9 posts categorized "Mixed media"


LN_16 Part ll


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A month on and the Long Night of the Museums discoveries have been processed and explored. It was a beautiful and insightful journey. 

Commencing from the floating wooden platform of Manifesta ll, Jill and l watched a series of short films. A collection of stories bringing together various local professions and artists - compelling in topic in conjunction with the artists' individual visual approach to story-telling.

Moving on through-out the evening, we amusingly found ourselves falling down a rabbit-hole via a set of charming book illustrations by Zurich-born artist Hanny Fries, complimented by a live musical performance, extracted from the classic novel Alice-in-Wonderland...this was duly followed by a colourful ride on Moroccan carpets at the Museum Bellerive - striking in textile medium and traditional craftsmanship! 

A few tram stops later, we mused over many an art piece at the Museum Haus Konstruktiv ..."Thinking Outside of the Box"  happily led us to the outside bar to enjoy a colourful drink and engaging conversation under the twinkling stars and fairy lights.

To round off our long night, we slowly made our way up to the Kunsthaus to view the retrospective on the diverse works of artist Francis Picabia. 

In the wee small hours, Jill and l happily concluded that a visual feast for the creative mind had been fully enjoyed. Food for thought indeed. 

*Visual Investigations images: © 2016 Elizabeth Hitchman


Snippets from a new sketchbook


l was recently given a beautifully hand-crafted sketch-book with crisp white pages. To me, these pages excitingly appear as a blank canvas in which l can play, collect and create visual stories.

l tend to start at the end of the book, as well as the beginning, meeting in the middle - l find this process entices the page to maintain a balanced level of visual interest throughout.

Beginning this sketch-book just a few weeks ago has generated a new creative space for the many layers of clippings that l have collected over time. In this posting l'd thought l'd share an artwork piece of a bookmark which l designed to compliment a book gift, and the opening end pages of my new sketch-book.

ln years to come, l feel it will be fun to look through ... catching a glimpse of inspired conversations, ideas for design projects, exhibitions visited with family and friends, or simply a lovely reminder of visuals that caught my eye.

*Please feel welcome to click on images for a magnified view :)


Welcome to Flow - an exhilarating paper playground



l was introduced to the creative charms of Flow by artist friend Sandra Ondraschek, who on a trip to Edinburgh wrote, "I thought of you as I picked up a copy of 'Flow' (magazine) and wondered if we had talked about it?". lt was early morning when l read her e-mail, yet l felt immediately compelled to discover this sparkling jewel for myself...

Pure delight swept over me as l set out on my journey and explored my first port of call - the Flow app. Smiling to myself, l read the editors note to the tapping sound of the typewriter - just lovely! The attention to each (imaginative) detail was a wonderful start to my design day!

Founded by Creative Directors, Irene Smit and Astrid van der Hulst, Dutch-based Flow magazine celebrates its fifth anniversary and l have a feeling it will continue to flow for many more years to come. 

Published eight times a year and with a recent international launch, (English copy being published twice a year) Flow is a visual feast, offering inspiration, insights and solutions for paper lovers. A paper playground which brings enjoyment to me on a daily basis, especially since purchasing the Flow Weekly Notebook, and the delightful 'Book for Paper Lovers'It's pure joy to plan my agenda, write letters and cards utilizing these two gems as a source of visual creativity. 

Welcome to Flow, a gloriously vibrant hub of paper innovation, a positive energy field which lights up the path of inspirational creativity!

* Photographs: 'Flow Book for Paper Lovers' by Elizabeth Hitchman


Upcycling journey of flowing inspiration

l was thrilled to recently discover a fellow blogger writing about Looking Glass and sharing my sketch-book work on her blog. Titled "My Book of Inspiration", l read the posting with a smile.

Altered Fantasy founded by Mahe Zehra Husain (MZ), is an art blog dedicated to upcycling items into higher quality forms, with the clear objective to help turn the world into a greener environment. MZ has recently created a new upcycling blog platform, which extends her passion for altering forms, enticing the reader to participate in the creative realm of seeing the world in a new (green) light.

On an inspirational note, this blog posting is a shining example of how the concept of Looking Glass is being visually realised - a creative online catalyst to inspire and generate ideas...

A richful surge of creative energy is surely bursting onto our screens, flowing into our minds, and giving us 'food for thought' thanks to the powerful platform of the blog.

May it long continue to serve as a rich source of inspiration.


Safari reflections

It's astonishing how quickly time passes by, as it feels like only yesterday that l took flight and explored the vast wilderness grasslands of Kenya. You may recall a previous posting that acted as a prelude to my travels - The perfect journal .

It certainly proved to be the model pocket companion...a blank canvas wrapped in leather, waiting to be filled with colourful visual stories recreated by gaslight...

This page taken from my journal, reflects the area that l was most fortunate to experience - the breathtaking Tsavo National Park.

On the right-hand page, is a winding path, which leads to a circular campfire place. It was here, that we were told African stories late into the night. And by day, the majestic beauty of Mount Kilimanjaro could be admired in all its glory!

Following the campfire evening, our local guide graciously gave me a hand-crafted gift, which in English is known as the Toothbrush Tree. Karithca kindly wrote down the different names directly onto the dental tool. The Maasi name is Oremit, in Swahli it means Mswaki, and the botantical name is Salvadora perscia.  l've placed this heart-warming gift in the middle of my journal montage, as a symbol of the culture embraced, and the friendships made throughout my travel. 

Observing wildlife in their natural habitat was simply a dream come true - generating treasured memories that remain close to my heart and have become part of my Safari reflections.

* l warmly invite you to explore (in more detail) my Safari montage by 'double-clicking' on the image.


Whistling the tune of 'The Bookbirds'


Whether it be laying in the long summer grass, or curled up by a roaring fire during the winter months, reading a book is a favourite past-time of mine.  And so to discover 'The Bookbirds' was a moment of pure bliss.

Dutch artist Pia Drent artistically combines her marine biology background with her love for reading - paths which stem from being read to as a child, while growing up by the sea. l find it richly unique to tie these two elements together, in the form of mixed media illustrations.

Taking the vintage book as the canvas, watercolours, acrylics, and inks are applied to the aged paper, creating art that celebates the soothing fusion of nature & reading.

With the digital age in full swing, it clearly feels refreshing to hark back to nature and the nolstagic appearance of the printed word.

It's an alluring tune, that which belongs to the voice of "The Bookbirds".


Exploration of secret inner worlds


To step into the dream-like world of Nina Mankin's art is to step onto a theatrical stage of pure intrigue and richly-intense drama . Exploration and "an attempt to uncover the lost parts of our psyche...our secret shadow selves is a main theme that runs through Nina's work.

Watching Nina talk about her work, along with the 'Victorian' hue that colours her work, enticed me into showcasing her hidden worlds. Secret places that can only be viewed when glimpsed through a tin's tiny pinhole. l find the idea of creating a secret 'narrative based' inner world out of disused objects and materials enthralling, fueling my imagination, along with a sense of searching for a deeper meaning.

'Behind Closed Doors' is a mixed media piece, and tells the story of a man with a 'faux' tailors workshop who becomes obsessed with a woman called Deidra. Posing himself as a dressmaker (with an eye for the ladies in corsets),  he entices her into his workshop, and with the lure of a  magic potion...slowly she begins to fall in love with him...

Such dark narratives are perfectly played out on the hidden theatrical stage settings that Nina has so charmingly created.


Creating a visual voice = playtime


I've been creating "visual ideas" sketchbooks for quite some time, and l thought it would be fun to share some of my tactile books with you on my online sketchbook - Looking Glass.

l tend to start visual thinking in my head, which then leads me to carve out my visions onto paper via my A5/A6 sketchbooks. l have started to see my sketchbooks as a journey - a space in time that evolves with the development of ideas, yet leaving a colourful reflection of a "moment in time".

It's always exciting to start a new fresh book with bare crisp white pages, as l never quite know the direction l may go with my thoughts, and the vibrant forms that start to take shape never ceases to give joy in my quest to quench my creative thirst.

Whether it be a textured piece of paper, a tactile cut of fabric, a charming illustration that perfectly fits a visual that l am creating, or the written word that matches the mood, for a vision that is taking form in my mind...l have fun playing around with concepts, giving them a visual voice that l eagerly seek as an artist/designer, yet generating a long-lasting piece of "pictorial happiness" for the intended recipient is truly the reflective objective.

Such playtime makes my soul sing.


Weaving a magical vintage spell


Specialising in hand embroidery as a form of drawing, alongside applique and collage, Jessie Chorley's chosen techniques of creating functional objects for the home or as wearable accessories, undoubtedly weaves a richly woven tapestry of vintage charm.

Jessie Chorley and Buddug Humphrey run their concept store on London's famous flower market Columbia Road. With hand embroidered bunting, vintage petticoats, and decoupage picture frames hanging in the window, both location and decorated interior, perfectly creates an enchanting 'Alice in Wonderland' setting for their signature vintage style.

l for one, could quite happily spend an afternoon or two, exploring its contents. Antique toys, hand-stitched covered journals, and trinkets galore, are but a few treasures waiting to be discovered!