5 Jun 2015

Hestia tries ....being creative Day 1

Shutterstock :)
I know that I spend WAY too much time on Facebook.  Like any addict, I can actually feel my skin getting itchy after a few hours, but I still sit there, basking in the blue glow of the screen and dabbing at my dry/watering eyes.

Some days - and this is without a word of a lie - I can kiss Sonshine goodbye and the first time that I stir creakily from my seat is when I answer the bell at the front door that heralds his return from school, many hours later.

It's not good is it?

I am still doing my digital detox, so a Sunday is my day off with no access to the intertubes, but my goodness EVERYTHING that I want to DO hinges on the ipad - reading (my Kindle app), my Italian (Duolingo app), drawing (sketchbook Pro app) etc etc.

So today marks a line in the sand *draws toe of welly down the carpet*

Every day, for the next 30 days I am going to do something creative. It might not be completed in a single day, so relax, I won't bore you with every bloody brush stroke of a water colour painting.... but I WILL put up here everything that I've done.

No matter how shit the result is:

Day 1

I have borrowed some lino-cutting equipment from my good friend The Artist.  I have wanted to try lino cutting for AGES, but never got around to it.  So today's the day I tipped out all the borrowed gear onto the table.

Lino block - 6" x 5"
Lino tool thing with different heads
Roller thing for inking up your lino
...and the internet to find an image that I could print off.  See? that damned internet AGAIN!
Glass (I have a lot of glass left over from my Stained Glass Projekt)

N'kay - now what?

A quick youtube gives me the basics to get started.  It looks fairly straightforward ..... I immediately realise that the words 'how hard can this be?' seem to pre-empt just about every household disaster that I have presided over.

I print off my image and cover the back of the image in pencil, a nice soft leaded thing that snaps regularly, causing me to press the sharpener for my eyebrow pencil into use.  *note to self: remember and remove the lead shavings before penciling eyebrows again*

I place the image on top of my lino and start going over the outline, heavily, in pencil.  It transfers, like magic, the lino block.  In between there are bouts of pencil re-sharpening.  The resulting outline is very faint.  I go over the outline in pen.  I realise that I have transferred the pen, via my fist, to all areas of the lino block.  I sigh and continue.

I slide a blade into the lino tool thing (I'm full of the technical terms, me) and start hacking at the lino.  Hacking is the absolutely best word to describe my actions.

I gouged.
I hacked.
I dug.

All the while desperately trying to make long smooth sweeping movements, like an artist.  I pause.  I have gouged a hole.  Right through the lino.

Not to worry.

My back starts to get sore.
My neck gets sore.
The table (and carpet) are covered in hundreds of little grey worms of shaved lino.

The front door bell rings.  Sonshine is home from school.  So, not much different to a day spent at the computer.  Except on the computer, no one can hear you scream.... as you accidentally wang the lino tool into your poor hand.

Sonshine runs upstairs to witness the artistic process.

the lino mat and the print out - looks professhial, right? 

All getting a bit more messy now .....

The scraped out lino thing.

"So it's a woman with a big hat and a dog?' he asks hopefully.

"It's a GODDESS standing infront of a CRESCENT MOON... with a dog," I correct calmly.

"I'm now about to ink it."

Reader, I confess, at this point I am thinking that this might be a new venture for me - lino cut prints.  Watercolour finished.  Maybe this will be The Thing!!!!!!

We ink up the block and carefully lay it on the paper.  Turning it over, I press down hard on the paper ..... and peel it off.

Is it The Thing For Me????

Maybe not ........


  1. That's interesting - the actual pic on the lino looks super, but it didn't come out on the print: when you work out why, you can fix it and try again :)

  2. At least you've had a go at it :D

  3. Hey, the question is, did you have fun doing it? They say it takes at least a thousand hours to become proficient at something, so the question is not whether you got it perfect first time, but whether you enjoyed it enough to keep going with it... :)

  4. Great start, really! I'd never have gotten that far...

  5. I know you watched a YouTube video before you started but if you had to gouge, hack and dig it makes me wonder - did you warm the lino? It makes it much more workable, like the difference between cutting butter when it's come straight out of the fridge and when it's been out for a while. A valiant first piece though and a big 'well done' for trying new things AND sharing the result with the masses!

  6. Oh I love it! looks grungy - you can do other colours on top or shades of grey perhaps and keep working with it. Love the design and the result... You can make cards with it for birthdays halloween etc.. Sorry if I sounds a bit over excited - I really like it :D


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