A daisy book

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9 squares of watercolour paper later and decorated with one of my poems

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A little daisy book

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Here is my daisy poem

On the banks of the Seine
Daisies dance and squabble
Swaying in the breeze;
Praying for some sun.
Prim faces cloaked up at night:
Several sun bleached white-creased clothes
Interlocked one by one
Unfold as rays shine down
So bees and butterflies can perch
And rest, singing their summer song.

To make one yourself:
Cut out nine equal sized squares

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Fold diagonally

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Then fold in half straight across

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Fold in half in the other direction then open out

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Open out each square. Shape each petal using a card template
You can colour in the centre of the square yellow, if you just want to make it a flower

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Fold each square like this

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Glue the petals together on the quarters of the square which have no creases

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Autumn Journal prompt ‘date’

Today marks the 1st October and the start of an autumn artist’s journal guided by prompts from Myfanwy Hart over on her blog.
http://fabrilicious.wordpress.com
Apart from creating a mindmap using the word ‘date’ I considered the word within a word, namely ‘inundated’. At work, I’m inundated by chase ups, queries, questions and responses backed up by scrupulous record keeping, cataloguing and archiving. It’s more common – even an unspoken rule now to record everything … life has become evidence collecting. Some days this blog even, gets more traffic than others and I still find myself asking, ‘will I get any responses? Will people like my posts? Will I get a record of the most views to date on my blog so far?’
There are many questions that I still ask myself and it’s always refreshing to read comments that bloggers write after I’ve posted and those who like my work. Some of the experiences I’ve shared with bloggers since January have been very new to me and certainly take longer than five minutes to create such as the 39 Squares project which evolved as I went along. Each image was prompted by a tale or family anecdote and it was such fun to see the embroidery grow into something I wanted to hang up on my wall.
So, with the prompt ‘date’ I drew a little mouse alerting us to harvest and my preparation to take part in the marathon Nano writing month in November.

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Shrink plastic napkin rings and calligraphy tag

Throughout the summer I collected various books and tools to try my hand at calligraphy. My mum had a couple of books on her bookcase, still unused and I managed to pick one up in a second-hand book store. I’ve grown very conscious of my handwriting since injuring my writing hand and often switch to using my other hand to do certain jobs (I even noticed yesterday while using the brayer, I resorted to my left hand and collected the assortment of paints for the lino print with my right). Everyday my work results in me scribbling something down on an envelope or two rather than typing address labels.
I admire the work of the ancient scholars who produced illuminated manuscripts and all the beautiful artwork which accompanied the lettering. I knew that by finding the right resource book, I’d feel more inclined to practise the letters one by one. It was only recently, while browsing messages on a social networking forum that someone recommended the book ‘Written Letters’ by Jacqueline Svaren. The book boasts ’22 alphabets for calligraphers’. There’s bound to be one alphabet style I like, I thought.
True enough, I found one. It wasn’t until I read the inscription message at the top that I realised the letters were drawn using the pen nib had the same name as my son’s! I followed the technique instructions – to draw the insides of the letters first and was quite pleased with the results.

The birds I sketched out are echoed on the shrink plastic. I cut strips of the plastic and heated them in the oven, watching them curl and twirl under the heat until they’d shrunk. While the strips were still hot and pliable, I moulded them around a bottle to gain a large enough curve to create a ring shape that could then be used as a napkin holder.

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Of course, I have plenty more practise to do before it become natural and I don’t have to keep checking back for reference!

Illustrated poem …

As I mentioned before, I didn’t write this poem. I merely used it to practise my calligraphy skills and develop the lettering in the hope of some consistency. Here is the nearly complete poster with the little illustrations in shades of gold, silver and bronze.

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