Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Lisa's Felt Friends

I've recently set up an Instagram account for my felt dogs, and other animals, called Lisa's Felt Friends as I want to try and grow that little business.

Here are some of the new dogs I've been making that you can find there.

These are a couple of custom dogs I made recently for Woof Wag Walk.

And I've been branching out from just dogs with a cat and a sloth! There's a couple more cats in my shop as well as a panda and a koala.

So if you're interested in seeing which animals I'm making, follow along

And don't forget my regular Instagram is @lisagharrold to join me there too.

Thursday, 15 March 2018

New Paintings: Dogs in Flower Crowns

I came up with these images when I was working on some designs for new colour in magnets, which I'll be sharing soon. I loved this set of four dogs in headresses and wanted to do more with them.

They look so grumpy about having to wear flower crowns!

I decided to print out the designs on a larger scale on to water colour paper to make some small paintings. I decided to use gouache paint as a way to keep practising with it. I thought its ability to produce flat, even colour would work well for the style I was going for with these paintings.

When painting it was easier to go over the printed lines and draw them in again afterwards with a black felt tip pen.

I'm so happy with how these turned out. Gouache paint was perfect for these. I'll probably print out more copies of these designs so I can keep practising.

I'm planning to make these four paintings in to prints but for now the original paintings are available to buy on my Etsy shop.

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Water Colour & Fineliner

I've been noticing some cool paintings of houses using water colour and pen over the top and wanted to try it for myself.

I started with a house that I know - the house I stayed in in Norwich during my 3 years at university. I found the house on Google street view and drew it out on to water colour paper. Then I painted it with water colour paints and went over the lines with a fineliner. The good thing about the pen I used is that it's waterproof which meant I could go back and add some more paint if I needed to with the water making the pen ink smudge.

Here's a video of how I did it:

I really liked how my first attempt turned out so I searched for another house to paint. I found this house randomly on Google street view somewhere in California. It's crazy to me that houses like this exist on a regular street.

I then did another painting using the same technique, this time working from a photo I'd taken at a beach. Using the fineliner pen worked really well to capture all the little details of the boat and the fishing cages.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

Miniature House Ornament

This little project came about when I was scrolling through Instagram and saw a photo of Young House Love's pink beach house in the snow and thought, 'I want to make that'. So I did! I decided to make a miniature 2D version of the house using layers of card on a wooden base.

After drawing out a template for the house I cut the shape out of wood using a saw.

To make the features of the house I used cartridge paper, brown card, mountboard and a wooden kebab skewer.

I tried my hardest to mix up the wonderful shade of pink that the Petersiks painted their beach house. I used acrylic paint on a piece of cartridge paper glued to the wooden base, which I scored with a craft knife to make the slats.

I think my favourite details are the fence at the front and the little top window. I had to work with the tiniest slivers of paper!

The house turned out just as I was hoping. I think it would look lovely as an ornament on a mantlepiece, or as a Christmas decoration if I looped some ribbon on the back.

Now I'll be on the look out for other cute houses to recreate in miniature.

Pin it!

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Painting with Gouache

I've been following a few artists recently who use gouache paints. They're sort of a cross between watercolours and acrylic paints. I remembered that I actually have a set of gouache paints but I've never used them. They were on the equipment list for my art and design foundation course so I bought some, but never tried them out. That was about 9 years ago and luckily the paints are still in good condition.

I chose a photo from my America holiday to paint from. It shows the Multnomah falls near Portland, Oregon.
The paints took a little time to get used to how to use them but I'm happy with my first attempt. Here's a video of the painting, with some footage from the day we went to see the waterfalls.

Have you ever tried painting with gouache? What's your favourite medium to work with?

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Recipe Cards

I find a lot of my recipes on the internet. If I have a particular ingredient I want to use, like if I have some bananas that are going brown, then I'll google 'banana recipe' and see what I fancy. I save the recipes I like in a draft email and cook from the laptop screen which isn't ideal. Especially when there isn't enough clean kitchen work top to put the laptop on and I have to keep walking across the kitchen to find out how much flour I need.

So I decided to print out the recipes I've found online and use repeatedly. I know this isn't a revolutionary idea, but this post is more about sharing some of my favourite recipes, and it might give you a nudge to do the same.

I designed my recipe cards in Publisher and made them roughly A6 size, because, as I mentioned, I do not have an abundance of work top space. Typing out the recipes gave me a chance to make alterations where needed. For example, there's a few recipes that I alway make half as much so I listed the ingredients at half the original quantities instead of having to calculate it each time.
I added a few coloured shapes purely for aesthetic reasons.

I printed out the cards, cut them up, and - here's the important part - laminated them. Now they're wipeable!
I punched a hole in the corner of each card and attached them together with a metal ring. Doing this will mean they take up less space than having to keep them in a box.

Here's some of the recipes I chose to print out:

I read about baked oatmeal on a blog and looked up a recipe for it as I was intrigued. I like the idea of porridge as a warm, filling breakfast but I have an aversion to sloppy food so it's a no go. A baked version is perfect; all the goodness of oats but with a texture that's almost like flapjack. I throw in whatever dried fruit I have and always make extra to freeze for a quick, special breakfast on a work day. Or when we've run out of milk for cereal.

I found this recipe when I was looking for a way to recreate a delicious chocolate dessert that I'd had as part of an afternoon tea in Cambridge. I made up the filling from this tart recipe and piped it into little plastic shot glasses. I highly recommend it.

A prime example of needing to use up black bananas. These pancakes are suprisingly filling and with bacon, as the original recipe suggested, they made for a delicious breakfast.

My boyfriend and I are all about this pie. We've started buying a whole chicken to roast and then making this pie with the leftovers. The second time we made it we decided to add stuffing and cranberry sauce since it was around Christmas time and it was a game changer! 

Another way of using up black bananas. And the recipe doesn't use eggs which is good because we don't regularly buy them.

I think I found these when I was looking for healthy snacks and have made them many times. I usually go for a combination of grated carrot, courgette and spinach. My boyfriend likes them with a sweet chilli dip. I've also made sweet versions with apple, sultanas and cinnamon.
The great thing about these is that they're freezable. I think they're best when re-heated in the toaster.

What are you favourite recipes?

Monday, 29 January 2018

Geometric Wall Painting

I was really pleased with how my painting on the wall of my built in wardrobe turned out. My boyfriend and I really love it but agree that it's a shame it goes mostly unseen. Since the summer, we've been going back to the idea of doing a similar painting in the main part of the room.

I decided on two parts of the room that were looking a little blank and put together some designs that used the same shapes and colours from my original painting. I took photos of the areas and used Photoshop to play around with the design directly on the photos.

I drew the designs on to the wall in pencil and then got painting. I only had to buy one new pot of paint as I still had the other colours leftover, and thanks to my last blog post I knew exactly which shade to get.

The corner painting was done over the Christmas holidays, a few hours at a time, but the painting next to the door I was able to do in one day. I thought that was a good opportunity to set up my tripod and show you guys my process.

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