Third February Blog

Third February Blog.


Light flakes of snow
Whispering down,
Landing on eyelids,
Whiskers of hair
That peek out
From the scarf,
Covering her head,
A light breeze
Moving the strands,
Making them flutter,
All covered in white.
Soft as down,
Fine crystals from above.
She feels the chill,
It creeps down her spine,
Settling somewhere
‘Neath the ends
Of blowing hair.
A wind whips it
To and fro,
Like an angry cat’s tail.
Mittens warm her fingertips.
Boots crush the snow
That lands on dirty paths.
Pushing the gate, she
Treads to the door.
Fumbles for her keys,
She is home at last.

Copyright. Evelyn J. Steward. February, 2017.

No. It is not snowing. Just a poem, when little else came to mind. I sincerely hope the winter is passing. Perhaps with a whisper.

I think we are all becoming fed up with the cold of this season. It is p.m. And a wan sun lights up the back garden. It needs to be a touch warmer for the plants to realise that the cold weather is on its way out.

Tempers are frayed. Sickness brings down the eveness that was there before, or perhaps not? When both are sick with viral infections that no one gives a hoot about, on top of normal hurts, then even-temperedness can go out of the window. Rows ensue! Then, the quiet that follows is oregnant with rants still to be aired.

Oh, things will blow over, eventually. They have to if living harmony has to return. But until then, it is like a death that nobody wants to talk about. The air will not clear fast, of that there is certanty.

I am sick, sick and tired too. I want to be well but old age has a habit of throwing all it can your way, saying ‘go on, get out of that, if you can’!

You never think, at young or even middle age, that these times will come. My friends, they will. Oh, in different ways.

Some of you will be lucky with your health and you may sail through with little wrong. Pardon my pessimism, but most of you will have one or two ailments ongoing. Added to those, there will be lots of minor things to cope with. Be warned.

Sorry to be pessimistic. That is the way I am feeling.

Be safe.


This entry was posted on February 20, 2017. 5 Comments

Second February Blog

Second February Blog.

Gloomy Fridays.

Gloomy Fridays.
Just like a song,
Gloomy Fridays,
Keep coming along.
I don’t think i’ve seen
The sun all week,
Rain and misty days
Make it damp and bleak.
Gloomy Friday.
It’s one of those days,
A day to forget.
It’s damp, but no haze.
February can be sunny,
Can be cold but not drear.
But looking through the window,
It isn’t this year.
Gloomy Friday,
Slow to pass by,
Hoping in March sunshine
And scudding clouds in the sky.

Copyright Evelyn J. Steward. February, 2017.

So, with the rain and lowering clouds all day long, and in the UK, our days are quite short still, ( though they are getting a tad longer with the passing of each day.)
Too cold and too wet to check on the plants in the tubs. I just have to hope that, as most of them were bare-rooted and in their dormant season, that the amount of rain we have been getting, is enough to keep the tubs moist. I do not want to go outside until the temperatures have risen and the sun is warm on my back.

So, what does one do? If all the menial tasks or work have been completed and the dinner prepared, and you find you have a bit of time on your hands, then a hobby comes to mind. To relax you, to give a bit of esoteric purpose.

For me it is both writing and art. More art right now. The light is too poor to do any pastel paintings, and since I have reacquainted myself recently with my coloured pencils, I have found there are others on the Internet who are like-minded.

There are people of varying abilities, from beginners to teachers and everyone is willing to give advice if you have a problem.

Since the 1990s when I was doing some CP work, I had other things on my mind and lost track of the genre. Now I find the CP has changed out of all proportion. Not to mention newer products, better pencils, blending, (who knew you could blend pencils? – I didn’t back then) and again, not to mention all the different types of paper, film, etc. that they can be used on! A real learning curve. But I repeat, everyone is very helpful. Even beginners can help, when they ask a question, that perhaps the answer you would also like to know.

So, my blogging has slowed a tad. My apologues but, I hate winter and I hate rainy, murky, miserable even more. So, I am completing a small picture fir the February Challenge in my Beginners site. Underwater -is the theme. Cannot post it yet as the day is much too dark.

That is it for now. Be happy but be safe. Traffic can be a bind in the darker times.


No News Is Good News . . .Isn’t It?

Another, slightly less raucous, blinder. Too few of late, but such is life!

jennie orbell

When I first started blogging, back in the dark ages, I seemed to have a lot to say and managed to say it on a pretty regular basis. This, does not appear to be the case these days, hence a spasmodic blogging pattern has formed – here one day, gone for a week – or more.

I think if this was a blog dealing with the subjects of writing, publishing, self-promotion etc. I’d be banging out my opinions 3 or 4 times a week – but it isn’t. Yes, I’m a writer. Yes, I’m a published author. And yes, I’ve done (or attempted to do) my own bit of self-publication. I say ‘attempted’ because I am utter crap at it. Some people could sell coal in a heat wave. Not me. I’m useless. So, this is not one of those blogs.

This blog is grounded on nothing more than life…

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Tutorial – Blending Colored Pencils with a Heat Gun

Good advice here. Must try this, though I do not have Prismas.

Chrysalis Goddess

This is a tutorial I wrote using a different approach to blending colored pencils. Hope you all like it 🙂

For this demo, I used Stonehenge Paper with Prismacolor and Verithin Colored Pencils (I only used one Verithin color – Indigo Blue to draw the apple but if you don’t have it, the regular Prismacolor Indigo Blue will do, just have the point really sharp. You’ll also need a Prismacolor Colorless Blender and of course the Embossing Heat Tool. You can find it at craft and art stores, usually in the rubber stamps and embossing powders aisle. I got mine from Michaels and I paid $20.00. Here’s a pic of what the heat gun looks like:

Step 1:

I started by drawing the apple with an Indigo Blue Verithin Pencil. Next I started to shade with a very sharp Indigo Blue pencil with very light pressure and using shape following…

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Five minutes of film

Great blog here Sue. Wish more would take on board what you say.

The Silent Eye

He wasn’t feeling too good so I carried his breakfast through into the lounge where he was watching TV and sat down with him on the sofa for five minutes. He was watching a wildlife programme and, as the small polar bear weakened and failed through starvation, I watched through a veil of tears. My own son beside me, it was easy to recognise the encouragement in the way the ursine mother tried to raise her cub to his feet. That was bad enough. Realising the little one could no longer stand she and his twin snuggled up with the dying cub, sharing warmth and comfort; nuzzling him gently and curled around the little body. Just waiting until the end. I can’t even write it without tears.

There was the debate about how the camera crew could simply stand by and watch, filming the tragedy, but the general…

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This entry was posted on February 5, 2017. 1 Comment

First January Blog

First January Blog.

LATE! Yes, I am.
I do not do January and February well, and this year, I have had medical appointments to contend with. Not to mention cold days, very cold days (I do not do cold well either) and some very wet days. I do not like rainy days, not wintery rainy days at least.

I have been suffering, medically speaking, with various extra problems that put more pressure on me at a somewhat perverse time of year. Never the same two days running.
What has sparked my interest and kept me busy, were several ART Sites. Looking at many fabulous paintings by artists from all over, beginners, to professionals. The mediums range from oils, pastels, coloured pencils, inks, watercolours and so on. All types of art mediums, in fact.

The Coloured Pencil Group has awakened my interest in drawing with coloured pencils. I last used them myself about the beginning of the 21st century. Then, for various reasons, I stopped working with them. I think I was making cards from then in.

My, how things have changed in the intervening years? On the CP site there are so many really clever artists who post some brilliant works in coloured pencils. Pictures that look like photographs of dogs, horses, giraffes, cats, elephants, birds etc., not to mention all the different flowers, faces, children. I was quite astonished!

But what is more intriguing, are the different types of pencils people like, and the different paper. Pencils, niw they have chalky, gritty, oily textures. Me, Zi orefe the oily/cremy textured ones, of which I already quite a few from all those years back. But I suspect they may be losing their colour. Fading ( it is now called light-fastness). At least one of my drawings definitely faded. It was done with pale colours to start with. But when I looked it out, it seemed much pale in colour.

The way to sharpen a pencil has also changed. Long points, short chubby points! The kind of pencil sharpener. An electric one is apparently a no no! Then again, rubbers. Everyone seems to like different kinds. Same with paper. It is a veritable minefield, the amount of new knowledge needed to step into the coloured pencil art craft seems endless. Though, it has to be said,I am enjoying learning all this new information from various people kind enough to supply me with answers nd opinions.

One cannot just buy a set of pencils and some cartridge paper, as I once did. You could do rough sketches this way, but it would be unwise to attempt a proper drawing to last for some years without considering the type of pencil, paper, rubber, sharpener. Also, the kind of painting you want to achieve and how long you want it to last in the atmosphere if you are selling it or giving it away. These will be questions you have to ask yourself.
I am leaning towards Polychromos and Luminance pencils. I have a good set of pencils already but in the future, hope to expand on the above types, slowly. Choosing paper will be a harder task.

I hope this has been of some interest. I have posted one of my drawings from the late 1990s in pencil. Just a sketch.

Please be careful out there, people.


This entry was posted on January 19, 2017. 4 Comments

The Unfortunate Wives of Philip II of France

I am learning so much here, how mixed the upper eschelons of Europe and England were, back in the day. Evelyn.

History... the interesting bits!

330px-the_coronation_of_philippe_ii_auguste_in_the_presence_of_henry_ii_of_england Coronation of Philip II Augustus

Philip II Augustus had acceded to the throne of France in 1180, at the tender age of fifteen. He married his first wife, Isabella of Hainault the same year; she was only ten-years-old. Isabella was the daughter of Baldwin V, count of Hainault, and Margaret I, countess of Flanders. At just one year old she had been betrothed to Henry, the future count of Champagne and nephew of Adele, queen of France. However, Isabella’s father later reneged on his promises, and arranged Isabella’s marriage to Philip, the son and heir of Louis VII. Philip had been crowned junior king of France in 1179. Isabella and Philip were married on 28 April 1180 and Isabella was crowned queen exactly one month later, even though her father-in-law was still king. With Louis VII’s death Philip and Isabella acceded to the throne as sole king and queen in…

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