Monday, 31 October 2011

Photographic Posting

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No! It's a moth.

I found this beautiful moth in the backyard.

One of my flowering plants is in full bloom.
I love this plant. The flowers are like a staircase.

Very dark. Very noir.

A domestic scene:
I challenge anyone to stack their
dish rack as tall as mine.

Happy Halloween

Justine Clarke - 'The Witches' Ball' Songs to Make You Smile from MaricorMaricar on Vimeo.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

All That Glitters Is Sometimes Purple

Sunday Snaps

It is Sunday and the evening has arrived. Sitting on the couch I decided to take some photos...
Look Up

Look forward

Look down

Friday, 28 October 2011

Your First - My First

My paper cut art.
    This afternoon I was busy constructing a Birthday card for a little boy about to turn one. This is actually a paper cut illustration. I tell you what it was no easy feat. The drawing is the easy bit. The real concentration comes with the actual cutting. You need a steady hand, but the end result is so totally lovely and therefore worth it.
    For a long time I have been inspired by a fellow crafter, Ellia Hill - she makes such stunning illustrations with her paper cuts. So when it was on my project list to make a Birthday card I decided to try my hand at paper cut art. 
    By the way I highly recommend you check out Ellia's artwork at

Thursday, 27 October 2011

I Dig Books

I dig books! I dig books! And books dig me.
I enjoy reading books. I could easily disappear into a good book for a day. The better the story the less time it takes to read. I recently read The Help and between taking care of my little girls I had devoured the book in about three days.
I am on a book high at the moment. I have been re-reading Sense and Sensibility [written by Jane Austen]. The other day I borrowed Murder 101 [written by Maggie Barbieri] and re-borrowed Chocolat [written by Joanne Harris] from the library. I am waiting for Twilight graphic novel Vol 2 to arrive in the mail. And I have a million and one books on my wish list I am craving to get my hands on.
Is it a vice to love reading so many books?

Never Twice the Same

The sky is an ever changing canvas.

Never the same and yet ever so beautiful.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Rainy Day Doll House

    Here is something to do on a rainy day [if you're living in Melbourne this can happen any moment; if you're living in Darwin you can set your clock by it at 4 PM.]. It is a papercraft doll house.
    Yesterday I set to it with my paper supplies and two empty tissue boxes and worked over a two hour period [ taking into consideration the lunch break]. The result was a homemade doll house. It is Gwen's first doll house and it is pretty neat I must say. I had such a fun time making the house.
    When I was a little girl I used to this sort of thing - just crafting stuff with paper, scissors and an entire roll of sticky tape. It felt good to get back into that child-like creative space, of not following set instructions and just letting the project develop itself naturally.
    You can use the following photos [which document my doll house construction process] to make your own doll house. All you need are two tissue boxes [or as many as you wish], paper, card, textas and pencils, scissors, sticky tape, ruler and paint. This sounds like a lot, but you can simply use any scrap paper or card you have about your house. Think green! For instance, to make the roofline you could use last year's Chrismas cards.

Cut off the top/lid of the tissue box.

Tape together the two tissue boxes.
Stick down trimmed paper for the floor and ceilings.

Looking good.

Draw on to trimmed paper some wall details.
There are three walls per room/tissue box.
Use a ruler to get an estimate of how much to trim the paper.
Colour in the wall details.

Stick the wall details into the tissue box.
Fold scrap card in half and tape to the top tissue box,
creating a triangular roofline.

Still looking good.

Oh yeah!

Cut a triangle piece of paper/card same size as the roof,
and glue to the back, thus creating an attic.

Now you can paint the exterior of the house.
If you have a variety of paints, try something creative
with extra details - windows, doors, flowerbeds.
With your left over card do some cutting and folding
and you've got some basic furniture - like
a bed or a table.
Oh! And don't forget some little paper people
to live in the lovely paper house.

Tah-dah! She loves it.

Drop me a line if you try this rainy day papercraft project. I'd love to see how it went.

Birds on a Wire

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Little Birdie

    Tonight, while wheeling the garbage bin out into the street for collection I noticed this baby bird sitting quite still in the middle of the driveway. His parents were hovering in the trees just above, trying to keep an eye on this little fellow. Eventually he made his way, fluttering a little above the ground, toward a protected patch of garden, filled with lots of big dry leaves. I hope he will be okay. Bless his little heart.
My heart is as big as Texas...

I've got all the love a little bird can give...

and maybe...

just a little bit extra.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

My Angel Baby

I have begun experimenting with the manual settings on my camera...

Monday, 17 October 2011

Good Reads

    Today I picked up a copy of Frankie. I was pleased to see it so choc-a-block packed with inspiring and laugh out loud reads.
    I am also re-reading Sense and Sensibility, written by Jane Austen.
    You know, by saying this some people will probably want to throw books at me, but I think Marianne Dashwood is a bit of a twit. Her melodramatics are beyond ridiculous sometimes. In her warped sense of the world she will easily insult good people, and speak cruelly of her acquantances. But then shows an acute sensitivity to anyone making light of her romantic sensibilities. There are many times when she hurts Elinor's feelings by accusing her of no feeling simply because her sister prefers to take the cautious path in life. Elinor understands well enough that much damage can result in character iftoo exposed to the public. Marianne feels a life is half lived without absolute drama. Inevitably this sick pleasure for gratifying her absolute joy and heartache does lead to ill health, and near death, as she chose to not take good care of her own well being.
    And there you have it. That's what I think of young Marianne Dashwood. I cannot help but wonder. When Jane created this character, did she despise her? Was she based on someone she knew? A sister, perhaps?

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Life Through a Camera

The first camera I used was a tiny black plastic disposable camera. It was the kind of camera to fit in your back pocket. It had a flip up window which acted as the view finder. The photos I took with this camera were a little fuzzy and grey. I had been on holiday visiting Grandma, I believe. The day was spent in Sydney and it was an overcast day, which would probably explain the dullness of the images. As ordinary as the photos turned out it was still an exciting experience. I loved being able to say that I took those photos. I must have been about eight years old. Maybe, even nine.
My next camera was a more permanent structure and therefore, presence in my life. Grandma let me have her disc camera. This was a flattish camera that used a cartridge film, much like a disc. This camera could take 15 photos. I got a good few years out of this camera. I remember there was a glitch in the machine. Somewhere about shot 8 or 9 would never come out. I learnt to work around this problem by ensuring that I never photographed anything particularly special when I got to that shot.
I did a funny thing when I first received the disc camera. I was so excited to have my own camera. I did a photo shoot for my Ballerina Barbie, and had her posing for the camera. It was such fun pretending to be a professional photographer. Little did I know that camera film has its limitation. I just kept taking photo after photo, after photo. Lord only knows how many photos I took, but it was certainly more than the 15 shots that the film allowed.
In grade nine, high school, I took a photographic elective and decided to save up for a professional camera. Realizing that I would be saving my money for a long time before being able to have such a camera, I settled for a point and shoot so I could keep going with taking photos. It was an unremarkable camera but it did the job until…
One Christmas my parents gave me a camera. I was sixteen. It was a Ricoh KR-5 Super II. It really was super and I got so many years use out of it. In my early twenties I invested in a second hand macro lens. This lens was designed for jewel photography. But I used it for getting close and personal with flowers and insects. It picked up so much detail that actually goes unnoticed by the human eye. At the time I had planned to gather more lenses, but little did I realise that digital photography was taking over. My camera was becoming obsolete and it was therefore pointless chasing those lenses.
My old Ricoh camera.

Ricoh macro lens.
The past few years I had been using economical digital instamatic cameras. It was quick, easy and convenient. But inevitably I was frustrated with failing batteries, dirty, pixelated images and yellow lighting.
Lo and behold the camera fairy hears my frustration. This year for my birthday my Dad gifted to me a digital Canon – an EOS 1100D - the perfect camera for entry level professional photographers. This camera has fantastic functions – it has both manual and automatic features. I have gotten a handle of the basic features, but now the time has come to check out the manual. My day is quite busy, being a mum of two, which can leave little room for personal creative development. But being able to lay my hands on a camera at least fills that space each day.
My current camera - the Canon EOS 1100D.

What in the Weird?!

    I noticed such a strange thing this morning. One of my rose bushes which has produced massive peach roses for many years has had a new transformation. It is still producing peach roses, but this morning I notice an addition of tiny ruby roses budding on the plant. What in the weird? How on earth can this be?

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Today I Am A...


    I am a creative person. I enjoy trying out different forms of art, and even craft. Some days I have an illustrator, other days I am a writer. For today I am wearing my photographer's hat.
    Did you know, Charles Dodgson [aka Lewis Carroll] was a photographer - another person who wore many hats. Back in his day it was a lot more difficult to create just the right amount of lighting for taking photos - it was all dependent on the weather. So to make his job easier Charles had the idea to build an outdoor studio. It was set up to look like a real room, but with natural light filling the space.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Something in the Weather

    There must be something in the weather. We have switched to daylight saving. The days are becoming longer. And I am feeling a desire to dress more prettily and eat food consistent with the weather.
    Which is why I have begun wearing a pink feather flower in my hair and am dreaming of eating cold dinners in the evening. The kind of dinner that is made of cold ham, guinea pig salad, and a boiled egg [also cooled down].
    This time of year brings about a sense of rejuvenation - of the mind, body and the home. I think Spring is always a good time for a change of habits - it's not to hot nor cold. The perfect window of opportunity to make things happen.

Thursday Shots

Car window reflection.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

My Creative Space

Yesterday, in a fit of creativity I pulled out one of my craft books - Meet Me At Mike's: 20 crafty projects... and the result was the Udderly Lovely Cow.

This is the book.

This is the project.

This is what I made.