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Tracey Fletcher King

Art and Illustrations

Friday, 30 November 2012

The Last Lunch Box ...

It is a monumental day today
not a birthday
not an anniversary
the cleaning fairies didn't turn up
it wasn't the day I woke up and my butt had magically shrunk while I slept
it is better than all of those
it is the last lunch box of the year
and at Paula's suggestion I am drawing it in celebration of this wonderful day

It has come not a moment too soon
my brain had pretty much run out of interesting options about a month and half ago
and this last one was pretty much stuffed with whatever was left
no thought was given to nutritional value or balance
I just shoved whatever was at hand and zipped it up
all the while singing at the top of my lungs and doing a mad happy dance about the kitchen
it was quite the sight I would think


There was edamame in there as a token effort to have something green
and the leftover Thai noodles aren't that bad
but the rest is pretty ordinary
but who cares on the last day of the year
and by the time most of you read this we will be lying by the pool
revelling in that feeling of it being the start of the 2 month summer break
no getting up at 5.30 am, uniforms or school runs
our days will be filled with swimming, eating ice blocks in the pool
trips to the beach, smelling like sunscreen all the time
and spitting watermelon seeds at each other at every opportunity
in short, my favourite time of year

Happily this painting will also pull triple duty
it meets the brief for the last Artist Play Room of the year
where the lovely Jenn asked us to paint five or so things

I have done it on a Friday so hello Paint Party Friday

and it is the last day of Art Every Day Month!!!!
AEDM has been great again this year
and a big thank you to all the people who have supported it
and took the time to visit, comment and play along
and a special shout out to Leah for hosting
I love that I can open my finished work draw and it is full of all sorts of new work
it has been a great month ... xx

In the last two posts I have been writing and painting about


Thursday, 29 November 2012

Smelling Artichokes ...

I have a bit of an artichoke thing happening at the moment
they are a great shape and colour though
I not a huge fan of eating them in any form
and on the subject of eating them
I do question just how hungry or mad someone was to eat one for the first time
they don't exactly shout to be eaten do they
I suspect it was done as a dare
this thought aside
what they don't give me in eating pleasure
is more than made up for with drawing pleasure
and the inspiration came from some new artichoke soap I bought
Who knew there was artichoke soap???
and it smells amazing
so amazing that I made a trip to the grocery store to stick my nose in the real thing
now I may have looked slightly mad smelling the artichokes
then smelling my arm
then back to the artichokes
but I was very curious to see if they smelt like the soap
and I had reason to think they might
because I also bought lettuce soap
I mean how could I not buy lettuce soap... how gloriously mad is that
anyway the lettuce soap smells like lettuce
so I figured the artichoke would be the same

but despite making a complete fool of myself in the produce section
I failed to get the fragrance of the soap or anything close in fact
but after sticking my nose in them I figured it would be rude not to buy them
so home they came and were plonked in a vase to keep them fresh
I duly made both Sinus and Phantom smell both arm and veg
but they couldn't smell the similarity either
so the soap, while lovely, was declared guilty of false advertising
and therefore the gorgeous packaging was not worthy of being painted
and the real deal has been my subject instead

On the drawing front they didn't let me down
and I had a great time painting them up
so much so I did two different small paintings of them
and they will be painted again I am sure
I can see a whole vegetable thing ahead of me
after this and the spagaragus of the other week
both were great fun to paint


but that will have to wait for another day
because despite your sympathy and wishes for my eye to heal quickly
which were greatly appreciated by the way
my eye still looking alarmingly like someone stuck a blue iris on Rudolph's nose
so short spurts of work are the order of the day I think

 Linking up with Day 29 of AEDM ...xx

Yesterday I blogged about

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Mozzies's Revenge ...

This is a completely blatant grab for sympathy
but I'm just not getting a suitable amount from my nearest and dearest
so the job falls to you lot
The thing is I think I got bitten on the eyeball by a mosquito
stop laughing
I am serious
I woke up the other night and felt something in my eye
eye started hurting, and I thought I must have an eyelash in there
and in my half awake state kind of poked myself in the eye
got out the eyelash, then realised the eyelash was kind of squishy
which was gross and puzzling in equal measure
all the while blinking like crazy to try to ease an eye which kind of felt on fire
got up had a look in the bathroom mirror and it looked fine
of course I looked at it without glasses on and I am blind as a brick
but as I said... half asleep
so reassured it was all looking okay I promptly went back to sleep


In the morning I woke to an eyeball on fire
and on putting on glasses 
I was greeted by one eye looking like it had been to the mother of all parties
this baby is freaky looking, and magnificently bloodshot
actually bloodshot doesn't quite describe it
 it is more a glowing pool of red
it is disgusting
though on the plus side I can't help but notice the bright red
really makes my normally hazel eye look quite blue
and I finally have something to match my studio shoes
anyway
I had it checked out this morning and it will heal in its own time
and it turns out that it was probably been the poke in the eye that caused the damage
the chemist thought it was hilarious that I thought a mosquito had flown in my eye
but I am sticking to my story
I think the mosquito is taking revenge for my taking out his family earlier in the year
it is a little known fact that mozzies are in fact the biggest grudge holders of the insect world
was just asking for trouble
but biting me on the eyeball is taking revenge a bit far I think 
So the only painting I have done due to my zombie eye
is this sketch of some tea cups in my little sketchbook
which I think turned out really well all things considered
and I am now off to take my poor Mozzie bitten eyeball for a rest 

Day 28 of Art Every Day Month is here... only a few to go ... xx

the last posts have been ...


Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Faltering ...

It is Day 27 of Art Every Day Month and I must admit I am sort of faltering a bit
not so much in artistic output
and faltering in the domestic sphere is a given so it isn't coming into play here
it is more likely due to this being the busiest time of the school year
we are finally and gloriously in the last week before the long Summer break starts
which means that this week is a mad rush 
doing all the things I should have done over the last six weeks

so I am cramming in things like visits to the uniform shop
for senior hat band and jersey
senior... how did that happen... bloody hell I can't be that old can I ?????

cleaning school hats before the nightmare mould season that is our summer
and from experience I have learned that this is one you cannot skip
if it isn't spotless before the start of the rainy season
 then it is like a freaky furry ferret on the hat stand come late January

washing and storing  the 5 squillion uniform bits and pieces
 which will still manage to magically get grubby and lost over the holidays

finding a place to store all the books and crap from the school locker
and we are talking a serious mound of stuff here

trying to cram in a few quick visits with some friends while we are still childless
and can chat in peace and not have to share our yummy treats with grubby hands

and last but not least considering doing some Christmas shopping for Phantom
though I am tempted to find a couple of lumps of coal and be done with it
she may whine that she has been good and doesn't deserve coal
but I am thinking there would be lots of naughty things I don't know about
so it would probably be justified...
Of course there is a excellent chance that most of it will go undone
and I will just retreat to the studio and drink tea from this favourite cup
and get busy on drawing and painting up the vase of artichokes I have on my desk
they are just crying out to be painted
and it isn't nice to ignore such lovely specimens...

so fingers crossed the painting goes quickly so I can sneak in a job or two
or not... xx

my last posts have been ...

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Milk Wars ...

I am curious if I am the only one who has ongoing milk wars
with their nearest and dearest
I am not talking about wars in the sense that they are making milk grenades
or that they are spitting in each other's
or heaven forbid drinking from the carton, which should be a jail-able offence in my book
though Sinus sticks his finger in ours occasionally
which is equally disgusting... but he is an equal opportunity finger in drink type person
so not so relevant to milk wars discussion

Maybe milk wars isn't an accurate descriptor
maybe milk conundrum works better
because the thing is that no matter what size milk I buy
both husband and daughter immediately need the converse amount
so I buy 2 litres
and it is cereal for breakfast lunch and dinner
and smoothies for snacks
but if I buy the three litre one in the hope of not having to go to the grocery store
for the 5 millionth time this week
then it is black tea , a mere splash in their coffee
and the mention of anything milky has them gagging and turning up their noses


Personally I prefer to have as little milk as possible
black tea is the order of the day
they invented chocolate made with milk so calcium could be palatable
and I believe in supporting the fine folks who create vitamin and Calcium pills
so they don't feel neglected
but my beloveds don't have that excuse
they are just a pain in the proverbial when it comes to their consumption
I am kind of considering getting the 1 litre
or even better yet dropping down to a 600ml one just to see what that would do
maybe it is time I take the battle to them 


No matter what the outcome is I have learned one important thing
and that is that milk containers are surprisingly tricky to draw
took a couple of goes to get there puppies drawn
but in the end perseverance paid off 
so I am thinking that maybe the same approach is needed as our war progresses...xx


The last few posts have been ...


Friday, 23 November 2012

5.30 with Finn and Jake ...

As regular readers will know I face a 5.30am alarm every school day
which is not that conducive to me making sense
Phantom gets up at 4.30am... seriously... no clue why... she just always has
so by the time I come down she is awake and ready to chat and things
me... not so much... the brain takes quite a while to wake up and unscramble
which is not being helped by the morning viewing these days
gone are the lovely tones of the Dirty Jobs Guy
 and no more Bear Grylls getting buck naked and jumping in a freezing lake
now we have Adventure Time with Finn and Jake
if there is a non adult in the house you will already be shaking your head knowing where I am going with this
because this show would do anyone's head in

This is a post apocalyptic cartoon that ignores all laws of narrative, visual continuity and common sense with a disregard that is actually quite admirable
at 5.30 am though, it can be downright weird
I am a cartoon purist... I want to see anvils being dropped on coyotes
bad guys being chased by Great Danes, and mice outwitting cats
instead I am faced with one of the last humans on earth
who was bought up by the dog's parents 
and the dog is magic because he rolled in a magic mud puddle
of course!!!!
The bad guy is the Ice King, and every girl is a princess of some type
there is a rainicorn who speaks Korean
a rainicorn is a rainbow unicorn if you didn't know...
and don't even get me started on the armpit farting penguin called Gunther
actually he is kind of the high point for me
nothing like a good fart joke at 5.30 am

If you feel the need to revisit those college years when you would go to a party
and find yourself trying to have a conversation with stoner guy
then go find yourself a kid and ask them to explain Adventure Time to you
you will be having flashbacks like no bodies business

Watching it when you are fully awake doesn't help that much
and I am starting to think that even if I had downed a jug of margaritas at warp speed
it still wouldn't make sense
The guys who create this thing are well out there
I can't help but think that Stoner guy from college may in fact be behind this thing
it would certainly explain a lot

But all of that is ok
and I'm not dissing it... I just don't get it
I know that as a parent I'm not supposed to get these things
I am supposed to be made to feel old and out of touch.... no hassles with that
my only hassle is being faced with it at 5.30 am
it is a very odd way to start the day

So at the moment I am counting down the days to the end of the school year
and the two glorious months of Summer break
5.30 am will not be seen... weird cartoons will be forgotten
and Phantom can watch in peace
just four school days left!!!!


My last few posts have been about more regular topics

Day 21 ...

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Studio Love ...

Let me open with a big thanks to everyone who sent Phantom get well wishes
they worked a treat and she is back at school
which means my sanity is looking much steadier today
in fact I am down right chirpy at the chance to get back in the studio
so I thought what better way to celebrate being back in my favourite place
than drawing one of my favourite corners of it


Just as you walk in I have this shelf where I have these sweet ceramics
 made by the very talented Kim Aitken
as well as some pendants I made from my art that I wear regularly
there are also fragrance reeds scented in Lychee Blossom
which smells of passionfruit to me
but as I have never smelt a lychee blossom , then maybe they actually smells like this
either way it is lovely and light and makes the whole room smell fresh and inviting
and yes that is an earring tree thingy... without any earrings on it
but it looks sweet in the corner so there it stays


Every morning that I walk into my little sanctuary I feel grateful and happy
I hear the sweet sound of the tea pot wind chime as I brush past it
the sun always filters in and makes it all look a bit magical
it gets that lovely hazy look from the filtered light
which means I can't see the dust
or maybe the lovely haze is because of the dust
either way it works
and all my paints and pens are just there waiting for me
 they don't make noise
they don't ask me to do anything/ read anything or pull their finger
they don't throw up on the carpet at 6.18 am like the bloody dog did this morning
they just wait patiently for me


I have to say that any day that starts in here is going to be okay
dog vomit and all
to have my own space
where I can work in peace
surrounded by things that inspire me is just so awesome
and I am thankful for it every single time I walk in there
which ties in nicely with the Thanksgiving holiday in the US
and so I am linking up with both APR and AEDM

hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday ...xx

my last two posts...
Day 21....


Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Day 21 ...


I would love to say I have been absent for the last few days
because I have been busy drawing and painting like mad
but alas this isn't the case
my poor daughter, Phantom Steve, has not been well
at all
so all I have to show for days and days
is one measly little finished painting in my sketchbook
and a backlog of about 5 million blog posts to visit....


I am pleased to get anything at all done
even if the plum isn't that plum-ish
it is sort of bright and lacking the purple bits
but I figure the blue bit looks suspiciously like a blueberry with a 50 tattoo
so put them together and you have a suitably plummy  rendition
of this delicious delicious tea
Slightly non plum-ish plum aside,
I like the finished product and it fits in nicely in my sketchbook
plus Phantom is on the mend
so all is on its way back to being fine with the world


I am now off to attempt to at least read some posts and catch up a bit
and maybe if the good old Phantom keeps improving at a rapid rate
I may even get back to the studio
crossing fingers and toes over here
which makes it surprisingly hard to type...
happy AEDM ...xx

The last two posts were ...


Sunday, 18 November 2012

Getting Busy On The Zine....


This is what my desk is looking like this morning
full of notes, and scraps of paper
and half sorted pages for the zine I am writing about how I make my art
I have most of it sort of organised
and have a lot of it written
albeit in chicken scrawl that could be hard to understand
but I am figuring it will come back to me
and it has been a fun process so far
it has been all the best bits from those years of teaching art
without all the yucky stuff that makes you question your will to live
like syllabus, staff meetings, marking and  writing reports
not to mention I get to write it in pyjamas
wins all round really ...


I have started the illustrations
and have a good plan of exactly what I need to draw
and a pretty good idea of the layout
though I know myself well enough to know that the layout will change pleanty of times yet
but all the stressful bits like deciding what to put in and what to leave out are done
and the now really really fun stuff begins


So these are little sneak peaks of some of the finished drawings
I wanted to get a couple done to set the style of it
and these are just as I wanted them
which means I am so ready to jump in and get busy
exciting stuff
of course it does mean that the ever growing mountain of part finished work
may continue to be ignored
but this is just all too exciting at the moment

The other excitement of the last day or so has been my post going up
for the When Artists Cook series
that I take part in over at Dion Dior
I enjoy being part of it and I the painting that I did for this post
is now one of my new favourites
I worked a bit bigger than I have been lately and I love how it turned out
might be time to work on that scale more often
after I get to some of those part finished works I have shown you in the last few weeks done
and the canvases
and the zine
okay so maybe I will be working larger in the new year
bloody hopeless I am...xx

Linking up with both Sunday Sketches

Links to the last posts are here as well...

Tarts ...