown onto a basil plant! Pretty soon it had ousted the withering basil and become the star plant on the F/V SonOfAGun.

sea tomatoes

Rather red…

redwork bird WIP*long, happy sigh*

This Sunday was spent just the way I have fantasized about spending a Sunday for many, many weeks: no craft market, no dinner parties, no social commitments, no dramas, no urgent errands, no housekeeping. I got up at a lazy 8 a.m. and—after breakfast and getting a huge pot of coffee ready—set to work with the aim of getting one simple project done, from start to finish, in one day.

I took an idea for a new journal cover design and moved it from daydream…to doodle…to finished illustration. In these pictures it isn’t quite done…but dusk came along just as I put in the finishing touches of opaque white ink, and then it was too dark to photograph the illustration properly.

redwork bird 2This is going to be the cover fabric design for a hand bound “Recipe Journal”…the title, in handwritten Spencerian script, was supposed to go inside the empty label, but I’m glad I held off from writing straight onto the illustration…text can always be added in Photoshop, later. I think I’ll keep the label blank, so that the design can be used for other things besides a recipe notebook.

redwork bird 1I loved devoting the entire day to making something. Now it’s dark outside and my eyes are a little strained from all the fine brushwork I did, so I’ll probably spend the rest of the evening listening to music in the dark and then turn in early.

It’s been a perfect, perfect Sunday. Hope your weekend was peaceful and satisfying, too!

Process: Pencil drawing (4B), watercolours on cotton rag paper. Redwork details (I was trying to capture the feel of embroidered redwork stitches) in matte flow acrylic paint applied with a fine-tipped gutta applicator. Opaque white details (not pictured) using white ink and a mapping pen.

The self-sufficient love letter…

lovegramme print Collage

“For love is sufficient unto love.” —Kahlil Gibran

And the Self-sufficient Love Letter is sufficient unto the Post Office…

Finally finished this for my friend Kat Tan-Conte, graphic designer, artist, all-around superhuman and the voice behind the blog Zero The One.

I photographed the pieces of red stitching on paper, straightened them up a bit, and then cut and pasted them into place in Gimp. A little bit of cleaning up—I don’t know how to do it properly, it’s very, very rough!—and then had the file printed in color to see what it would look like.

Anyway, the idea is to write your letter of Love (or other Demons) on the blank side, and then fold the sheet along certain lines so that the letter becomes its own envelope. Affixing the postage stamp (none of your soulless postage meter impressions, go and buy an amazing stamp!) to the letter also seals it. Voila! A non-Post-Office approved aerogramme that saves on paper. Love, and nothing but love—red, curly, er, cloyingly ornate—in the mail. ;D

No idea when Kat will release the zine in which you can find the template for the SSLL, but as soon as it’s out I will be sure to let you know!

My perforated heart…a love letter

perforated love letter WIP

Here’s a sneak peek of a project I’m doing in collaboration with my friend Katerina Bona Vora of Zero the One

✕✕✕ ✕✕✕ ✕✕✕ ✕✕✕  ♡  ✕✕✕ ✕✕✕ ✕✕✕ ✕✕✕

I drew the design on 2mm. graphing paper, and then used the same as a guide to perforate a sheet of 220 gsm. watercolor paper. I’m working the stitching using a single thread of DMC embroidery floss, in a shades-of-fresh-to-dried-blood variegated red…

perforated love letter WIP

perforated love letter WIP

perforated love letter WIP

Come to think of it, this piece has the same feel of this other ‘love letter’ that I made 3 years ago, using the same variegated skein of thread…

The Midnight Velada