Saturday, 6 October 2012

Is there anyone out there??????

Hello everyone, I have been very naughty not keeping on top of my blog. I don't know, but things just seem to get in my way, don't ask me what though?????? I don't seem to have got much artwork done either. The weather has now got down to lovely temperatures AND you can sleep at night, walk the dog at normal times and generally get on with your life without dripping sweat everywhere. I think this summer has been one of the longest and hottest since we came to live here 24 years ago. PHEW!!!!!
Recently I bought a book by Flora Bowley. I have followed her blog for sometime now. I love her work. But, as I have a job letting go with my artwork, I thought I would give it a go. I have really enjoyed the experience. I have made a nice mess all over the floor, walls and myself but what the heck.........
I'm really sorry I didn't take pictures from the start of these two paintings as it is quite an unsual process but, very enjoyable. The one below I am working virtually as we speak. Just waiting for the paint to dry.

I forgot to take pictures when I first started so here are two works in progress, lots of work to do though. I will keep ploughing on. Hopefully I will not get too involved and start fiddling..... Bet I do though. HELP HELP.
This book has been a real find. I'm loving it.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Explanation of my Blog name

Hello there everyone, thought I would give you a quick explanation of my blog title. My name as you all know is Melva. The name my parents gave me why I do not know. Whilst being brought up in England it was quite a novelty. People would say that's an unusual name, where did your parents get that from. All I knew was that my mum had a pen friend in America with the same name. On moving to Spain I found quite quickly that it is quite normal. Hence every time I am asked my name here it is greeted with uncontrolled laughter. Much to my concern I had to try and find out why. A trip to the local supermarket was all that was needed. All will be revealed below.
Well here is a self portrait. It's hardly smoked salmon. Check the price I come very cheap. All I can say is the local village name around here is Caravaca which roughly translated is Cow face so perhaps mines not so bad after all ??????

I have been really lazy of late due to work and it being so hot plus I haven't really had the urge but I will show a journal page that have played with.

This believe it or not is a picture of my husband New Years Eve in his lucky bag contents minus flower behind his ear. I then worked up the photo in photo shop. I have added cut outs from magazines then coloured them with oil pastels. The background gesso and watercolour paints. Not a very good picture I am afraid. Will have to try harder.

Sunday, 10 June 2012


Back again for little bit of blogging. My artwork seems to have taken a back seat at the moment as it is so hot and I need to acclimatise again. I do this every year. Always saying the same thing "it's much hotter this year than it was last year this time" but no it's not, it's always the same HOT HOT HOT.........
I can't believe it was only last weekend, that we all were watching the Diamond Jubilee on the telly. It's the first time in all the years I have lived here (23 years phew!!!!) that I would have liked to have been back in rainy England being part of the momentous occasion. Even in the rain!!!!!! am I mad or what? The river pageant was wonderful. We had a few small parties out here with fetes, bunting the lot. But it?s just not the same.

We have even had to have our poor dog clipped because of the heat. He isn't liking it at all. I think he feels a bit like Goliath. It has sapped his strength.

This is what I have been up to this week. I'm still playing with the salt & cling film.

This is a close up of Larry the supposedly white llamas head. It's not to great a shot of him really.

This is one of my journal pages. This ones for you Virginia I said the giraffe would be named after you so here's GINTY. There's still work to be done here. As usual.......

It is a two page spread. So it will take me double the time to finish. Knowing how I work it will be in a few years time.
 Well off I trot to get myself a nice cool drink. I think I deserve it.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

The sun has got his hat on !!!!!!!!!!

Hello there all. Got up really early this morning. Have got all my jobs done. So now I can sit down and enjoy myself. A little blog hopping, a little painting, a little radio listening, perhaps even a little telly watching. Who knows, a little bit of what you fancy does you good so they say.......
My husband John is really on the mend now after his meeting with the huge Mastiff dog. Our little dog has stopped shaking also. That is until the next firework goes off. Living in Spain that's a problem. So he will sit shake in the shower tray in our en-suite until he thinks it's safe to come out.

Here he is Ronaldo. I have used watercolour both in tube and liquid. It was sprayed with water then cling film scrunched up and left to dry. I then resprayed and left sea salt on it to dry. Brushed it off and then went to work.

You can see here where the salt did its job. I love the texture it makes. Amazing what you see just from a blob. Hey ho!!! back off to the drawing board........

I have been reading the magazine "The Artist" of late. There is an article in last months by Jean Haines called " Be brave with watercolour. " I found this article very interesting and had to have had a little go. The result is above. Not brilliant but I am definitely going to try working this way again. Slapping it on using cling film & salt the lot. When the paint was put on  a large yellow blob appeared. Low and behold there he was Ronaldo the rat. Working this way picking out parts of your work to expand on is real fun. I loved it. It might help free up my work a little, hopefully?

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Long time away.

Long time no post!!!!!!!
Things have been a little hectic here. My husband and our little rescue dog were attacked by a stray dog. A very large Mastiff  (and massive he was). No fisherman's tale this, size of a small pony??????? or so I have been told. John ended up at the hospital and that has been  on-going ever since. Not from a bite but falling down in the melee. He is now having to have physio everyday. But at least he can walk and drive now. For a week he couldn't do anything. He does have a very fetching strip of cerise pink tape running from the top of his leg to his knee. Just the right colour I thought. Our dog is OK but very nervous. Needless to say the dog was never found. We have reported it to the police. But the huge thing must have gone into hiding.......
Thought I would show you what I have been up to of late.
This is me getting a little messy with spray paints and stencils. Plus a little black gesso.
Still had time to fiddle. While husbands recuperating.

This is the reverse side of the page.

Another page. I have used some texture paste on this, and a few other bits and bobs.

This is an on-going drawing in coloured pencil of a friend of our's cat. I'm afraid it's taken a long time  because I just seem to get bored with it. Oh dear!! shouldn't say that. So every now and then out of the cupboard he comes and sees a little daylight. It sharpens up my pencil skills I suppose.

Saturday, 7 April 2012

Playing with Photoshop

Happy Easter everyone, I am sitting playing with Photoshop at the moment. I know I should be doing all the mundane things in life i.e housework, gardening, ironing. Oh no!!!! not me. I am locked away in my little room, playing. I wish I could find someone local to me to really show me the workings of this fabulous bit of kit. But no such luck. I have been using a book by Susan Tuttle called Digital Expressions which for me is brilliant, she takes you through things so easily. Well,  like you really haven't a grasp on anything. That's good for me then!!!!!!!!  It is a little frustrating sometimes as some of the jargon used in the book I suppose I should know. But HEY!!!!!!! what's a few mistakes and hours wasted?????? Well, here we go then.
 Bits of the pictures below where all used somehow????????

 This is one of the old buildings in our village it was used as a cultural centre but now we have a brand spanking new one. Very smart indeed.

This is were the local band has their practise sessions. We have a very good thriving local band. Nearly all the children here grow up playing an instrument of some kind. Which is wonderful.

This is a picture of our lovely old bridge that was damaged a few years ago in a very bad storm. This has now been replaced by a modern monstrosity. YUK!!!!!!!

This is a combination of the above photos fiddled with in Photoshop. I know I have a long way to go. But, I have to say I am enjoying myself in a frustrated kind of way.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Need to get back in my art room.....

These are a few pages from my art journal that I have been working on lately. I seem to have thrown every technique that I have learnt. Including UTEE. But have enjoyed the process.
This page has been sprayed with watercolour paints. Also a little UTEE that I stamped out.

This page even has a little bit of sewing going on. That's brilliant for me!!!!!! as I am not the worlds best seamstress. Plus the obligatory UTEE stamped out with coloured paper underneath.

This even I do not know what is going on here. Strange that. All of these pages where taken from a watercolour painting that wasn't working for me. The new age of recycling
My work at the moment seems to be going on a different path. Which I suppose is a good thing? I don't know where it's going though?????
Hopefully I will knuckle down and finish something soon?

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Quick Hello

Hello is there anyone out there???????
Just a quick blog to show you what I have been doing on my on line art course. I am so out of my comfort zone it is untrue.............We were told to make a mixed media background and then add a bit of girly glam. So here she is!!!!!!!!! This is the start of the work.
Below is a close-up of her fascinator (is that how you spell it)???????
Below is a close up of the building up of the layers in the mixed media work.
Again below is the texture of the stencilling. I really quite like this.
Hope You are all keeping warm???????

Sunday, 15 January 2012

San Antoni ( The blessing of the animals)

This is Biri with his horse getting ready to get the Saint in position on his cart for the parade.

This is the start of the parade. You can't quite see the two small children trying to push two rabbits in a cage, in a wheel barrow. (wheel barrows seem to play a big part in the proceedings today.
Here's Biri with the Patron Saint of the animals. Sorry it's not all gold and blingy. But it's all we could afford in these days of austerity.

This is breakfast being prepared in a wheel barrow (another one) You can see the wine and beer in the fore ground. This is very important to breakfast in Spain???????? My husband is taking the picture but as you can see not to far from the food.
Well today is San Antoni here in sunny Spain. The day when off you trot down to the village with any animal you wish to have blessed. Hence dogs, cats, rabbits birds were all being dragged down there this morning. My husband was up at the crack of dawn getting one of his friends horses ready. He didn't know he was about to be blessed as well. Bless him!!!!!! He ended up in the cart being paraded round the village. He only    went for the breakfast. This you can see being cooked in the make-shift barbeque, the wheel barrow. Pretty good at improvising the Spanish. I hasten to add John got home around three o clock after doing a bar crawl on the horse & trap. Not bad for a Sunday.........

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

The New Year 2012

Where did last year go to?????? Is it a sign of getting old. Yes, I hear you say. OH NO!!!!!! Our New Year ended with a fizzle rather than a bang. Meaning both myself and my husband fell asleep in our chairs next to a roaring fire (well it was when we went to sleep).Then all of a sudden I was awakened by lots of noise from the television and bells chiming in the Plaza Mayor in Madrid. Oh No! we should be downing 12 lucky grapes this we haven't missed since we have lived here which is over 20 years. So then it was a race to try and gobble them down before the clock stopped chiming. No, we didn't make it. So no good luck for us this year!!!!!! and the Cava is still chilling in the fridge. Didn't feel like it after stuffing down 12 grapes very quickly.........

The lessons from Strathmore are up and running. I honestly couldn't be more out of my comfort zone if I tried. Still they say things like this are character building. Not if you hear the swearing coming from my house it's not!!!!!!!

These are from the first lesson with Traci Bautista. I am finding it so hard to just let go. But, hopefully it will free up my art work. Fingers crossed

This from the first piece of work that I did on a very large sheet of watercolour paper of which got chopped up into smaller pieces to work with. Not only that I wasn't pleased with it!!!!!!!

Well, I will leave you with a little quote that is quite apt as I am on a diet!!!!!!!!  DIETING IS JUST WISHFUL SHRINKING.