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Art… and an explanation / apology

Hey there!

I have been very, very absent lately. And, although I guess it would seem so from the title, it’s not to do with art. In fact, my art has been suffering neglect, too. What’s happened has been that my mother, Annette, and I have gotten quite a bit more proactive with making and listing our nail polishes in our Etsy shop, and while that has been a heap of fun, it’s chewing through a heap of time. 🙂 I’m still here, I’m still loving nail polish and all the rest, I’m still wanting to blog, I’m REALLY missing chatting to my friends here!

To keep some kind of sanity, though, I may have to spend more time blogging about non nail polish related items, though I’m building some large spam type posts, and also to show some of our creations, because I am SO proud of them!

For now, here is a painting I did for my course, acrylic on primed board, and the theme was a self-portrait, not involving a physical aspect. Which I loved thinking about, and this, pretty much, is a representative of some of my thoughts, beliefs, and a sort of attempt to portray an inner landscape of sorts. A meditative one, rather than anything frantic. Life can be frantic enough 😀

Tree 2

Have a wonderful day, and I’ll be around more often!

Pohangina Village Art Exhibition at County Fayre

The local artists (including my good friend Neighbour N) organised to transform a room in our local village cafe (County Fayre) into an art space. For the first exhibition, they invited lots of local people to display arts and crafts – and I was one of the invited.

My first response was panic, I had been doing my long-distance art course for a month when the idea was broached, and didn’t have ANYTHING at ALL. Literally. Not one piece. Everything I had done to that point were exercises. But I thought hey, this is such a great idea, and a great opportunity, and I’d be daft to turn it down, so I managed to make a few things, and then stressed myself out completely trying to frame them (honestly, that was evil. It took days and I ruined so many frames. I need some skills, STAT) and then it worked! I put 4 paintings in, and my mother put a whole bunch of her amazing handmade candles, and we were both happy! I took some photos on the opening night (yay, wine, food, music and friends) 🙂

My mothers candles, on the shelves. Sorry for the poor quality photos, I was tired and the light was bad.


The wall with my stuff on! SQUUEEE! My paintings are the 4 on the right, the large orange framed one, and the three small bird paintings (which are done in nail polish, mostly!).


I also adore that whale tail quilt! It has tiny clear beads for the water drops. Amazing. The cute little red and black mixed media trio to the left of my orange pond is by the other person I know doing the same art course, it’s brilliant. Buttons on fabric and more. Clever!

Closer, because I’m just so excited to have my paintings on a wall, and one sold, and I’ve only just started. It’s really nice validation, and I KNOW I’m not supposed to need external validation, but psychology can’t get through to my inner tribal ape on that one 😉


So, a huge thanks to Neighbour N and the team at County Fayre and Artists, I so appreciate the opportunity, and the evening was amazing. Good show, chaps and chappettes!

Have a great weekend


Random Photos!

Good morning! It’s been a weird few weeks, things have been a bit rough and rocky at home, hopefully things are improving now (fingers and toes crossed). Because of this, I just haven’t been able to get into blogging, and I’m missing it! So, on the advice of Sister V, I am going to post something random, and unrelated to nail polish. 😉 Here then, are some photos I’ve taken previously, and not really known where to post. Prepare for animal spam! (not the food in a can. No.)


Here is my goofy dog, April, smiling as she lounges around in her bed. Love her so much, she’s such a character. Even if she’s more of a giant cat than a dog, she’s my girl.


And… here is my cat, Sehkmet, just… doing cat things. We don’t get on. We pretend, but as it’s mutual, I don’t mind not liking her much. All the cats I’ve ever adored (well, they tend to act more like dogs, for one thing) they die young. Sekkie is over 6 now, and going strong, so yeah, go figure 😀


And a chick. Saying hello. I think I’ve posted this before, but I love this photo, so too bad 😉


And another chick, cute little thing!


Big Daddy Bruce… the sneakiest rooster I’ve ever met. I really like Bruce. But… I think we have to eat him. He’s given us over 100 chicks already, he attacks me if I go near the hens and chicks (and I’m not a coward, I’ll gently kick him off me if he tries, and that just means we get into a kicking/biting fight and I end up bleeding and really worried I’ll hurt him, on one hand, and looking for an axe on the other…). So, he’s only one year old, and already really aggressive. They get meaner with age. I don’t want to breed that into a line. And I don’t want to go through another Summer of Chicken Drama like this one, EVER AGAIN. Sorry Bruce. 😦


To get away from that, here is another chick! About 2 hours old, on a loaf of bread. Sweet little thing 🙂


And here’s a … thing…. I did. The background/foreground was an activity I did with my family, basically using alternative tools to apply paint to paper. Well, I used paper, they used canvas. Theirs looked great, mine was quite boring, so I added all the other bits to it – I wanted it to look like a little pool of water somewhere…


And close up of the fish. It’s just a photo I found, and cut out the painted bits to show it underneath. It was fun to do, anyway!


And, last but not least, a photo of seagulls on the beach at Napier.


Have a great day

Ami 🙂

Plover Painting – using nail polish

Good morning all! It’s gorgeous here, after a few days of bleak and rain (don’t get me wrong, we desperately needed the rain, and I WAS doing a rain dance, but the sun is nice too..) and we just had a moderately lengthy, rolling earthquake so I’m feeling rather wired. Pleased to report that not ONE bottle of polish fell off my shelves. Now I need to think of some kind of barrier to keep them safe… hmmm. Any thoughts?

Ok, no time for a lengthy post, so I thought I’d quickly show you a tiny painting I did using nail polish, on the glass of a photo frame. It’s my first attempt at this, and I really quite liked it.

backgrounds not finished, but shows the tiny size of it :D

backgrounds not finished, but shows the tiny size of it 😀

It’s a spur-winged plover 😀

with flowers (from DDP Bzz Bzz) and Daily Lacquer Makoto among others

with flowers (from DDP Bzz Bzz) and Daily Lacquer Makoto among others

I did like how you can lift it, and it becomes quite translucent. Not sure how to go about getting rid of those gaps between background and bird without ruining some of the translucence… smaller brushes, perhaps. I was using the nail polish brush and man was it hard to get any detail in.

don't much like the messiness, but it's good to know what I have to improve!

don’t much like the messiness, but it’s good to know what I have to improve!

This is with my mentor at The Learning Connexion now, hopefully she’ll send it back later. Even more hopefully she’ll acknowledge that my nail polish collection can, in fact, be almost arty 😀


Have a great, non shaky day!

Ami 🙂

Day 27: Inspired by Artwork

My amazingly artist sister, sister V in this case (I have two sister, both of whom are incredibly talented artisitcally!) suggested I take inspiration from Van Gogh’s  Starry Night or Monet’s Waterlillies. To paraphrase Shrek: oh yes, like that’s going to happen. My ‘skills’ are nowhere near being up to that! Instead, I chose to be inspired by this artwork by Piet Mondrian, from this awesome art website here.

Why did I choose this? Well, I was going to paint my nails black with a white line and just be lazy, but thought I’d go a bit further with the black and white theme, and while google searching modernist images this caught my eye – something about the splashes of colour and random sized grids, I think. And I thought it might be easy…

Well, I was wrong. I’m very often wrong, so it didn’t suprise me, but still! I painted my nails black with China Glaze Liquid Leather, then taped off the lines with striping tape. At about that point I realised it wasn’t going to be easy… parallel lines and I aren’t good friends. Then I tried to add the colour squares.. and that didn’t work so well. The blue was Kleancolor Sea Ice, the red was Depend 36 and the yellow was Depend 210 – and they’re both jellies! Over black! Argh! The white was CR 58.

Right in the middle of this, we had a man come around to give us a price for chopping down two of our huge pine trees – they’re too close to the house and damaged in a wind storm. So, during all of that the polish was drying – and collecting dog hair – and getting bumped… so when I did get a chance to pull off the tape the lines weren’t that clean. I topped up the colours a bit, so the red and blue is more colour accurate and a LOT more lumpy, and the yellow looks a bit like a boogy hehehe

Looks a bit odder when holding my hands normally!

Topped off with a coat Orly In A Snap, took a photo, took it off 😀
Have a great day!

Fiona Elrington Pet Portraits

Hello everyone! My awesome cousin Fiona has her pet portrait website up and running, and I’d love you to check it out (here!).

Fiona works with oil paint and canvas, and creates the most amazingly better-than-the-photo paintings of peoples beloved pets: mostly dogs and cats at the moment, but I know her and her skills, and she’d be up for ANYTHING.

It’s not just shameless nepotism; I sincerely believe that she has amazing ability with her art, and her heart, to see what it is that makes each fur baby special and adored, and translate that to canvas. She has quite a few of her previous commissions on her website, in the gallery (along with testimonials and the original photos), so you don’t have to take my word for it, you can see for yourself 😀

Sam, with oil, on canvas. So gorgeous. Image remains the property of Fiona Elrington.

She’s based in Kapiti (mmmm, almost at the bottom end of the North Island), New Zealand, and can work from photos – she also gives great advice on taking a good photo of your pet. These are great for presents (esp if you want to make the recipient cry, she’s GOOD at that) – and it’s the perfect way to remember your loved four-foot (or two, or finned, go on – make it a challenge!) forever; whether or not they are still with us physically or have passed on.

Lucas – on canvas, with oil. Images property of Fiona Elrington

So, please, if you have a few minutes, can you check out her brand-spanking new website at Fiona Elrington Pet Portraits, and pass it on if you can think of anyone who may love this? Thank you so much!

Have a great day 🙂

Please note: ALL images copyright to Fiona Elrington, and used with her express permission (she’d beat me otherwise, trust me, and be wary :D)

Cutest Bird Art by Nicola Hemphill, Artiste

I finally had a chance to buy a piece of artwork from Nicola Hemphill, Artiste. And so I did. Take a look, isn’t it cute?! She has named this one ‘Loose threads and un-tied ends’

Her artwork is normally larger and very complex, but I really liked this smaller one too. I love the detail, the colours and the multi-media. She has used a doily as a edging, making it very reminiscent of curtain lacing. The two birds are similar in outline, although the one on white is smaller – but both are connected by, and holding on to, a piece of white cotton.

I could make a million different meanings from this, and I do, but I’ll leave it up to everyone here to interpret as they wish, if they wish! Thanks, Nicola, I’m really happy I bought this! Long may people scrap over your landrover paintings. 😀

Found-Object Art: The easy/lazy way.

Mr Husband Man spotted an awesome piece of driftwood sculpture when we had a beach trip on the weekend. He gave it to me straight away, because he thought it looked like a mad chicken, and hey, who owns all the mad chickens? Ok, both of us, but you couldn’t prove it by most people 😛

We don’t know what it is. It looks sort of like a dried seaweed pod thing to me, but I’m not at all sure! I knew I wanted it displayed, though.

So, bring out the trusty Hot Glue Gun (thanks, neighbour N! Awesome present!), a selection of cool papers, and an old frame.

I found the paper I liked as a background, and glued it on to the backing board of the frame, then glued the mad chicken to the paper.

Framed, and WOLLA!  Art! Ish. I like it, it makes me laugh.

However.. word to the wise: check that your anchor points on the back of the frame are the right way up before gluing. Ahem.


Ah well, I’ll just use a hook instead.

HEALTH AND SAFETY WARNING! They call it a Hot Glue Gun because the glue is Hot. With a capital HOOOOOO! (the noise you make if you forget that, and touch the glue too soon for any reason). The blisters come up fast, and they hurt. 😉