Now October is here, and how fast it arrived don't you think? However, we are still in the lull of an indian summer in these parts, its quite warm enough to swan about in flimsy tops and it's only when the sun has passed the garden that a slight chill begins to pervade, and were it not for it being dark by 7:30 I would be convinced we were still in August.
I enjoy all the seasons and more so as I get a bit older! I also enjoy all the foodie delights that accompany them! At the moment we are purging ourselves on the juiciest figs, well rounded and ripe plums, as well as splendid donations of windfall apples from our neighbours garden which are promptly turning into tatins and crumbles!
I also adore Autumn flowers, and at the moment I am swooning at the firey oranges, yellows and golds of the nasturtiums we have picked from our rather rambling and overgrown garden (its been very neglected of late, what with the decorating, and our hanging baskets are a disgrace having not seen a watering can in weeks). I also love the wonderfully plump dahlias and the brightly coloured asters with their button yellow centres.
Talking of seasons, I have finished my new winter scarf. Here it is in all its little-granny square-glory!
In total there are 135 little squares in shades of milk, driftwood, pale blue and green. The whole thing is edged in the driftwood and milk colours and when I chose the colours, my mind was adrift in memory land, in a Cornish village where a friend and I spent some happy times one January. The shades are very reminiscent of wintery Cornwall, everything on the day in my mind was bleached by a watery sun in a chalky white sky, scudded with smudges of pale grey clouds. The green on the cliffs seemed tired and worn, the very shade in the scarf, and the tide seemed to have a listless energy as it halfheartedly sent cold foam tipped waves up the wet ochre sand. So thats what the scarf is about, that was the inspiration for the colours and I think for my own pleasure, Im going to call it West Penwith.
Being inspired is a daily necessity. As an artist I am always on the lookout for things that light the creative spark. I get alot of pleasure from discovering little bits of things like a beautifully iced cupcake, a jar of fresh flowers and so on, but its work by other artists and creatives that light the fire and I feel very lucky to stumble upon such people whom I can learn from. Its very satisfying to put their ideas to work in my own creative pursuits. I must say, Im not talking about blatant copying here - no, I like to do my own thing art-wise otherwise its not worth the effort, and you can never ever recreate what someone else has done anyway as it lacks the personal energy that you need to infuse your own art/craft with. To me, being inspired is all about seeing and absorbing, looking at different paint techniques, studying a new stitch or trying new colourways, seeing how various mediums are used to create something and then applying those processes to your own work!
I was VERY inspired whilst in Wales this weekend. I took my daughter to Porthcawl and it just so happened to be in the throes of an Elvis Presley festival - I have never seen anything like it - delightful clusters of elderly ladies in bright pink stetsons and Elvis t-shirts singing and bopping outside a cafe that was blasting out 'Viva Las Vegas' into the street! Ha! We found a little deli, stocked up on goodies and made our way to the sands. Once the frivolities of being on the beach for a few hours had been accomplished - donkey rides, picnics, paddling and obligatory ice-cream devoured, we made our way back into the little town for a wander. Now I really like Porthcawl, some might say its a bit time weary but it has a faded seaside charm that I love, it has two lovely beaches close at hand and a marvellous little cafe right on the seafront that does a lovely coffee which you can sip whilst watching the waves!
Anyway, I digress! :D
It was in the bookshop though, up the little high street, that I found creative manna from inspiration heaven! I'd had my eye on the Sew Sunny book for some time but had no idea that Poppy Treffry even had a book out! I had a brief and careful look through them both and my appetite was well and truly whetted - however, I didnt have the necessary £30 to spend there and then on them, so I did what any thrifty young woman would do in a recession, and I came home and bought them on Amazon! :)
Serendipitously, they arrived today, on my art day. For the first time in about 5 weeks my paints have come out, and now I have the perfect reading matter for coffee break time!!Talking of art, I am going to show you something now and I dont want you to be cross. I know its only October, and I am myself one of those people who wince when I see Christmas Things in shops in August etc, but I dearly wanted to tell you about my charity card. I have just finished working on my design for this year and I will be making A5 sized cards which will be printed, giclee style, and sold to raise a bit of money for the Downs Syndrome Association. Im sure some of you already know that my little nephew has Downs, so its a charity that is very dear to me and each time I sell some cards I send some money to them.
I will be selling this card through my website, etsy and folksy shops. I hope you will forgive me for showing you a Santa in October, but my intentions are good ones! :)
'Father Christmas' Charity Card 2009
I can feel a coffee coming on - and a little bit of browsing in those gorgeous books! I hope you all have a sunny weekend and I look forward to catching up with you again soon!
Love Julia x