Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Remembering Vanessa Cowl KAL


The weather has been really unpredictable lately but we know spring is just round the corner.

Down here at the Honeysuckle Studio I have been planning what all to grow (apart from honeysuckle of course). Do you remember in this post I mentioned about the "Remembering Vanessa Cowl Kal" project?

Well I have just started working on the second chapter which was out already few days back. It was so wonderful to see that second chapter was based on Vanessa's love for gardening.  Christina Wall who started this whole project in Ravelry also put some links on Vanessa's beautiful garden.

 So I chose some spring colours for the second chapter of the cowl. It is knitted in round. Will be a very snuggly cowl.


Meanwhile, I am still enjoying my dry poppy heads (from my garden last year) and happily sowing seeds for this year; planning my summer garden.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

My Voice

Work in progress...

Detail of work in progress.

There are so many ways to stray from your own personal voice. When I took painting more seriously and started painting and exhibiting in India, I was actually painting for others. I was painting what other people may or may not like. Also when I joined HND in Fine Arts in Stafford Collage and came across most amazing teacher whom I would call real Guru. He gave his 100% to students. He taught us not because he was just an art teacher but because he was passionate about art. I remember him saying to me when I started painting Abstract paintings that "you need to feel it" only then it will happen. First I couldn't understand how could I feel what I am painting. I paint because that's what I like to do. Then I joined Derby University for BFA(HONS) and slowly as I painted more and more abstract Landscape, I could understand what my teacher meant by "Feeling". At the beginning my paintings were either over worked or had no energy. With time and practice I have overcome a lot of those issues and each new painting is a learning curve. When I paint I am completely lost in a different world and I can shut myself up. Then the dialogue is just between me and the work surface. The painting dictates me where I should go and when I should stop. Most importantly I paint what I like to paint, now, I have found my own voice.

Above is the image of my new mixed media painting which I am working on now.

Friday, 13 February 2015

Fair Isle Knitting

 Sorry, its a bit late but better now than never.

 Do you remember last year before Christmas I mentioned to you about my new obsession Fair Isle Knitting?

 I told you I would show you my new book on Fair Isle Knitting.

Well, here it is.

Yes it is a very nice book with lots of clear instructions which guides you through the techniques. And all these beautiful yarns are from Jamieson's Shetland.

Waiting for me, so they can be knitted into something cosy and warm.

 But before I could start something for me again I had to knit for little Emily first.

She just likes pink and purple. *Sighhhh*

We went to the yarn shop together and she choose these two shades of pink. Its Alpaca Tweed, lovely soft yarn. The heart pattern is from the above mentioned book. Of course, Emily loves hearts and its just ready in time for her to wear tomorrow - Valentines Day!

But for now she was not ready to model the sweater for me.' No I don't want to' is that what she says and pulls her hands like that when she doesn't want something. Bless her.

 The back is not too bad but yes I still need a lot of practice. I am addicted to fair isle knitting.

It is such a relief to finish a project and I am trying very hard this year not to have too many WIPs. Now that's tough. At least Emily's sweater is ready. It is slightly wider but that is because I did this without any pattern except the Fair Isle pattern. But better than being too tight I guess.

Now then! What's this basket full of yarn for?

Okay, sorry but I have to tell you a bit of this story now. Just before Christmas I read on  'Hen House Blog' about the tragic death of a very talented Artist 'Vanessa Cabban' from the blog 'Do you mind if I knit?'. Even though at that time I didn't know about Vanessa Cabban or her blog. ''  blog post on her touched me and I started reading Vanessa Cabban blog during the Christmas holiday. How sad to have lost such a talented Artist and even more sad that I came to know about her, and her blog work; only after her death.

The other thing was that I joined Ravelry sometime last year, but never really used it until now. Recently I got into it again and as I started looking for some Fair Isle project for me. Then surprisingly came across a 'Knit Along Cowl' project and it said Remembering Vanessa Cowl Kal. It is a mystery KAL which started Feb 6, 2015 and anyone can join in the "A Knitter's Life" Ravelry Group under the thread, "Remembering Vanessa Cowl Kal" This is a cowl to remember the life and work of the lovely knitter, artist, illustrator, sculpter, gardner who passed away Dec17, 2014.
So I joined the group, aswell with many others, and choose some DK yarn from my cupboard for this cowl. It is a great project for using all those left over yarns from other projects.

Thank you Christina Wall from A Knitters Life to start this project x

Monday, 9 February 2015

The Provence

It feels like I took a break from painting for the last three years, even though I kept painting in between. Last year I did only two exhibitions. Felt so good to receive so much positive feedback. I was determined to go in my studio a bit more. And now it is possible as my little Emily goes to the local school nursery five afternoons. I have more studio time. The feeling is so good.

Last year I spoke about possibilities of commission work. Well, I can now tell you all about it. After receiving a email through my website I was really excited but stayed calm. Then followed by few phone calls and personal visit by the couple who wanted me to paint two large canvases for their second home in France. We then finalized everything.

I started working on them this year. Working on large canvas is what I love. Its more physical and challenging. Painting abstract seems to be easy. Just throw some colours on to the surface but it is rather difficult to achieve. It can be achieved through practice and this is what I have been practicing for years now. I am still learning, discovering new techniques ad possibilities. A journey I was, and still am travelling. This time my journey took me to the Provence through someone else eye. It feels good to have completed these work and the couple is very pleased with them.

 Both the paintings are done with acrylic paint. When painting large I prefer acrylic as it dries very quickly and allows you to layer up faster. Acrylic paint is quite versatile and can be used very thinly like almost water paints or you can achieve thick impasto effects. All my work is done in layers of paint applied with different techniques to achieve the desired results.

I still need to do the edges of the two canvases but I guess this will happen after the half term now. Hope we get plenty of sunshine to enjoy the haft term with the girls outdoor.

Happy half  term from Honeysuckle Studio.