Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Festival of Light

A Festival of Light
for a Challenge on
Art Creations Friday

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Two Dogs in Sepia


Man's Best Friend Challenge

I chose to enhance the dogs rather that ornament them.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Friday, November 6, 2009

Billy Can & Can't

Done for the 'Pairs' challenge on Three Muses challenge

The Plaster-of-Paris figurines, showing a pair of boys on a chamber pots, date from the 1908 or earlier. They used to sit in my Aunt Gertie's washroom. Knowing that her health was failing she asked us each to pick a favourite item from her ornaments. Passing by the Royal Doulton's I chose "Billy Can and Can't.

They are Billikens With their pointy little heads, grinning faces, slitty eyes, round bellies and hands tightly pressed against the sides of their naked bodies, billikens were a craze. From about 1908 to 1911, Americans gave them as good luck charms in the form of tiny statues, postcards, coins and banks. My Billikens were probably given out as Carnival prizes.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

In a Mirror - A ghost of time gone by

Challenge #47 - In a Mirror - A ghost of time gone by
Done for a Art Creations Friday

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Day of the Dead Remembrance Altar

An altar in remembrance of My Aunt Gertie
Done for the Day of the Dead Challenge on
Art on the Darkside

I remember my Aunt Gertie well. She had standards. Her standards were the standards of her day and she applied them firmly and with an air of righteousness.

When she grew up and married my dad, my mother used to dread Gertie’s coming to visit the house. Gertie would check for dust and looked under things, She sought imperfections and found them! She would call these imperfections to my mother's attention. “Now, Phyllis, perhaps you didn't notice but there are dust bunnies under the couch...” etc. There must have been an orgy of housekeeping before she came to call or, God forbid, if there was an unexpected visit, despair. Gertie, however, was not given to unexpected visits. Her premise was “Let them do their best. I'll still find something wrong!”

She was a widow with no children. Her apartment was perfect. In the dining room there was an oak dining table and a glass-fronted case with bone china cups in it as well as the good dinner service and a tea set. Gertie never served coffee, only tea. She had a neat little kitchen and a sun room. The living room was the jewel. There were needlepoint chair cushions and framed needlepoint works hanging on the wall as you came up the stairs to enter the living room. These were not done by herself. She wasn’t a crafty person. Needlepoint was the accepted feminine art of the day so she collected some. The mantelpiece held Royal Doulton figurines, which used to fascinate me as a child. A beautiful oriental rug in tones of red and blue was on the living room floor. Everything in the room was ‘just as it should be’.

In the bathroom on the back of the toilet ledge there were two rather unusual antique Plaster of Paris figures of small boys sitting on chamber pots. One had a broad smile on his face and was labeled “Billy Can”. The other was sunk in gloom with a dejected frown on his face. He was labeled “Billy Can’t” When my Aunt, in her elder years was getting ready to go to a Home for the Aged she was giving away different things and she gave everyone their choice and I chose “Billy Can” and “Billy Can’t”. I still have them.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Rooster Booster

Now, the story of Rooster Booster, my mother kept chickens and had a Victory Garden. It was part of the war effort to grow your own food. She started out with Bantam chickens which are very small. She had hens and a rooster and the hens laid tiny eggs. Later, she got some Leghorn chicks and they guaranteed that these chicks were all female but one of them slipped under the radar and and he was male, very much so. When those little chicks were growing up Rooster Booster, the Bantam, used to pick on that Leghorn rooster chick. He gave him such a hard time. Of course the Leghorn chicks got bigger. The Leghorn rooster started to get tall and lanky. As an adolescent he was still scared of the Bantam rooster who would chase him around. This little Bantie rooster chasing around this big old Leghorn was quite a funny sight to see. One fine day the Leghorn rooster realized that he was bigger! He turned on the Bantam and, well, that was the end of Rooster Booster. You could say that it was the end of tyranny or whatever you want but it was curtains for Rooster Booster.

Done for the "Chicken" Challenge

The Dark of the Moon

Done for a Halloween Challenge on
Art on the Darkside

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Hungry Ghosts

Done for a Halloween Challenge on
Art on the Darkside

The figure is that of Catrina
from the Mexican "Day of the Dead"

Thursday, October 15, 2009

3 Muses 'Hair' Challenge

Done for the "Hair" Challenge

Girl is from as free for use stock photo from Photoxpress

Background by Temaristock, mostly handmade from private stock

From the Textures for Layers Pool

Monday, October 12, 2009

Halloween Decoration

Done for the Halloween Decoration Challenge on
Art on the Darkside

The cat is a primitive cloth doll pattern

19 - Numerology

Done for the Window Challenge #19

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Soartful Saturday - Midsummer Night's Dream

Click to Enlarge

"Where the bee sups there sup I,
In a cowslip's bell I lie..."

Soartful "Midsummer Night's Dream" Challenge on

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Monday, September 21, 2009

When Adam Delved and Eve span

"When Adam delved and Eve span
Who was then the gentleman...
John Ball


Sunday, September 20, 2009

"Live Oaks" Challenge

Click to Enlarge

Soartful "Live Oaks" Challenge on

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Medicine Buddha with Rainbows

Medicine Buddha with Rainbows
(c) Ani Thubten Jamyang Donma aka Catherine A. Brock & Associates

This is the work of my daughter who is a Buddhist and a stained glass designer.

Soartful Challenge on

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sunday, September 6, 2009

"Hang down your head Tom Dooley
Hang Down your head and cry
Hang Down your head Tom Dooley
Poor boy you're bound to die"

For the 'Black' Challenge on
Art on the Darkside

Red Riding Hood

I used royalty-free clipart for the wolf, added some asters with a watercolour filter and a tree in the background with a gradient applied with soft light. The Riding Hood was filled with flowers using Edit/Fill/Pattern in Photoshop with red touches painted in. The hardest part was cutting the figure of the girl out from the murky background. I used the Photoshop Levels adjustment to add some colour to the girl and her dress is a softened gradient.
The frame is from Filters Unlimited

Challenge 39

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Friday, August 28, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Angel/Fairy rides a Moth

Challenge on

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Hands of Glory

Early Halloween and Hands of Glory entry

Done for Challenge

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea green boat,
They took some honey, and plenty of money,
Wrapped up in a five pound note.
The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar….

(Guitar 1950 Gibson ES5 from the collection of Danny Marks)
Cat is from my own sketch of Bitsy, my New York cat.

Challenge on

Friday, August 21, 2009


This is a test of the new Windows Live Writer

which allows me to post content from my desktop

Mother Nature takes a Nap
Challenge on

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Done for Challenge #11 - Things with Wings

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Monday, August 17, 2009

Wednesday, August 5, 2009