As planned, I put the ‘blocks’ together on the Zazzle site but it was very slow-going!
Making all the pieces exactly the same size on Zazzle was time-consuming so I had another try at fitting them together on my computer before uploading the whole piece, keeping my fingers crossed that I wouldn’t run out of memory. At one point I did get a message saying that Windows was increasing my memory and warning that some requests might be denied in the meantime, so I left it alone for a while and went off and did a few jobs around the house.
When I came back I was able to continue and this cushion has the larger pattern on one side and the smaller one on the reverse –
This Ipad case is a good example of what I mentioned last week – I hadn’t anticipated that the pattern, when repeated, would turn out to have such a prominent 'slanted' effect!
Meanwhile, spring seems to have begun to arrive in my garden. And seeing buds on the daffodils, I felt a strong urge to paint some! The daffodil is the Birth Month Flower for March; it is also the traditional Welsh flower featured on St David’s Day cards, as well as Persian New Year cards.
So I decided that treating myself to a bunch of daffodils when I went shopping would be money well spent. But I was disappointed to find that the only ones left in the shops were the short, straight-stemmed kind with no leaves – really boring and not at all what I was looking for!
One of the things that I love about daffodils is the way they move, ‘tossing their heads in sprightly dance’, as Wordsworth wrote. Somewhere I have a sketch from long ago of just a couple of long-stemmed daffodils, with their leaves and I remember that it was their ‘gesture’ that appealed to me and compelled me to draw them.
But the nearest I could find in town was a little pot of tiny daffodils – apparently I had left it too late for a bunch! - so I bought it and began to draw them. I often draw flowers over and over from different angles before I paint them. It’s almost like 'getting to know' them so that when I come to paint, their shapes are really familiar to me.
The trouble with this particular pot of daffodils, the only one left in town, was that all the flowers were facing inwards! So I took a bit of ‘artistic licence’ and moved the left-hand clump over to the right when I drew them, to make a much better composition.
I had hoped to try out my new water soluble crayons at last and I started out with some lovely blue sugar paper to give a bright sunshiny background. But the colours, dry, weren’t strong enough to show up on the blue background and the paper didn’t respond at all well to being made wet.
So I moved on to some watercolour paper. That worked better, but I felt that the effect of the crayons was too heavy for my ‘tossing their heads’ daffodils and I ended up painting them in ordinary, transparent watercolour, after drawing them with watercolour pencils.
One painting has formed the basis of several ranges of cards. But in case you're thinking that I've saved time by using one design for several occasions, these, with all their variations and their search engine-optimised titles, descriptions and keywords are going to take hours to upload! It will probably take me all week - at least!
But I also have an idea sketched out for a ‘Thank You’ card for the lovely staff at the Endoscopy Unit at Ysbyty Ystrad Fawr, who were so kind and went out of their way to make me feel as comfortable as it's possible to be with such an uncomfortable procedure, a couple of weeks ago.
I can't wait to get started on it . . .