This week I cracked out a dip pen and some ink and made a wedding card for a beautiful young couple (one of whom I held as a newborn babe .. But that’s a whole other blog post).

In this world of computers and phones as ubiquitous capture devices it has been a while since I have really handwritten anything more than a scrawled note while I’m on the phone, or the odd caption for a drawing in my sketchbook. I felt somewhat rusty!

It turned out well didn’t it? I was pleased. I hope they were too.

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I have always loved beautiful handwriting and I am a stationery addict par excellence. I have collected pens and paper and journals and art supplies since I was a small child. Pencils that smelled like strawberries. Erasers that smelled like grapes. Paper with deckles and imprints. Journals with creamy delicious paper. Aaaahhhhhhhh :)

When I was about 11 my mum gave me a fountain pen (an old Parker that looked to have been a piece of company advertising) and it was at this point that I believe I was truly lost… I have been obsessed ever since. The weight of them in my hand… the way the ink flows… the search for the perfect nib…and the best way to remove ink from my fingers. Not a lot has changed…except perhaps the price of the pens I buy….or lust after if I am to be honest…the Montblancs and Watermans are pretty much out of my price range at this point, but I am a huge fan of the Lamy range for both writing and sketching.

I went to school in country Victoria in the seventies in the days when we started each day by lining up in the quadrangle, doing jumping jacks and singing God Save the Queen. Ah the glory days…. *Ahem*

In the sixth grade I had Mrs Thompson… I was voted class president, and having used my power particularly unwisely, I made a lot of enemies and never really recovered any semblance of popularity that I might have had to sure me up for the entry into high school. She taught me a love of the english language and of good grammar, but she lacked art in the delivery of said beautiful language onto paper. She taught us standard Australian cursive script .. (Although it could very well have been Victorian cursive script). Suffice it to say, I was less than impressed. I had been waiting for years for the opportunity to be taught the beautiful cursive scripts that I had seen in books. I was sorely disappointed.

The shining light in that year of prepubescent angst though, was my maths teacher… Mr Cleveland. He was a large hirsute man, more than a little reminiscent of early seventies Elvis, complete with belly and oversized spectacles. What Mrs Thompson lacked in art, Mr Cleveland made up for with the line of hieroglyphs that lined the top of the blackboard in his classroom. The holy grail of handwriting … Copperplate Script. Those curls! Those swirls!!! Such beauty in contrast with the bland printed letters joined together with plain straight lines espoused by the seventies standard Australian cursive. Mr Cleveland was teaching his class how to write “properly” and I was jealous. So I hatched a plan.

For months, in the snippets of time between maths problems, I would try to copy down the letters on the board…attempting to follow the swoops and swirls with an unguided and unpracticed hand. Pages and pages of misshapen capitals and crudely formed lowercase letters in what could loosely be construed as words. As I filled my exercise book up with numbers from the front, I worked steadily backwards from the end pages filling the lines with rows and rows and rows of “a” “e” “i” “o” “u” and full alphabets all joined in contiguous streams of unintelligible loops and flourishes.

Over time I brought the ink into submission and developed a handwriting style that has been called on through the years to complete wedding certificates and place cards and various bits and pieces, and filled journal after beautiful Moleskine journal.

I am a little rusty at the moment, but I am reacquainting myself with the feel of the ink flowing out from my fingertips, adding varying pressure and new nibs and styles. I am loving it. Would you like me to write your envelopes for you? Would you like me to write your place cards for you? I can make them beautiful works of art for you! No computer-generated homogeneity … just beautiful hand crafted words. Watch this space for samples, or drop me a line in the meantime :)

 

Click HERE to take a look at the shop!

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I have just listed four new watercolour originals for sale in my Etsy store. Click on one of the pictures to be taken to the store.

 

Brindabella View daisy Flutterby Sorry to bug you

bottomless cup

June 27, 2014 — 1 Comment

studio

 

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
- Maya Angelou

 

I ran aross this quote this morning. It made me smile! Creativity is such a positive thing in my life at the moment, that the thought of it being available as a never ending stream makes me very very happy.

back in the saddle

June 22, 2014 — Leave a comment

 

I’m back being creative again after a bit of a break from posting. Here are some of the watercolours I’ve been playing with lately in preparation for some new products in my Etsy store. If you want to see what inspires me or follow along with my projects as they progress you can follow the action on my Instagram account or on the Robertson Studios Facebook page, otherwise I’ll be posting here more regularly from here on out as I continue to create pretty things and build my business.

If you have come over from my old blog (michellegeorge.net) … welcome! Take a look around .. you’ll find more pictures and less words over here :)

watercolours

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It has been a while since I posted here, but I can assure you that I have been busily drawing all the while! I am in the midst of creating a very exciting tattoo design at the moment that is almost ready for my client to take to the tattoo artist to begin the inking process! The page below is the first “art journal”  page I’ve done in a while…my sketchbook has been a place for planning and doodling of late, so I’ll post those a little later in the week when I have a chance to scan the pages :)

My selfie drawing  on the page below is looking kind of caricaturish … I don’t think I like it, but then I don’t like photos of myself either :) Note to self…practice doing faces as watercolour sketches more often! :) I need to be able to get proportions right in a quick sketch (normally my portraits take hours)

Click HERE to read the full write up of my weekend away.

horse gully

a memorial portrait

September 22, 2013 — Leave a comment

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I finished this memorial portrait this week for a client who wanted something special to remember her sister by. Before I started drawing we talked about what her sister had been like. What she liked to do. What she was passionate about. The songs that she liked to sing and listen to (which turned into a playlist to listen to while I was drawing). It helped me connect and honour this beautiful woman as I drew. It turned out to be a pretty intense experience – concentrating on the tiny details and immersing myself. It took me out of my own world.

It has been a while since I did a full on portrait like this, and it has only reinforced my passion for drawing. It got me thinking. Why do I like drawing? What is it that compels me to create? Honestly? I’m not entirely sure at this point. I know that it feels like a kind of freedom that is foreign, so it may take me some time to understand and harness it. I know that I love burying myself in the beauty of a thousand tiny details. I know that it feels like I am in a whole new world .. like heading down Alice’s rabbit hole when I get lost in a drawing.

I’ll let you know when I figure it out…or perhaps it’s just one of life’s mysteries that will need to be embraced and enjoyed.

deconstructionist eating

September 14, 2013 — Leave a comment

I was dying to get some sketching in this week. I’ve been working on a graphite portrait and have been enjoying the tight detail and concentration it requires…but I got to the point where I really just wanted to scribble down something loose and fun. So I drew my lunch. The cafe staff always look at me a little strangely when they see my pull my lunch apart like this, but when they saw me start to draw it too…that was the last straw :) Giggles all round!

23-2013 // deconstructed steak sandwich

I walked past my favourite tree yesterday afternoon and snapped off some pictures with my phone so that I could try my hand at a botanical sort of style journal entry…this is the result. I quite like the detail sketches…but i still can’t manage to make trees look like trees. So frustrating! I’d better work on that some more before I go to New Zealand…I suspect there will be a few over there that I will want to draw!
22-2013 // Euchalyptus leucoxylon