Saturday mornings at home has become sacred ground for me.
I can understand why in some religions, it's the Sabbath.
To wake up to quiet, no rushing out the door with my hair on fire, is honestly spiritual for me.
The girls tend to sleep late if they aren't riding.
I even think my Saturday routine has become a sacred ritualistic act of taking stock of each moment... as I slip into my warm gown, pad through the dark, silent house, make my coffee and sit in my sweet studio to have a quiet time and do my morning pages and quite honestly pull my soul towards myself.
Sometimes I get to paint before the household is up.
Every now and again I get a studio buddy who comes to sit by me as I write.
It's winter now and the mornings are cold. In many regards I love winter because of this.
The girls always have winter exams that stretch across 3 weeks - which means we are housebound most weekends for about 6 weeks. Which is pretty perfect for winter.
And for a true blue introvert like me - it's heaven.
We tend to hibernate. And be home bodies.
We have slower days and longer hours in front of the fire.
Early Saturday morning paintings for my #1faceaday.
Quick and fast warming up exercises but it felt good.
Just what I needed.
The weeks are full on.
But I steal moments here and there to be still.
I don't often get patterns in my Soya Latte's, so to find love here today was a treat.
I've been spending a bit of time and money, getting some of my collections framed up.
It's expensive in these parts, so it's a slow process.
I'm stoked with my Renee and Misty pieces.
Let the journey continue...
I started this weeks ago.
It's based on a tiny card I did for #1FaceaDay project.
23"x33" stretched canvas. I couldn't resist doing it big.
I love this piece so much...
The tenderness and connectivity that they share, speaks straight to my heart.
It's the same connectivity I share with my girls.
They are always pressing their sweet faces on mine, always coming in for the embrace.
It's truly such a blessing in my life to have so much tender love.
I'm happy to say I'm finished this piece.
I'm hoping they will go to a beautiful new home.
But for now I get to enjoy them.
I love this cut image - I will have cards printed like this.
Digz said "hey - you look so adorable, can I take a picture?"
And I love the serenity and mood he captured here.
I sat lounging #InMyStudio...
listening to the beautifully haunting classical music of Ruth Fazal.
Staring at these 3 girls, feeling exhaustingly satisfied and contemplating how to move forward.
I don't often have a clear schedule or easel.
A few months ago I made the decision to cut back on my working hours so I could focus more time #InMyStudio but more importantly to spend more time in my virtual classrooms. If I want to improve - I have to do the work and have to learn.
I have many unfinished classes to work through.
To say I'm a tad bit overwhelmed by how much I've signed up for and not completed, is an understatement.
I don't like being that person.
It's one thing making the decision to cut back but walking that out, takes time, like all things.
Finding my replacement has taken a while. That together with manic work deadlines.
I feel for the first time this year, I'm on top of my work work.
I thought the notion would leave me excited and energised.
But in all honesty it's left me a little depleted and a little lost.
I know I will get on top of it and get into a new routine and rhythm.
It was my first piece under Misty's teachings (OpenStudio) and I did it right before I left for Italy to paint with her in person. It was 100% Misty inspired. I knew going to Italy to paint in her class was far reaching for where I was at. So I was desperate to do something that would make me feel less out of my depths. I'm not sure if it helped. I knew all the way I was out of my depths.
When I got back from Italy I did all the thousand dots.
I originally painted her on stretch canvas that I had stuck patterned scrapping paper on.
I have loved this piece. And I vowed never to change her.
Because she was the start of something... a wonderful journey.
But last night I did. I just knew it was time.
Digz said - "hey, you are changing history".
But I have the prints, images and memories of my journey.
In truth she has been calling me for a while... and I guess the time was just right.
Her tiny mouth and nose, too thin neck and no shoulders needed to change.
The more I worked on her, the more the paper bothered me and it created a bubble, which I started to pull at and before I knew it I had lifted off all the paper and my new over painting.
I kept redrawing her so I would loose her completely.
It ended up being a massive undertaking, right down to using sandpaper.
In essence... I have now painted her 3 times.
I always loved her. She was sweet.
To me she's moved from whimsical girl to beautiful woman.
Which I absolutely adore.
I love her new delicate lace around her face,
It is a pattern I copied from the last piece of lace I had left from my gran.
This is where I left her last night.
Not sure how to end her...
When I had some studio time this morning... I decided to do dots/dashes down and across, as opposed to around this time.
And it just totally finished off this piece. I'm beyond thrilled with her.
In 2012 I called this piece Misty.
And to me, although she's changed so much - she's still very much My Misty piece.
I am so grateful for change, for growth and for progress.
I hope this is something I never stop doing or stop seeking out.
I started painting this one when we were all praying so much for Beautiful Lorraine.
I loved the symbolism of the prayer balloons.
I didn't have the courage to finish it at the time...
It was a lot of work and maybe on a subconscious level, I was afraid what that would mean.
But this last week, I finally found the courage...
I am still completely in love with this piece.
I love this mighty woman so much...
I just love the wisdom in her face. The knowing in her eyes. The grace in her hands. And the love in her heart as she appears to be standing above the earth. All along she's felt a little prophetic to me.
I love these grey beads. I didn't know they were called Job's Tears... did you? They are a simple grey bead and a very big part of my childhood. My beautiful Momma wore them through my childhood and we always used to play with her grey beads. You can pick up up on every street corner in Durban, where I spent most of my childhood. I usually send a string of these beads out with my parcels and paintings, a bit of my world. And last week Misty together with Kathy, both received theirs. Who both told they were called Job's Tears - I love that I learnt that this week. I received a message from Misty saying a lady at her local coffee shop asked her where she got hers and when she told her, she told Misty she was also from SA. I just loved that... love the connection. That story made my day. I can't wait to send more out.
I love this painting.
Which was the basis of the book, The GoldFinch, that I finished this week.
Have you read it? The thread that ran through was one of sadness and that of a wasted life.
But I loved the dialogue and thought processes very much.
I had no idea what the story was about and that it was indirectly about art.
On Friday night when I was waiting to fetch Digs from the Airport,
I sat by the fire, whilst watching Big Eyes just scribbling with my pen and white paint.
A simply beautiful way to unwind.
Last night I watched Words and Pictures.
Both art movies - both excellent. I recommend.
It was good to do some laid back things this weekend. After such a heavy few months.
I also spent most of Saturday sleeping. Oh heavens - it was beautiful.
I even got on top of my monster washing pile.
I feel like I'm past a lot of my heavy work schedule and life mayhem and easing into a new place.
I'm hoping I will find time on my side so I can really get stuck into my course materials and studio.