December prints

 

A little pattern I made using photographs of quince cordial, quince jelly and colouring in the remaining ghost shadows left over when I was making lots of beads.

Above is a pattern I made using some slices of polymer clay cane that I made inspired by the colours of Audacity software which I have been spending a lot of time on lately.

 

Christmas Crafts and Cake Decorating at Comet Children's Centre

 
 Homemade soaps

Homemade soaps

 Christmas Cake made with homemade mincemeat

Christmas Cake made with homemade mincemeat

 Sausage rolls

Sausage rolls

 Gingerbread shapes

Gingerbread shapes

 

Thank you to all the families, staff and children at Comet Children's Centre - especially Gareth, Sarah Jane and Clara. We made our own mincemeat, mince pies, mince muffins, Christmas cakes, soaps, gingerbread shapes, carrot cake muffins, chocolate muffins, lots of icings and more.

Plymouth Massachusetts Lobster Crawl

 
 Claws Monet by Jeannette Carney

Claws Monet by Jeannette Carney

Meet Claws Monet, one of 29 fibreglass lobster sculpture erected throughout the Plymouth Massachusetts Downtown and Waterfront areas. I saw loads more but only managed to get somewhat decent photos of the ones displayed here. Each lobster was sponsored by local businesses and organizations which were then custom designed and hand painted by local artists. While I was there a gorgeous mosaic lobster sculpture named Sir Loin was stolen but (UPDATE) artist Diana Naples has agreed to recreate Sir Loin and two teenagers have been charged. You can read more and see Sir Loin here did I just link to the Old Colony Memorial, why yes I did.

 Mayflower Lobster with Scenes of the Wampanoag

Mayflower Lobster with Scenes of the Wampanoag

 Lighthouse Lobster

Lighthouse Lobster

 1620 Lobster

1620 Lobster

 Welcome by Frances McClaughlin, sponsored by Plymouth Lions & Leo's

Welcome by Frances McClaughlin, sponsored by Plymouth Lions & Leo's

 

Latitude 2016 - Action Aid UK Tent Workshops

 

Action Aid UK are an amazing charity and I was thrilled to be asked to be part of their Latitude Festival activities. The theme this year within their tent at the Festival was menstruation. There were mixed reactions when I discussed this with lots of people prior to the event; from mild interest, confusion and lots of pulled faces. It's something that all women will experience in their lives, a rite of passage, a cycle and the varied reactions reflect the different experiences that women will feel at different times. What we often do not think about are how people struggle with issues pertaining to menstruation in third world countries, while experiencing homelessness or poverty. The Action Aid Uk tent were offering activities including henna painting, dance and drumming workshops, my jewellery workshops and more.

My session focused on creating waist beads from recycled African glass beads:

  • Waist beads are a celebration of womanhood and femininity.
  • Waist beads are not only for the young or slim!
  • Waist beads can also be worn around wrists or necks.

Waist beads can be traced throughout Africa, they are depicted in Egyptian hieroglyphics are famous from the Yoruba tribes of Nigeria. They are a chain of beads worn at the waist and have personal meaning to the wearer. Meanings include:
Adornment - worn under or over clothes or via an exposed mid-drift, waist beads are decorating our vital middle sections with one of a kind, personal pieces. It is not about conforming to body pressure but empowering this area and highlighting femininity.
Menstruation - Mothers may traditionally create and present their daughters with waist beads as a rite of passage into womanhood. Waist beads were/are practical as menstrual cloths could be strapped to the beads to provide a type of belt.
Celebration of Womanhood - waist beads are worn during rites of passage during puberty, at weddings. Waist beads are used as a tool to measure weight loss or gain as they will roll up or down which can also be used to signal a pregnancy. They are also said to allure partners and to signify that a young woman was ready for marriage.
Protection - as with lots of jewellery, waist beads are thought to offer healing energy to the wearer and protect them from negative energy. Gems and stones are included to provide specific powers.

Waist beads, like everything, can be seen negatively by some:
Ownership of Women - Some say that the placing of the waist beads at puberty can be seen as staking a claim on the woman’s virginity, purity and placing the father or parents in control.
Charms - Some waist beads have been known to be charmed or have spells placed upon them to entice or entrap the opposite sex.

African beads reflect the diversity of African geography, culture, resources, technology, religions and society. Beads have been found on or next to human remains dating as far back as 100,000 years ago, a number that gets larger with further archaeological finds. African beads have historically featured organic materials such as seeds, shells, bone, nuts but include those made from stone, shell, ceramic, glass, wood, bone, metals, plastic, computer chips and more. Today there is a growing industry of recycled glass and plastic beads.
Bead use and meanings range from decoration, trade, monetary, emulation, religion, adoration, fashion and more.   

 

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Thank you so much to all the staff and volunteers of Action Aid UK and Latitude Festival!

 

Student Thank You Card

 

I love working with people of all ages doing arts, crafts and food workshops. I received this thank you card from a young girl who I have worked with several times before when she has attended workshops with her twin sister and their grandmother. Today we made mobiles and talked about art, crafts and musicals. I was really touched to receive this card at the end of the session and it hangs up and inspires me each and every day.

 

Mosaic - Henry Maynard Primary School

 
 110 x 110 cm paper mosaic and acrylic paint on mdf

110 x 110 cm paper mosaic and acrylic paint on mdf

Here is the completed mosaic made over a four week period at Henry Maynard Primary School in Walthamstow London. Henry Maynard is a wonderful school where everyone from the children, staff and students are enthusiastic, kind, caring and proud of their lovely school. I facilitated a family learning course with eight children and their mothers. The children and parents came up with the theme of a ship, which is the schools emblem, coming out of a book and different items which symbolise what they love about their school such as music, reading, maths, friendship, sport and arts. The hand border are the mosaic hands that they all made from their own hands on the first day and symbolise the teamwork that they all showed throughout the project. I am so proud of everyone on the course and at the school and so thankful to everyone, especially Lauren and Alison Pearson. Please do check out my other mosaic projects at Wentworth Children's Centre and Comet Children's Centre.

 Week 1 - making hand mosaic

Week 1 - making hand mosaic

 Week 1 - cutting paper to size

Week 1 - cutting paper to size

 Week 2 - making templates for mosaic pieces

Week 2 - making templates for mosaic pieces

 Week 2 - painting the mdf board

Week 2 - painting the mdf board

 Week 3 - filling in and laying out mosaic elements into place

Week 3 - filling in and laying out mosaic elements into place

 Week 4 - gluing down the mosaic elements onto the board.

Week 4 - gluing down the mosaic elements onto the board.

 

Patterns of 2016 - Week 9

 
 Still Life with Pasta

Still Life with Pasta

 Eggs is Eggs

Eggs is Eggs

Here is a still life print that I created from some of my prints and patterns as well as some photographs of mine which all together make up a collaged scene of a Still Life with Pasta. more patterns and prints that I made in week 9 of 2016 which are comprised of polymer clay cane segments which have been made and designed by myself. I then scan them and create a pattern and prints from the cane slices.

Find more images on Smy Goodness Instagram.