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Reference photo for tapestry

Stitch A Long #1

I am gatecrashing a monthly get together that Kate at Tall Tales of Chiconia hosts. Edited correction ~ apparently I not only gatecrashed the party, but got the address completely wrong! It’s not at Kate’s house, although she does write a mighty fine blog, but rather at Avis’. She blogs at Sewing Beside the Sea  and hosts the Stitch Along where each month a group of stitchers post progress on their stitching, work that is purely for pleasure.

You may know my art work ~ watercolour, sewing on paper, oil pastels etc. If you would like to see more you can jump over to my Etsy shop, or get a closer look at a watercolour tree that is for sale.

However, you may not know that I create tapestries, where I interpret a photo with yarn. They are landscapes, and, of course, usually include a tree or too. Like this one from my time as artist in residence in Flinders Island. I loved the weather beaten landscape and the coastal heathlands.

Embroidery ~ free form landscape

Or this one from the outback landscape around Menindee, NSW. Very few trees in that environment!

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Winter is a great season to create these as Summer is too hot to work with wools and the the canvas crumples.

So time to get going on a new one, from a photo taken at Portsea during my artist in residence at Police Point.

Reference photo for tapestry

There are strong diagonals in this photo, which lead the eye to the focal point of the tree and there are darks to give contrast. As well I loved the texture of the cliff face, and my fingers are itching to work there, and the twisty trunk of the moonah tree, is a joy.

I set up the tapestry canvas with minimal guide lines, and began with the sky, using variegated blue wool and tent stitch.

Anne Lawson Art

 

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The clouds were trickier. I thought a beautiful silk thread I had would be right, but it didn’t work. A hunt in my stash gave me the perfect wool ~ white with a slight roughness, which gave the cloud the fluffiness I was looking for. The beginnings of it are at the bottom of the cloud. I used a cross stitch to give it more bulk.

You can see why I was dissatisfied with the silk. I had to carefully unstitch the silk thread, which is handprinted and expensive. No way was I going to chop it up.

Anne Lawson Art textile artist

Much happier.

Anne Lawson Art Textile artist

I am looking forward to selecting the yarns, and stitches, for the next part, which will probably be the background foliage. I am excited to see what emerges!

Next time I hope to include a link to others who are taking part in the Stitch-A-Long.

solo exhibition, the Old Auction House Gallery

Painting for sale!

Anne Lawson Art

My exhibition at the Old Auction House has finished. Many of you were unable to make it, so I would like to offer you the opportunity to have a closer look at the individual pieces. This is the first one, and it is for sale.

$150.00

Watercolour

Paper size: 26 x 36 cm, A3

Paper: Arches watercolour paper

I used a slightly glittery paint on the tops fo the tree. You can see it a little in the photos.

Tree painting from Anne Lawson Art

Anne Lawson Art

Anne Lawson Art

If you are interested in knowing more, contact me:

  • In the comments
  • via my contact page
  • email me     annebags@optusnet.com.au

I happily ship internationally and shipping is free.

Cheers!

 

My exhibition at the Old Auction House

Let me show you my work in a moment, because we need a catch-up.

My Patients are both home, and both doing well. I am gradually getting some time to  do things I need to do, pulling my life a little back towards me. Thank you everyone who commented on the last couple of posts; sorry I didn’t get to reply individually.

We are not out of it yet as there are a whole list of hospital appointments and follow-ups in the next couple of months, and I will be involved in those. I need to be involved, as Terry’s extra pairs of ears (and even with the hearing aids his don’t work so well 😉); I want to be involved, as his support crew; and I have to be involved, as he is not allowed to drive!

Along side of the hospital dramas, was my exhibition in Kyneton. You know that it was my first solo exhibition, and I was very excited. Just to refresh your memory, Kyneton is a regional town about an hour from Melbourne. I managed to get there a few times, including the Meet the Artist session.

solo exhibition of Anne Lawson Art

I was blown away to see my work hanging and felt so proud.

solo exhibition, the Old Auction House Gallery

 

Anne Lawson Art

solo exhibition The Old Auction House

A big shout out to Rhain at the Old Auction House. Along with Jo, she has been such a positive support for me. It has all gone so smoothly. She is building a vibrant, creative space ~ musicians play together on Sundays, a studio space house a costume maker, the gallery walls are full of interesting art and the gift shop is a treat. All things for sale are hand made, and if not local then from Victoria and Australia.

I was delighted too by the number of friends who were able to get to see it. If you were one of them, big hugs! It’s a lovely feeling to know that so many people, even those of you who couldn’t make it, are interested in my art and cheering me on.

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And the sales? Well, as of a week ago, I know that 2 have sold. There may have been a big rush in the last week of the exhibition! 🤞🏼

This is one that is off to a new home.

 

Anne Lawson Art tree painting

The other painting was one of the oil pastel trees. Maybe it was this one?

Anne Lawson Art

On Wednesday I will head to Kyneton to pick up the remaining ones.

Was there one that you fancied? Over the next few months I am going to ‘advertise’ the paintings. A weekly blog post, Instagram and Facebook posts and my newsletter will give you details and close-up photos of one of the trees. If you would like to buy it just let me know.

I have been so inspired by everyone’s positivity that I have applied for another exhibition at the Beadle Hall Community Gallery, at the Incinerator Gallery* here in Moonee Ponds. I’ll find out if I have been accepted in early November.

*Why is it called the Incinerator Gallery? An incinerator, designed by world renown architects Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony, has been repurposed into an arts hub. Read more about it.

The story of the Incinerator highlights a proud moment in Australia’s history, when our country developed an innovative, economical and technologically advanced solution to waste disposal that was envied worldwide.

Pity we can’t do that today.

 

Time to stop and prune the roses

My original intention was to write a post with a very different tone. I was halfway through it when I was called away. That gave me time to reflect on what, and how, I had been thinking. The original was to be of the ‘poor me’ type, the ‘give me a break’ type. I had even written an opening disclaimer telling you to flee without reading more!

As you know my Fella, aka Terry, and my Mum, aka Mum, have been in hospital. Mum’s discharge date was put back a number of times. I was the sibling to pick her up, so my plans had to change as well. (Fingers crossed that she is on her way home as I write.) Then, the other night Terry woke me as he needed to go to Emergency ~ thankfully not heart issues, the reason for his earlier hospital stay, but a very badly infected toe.

I fully expected them to dress the wound, give him antibiotics and send him home…..but no. He has been admitted while they investigate the circulation in his feet and legs. It was that news that made me start the original post.

You see, I like to be in control of my time, I like to be organised. While I am content to make Terry and Mum my priorities I get frustrated. Both are within the Hospital System which has to work at its own pace, with the best interest of the patients in mind. So with each visit there will be different news, or maybe no definite news, leading to changes of plans. And my plans have to change too.

While I was walking home from yet another hospital visit (different ward, different view!) I suddenly thought “I have no control over this, let’s just roll with it.” There’s a quote along the lines of Life happens while you are busy making other plans. Life can just do its own thing and I will give up trying to wrest it into my shape for a little while.

However, there is a collorary thought ~ make the most of the pockets of time.

That brings me to the roses of the title of the post. I had a pocket of time when I came back from the hospital, and the roses were calling, as August is almost too late to prune them in Melbourne. I could have mooched around, pretending to tidy up, or I could have blobbed on the couch. Neither would have given me back a little bit of control. So I grabbed the secateurs and braved the garden.

Now I have to warn you that while I have done nothing in the garden for at least 6 weeks, the plants, especially the weeds have been very busy. The following photos show the garden warts weeds and all. You may have some fun identifying many of the different weed species!

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I am being positive, enjoying the contrast of the silver succulent with the green weeds!

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So, one rose bush before pruning.

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And after. That’s better.

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Hidden between the mallows and the winter grass and the nettles are some treasures, doing their own thing. Some are a little munched around the edges, but look how many flowers are on the blue berry bush! (That’s the last photo.) You can also tell that I have recently discovered the ‘selective focus’ function on my phone camera. It blurs the backgrounds, making the weeds look rather attractive, as though I grow them specially to be background plants!

Yesterday I grabbed another pocket of time and went up to Kyneton to see my exhibition for the first time. I was so proud to see my work hanging there! I will write a post and show you photos. However, if you can’t wait, make sure you are on my newsletter list, as I will be showing off there very soon. To add your name, click here. (No spammy stuff, I promise.)

Reflecting on July

I like to do a reflection at the end of each month, thinking about what I have achieved. Most months there are about 8 to 10 things that I look back on as worth celebrating. In July I had 3:

  • I helped see the Fella through a difficult time in hospital, so that now he is well and getting on with things.
  • I helped my Mum recuperate from her pneumonia. She is now in rehab, and while frail, is much better within herself.
  • I got ready for my first solo exhibition.

So, only three, but what mighty big achievements they were! No wonder there has been little time for anything else. And no wonder I am well over hospitals.

The other day I took my paintings up to the Old Auction House in Kyneton. There are 20 of works, all trees in some form. You know of my fascination, some may say obsession, with trees. This is some of them laid out, ready to be packed up for travel. (The orange labels are my cataloguing process, and are removable.)

Tree paintings

A selection of some of the individual trees.

and the Tangled Trees series ~ watercolour and then embellished with machine sewing.

Then there are some others.

I thought you might like to read my statement that will hang with the paintings.

Trees have always been a part of me. My grandfather worked in the forests of the Dandenong Ranges and Dad took us camping in the bush, off the beaten track. I remember learning the word ‘silhouette’ when Mum pointed out the shapes of the trees outlined against the sunset.

It was during an artist in residence at Mountain Seas Resort on Flinders Island that I first noticed the shapes of the melaleucas and their wonderfully twisted trunks. I was further inspired by a trip across the Nullarbor Plain, where the trees glistened and swayed. A recent artist in residence at Police Point in Portsea, organised by the Mornington Peninsula Shire, opened my eyes to the coastal moonah habitat. 

It is the shapes and rhythms of the canopies and the twisted branches and trunks that inspire me. I have explored them with many different media ~ watercolours, oil pastels, ink, sometimes embellishing the watercolours with machine sewing. I have created tapestries of trees and landscapes. 

In this exhibition there are individual trees and dense, tangled thickets of trees. No matter what the medium with each work I want to capture the feeling of air moving through the branches and then contrast the twisted trunks. There is a joyous freedom in exploring these ideas.

As well, each piece is a reminder of precious, fragile habitats that need us to treasure and protect.

The details of the exhibition:

8th August to 2nd September

The Old Auction House 

Mollison St

Kyneton, Victoria

 

So July has gone and August has many things to look forward too, especially being able to take Mum to Kyneton to see my work hanging. What are you looking forward to?

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Anne Lawson Art

A solo exhibition!

Well, in between getting the Fella home from hospital (he is doing very well; thank you for your positive thoughts) and my Mum going into hospital (she is also doing well, but still in hospital and being looked after so well by the nursing staff) I had an offer of a solo exhibition at the Old Auction House in Kyneton.

If you have been following my blog for a while you will know that a solo exhibition has been a goal for a long time. I researched galleries, googled “ways to approach galleries”, worked on a body of work, but was held back by the fear of rejection. What if the gallery said “No. Not good enough”?

Then, as often happens, my fear was bypassed when Rhain, at the Old Auction House, approached me. Her previous booking had fallen through, and had a gap for August. She had seen my work at the recent group show ‘Not your usual canvas’, and popped the question ~ Would I be interested? Would I? You bet!

So in between hospital visits I sorted through my art works, and surprised myself by finding about 17 pieces that I would be happy to show. All trees, so no surprise there!

About half of the pieces are oil pastel trees.

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I have often shown the smaller, A4 versions of these trees, and some are still available in my Etsy shop. You might remember me telling you about my fascination for trees after my trip over the Nullabor Plain. The ones for the exhibition are larger ~ A3 and one is even bigger. I haven’t shown these before as they are too large to send through the post  successfully. Lucky, because they are perfect for the exhibition.

Another group are the watercolour landscapes embellished with sewing. (I call them landscapes because I don’t know where they fit.) Some you have seen before, but they haven’t had wide exposure.

tree painting

Then a couple of single trees, watercolour canopies and stitched branches and trunks.

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The last group are a couple of works created only in watercolour.

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I think they will hang well together, with a consistency of shape, media and certainly theme.

I won’t have time to create anything large from my Police Point residency. Whatever comes from that might be in my next exhibition!!

However, I would like to find time to create some of the panoramas that I began down there. They should be a nice little addition to the collection. Along with the cards I have already made, they will give people a chance to buy something at a lower price.

So, work to do before the beginning of August, but quite do-able, and yes, I have made a list.

If you are going to be around Victoria in August I would love you to be able to see my work in person.

8th August to 2nd September

The Old Auction House

52 – 56 Mollison St

Kyneton

The best laid plans……

You may have noticed that I have been quiet of late. I hope you have been imagining me creating masterpieces from my time at my artist-in-residency. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case because life took a sharp right turn.

I came back from Portsea fired up with creative ideas and plans. I went up to the Old Auction House in Kyneton, to pick up my paintings from the exhibition. I had a fabulous talk to Rhain and Jo about creating cards, notebooks and accordion books to put into their fabulous shop. They were so enthusiastic, positive and helpful. So, I came back enthused and settled to work on Thursday.

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That’s when life tossed me a curly one. The Fella had to go into hospital that night. He is fine, and back home now. I won’t go into detail. However, if you have ever spent time in hospital with someone you love, you know that it is a tiring, draining experience. Any spare time is devoted to catching up on sleep, bringing other people up to speed or just mindlessly blobbing in front of TV.

He’s home, and that’s fantastic! While there are ends to tie, including a hair appointment which I changed three times,  I am hoping to get back to work this week. Lucky I made notes from my chat with Rhain and Jo, because I would remember so little if I had to dredge their advice from my memory.

Hopefully this week I will have made more progress. If you would like to know more about my art work, sign up for the fortnightly letter from my studio. Delivered straight into your inbox but no spammy stuff.

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[I have turned off comments for this post. I know you are sending me positive thoughts, and I appreciate them, just know that all is good now.]