lamp resurrected

A friend of mine sent me a photo of his lamp. He’d knocked it over and wondered if I could do anything with it, since we both belong to groups about recycling and not buying new.

I said bring it over and I’ll have a look.

I had envisaged a japanese gold fix KintsugiĀ but more than halfway through glueing pieces I discovered there a couple of large pieces missing.

I had to rethink it. I had to make up the missing pieces somehow. I used air dry clay but it looked awful. So, I started to play with it. And this is what I came up with.

An octopus is now holding the lamp together. You can’t actually see him cause he’s inside, but his tentacles come out of the ‘holes’ and wrap around the base.

I hope he likes it when he sees it!

Meanwhile Lainee is doing great but the news isn’t good. The lump they removed in Syros at the vet hospital was malignant. I don’t have the details yet, what type of cancer it was, but they recommend I let her recouperate from this surgery completely and take her back to remove the entire row on mammary glands on the other side too. There are lumps there as well. Tiny ones, but since the big one was malignant they don’t think I should take the chance of leaving and watching them.

I guess I wait to get the full biopsy report and do some research. I want her happy and healthy and if that means another surgery, then I’ll do it. I’d rather do it now, before she gets any older… She’s 12 now and if any of the other lumps begin to go ‘bad’ she won’t have to face surgery at 13 or 14. I want her to live to be a very old lady.

Meanwhile I’m waiting to hear back from the doctor in Athens regarding my stent removal. And waiting to hear about my job this summer. And generally just waiting. Seems lately there’s a lot of waiting involved in life.

z

upcycled cabinet door

Well, I finally finished another painting. I’ve been spending more time on handy work than on painting lately… Not that I’ve done any handy work at all on my two re-do cabinets…

This piece is a sort of natural progression from the fish I painted on old wood a couple of weeks ago. While looking for old wood to paint on I found this cabinet door just sitting around doing nothing, begging to be made use of.

Yes, there is a hole in the large urchin. Came in handy!

I had planned to paint mostly white on white and shades of white, but in the end I put in more colour. Not sure what I’ll do with this but I have time to decide.

I’m planning/hoping to have an exhibition this summer and almost all my work will be recycled and art from trash type of works… (dog sculptures, plastic bottle naked ladies, sea rope baskets etc) This fits in with that so maybe it will be included… or maybe I’ll list it for sale on Facebook. Who knows…

z

re-recycling rusty wire

Second life for this piece of wire I found on the side of the road. Its first life (with me) was when I used it as a planter by putting it around a plastic pot on the front porch.

But the plant died and I wasn’t really sure what to do with it so I just let it sit there a while.

The floor lamp I use it as my work lamp has a broken ‘neck’ and won’t stand up when it has the lamp shade on it – too top heavy. I removed the shade and have been using it with a plain bulb. But I had this brainwave and now this is what the lamp looks like.

It might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it doesn’t overbalance any more and the wire shade doesn’t interfere with the light.

I’m happy.

For now.

z

fish – lockdown 2 day 161

Just a quickie today as I have a trip to Syros to get ready for.

This is the commission I had to have ready by Easter. Its a pic taken as I worked on it. I painted directly onto a couple of pieces of weathered timber I sanded down for that recycled rustic look.

Stay tuned to see after pics of the unit with this on the wall above the bed.

z

searope basket – lockdown 2 day 145

I’ve been a day behind on the blog for days now so today you get 2 posts so I can catch up. At least I think this is catching up. I may be 2 days behind… hmmm…

Anyway, I’ve been working on art sporadically but seem to have spent most of my time lately doing things other than creative work. Like cleaning up the courtyard out the back, planting seeds and other such stuff. Considering I’m planning to have an exhibition this year, I really need to get cracking on art.

One thing I began and actually finished this week was another sea rope basket. I’m now officially low on sea rope so need to go for a walk on the beach to gather more. I had to buy more thread this week too as I finished the last spool. I like to use a crochet thread in a natural colour for my baskets.

Making these little baskets is kind of zen, I can do it while sitting quietly with my thoughts (though my thoughts tend to get loud at times…) or while chatting to someone or watching TV… They take a while to make and I’m getting calluses on my thumb from pulling the needle throught, but hey, you gotta suffer for your art.

I love finishing off the edges of these little guys with loose bits of rope, in this case knots I had to cut off the bits of rope in order to make the basket. It gives them a sort of whimsical feel…

They’re not really big. I’m considering making a bigger one but it will need a whole lot more rope…

Anyway, its time for another beach scavenger walk…

z

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more sea rope creations – lockdown 2 day 133

I finally finished the latest sea rope basket late last night. Sometime after 12am. I’m now officially low on sea rope and need to go searching for more. Easy enough… There’s always tons washing up on the beaches near here.

I couldn’t get to sleep last night. I went to bed later than usual which should have meant easy sleep, but no. I’d been watching season 13 of Grey’s Anatomy on Stremio (the wonders of which my niece introduced me to) but could not stop my brain going flat out. I couldn’t find the off switch. I tried some deep breathing and meditation at one stage but it was like trying to hold back a tsunami with a paper towel.

Do you ever have nights like that? I do. More than once a week. Its like all the thoughts I managed to damp down during the day come back with a vengeance. Especially creative thoughts.

During those nights I often build the linen cupboard I want to make out of pallet wood for the alcove near the bathroom. Last night I added in the twist of getting a metal cabinet an uncle made for us many years ago as a shoe cabinet. Forget linen. That can stay in the bedroom wardrobe where it is now… I definitely need shoe storage! I wonder if the metal cabinet will fit? I have the measurements somewhere, I looked into that idea a while ago before deciding I wanted to build a cupboard… I must search my notebooks and see if I have it in one of them. Why do I have so many notebooks? Cause I like notebooks of course, especially pretty ones, and its useful to keep notes on stuff (like the size of the metal cabinet) instead of writing everything on bits of paper you lose. I have a diary I got last year but really never used… I can use that as my next notebook since the one I used before I now keep at home with ‘important’ stuff in it I can’t risk losing. And I can’t keep everything on my phone. If I lost my phone I’d be stuffed. I mean, phones keep so much of our lives on them as it is! I don’t remember anyone’s phone number any more. My mom, who is 88, remembers so many phone numbers. I used to. I used to know my credit card numbers off by heart too. How would I make that footstool I decided I can’t live without? Cut the timber pieces I have for legs – straight or at an angle? An angle would look best, but much harder to screw in place so its sturdy. Guess I could YouTube it… but straight would be easier for sure. Make a square frame, screw each leg on two sides in each corner. Maybe even put a screw down from the top in the middle. Then find something to cut a round top (do I have any boards I can use?)… I can’t make a square foot stool to sit next to my round coffee table. Wouldn’t look right. Then buy some foam cut to the right size/shape. Find some nice fabric. Do I have any fabric I can use… Wait, I have those small round boho style geometric black and white rugs… they’d be ideal! Get some wadding to soften the look of the foam. I have an electric staple gun. And hot glue. Man, I wish those clothes I bought online all fit. That black dress is hideous. All I need is a burkha and I would fit right in in the middle east. I can cut the sleeves… and raise the hem… but in order to make it fit decently I would probably have to open up all the seams and re-sew them to make it look decent. Could I be creative with it? Or the other things I bought? I love mending my older tops which have holes or where seams have come loose. I have the two summer overalls I ordered too… way too big, but that’s ok, they’re overalls after all, easy enough to take in down the sides. They basically just need the straps shortened. That might be enough. I’ve lost weight now and I’m loving becoming reacquainted with my rib cage. I need to keep it off now. Which means I need to start exercising again, walking at least. The doctor said only remove the tube when there was nothing coming out for a full week. There was still something coming out. Only about 10-20ml in 2 days, but that’s till something, right? Could I have fluid building up in my abdomen? What happens to it, even if it is just a little bit? Does it get absorbed? Is it going to poison me? I need to plant those sweet pea seeds I soaked in water. I want to take some to mom, put others in where they can climb up the scrap metal trellis I made out the back. They need to go in pots today. I planted the lupin seeds. I thought I have more lupins, blue and white ones… but I must have planted them and they died. I have one single flower on one of the plants, a pink one, the other surviving seeling is still small. And what about the unfinished dogs…?

You have some idea of what it is to live in my brain.

Exhausting.

Maybe it had something to do with the fact that not only did I finish the basket, I also stitched up one of the felt cat toys I want to give away and got back to work on a broken lamp and the naked ladies made from dishwashing bottles. Maybe starting back on my creative projects sparked this avalanche of thoughts. But you’d be wrong. This happens whether I’m being creative or not. More if I’m not creative in fact, as its like all the creativity I’ve suppressed all day breaks out at night to swarm me like a pack of mosquitos on steroids.

I’m a bit late publishing this one. I’ve been having internet connectivity issues with the laptop. Odd. Anyway, better late than never!

z

naked ladies – lockdown 2 day 74

To be honest I’m not sure I should be calling this a lockdown any more. Schools are back in session for the most part and retails shops are open. The only things that remain closed are restaurants and cafes. We still have to send sms when we go out and wear masks and abide by the safe distance rules, no large gatherings, festivals still cancelled, limits on how many can travel in one car, still not allowed to travel from one county to another… but is it still a lock down? This seems almost like back to normal life… funny what you get used to.

Should I continue to number my posts by lockdown days?

Anyway, thought I’d share another of my projects… I’ve started making naked ladies. I’ve done something similar to this before but not the same. I’m going with a sort of greek statue-esque look. Maybe some will be more fertility goddess looking… for now this is the first one ready to share.

And for those of you who haven’t clicked yet… given I love art from trash and recycling and using everyday things to create art… Can you guess what she’s made from?

She’s made using a dishwashing liquid bottle as the base with DIY paper pulp, recycled cardboard and air dry clay.

Not bad for an old dishwashing liquid bottle huh?

z

mom & dad memory box – lockdown 2 day 10

I’ve had a bit of a lazy day today. Well, a lot lazy. I didn’t do much of anything at all. One thing I DID do was finish something I’ve had on my To Do list for a a long time. I finished a memory box for mom and dad. Something similar to the one I made for my grandparents.

I’d found this glass fronted display box at a second hand store last year and had always planned to use it to do this, I just never really got around to it. I did give it a coat of paint but sort then sort of got stuck…

Mainly on what to use as a background. I knew I wanted something romantic looking and about a month ago I ordered some pretty rice paper I found when shopping for art supplies online. Once I finally put the paper in the boxit was easy to sort through prints of old photos of mom and dad courting and on their wedding day and pick the ones I would use. There are so many photos it was hard to pick, and mom was so gorgeous…

You can click on the images below to see the steps and close ups of the photos I chose.

I wanted it to be romantic so I picked some lace to include, a rose and a lovely old bracelet of mom’s for a bit of bling.

It was still missing something so I found a rusty bit of wire and twisted it into a heart – perfect! Painted shabby wood, pretty paper, vintage lace, old photos, bling and rust. Can’t get better than that.

I’ve hung it by the door in my bedroom, on the same wall as the box for my grandparents and the photos of dad displayed in the old radio face.

It occurs to me I have the perfect white, lacy, shabby, romantic girly bedroom. Finally. After so many years of black furniture and dark colours. Funny isn’t it?

z

a new sea rope basket

Remember the last sea rope basket?

It was only tiny and is now living in Norway.

This time I decided to tackle something a little bigger, more practical in size. I began with a piece of rope which was longer than the 5-6 inch pieces I normally find on the beach. I was lucky a couple of months ago to find two longer lengths of grey, so I began this one with one of those pieces to create the bottom of the basket.

By doing a little every night while watching Netflix I continued to build up the basket, adding in my small pieces as I went, adding colour as each piece was different.

The predominant colours are usually blues and greens, but you never know what you’ll find buried in the sand.

This time I’d been lucky enough to find some netting as well, which I decided to add to the top of the basket to add that whimsical feel.

Its not a huge basket. about 22cm diameter, but its about the same size as the first basket I ever made out of new cotton rope… (which I can’t seem to find on the blog, which means I probably never shared it… hm… must fix that.)

Its a handy size, I’ve used my first one to hold sunnies, makeup, all kinds of odds and ends. Only difference is this one is stiffer as this rope is harder than the cotton rope. Holds its shape better.

I’m actually very pleased with it. This little fella will be going into the art exhibition I’m planning/hoping to have next summer. A mix of art from trash, recycling and mixed media art. I’m excited by the idea of it and actually very eager to start working on ideas that keep me awake at night.

(If only my buzzing mind translated into more action…)

So. Other than this little creation, what have I been doing lately?

Well some small artworks on stone and marble by commission. Day to day living. Working. Swimming. Attempting to keep my home neat and tidy for when mom visits and failing miserably.

And Netflix.

I’m currently watching Salvation – just started last night. I like end of the world type stuff, call me crazy…

I watched The Glitch (wierd and sort of unsatisfying in its conclusion), The Code (which I enjoyed) and The Let Down (loved it). These three are Australian series and maybe part of the reason I loved them so much was that they’re Australian and I got to wallow in aussie accents and sense of humour again for a while. The Let Down is hilarious and SO Australian!

I watched Away (enjoyed), Snowpiercer (yep, end of the world stuff) and…

I know there were more since I last blogged about my Netflix habit… but right now my mind is blank. Aren’t you glad?

z

art from trash – sea rope basket finished

Back home. Finally. And SO glad to be back. The moment I stepped off the ferry and smelled that sea air I was happy.

Of course, you go away for a week and come home and it looks like you’ve been gone for months. Piles of pine needles all over the place, everything is dusty… but I’m home!

Anyway, I finished this little gem before I left for Athens and never got a chance to share it. Its made entirely of rope pieces I found while walking on beaches near home. Art from trash basically.

Its only small, about 15cm at the widest point. I love art that’s also functional. Lets face it -not many people have the money to spend on art these days, but I know I’d buy something beautiful/interesting/unique if it was functional as well. Hence, most of my creations are both.

So… news… I have some. I just haven’t felt like posting about it. I will. Let’s just say I’m not a happy camper with the ‘finished’ work in the bathroom, but that’s a long story for when I have more time and feel up to talking about it.

Healthwise I’m better, Lainee is looking a bit better but her treatment continues. I feel so horrible for her. Right now she’s staying home when I go out cause I feel safer keeping her contained right now.

Spartacus is much better. He only has one bald patch at the base of his tail left and even that is starting to grow hair. He’s turned into a wild child… all scratchy bitey when you reach out to pat him. And fearless. Then again, what do you expect when you have a kitten you can’t handle for ages? sigh… Hopefully once he’s cleared and can begin to hang out more he’ll calm down. He’s like a cat on speed right now… speed and red cordial. ugh.

Both of them have another appointment at the vet in a week. Sparky’s last shot and Lainee’s second.

I’ve started working back at the ceramics studio and love being back in such a creative atmosphere. Even though I’m painting all day, I feel inspired to do more when I’m home. Not that I have as yet. I haven’t had much time. I need to clear off the kitchen table (my painting studio) so I can work, but the desire is there which is good. With the heat in Athens, the headaches of all the stuff I had to organise and us all being sick, I just didn’t want to do a thing.

Hopefully things will get back to some kind of normal soon.

With a couple more trips to Athens mixed in…

ugh.

z