Thursday, February 21, 2008

Deliveries, printing, paint and Captain Rupert goes to the pub!

While Captain Rupert enjoys the frosty mornings and the warmth of the late morning sun, I have been busy battling with cello wrappers packing up orders for cards all the orders are of to some lovely garden centres and farm shops. Every now and then I glanced over to the end of my desk and get tantalizing by glimpse's of the painting at the end of my desk.
The painting had been drawn out for ages onto the lovely creamy water colour paper and I have not been able to wait to start with the first stage of laying up the paint. I find some times that when every thing is busy its hard to know where to start first, but its great when things finally begin to get ticked of the to do list.
All my paintings start with a yellow base I use this as a way to work out where I would like the lights and darks to be. I used to only use yellow ochre, I now use lemon yellow as well to give a brighter more vibrant finish. I only use a very limited palette, of the printing primaries, plus a dark mauve or dark blue. I layer the colours up on the paper, so no mixing in the palette at all. Experience gives you the ability to know what colour will make when washed over the last layer. I find it a complete joy to lay a blue over a yellow and get green, or a magenta (Pink/ red)over lemon yellow and to get red. Its like magic seeing the colours change like a magic painting book. It is a very involved way of working but
Captain Rupert has been enjoying a hectic social live going out for tea yesterday afternoon. Well actually he was a model in a children's art lesson I had been teaching. He gets paid in carrots! We then both met K and his Friend in a local pub I don't normally go to the pub and let K have a boys night out every week or so. Captain Rupert was very excited about going to a pub and did not want to miss out to be left in the car as he had been never been to a pub before. He enjoyed chatting up the girl behind the bar, but turned his nose up at beer and crisps so luckily he came prepared with his own box of of good old hay.
We are so pleased that everyone liked his stamp so much, Captain Rupert is very chuffed with it too. Yesterday we received a delivery of very smart stickers all bearing his stamp and are looking forward to putting them proudly on all the envelopes and packages we send out. And maybe the invitations to his next party.
Yesterday too, I went to see the latest batch of cards roll of the printing press Captain Rupert stayed in the garden as its far too noisy for bunnies ears. The cards are printed on a wonderful old press that is controlled by hand rather than a computer this why I can get more adjustment on the colours so they are just the way I want them.
Captain Rupert is very glad his Tea Party painting made it as a card design, I do worry that his head will get too big for his paws one day. I can't wait to pick them up from the printers We will show you all next week when they are back from the printers all folded.
Yet another delivery saw the arrival of some smart looking cardboard boxes. I had been wanting to change the packaging on the note cards for some time. These boxes are more eco friendly and I love the look. I have put some in our etsy shop. I'm also planning on adding a few more originals and captain Rupert and I have been thinking about some other goodies to add soon to the shop.


this is my patch said...

You are so talented Jo, I love all your paintings. I am so pleased with the notecards I bought from you, the ones in the lovely new style boxes, I hope you do well with them on Etsy. I am looking forward to any new paintings which may be coming up in 2008, how about one with Captain Rupert in the pub, of all places! x

Rabbits' Guy said...

Oh my, you all have been so busy, social, and constructive! Quite something to see the progress of the party picture with the carrot stew there.

Just to help the swelled heads, I should tell you that someone takes a look at the Carrot Cake recipe link I have on our blog about once or twice a week ... from all over the world!

shabby chic said...

Hi Joanne,
Your cards look lovely. captain Rupert is so lucky to be such a star in them. A trip to the pub too!. How lovely it must be to be produce such lovely items and all from your magic hands & talented hands too
x Dominique

Cowboys & Custard said...

Hello Jo
Thanks so much for your message the other day.. it's been a busy week here and for you I see.. I LOVE your new packaging and the stamp stickers..great idea!
I am very interested to see the process in which you paint your gorgeous pictures.. You have a wonderful talent.

Lots of love
P.s Hope Captain Rupert doesn't become a binge bunny .. keep him away from the beer!

PG said...

Ah, underpainting, I have just started playing about with that in oils...really looking forward to seeing this finished, so hurry up! That is a good solution to packing cards, I was loathe to get plastic boxes for mine, for similar reasons.

ellie said...

It is so interesting to learn about how you work, thankyou. I look forward to seeing the painting finished. Your work is beautiful ! Lucky old Captain Rupert being chatted up down the pub ! Did he drink a pint of carrot juice ?

Chrissy said...

I don't know which to choose - all your paintings are LOVELY! They are deceptively childlike but you are an excellent and very skillful artist.
Thanks for explaining the layering technique. I've looked very closely at the pictures in your etsy shop. Now we know how those mysterious blue shadows come about.

Elizabeth said...

Lovely to see how you work.
Greetings to Captain Rupert.
May I add you to my blog roll?

Jackie M said...

What a lovely post Joanna and thank you for sharing the painting technique, that was very interesting.Love the new card sets too. I love the image of Captain Rupert doing a spot of modelling and then off to the pub for a bit of flirting and socialising, he has a brilliant life! Love Jackie Mx

d. moll, said...

Tyler and Sydney model in one of the drawing classes I teach. Rabbits have such a variety of simple shapes, and can very expresssive, of course now they are going to want to stop at a pub, which we haven't really got in in California. It is fun to see you work in progress, thanks for sharing.


Hi Jo, just to say I shall be giving the cards out to my friends tomorrow, it is my last day at work, I shouldn't get too emotional!!! So I know which packs are for who, I have finished them off with some tags in the same card as your boxes, I must say between us we made them look very professional! Thanks again. x

Libbys Blog said...

I really love the new packaging! Just off to have a look round your shop!

Anonymous said...

Hi there! I have a question about your cards/shop

I would really like to buy two of those boxes with notecards in them. They would be coming to the US (Southern California)

I would like mine to lean more toward rabbit cards and one for my best friend that has a variety. You mentioned putting a bunny like archi in one of the pics - i'd wait for that to come out to put the order together and save the most on shipping .. i'm patient (sort of!)

Can you do 2 boxes to the US? Should I then just go to your etsy shop and place the order and you'll know? my email is cacassabaum at yahoo dot com if you want to email me

I love your art - it's playful and beautiful and whimsical.

thanks a mil,
carri ann

thevintagemagpie said...

Hi Jo, I'd forgotten just how much I loved to hear about Captain Rupert's adventures. Glad to be back x

weirdbunny said...

I used to love those magic painting books as a child ! The ones where you just put water on the page and the picture turned to colour from black and white.

I showed my non blgging friend your blog the other day. She an illustrator for children's books, she adored your paintings.

natural attrill said...

Thats very interesting to read about the way you layer paints, I always mix mine in a pallette, and only sometimes layer like that if I want to change a colour already painted.
I have been trying to think about this, you must have to work in some particular order as the end colour will depend on which layer is underneath/ontop. I guess if thats the way you always work you just 'know' now and dont even think about it, but my old brain is cranking at the thought of which colours i would lay down first. It would be SO time consuming to paint one element at a time, having to change colours constantly, washing your brushes each time, I guess you must paint all of one colour, all over the painting, then layer all of the next colour, that would be the quickest way - but you'd have to really know what you are doing to work like that, which you I suppose you do!
I paint for a living, each day, and time is money for me being self employed, I am always telling myself off for fiddling around and not painting in a quicker and more methodical way.
I love your creamy yellow undercoat, I can imagine your painting finished all over in warm browns and creams almost like an old sepia style photo.