Knot Drawings 

I found a Celtic Knot drawing book in a thrift store the other day. I have been wanting to have a go at drawing some knots for a while – they feature a lot in the tourist shops in Edinburgh and on some of the interesting stones in the national museum. 

This morning Deb informed me that we were going to do a Buddhist Knot, which is one of the 8 auspicious symbols. I had been putting off my Celtic drawing because I don’t find geometrical stuff easy because of my dyslexia and I knew it would be an exhausting experience. 

I find I am drawn to complicated geometrical designs and opart even though looking and drawing them is tiring for me – it’s a masochistic tendency 

I found a fab store that broke down the knot into more easily achievable elements

I started off by drawing a grid ( tooo large and not quite square) 

I highlighted the grid Crossings  with dots and then tried to follow the instructions provided- I found it easier to think in squares and patterns than follow the words and images 

I took one section at a time and thought about not drawing lines that were longer than 4 dots on the grid 

As soon as I could see the pattern I was fine lol! 

I didn’t manage to draw the lines as neatly as I would have liked and I went off the grid a bit – I just need to have a skeleton to trace for my Soulseed session later 

While I was waiting for Deb to connect I started a Celtic Knot –  Waagh brain ache or what – I am finding it really hard to look at the finished knot and see where to go on mine 


Art Journalling workshops 

I have been very excited about running some journalling work shops There are opportunities for me to work with counsellors at work. It was funny I was researching images/ colour/ emotions / lines and I thought ‘hello’ abstract expressionism and art teaching . I found a couple of websites that looked interesting I started thinking about resources that I could use as examples. I produced a series of doodles that represent me in various emotional states – I wanted to make things that were cheap and cheerful and not expensive for counsellors who don’t have lots of art equipment at hand I used a small mandala as a metaphor for me and put the circle Inside a square so that I could use the it as a boundary. This allows a space around the circle and gives a sense of how large or small the mandala is depending on how I feel – it also gives scope to be broken or me feeling larger than the box 






Let it go 

I know that this is an over used phrase at the moment but it is apt . I have lots of things going around on my head and it is affecting my IBS 

I decided to do a spread in my journal based on the word ‘release’ – I couldn’t resist adding ‘welease woderick ‘ which is a Monty Python quote that is bandied about my house quite a lot …. It helped lighten the mood , well that’s my excuse anyway 

I drew a prehistoric Venus on a page that was all ready covered in blue acrylic and gold stamps. Then I wrote down everything that has been bugging me and overwrote it so that it is mostly  illegible. It adds depth to the background ( well that’s what I tell my self anyway) 

I have always liked the Venus statues and identify with the way the weight of her stomach pulls down her skin.( The boobs are beyond my imagination) 

I looked up lots of different phrases and synonyms for release- (because my IBS is playing up) I I made the words radiate from her stomach – using my stash of blackmail letters 

To emphasise the ‘release’ I doodled waves of lines radiating from her stomach in pen and then scribbled graphite and watersoluble crayon to add tone 


Surviving the elements – The documented life journal 2015 

This week the prompt was surviving the elements. Since I moved to Edinburgh my hair has got shorter and shorter because I couldn’t standby hair whipping around my face and in my eyes .I wanted to do smithing with a wet and windy feel 

I was influenced by Robin Meads spread on the DLP website

  I drew flower doodles all over the page ( not that you can see very many of them in the finished piece )

Then I covered the pages with Gesso , blue acrylics , my own feather stamps and a doily stamp – I used blue and bronze Stazone ink 

The top layer of feathers are hand drawn or my stamp on security envelopes. 

I added the text using my ransom note letters cut from magazines .

 I added the feeling of wind using a water soluble Stabillo pencil in great big swoops above and below the letters 

The feathers felt like they needed anchoring so I covered the bases in a lace stamp and more stabillo scribbles 

The documented life journal 2015 – use at least 5 layers / Feb28th 

I am doing the arttothe5th documented life journal again this year. The prompt was ‘high 5’ and we had to use 5 layers- I miss read the prompt …… I prepared 3 circles to use as compass roses. 

Here are my first 3 layers 


2. Grey Dylusions spray ( wiped off with a baby wipe because I always forget how dark it is ) 

3) Pink ink sprayed through a large alphabet stencil 

The overal effect was a bit grungy so I added strips of paper that I used to wipe my lettering stencil 

I wanted to add some compass roses about travel and family – the pink didn’t really go with these so I added a layer of red acrylic with a credit card 

I added my compass roses – 3 more layers and then was stuck with how to add the title ‘give me a high five ‘ it is a bit literal but I added a hand print 

So the title now is ‘my destination is in my hand ‘ lol! 

Greenwhich and family 

we visited London for a long weekend – family stuff needed doing . We stayed across the road from my brother in an airbnb apartment in Deptford. 

My daughter was moving out of the brothers into a room in Greenwich which is all location location location about 2 mins from the maritime museum, the river and Greenwich park. 

Sometimes when I visit family I get all disorientated. Deb used a compass as the motif for our skype art session last week and I have been unable to stop doodling compass roses. I don’t know if it was because we were travelling but lots of well used phrases kept popping up ion my head like ‘feeling lost at sea’ ‘ I need to realign my inner compass’ ‘I feel lost’ 

It was poignant being with my neice she sat on my knees her soft hair in my face and her weight on my lap made me want to hold on and not let go.

 My son has been in South Korea and Vietnam for 3 years now has fallen in love with an American girl and may go and live in the US 

My friends Dad died, it is 9 years since I lost my Mum and it is Mother’s Day soon. There is a constant reminder in the shop windows as I walk past. 

My response to Deb’s prompt 

Doodling compass roses

My journal page 

History is Now

History is Now – large exhibition at the Hayward Gallery 10th of Feb until 26th April I found the overall exhibition fascinating but suffered from visual sound overload -there are large displays of text/ image/ video/ sound-
The research and images about Mad cow disease very powerful – disturbing and I didn’t want to stay long in it because it conjured up to many memories of being there
Felt like you were immersed in images sound text – I was told that I could come backwards and forwards within it all day but we had to fly back to Edinburgh I reckon you would need 2 or 3 days to do it justice

I think a stunning portrait of a nude older woman was a conceptual highlight for me – but was annoyed by the cross sign that the attendant made at me when I tried to photograph the description of the words – I was allowed to type it word for word )

Melanie Manchot
1996 Mrs Manchot Arms overhead
‘Vulnerable and assertive …..
Challenges preconceptions of beauty and desirability that are reinforced across our visual culture …..
Drew attention to the stage of life at which women reach cultural and social invisibility …..
The Body deserved to be recognised and celebrated as it ages ….
See image below

Britain seen from the North
British map made up of plastic wood rubber paper and other materials
Makes up a map of GB
The pieces have the feel that they are made up from detritus washed up on a beach

Lots of primary and secondary colours
Ednburgh is a blue plastic tub lid
Oxford a green key

Another piece that caught my eye was ‘Britain seen from the North’
Which consisted of a large British map made up of plastic wood rubber paper and other materials

The pieces have the feel that they are made up from detritus washed up on a beach

Lots of primary and secondary colours
Ednburgh is a blue plastic tub lid
Oxford a green key