Calligraphic poetry

I’ve posted this on my other blog, the elevator press because I will be adding some printed images to illustrate the poem. This is just a section of it to share with you – I did not write the poem, I used it to practise calligraphy skills and it’s so far taken me five hours.


Card cut intaglio print no.2

The results of a card cutting I showed in an early blog post 🙂

The Elevator Press

I cut a template printing plate using picture mounting board, gradually peeling off the top coloured layer to reveal the white beneath.


Then I used a roller and watercolour as a printing medium, applied a thin layer and allowed some of the paint to catch the white (can produce a textured effect).


A note to newcomers to printing … Remember that whatever picture you want to end up with will be the mirror image of the printing plate. Have fun 🙂

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Textured foil


On Friday while serving cups of coffee to the architect technologists, we had to start a new tin of coffee granules. The seal on the top is made of foil and had a lovely raised dotty pattern on the surface. I decided to try this out on my gelliplate and this is one of the prints taken from it. To achieve this effect, I rolled over the back of the foil, pushing the pattern into the inked gelli. I then added a button to the centre and dragged the end of a paintbrush out from the centre.

ten minute doodle

I was sat in the car lunchtime wondering what to draw.  The view wasn’t that impressive – just cars, a brow of hill (which I couldn’t see over) and an unimpressive grey sky.  Even the leaves have yet to fall.

 I knew I had my Berol pens in my bag and a small A6 notebook.  I resorted to a book of stamps lying between me, the gear stick and the area reserved for espresso paper cups and drew this without using a pencil outline first…



a paint palette biscuit and some cherry and almond scones

I’ve wanted to have a go at these biscuits for a long time and as The Great British Bake Off has been on TV, the office is buzzing with people bringing in their homemade bakes.  Tomorrow we will have caramelized onion and cheese bread; I will be bringing cherry and almond scones.  I took the advice from one episode of the TV programme to roll the cherries in flour so that they evenly distribute in the mixture rather than drop to the bottom.


then added them to the rubbed in flour, sugar and butter.  While my biscuit dough was chilling for ten minutes, my scones were baking nicely in the oven and I had time to clear up a bit.  


The kids enjoyed unwrapping the boiled sweets and sorting them into traffic light colours.


bit out of focus (oops) but you can see they are rectangles.  The recipe suggested lollypops – the rounded ones, but these sweets were all I could find this evening.

The biscuit dough is then shaped into rectangles and cook for ten minutes.  We then cut out three circles using a clean thimble before positioning the colours.  The sweets were the equivalent of trying to fit a square inside a circle, so of course this happened when they were put back in the oven for three minutes.  I’ve renamed them the Jackson Pollock Paint Palette Biscuits as they now look like paint spills.  The kids didn’t seem to mind 🙂



the chainsaw bear

As promised, here is a photograph of the chainsaw bear sculpture from the Treefest.  It sold at auction for more than £300 and it was fascinating seeing this sculpture take shape, even down to the detail of nose, eyes and ears using a heat tool to burn the wood.  I’ve also added a picture of the rabbit which inspired me to make a print of a rabbit swinging in the trees – which you can see on my printing blog:




cat in a box

There is a cool photo contest over at Katzenworld 🙂  Of course, as people know, I have a kitten who gets up to so much mischief and likes shoes and pinches tights, socks, drinking straws …

So here is my entry for the August cat in a box contest – Nikon in her box:



Six years of waiting…

Yep, after six years we finally managed to get to the annual treefest event where you can see chainsawers in action and Welsh axemen showing their tree climbing skills.
The chainsaw guys were given just thirty minutes to carve out a sculpture in front of a large crowd, which would then be auctioned off. Fortunately, my family checked the UK Bank Holiday forecast and we decided to go yesterday rather than today.
Can you guess how much the sculptures went for?

This owl went for over £200

This bucking rabbit sadly lost one of its back legs, so never made it to auction.
There was a stunning bear too, which I’ll post tomorrow which went for over £300! The wood had a gorgeous pink tinge to it and left a dusting on the grass.
Another great sight, if you like steam engines (my husband has a miniature version that still works), you would have loved this. It pumped up a lot of steam to aid the cutting of a large tree, slicing into thin planks of wood to be sold at the festival.


Working a chainsaw is not something I plan to explore on squarebird, however I do like trees and will be doing some maple leaf drawing and tree art 🙂
For now though, here is a print I made this evening using mini square blocks of wood, some buttons (I could add that the buttons were wooden, but they weren’t on this occasion!) and an odd curtain hook or two …


Frankenfluffy – the winning pet portrait choice

The kitten picture I received was a gorgeous long haired white kitten with a ginger tail. His name is Frankenfluffy 🙂

Congratulations to blogger artyflowergirl who entered for her friend and provided the photograph for me to create this lino print of her friend’s kitten 🙂