Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

My Beautiful
Midnight in the garden of Good and Evil
ATC's arrived today
from the swap hosted by the lovely
I adore the work of Deedee Forrester
and was thrilled to see this beautiful card
by Deedee in my envelope.
This gorgeous card is made by Lynn Kelman
and features her beautiful stone angel
and I remembered the words from Monika's blog post
that Lynn included with her cards-
Anne Trudell created this pretty card
I wonder if that is a forbidden fruit?

I love this spooky card by Julka Vlajic
very atmospheric
and this last ATC is an amazing creation by Dawna
and she has made a fold out card with this quote from Rumi~

"Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent as a guide from beyond"

I love to see the variety and individual interpretations
of the themes we take and create with.

Thank you to Monika for hosting this fabulous swap
and to all of my fellow artistic women for joining in.

August Swaps

I have had a fabulous busy creative month making art swaps
I am not normally one to dabble in fabric arts but I do admire them and couldn't resist joining in with this lovely swap over at Milliande's Art Community for Women

Each participant made 5 prayer flags and made them with good intentions for our anonymous receivers and it was not until the end of our time that the list was posted and we got our 5 names to send out our cards.

I have really enjoyed this process and am making some more to hang with the 5 I will be receiving, and the gorgeous sunny one I have already received from my lovely Mum who has taken to art swapping with great enthusiasm.

Almost my whole family is joining in the art swap fun,
we are getting the homeschool kids over at
to start swapping winter themed ATCs and my Mr8
received these gorgeous cards from a fellow
8 y.o. home schooled boy.

snowmen must be symbolic of winter for little boys in Australia
because my little one did a snowman as well

and he has never even seen snow.

He also did the gorgeous tree at the top of the post.

I was doing Tree ATCs as well and made the embossed one above
and the wired ones below for a Tree themed swap

and I have already received this one from my

It is such a treat having Mum start arting,
we now have a common interest and that is really special
and birthday and solstice presents just got a whole lot easier.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Mother Earth ATC swap- part 13

Another beautiful set of ATCs arrived today from Trine in the Netherlands,

Trines beautiful cards have her very heart and soul in them,
that is a picture of her gorgeous younger self.

Thank you Trine,
your cards are just lovely and thanks also for your extra stamps.

Last weekend I went to an Intaglio workshop
at the Grafton Art Club

The first prints are done with our simple drawings
etched into an aluminium plate

Then we worked them further , adding shading and highlights in multiple baths in the etching solution. I learned lots about intaglio and reaffirmed my love of printing.

It was great workshop
taught by the very lovely Rochelle Summerfield.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Art in your Homeschool

This is a post from my other blog,
but I have had people asking me about teaching kids art,
so I am reposting it here,
and I hope my other readers will enjoy it as well.

All of the pictures are art works my 2 wonderful
boys have done over the years.

Art can be easily overlooked in the homeschool, some parents have shared with me how they find it difficult to fit it in, it is very valuable to your child's education though so I thought I would share some thoughts and resources here. I am passionate about art in our homeschool.
Most of the subjects we focus on have well defined procedures to follow, rules and regulations leaving little room for creativity or mistakes.

Art is wonderful to open a child's mind to freedom and play; to allow them to experiment and to use their own imaginations without any fear of getting it wrong-


Why study Art?
Learning art provides a foundation for visual perception, the ability to recognise and understand images, these may be found in many places- art works, plans/ blueprints, symbols, words.......

Art education helps a child to develop abstract thinking skills-
the visual arts combine abstract thinking with real concrete materials
to create the idea in their imagination,
using convergent, divergent, evaluative and visual thinking skills.

Art education provides a window
a connection into people in another place and time.

Art education encourages creativity using art skills and knowledge-
in order to create children utilise other Key Learning Areas
Maths- patterns.
Science- colours- mixing, tones, opposites.
Language Arts- communication- expressing ideas, discussing art works
reading or listening to directions.
HS&IE - history- people have made art in most cultures and most times, studying art from different times is like a window into that time and kids notice details they wouldn't pick up from a book or lesson. Recreating art from times past is also a wonderful way to add depth to a study of that time and place.

Physical ed- motor skills, some art materials are heavy and use a lot of muscle-
clay in pottery and sculpting a heavy base.
How to Incorporate art into your homeschool.

Children need to see art to appreciate its beauty and power-
Look at pictures together, and talk about what you see,
there are many lovely books with wonderful reproductions of great artworks
and libraries have great collections.
Calenders often feature an artists well known works
and can be easily collected and stored till you need them.
Visit art galleries and art shows.
Study different artists and different styles of art.

Making art is fun.
How often in your school time
do you really get to do something spontaneous and hands on?

Art can easily be included in your homeschool days-
it fits really well with unit studies or into set subjects,
especially science- nature journalling
Geography- salt dough maps or mountains or volcanoes,
sketched or painted landscapes and History.

My personal goals for my kids
are to teach them to be comfortable and familiar
with how to use various art materials
so they are willing to use them to express themselves freely.

The materials we use, we play with,
but they learn as much from the art materials themselves
as they do from me.

I am aiming for my boys to find success and pleasure in our art time.

We use a lot of montemarte art materials in our home, I find they have a good range, the are good value and quite good quality for our uses. I tend to pick up things as I plan them and I include art planning in my general homeschool planning.

I also give the more precious art materials to my boys at birthdays and solstices as gifts, they enjoy having their own supplies and use them in their own time.

We also use lots of recycled materials, there are always clean recyclable things around- paper, cardboard, tubes, bottles, lids containers etc, many can be used in assemblages or art works and others can be used to store art materials.

A couple of my favorite books for teaching art
Discovering Great Artists
MaryAnn F Kohl and Kim Solga


The Art Teachers Book of Lists
Helen D. Hume

The Internet is a wonderful source of inspiration and ideas
here are some of our favourites.

Coloured Pencil Art

Colored Pencil as Professional Art Medium

While colored pencils were once considered to be primarily for kids, throughout the years they have been steadily gaining respect amongst artists, galleries, and collectors. Artists are exploring the creative potential of this art-making medium, while art collectors and enthusiasts are marveling at their output!

Art Attack a fantastic collection of ideas taken from the popular television show- loads of fun to be had here.

smART kids and interactive site from the smArt museum in Chicago, very educational.

Watercolour secrets a free ebook

A selection of inspirational arty blogs-

Kathy Barbaro's Art Projects for Kids this is a fabulous blog, a real favorite in our homeschool, make sure you search through the older posts.

Jessica Camis' Art Smarts for Kids

Deep Space Sparkle, Patty's art lessons for kids.

Charva LeBarton's Art Teacher

Art with Mrs Smith

Teach Kids Art

Artist of the Week This one has not been updated for a while but still has some great resources.

Mother Earth ATC swap- part 12

More fabulous ATCs have arrived

These gorgeous cards have been made by Lisa Dunn

Lisa is a fibre artist from Mississippi
and you can find out about Lisa at her blog
and see some of her magic with fibres
at her flickr

These amazing ATCs
are made from layers of heavy fabric,
perhaps upholstery fabric,
(from one who admires but knows nothing about fabric arts)

They are so tactile and lovely.

These gorgeous atmospheric cards also arrived,

they have come from Toos
in the Netherlands,

Some of Toos's other works can be viewed at

These pretty cards have been made with a stamp
coloured pencils and collage
using scrap book and magazine papers.

I love the vintage feel of these cards

I am enjoying receiving everyone's cards here,
it is so nice to hold them and see them in real life.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Mother Earth ATC swap- part 11

We had 2 more packages arrive today from Canada,

These beautiful Mother Earth cards are made by
Julka Vlajic.

Julka has used stamps, distress inks,
tissue paper, gel medium, pearl paints and crayons.

These gorgeous ATCs have been done on light canvas

They are so bright and stunning

I have never seen any done on canvas before and I love them

The very talented Dawna Quinn
made these .

We also received from the lovely Helen Goulty in Ireland
my unusual shaped atc swaps.

This pretty ATC is made by Mary Larner
and called Friendship


This gorgeous unusual shape ATC comes from Kalona

and last of all is this little card I made
for the very first ATC swap