Monday, February 28, 2005

Posted by Hello Some bookmarks made using the decorative initials shown below.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Ok, it really is time I updated this blog! It's been one of those weeks.

The Illustration Friday word of the week was "Sorrow". Couldn't have been more apt as it turned out to be a sorrowful week.

We had word that one of our dairy goats back in NC had died. Now to most normal people he was just a smelly old buck. ( VERY smelly!) Nothing they would cry buckets over. But I had raised him from a baby and he had champion bloodlines. Fortunately I have one of his daughters but I was hoping to have many more of his offspring in the future once we found our new farm.

So, I cried for 3 days and then had a terrible sinus headache for another 3 days. The type that has you hanging over a bowl wanting to throw up your toe nails. Needless to say when I finally felt better I wanted nothing more to do with "sorrow" and decided against attempting an illustration.

The new word will be posted tomorrow and I can't wait to see what it is. Sunday nights are beginning to feel a bit like Christmas Eve!

Believe it or not once I got back to carving I managed to turn out quite a bit of work including a small collection of Ex Libris stamps that I'm really quite excited about.

I'm thinking of putting up a little online store and would be interested to hear if anyone would be interested in buying stamps or items featuring my carved images such as bookmarks, cards, Ex Libris /bookplates etc. I'm open to any other ideas. Let me know.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Thought I'd post some pictures of things currently "in the works" so to speak.

This is a decorative alphabet I'm working on. I draw the letter and the basic design for the decorative fill then transfer it to the eraser. I don't draw in every last detail. Just enough to get a general idea and to make sure the design is positioned properly. I love the thrill of inking the stamp for the first time and seeing the image jump out. It's always a surprise!

Decorative Initials Posted by Hello

Thursday, February 17, 2005

As I mentioned earlier I've been getting quite a lot of carving done. I've been sketching ideas during the day while helping Joshua with his school work and then carving mostly after midnight when hubby and Josh are sleeping. I just love being able to sit down and concentrate free of distractions and the little nagging thoughts of the dishes in the sink, hubby's uniform to iron, phone calls to make and the dogs to walk. One thing I love about homeschooling, we can start school at whatever time is best for us.

Today was kind of odd though. Joshua decided he wanted to get up at 4 am when Daddy left for PT! What did he do but sit and watch cartoons untill I got up to see what was going on at 7:30. I wasn't very pleased about that. "but daddy said I could watch for one hour"

At 9 am he was getting so sleepy I had to put him back to bed and he slept until noon.

During the time he was asleep I kept hearing a strange noise here in the dining room. Thought it was something in the dryer at first but on further investigation it turned out to be a bird that had got under the eaves and fallen down into the wall cavity. Ken came home for lunch and called the base housing office. Two guys showed up not long afterwards and cut a hole in the wall and rescued the bird. It was a Starling. I took it outside and let it go. It took off squaking as if it was cursing up a storm. Now we have to get the hole under the eaves fixed to prevent the same thing happening again.

We had planned to go down to Virginia this week end to look at a couple of mountain farms that recently came on the market. Ken thought he was going to get a four day but it was shortened to Saturday, Sunday and Monday. With the 8 hour drive down there and the same coming back it didn't leave much time for house hunting. Hopefully we can go at the end of the month.

I'm so anxious to find our place and get back to 'normal' life. All our farm animals are down in North Carolina being cared for by Joe and Julie our renters. One of our dogs is there and the pony is boarded at the stables. Another dog is being cared for by Ken's parents. I can't wait to have them all back!

Tuesday, February 15, 2005


Below is this weeks carving for Illustration Friday.

What a job I'm having posting pictures lately. I usually photograph my prints with the digital camera then send them to Photo Impact to get rid of shadows then use 'Picasa' and 'Hello' to post them. For some reason all of a sudden, after following all the steps to import the image to picasa it wont retrieve the image. I can go directly to the folder I stored it in and view it but when I ask picassa to look in that folder the image isn't there. All the other images are still there but it's like the new one is invisible. I've been tearing my hair out all morning and wasted so much time. In the end I sent it to the free image hosting service Image Shack. The same thing hapened with another picture I wanted to post over the weekend. I ended up giving up and going to bed. What's changed? I uploaded all the other pictures on here with no problem.

Also this is the first image I've saved as a PNG. So I hope it's visible to everyone.

Think I need to take a course on this stuff!!! Everyone else in the group seem to be fluent in HTML and I'm still stuck in the days of copy fitting tables and Lettraset!

Oh, bye the way, this was carved on a "jumbo" eraser about 1 1/2 x 3 inches.

Scroll down a little and you'll see my little son's drawing too.

It's days since I last wrote anything. I've been so busy carving!

I'll post pictures later.

This week the Illustration Friday word is "FLIGHT"

Here's a picture my nine year old son drew. I asked him if he wanted to put it up here as his contribution to Illustration Friday which thrilled him to bits. He's pretty excited that lots of people will see his work!

Josh's Flight Picture Posted by Hello

Monday, February 07, 2005

The Actual Stamp Posted by Hello

Year Of The Rooster

This week's Illustration Friday theme is Year Of The Rooster.

I happened to have this stamp already made. It looks a bit odd blown up so large. It's carved on a very small eraser about an inch in length. I'll take another picture of it to give a better idea of it's size in relation to other things.

Thank you to those who left kind comments about the Friendship stamp. It's really nice to have feedback. And nice to know I'm not talking entirely to myself here!

Little Rooster Stamp Posted by Hello

Walking Dogs!

The snow is melting and our back yard is a bog so I now have to take the dogs across the street into the woods about 6 times a day. We have three dogs that get a bit crazy if I try to walk them all at the same time so it means 24 individual trips!

No wonder I don't seem to be getting much carving done.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Illustration Friday

I discovered this great place a few days ago. Each week there is a theme word and everyone is invited to contribute an illustration related to it.

This week's word was Friendship.

All my friends live miles away so letters are always very special.

As you can see the image was carved on two erasers and then put together. It was also an ideal opportunity to try out the little pencil alphabet!

Think I may develop this further into a stationary set.

Check out the website here:

Illustration Friday

My first contribution to Illustration Friday Posted by Hello

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Pencil Alphabet

While rooting through a tub of my little son's school supplies last night I came across this collection of new pencils. Just what I needed for my "big plan".

Back in September we found ourselves in the town of Mainz, Germany. The home of the Gutenberg museum.

What an enthralling 3 hours we spent in there! Five hundred years of printing history. Of course the Gutenberg Bible was the major attraction but I was just as excited to find a display of books from the Kelmscott Press with the wonderful illustrations by William Morris.

I got to thinking about the possibilities of buying an old hand operated press similar to one we had back in my art college in England. After scouring the internet for more information I quickly shelved the idea. There are some affordable ones out there but with the cost of shipping (cast iron!) plus the cost of metal type and all the other equipment needed there's just no way.

So then I found all these pencils with the pristine little erasers on the end and decided to carve an alphabet.

This is the beginning of The Ikki-Pokki Press!

pencil alphabet Posted by Hello