31 December 2023

A Review of 2023

My plan for this year was to concentrate on dot painting. I started off painting stones and other items for practice, which looked quite effective. As usual I got side-tracked several times on other ideas, which all came to nothing, and have only completed three small dot paintings. I have spent a lot of time this year landscaping the back garden and doing house maintenance. I have also developed some new ideas for the Swirl-StoNZ I sell at the local market, as well as just replacing my existing market stock.

While I have received a lot of admiration for the dot painting, it has not materialised into sales. So, I think my focus on the Swirl-StoNZ is confirming that my heart is not in the dot painting. I do not get the same enjoyment from dot painting compared to the dot mosaics I made with polymer clay but at least I have given it a good try.

So, for 2024 I plan to return to creating artwork with polymer clay mosaics and selling Swirl-StoNZ at the local markets because I like the contact with customers. I would also like to have another go at selling online, due to the limited number of accessible markets (without a car) and the unpredictable nature of the weather for outdoor events. For this, I am thinking of glow-in-the-dark items, under the name ‘Glow Designz’. I feel this idea is more suited to selling online, as they can easily be shown with photographs, rather than my Swirl-StoNZ that you really need to touch.

From previous experience, it is easy to have plans for the forthcoming year, we will have to see what actually happens! 

30 October 2023

Art After Dark - 10 November 2023


Really looking forward to this event, which started for the first time last year. This year, I will have three dot paintings on display/for sale: 1. Sky, Sea, Sand, 2. Sunflower, 3. Meadow Flowers. It should be a great evening and nice to have a chance to dress up.

19 October 2023

Paverpol Flowers

I have been experimenting with Paverpol fabric hardener, hoping to create some large outdoor 'garden art' flowers. Here are two large poppies that I made. 

I had to put reinforcing wire in the petals, between the layers of stiffened fabric, as they were quite large. This was good because it meant the petals could be bent into shape but very time consuming to do. I also needed several coats of paint to get a solid red colour. Unfortunately, this idea is not realistic to continue for selling.

These are some small practice flowers I made first, with the idea of upscaling. After my experience with the poppies, it will not happen.

27 July 2023

Glass Microbead Art - I gave it a try

Poppy - 15cm x 15cm
This is the one and only piece of glass microbead art I will do. It seemed like a possible alternative to mosaics but was very fiddly, time-consuming, and not enjoyable. I can say I 'gave it a try' but it is definitely not for me.

30 June 2023

School Holiday Fun Activity

I have placed 8 of my dot painted stones around Whangamata. See how many you can find. If you find one, let me know in the comments.

You may keep for yourself, gift to someone else, or leave for others to find. Happy Stone Hunting!

Come and see what other dot painted and hand crafted items I have for sale, including Swirl-StoNZ, at the Whangamata Sunday Market on 2 July 2023 from 9am - 1pm by the Library.

29 April 2023

Glow-in-the-dark flowers made from plastic drink bottles

I had a little play last week, after seeing online how to make flowers from plastic drink bottles. To make mine different, I added glow in the dark centres and edges to the petals. Hoping I might sell some of these at the local market for Mother's Day.

Flowers made from plastic drink bottles

Shown in daylight and in the dark 

27 March 2023

Arts Collective Whangamata - Easter Arts Trail - 8 & 9 April 2023

Looking forward to this event over the Easter weekend.

I have been invited to exhibit at location No. 3, Sue Jamieson Art Studio, 306 Hetherington Road, Whangamata.

20 March 2023

The dot painting practice continues

 My dot painting practice has now ventured on to larger stones and pots.

19 February 2023

Cyclone Gabrielle, Garden Design and more

I was not able to feel creative during Cyclone Gabrielle but luckily we came through without damage. Now the weather has improved, I am working on a big garden design project, which will take up a good deal of my time during the next month or so. Also, I have a significant birthday in April, so plans and celebrations for that will eat into my creative time too. Consequently, it may be a couple of months before I can seriously get down to starting some larger dot painted artwork.

01 February 2023

Practicing Dot Painting

Here are some of the items I have painted while I have been practicing painting dots:

I am now waiting for some special dot painting tools to arrive from Canada before I start on some larger dot painted artworks.

29 January 2023

Big Arts Day Out 2023

Despite the terrible weather over the weekend, with no out of town visitors being able to get to Whangamata on the Sunday due to road slips, this event was quite successful for me. As well as the sales from my stand, I also sold one of my two entries in the Harcourts Challenge, "Making a difference to our Oceans". It was nice to meet the purchasers, as it gave me the opportunity to explain how I made the piece and how it related to the theme of the competition.

Making a difference to our Oceans - SOLD

27 January 2023

My two entries for the 2023 Harcourts Challenge

The theme for the 2023 Harcourts Challenge is 'making a difference'.

Making a difference to our Oceans
40 cm diameter, mixed media

Entry #1: ‘Making a difference to our Oceans’ was created with recycled plastic, including some ground down polymer clay mosaic tiles, glitter and resin. (I had to photograph this in quite a dark room, to stop the light reflecting on the glossy resin surface, so unfortunately you cannot see the glitter in the artwork). My thought was that locking the plastic into the artwork means it will not end up finding its way into the oceans.

The Great Barrier Reef
30 cm x 30 cm, acrylic paint

Entry #2: ‘The Great Barrier Reef’ was dot painted with acrylics; the 'making a difference' is intended to be shown by a reef full of coloured coral and fish grading into a colourless version in the distance. It is meant to show that we (humankind) can make a difference to the future of the reef if we try. 

23 January 2023

Harcourts Challenge & Big Arts Day Out - 27-29 January 2023

Really looking forward to this event. I have entered two pieces in the Harcourts Challenge, which I will post after the judging, and I will have a stand at the Big Arts Day Out. My display will show the gradual transition from polymer clay dot mosaics to dot painting. There will be a range of work, all for sale, and I will be dot painting some rocks and a canvas during the weekend for visitors to watch.