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WELCOME to my little arty world! Trying to make art is a huge part of my life ... love nothing more than messing around with inks and sprays and generally making a mess!

Sunday, 6 March 2016

All things Finnabair!

Had an amazing weekend taking all four of Finnabair's classes when she came to Coventry last weekend ... did two of her classes last year up in Harrogate and was desperate to do more so when I found out she was coming more local to me I had to bat the big brown eyes and persuade hubby to let me go!  So, Saturday 27th was my Christmas present and Sunday 28th was my birthday present and the shopping bill afterwards was my divorce settlement!!!

First project on the Saturday morning was "Frozen in Time" ... a gorgeous journal cover and I enjoyed doing it so much I have done two more this past week.  

I had a mini-meltdown when colouring this one ... chose my colours and thought I picked up the blue bottle, did my first squirt and OH NO!!!! I grabbed the pink bottle by mistake.

I do not do pink.
I hate pink.
But pink it had to be as there was no turning back!
Deep breath and continue.

Can kinda, sorta live with the end product ... it is growing on me.
But I still hate pink!

Some ladies left after the first workshop and new ones came for the afternoon session but I was well and truly settled for the weekend so I actually had it all together for once!

Next workshop was "Beauty and the Beads" ... I did this in Harrogate last June and was very pleased to get a second chance at it.  

Went into meltdown the moment I started and regretted my choice of stencil from the moment I put the paste on the canvas.  Sat with my palette knife in hand about a gnat's whisker from scraping it all off ... it had already started to dry so am sure I would have ended up with one heck of a mess so decided to just go with it.

The piece Finn worked on for her demo had two corner designs and as most of my work seems to follow that design I wanted to do something different.  My piece last year was a diagonal so I didn't want to do that so thinking cap on!  I had messed up the one edge of the canvas where I didn't take the stencil far enough so that became the bottom and I envisaged a sort of "WHOOSH" up the centre of the canvas.

This did not go AT ALL to plan and I faffed round for ages moving bits here and there and getting more and more disheartened.  Shouted HELP! to Finn who came to my rescue, made a suggestion which I very readily took on board and ended up with this.

Was not really pleased with it at all until I shared it on Facebook and words like "magic potions" and "spells" began to appear ... hadn't thought of that at all and I think it is now my favourite of all four pieces.

Back the next day to start all over again ... loving every minute and wanting it to never end!
First project Sunday morning was "Time Capsule" ... again a repeat of the one I did in Harrogate ... loved making it but my least favourite of all I think.  I am undecided whether to gesso over the roses and make them less intense ... am not being impulsive though and will decide at some point!

The three workshops so far had all been amazing ... I had really, really lovely ladies at my table and the group as a whole worked brilliantly with everyone patiently waiting their turn at the spritzing/inky tables that had been set up.  

Sunday afternoon it all changed and we were back to the grabbers and impatient ladies who simply have to go first.  I had my three carefully chosen colours lined up and was merrily spritzing away when one of the bottles disappeared and was now in the hands of a group of three.  Some colours look so similar in their bottles so I had no chance of finding those I was using again and messed this one up big time.  

Felt myself getting quite cross but just laughed inside and let them carry on ... and now blame them for the horrible colour choice on this one!

The numbers refer to my wedding anniversary and the word "journey" sure does sum up the past 37 years!

  The final piece was "Overemotional" (all Finn's workshops have names) and it is one I have wanted to do ever since discovering Finnabair ... this piece sums up her work for me and sure did call out to me.  

Hardest part of this (and one which stressed me out since I booked my place on the workshops last June) was using a photo' of myself.

Decided at the very last moment to go ahead and stick myself on there but was delighted I then got the opportunity to hide most of myself away ... see, I am not daft as I look!

This piece would have been individual to everyone there and mean different things to everyone ... I feel this one truly represents ME at this moment in time.

Stupid little smirk.
A waterfall of tears
A little broken heart.
Torn and tatty to the extreme.
Engulfed by sadness.
Holding on and getting by and sometimes the stupid little smirk becomes a real smile of joy and happiness.

Totally LOVED making my tatty dress (got the Miss Haversham vibe going big time!) and made it as ragged as I could.

My heart and soul is in this canvas.

Was enjoying doing this piece so much and then Finn had to go and spoil it by saying the "P" word ..

I don't do pencils.
I LOVE pencils to stroke and admire but not to use.
I HATE colouring-in.
I don't do pencils (did I say that already?)
I REALLY don't do pencils!

Sat there for ages with it in my hand.  Went to make the first mark and pulled back ... time and time and time again.
Put the pencil down figuring it did not need it.
Knew that if Finn said we needed a to use a pencil then we REALLY needed to use a pencil.

SO ... I just took a deep breath and went for it.

Finn was standing two feet away and heard that deep breath.

"Well done. I am proud of you"

Can't wait to do more classes ... will have to negotiate the Christmas/Birthday present deal again but can't think of better presents to get.  
Finn is the most amazing teacher ... funny and generous and so willing to share her talent and her encouragement makes you believe you can do anything.

Her motto is SPREAD YOUR WINGS ... and mine were spread open wide immersed in the wonderful world of Finnabair.

(just realised I have them in the wrong order!  Not to worry ... you will get the drift!)


  1. having read of your meltdown on FB about pink and pencils and all the rest - these are totally gorgeous and you should be very proud of them!

  2. Hi Debbie, lolled at the Divorce Settlement! Seriously, you have made a group of amazing pieces here, I love them all. Wonderful to hear how much you clearly enjoyed the workshops too- it shines through in every sentence. Huge Hugs to you. xxx