Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Gorgeous Lilies in my Garden.

 It's the first time that I've grown these lilies, so I'm not quite sure exactly what colour pink they will turn out to be.
                        Not quite the deep pink that I was hoping for, but lovely all the same.
 These gorgeous lilies have several names, Maltese cross Lily, Jockey's Cap lily and the correct name which is Sprekelia. They look so spectacular, yet are very easy to grow and multiply prolifically.
 This is another new variety for my garden and much more the depth of colour that I was looking for.
These Hippeastrum lilies I think used to be called Amaryllis, or maybe that's the accepted name these days. Anyway they are really spectacular, and again the bulbs multiply nicely.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

The Next Stage.

          I've sealed all 3 plates with matt gel medium and also with a light coat of gesso.
         Interestingly the colour of some of the materials has leached through both of these sealants.
After a night under my weighty book press the sphagnum moss has flattened a bit, but it may still be too lumpy to print well. I'll let these dry and then the exciting bit, to print from them.

Monday, 20 November 2017

New Collograph Plates.

 While I was away recently I keep on the lookout for suitable natural materials to try on collograph plates. I came home with several bags of bits and pieces to try. The plate above used sawdust on the light board mountain cut outs, with mulberry bark in the middle ground and finely chopped tree bark for the fore ground. All the material on the sealed plates have been glued into place, but not themselves sealed.
 Again I have used sawdust, this time for the fine tree leaves and strands of bark for the trunks. I have also added some dried oak tree flowers below.
For this one I crumbled some dried sphagnum moss, the sort of stuff that you get from a plant nursery, for the tree leaves, with several strands of worsted yarn for the trunk and branches, and with shredded bark for the grasses below. Unfortunately the dried moss has started to swell with the water in the glue, so I will have to see if I can flatten and seal it suitable for printing.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Mitta Valley.

 This is part of the beautiful Mitta Valley in Northern Victoria. Whilst it can get very hot and dry here, the Spring days that we spent in the valley were warm, sunny and with views of lush green pastures.
 Again my eye was caught by some abandoned machinery, this time a small trailer that had been over taken by weeds.
I just love this tiny garden taking hold in the tray of the trailer, complete with spider web. You can just see the tree covered hill in the background.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Rural Artefacts.

I have been away from home for a few days, exploring some of the North Eastern parts of the state of Victoria.
While walking the dog around the tiny town of Strathbogie I came across some old artefacts that I just had to photograph, such as the huge pile of rusty farm bits lying in the grass behind a derelict old house. What a bonanza for anyone wanting things for rusting of paper or fabric.
 It was a very hot morning, so even if I had wanted to take any pieces, the thought of snakes lurking under the bits of tin certainly put me off doing that!

This appeared to be the remains of an old fireplace, and someone had added their finds of odds and ends to the stonework.

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Rhubarb Flowers ?

It never occurred to me to think that a Rhubarb plant might have flowers, so I was very surprised to find my very old, at least 17 years old, plant in flower.  Some of the flowers have gone on to form reddish seeds too, which are very attractive. The stalks of the flowers are very strong, although hollow and are easily as tall as I am. What a surprise!

Sunday, 12 November 2017

A Touch of Paint.

 These two prints are more or less rejects, being too dark and not rubbed back enough. They are therefore ideal candidates for me to practise painting the grasses for future prints.
This one above is really a mess of lines and blur, but useful nevertheless for choosing colours for such an image. I thought that I needed white to give the grasses some sparkle, but in fact it's the orange that makes a real difference.

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Gorgeous Roses.

 I don't think that I have ever seen such a wonderful display of roses as I saw in the Benalla Rose Garden this week. I was trying to locate the flower with the most iconic rose perfume, so I seem to have only photographed the red flowers, although there were many other colours too.
 There were all sorts of variations in the form of the roses, from the expected  shapes of the blooms above, to the almost cabbage like flowers below.
 This one caught my eye just as I was leaving, just so pretty with the deep colour on the outer edges of the petals to the white in the centre.