Thursday, 29 December 2011

Just found this amazing masked crab on Maenporth Beach. Something to draw and paint in the future. It's in the garage to dry for now and is a bit smelly!
Lovely to find a whole creature as all I have found in the past are shells. This one is a male I think because of its long leg/claws (chelipeds) One of the wall sculptures I made earlier this year, 'Broken', has one embedded in it. Think I'll just draw this one for now.

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

I've been painting...

Spider crab
Looking across the Helford River from the fields above Prisk -
Christmas Eve

As I haven't been working in the garage making stuff much this month I thought I'd make a new page with some of the drawings and paintings I've been doing. I have started taking paints out with me and painting landscapes. At the moment I am painting with acrylic in a sketch book of primed paper 14x21cm

It is something I have never done before so is quite a challenge.

But I am also drawing the things I find once I have brought them home.

To see more check out the 'Painting and drawing' page

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

The colours of my garage

the colours of my garage

Look out for me at Open Studios begining of June next year.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Orchids - drawing a day 2011

Orchid roots

Started a Facebook page with an album of drawings called Sarah McCartney drawing a day 2011
Good to be drawing and painting as I am not in the garage so much at the moment it being colder and the days shorter - and ran I out of resin.

But yesterday I got in some supplies and have been out there all day tidying and sorting so I can get a good day in tomorrow.
Will be casting and sanding down lots of these little round things for a piece I have planned. Maybe it will be the first one to be lit from the inside?

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

who die

who die
the silence is
but  slowly
piece by piece
layer by layer
they become
and always
the One thing
I work and it is good

Friday, 4 November 2011

cooking with copper

don't loose it 

Have recently ordered a load of chemicals to patinate copper different colours. At the moment I only have ammonia and a mysterious white powder that together make a lovely turquoise, blue. I used it on the copper framing this piece. But I'd like to get some greens and recreate the gorgeous red I managed to make happen somehow on the piece called 'column'. I think I used plant fertilizer but have never been able to recreate it again. Found some recipes on the web so I'll be cooking with copper soon!

Monday, 24 October 2011

Autumn colours

remembering things lost
and the sad beauty of Autumn

I take my work down from Jam Records on 8th November.
I still have work at The Riverbank in Truro.

Meanwhile despite feeling like I'm not doing anything because I have so much other work to do (as in paid work) I cheered myself up today by finishing this one

sky of silk

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

How are they made?

Had some lovely comments about the pieces I put in Jam Records - thank you all who have gone along to see them - they are still there for a bit those that haven't.

As people seem to like hearing how I make them I thought I'd put in a few 'work in progress' pictures and say something about the processes involved. It is different with every piece. They all go through a journey, sometimes of a few weeks, sometimes a lot longer. But basically there are two parts to my pieces, the resin and the frame.

making silicone moulds

moulds ready to pour

The resin is made by pouring water clear casting resin into silicone moulds. I make the moulds myself but I also use silicone ice cube moulds, wooden frames and recycled tin boxes. I embed objects along the way, pouring a few millimeters with each new batch of resin and adding things at different levels. The text and images are printed on acetate or tracing paper. I try to be organised so I know what I'm going to put in each mould before I start pouring and I spend hours cutting up text and playing about with things with tweezers. But it can get messy and a word will blow away or I will make up more resin than I have prepared for so things can be spontaneous and unpredictable. Which is good!
The resins take a few days to cure then I have to clean them up to get the clear, polished finish. This is done by sanding with wet and dry paper in a tray of water starting with 100 rough grade and working up to 1200 fine grade. Its lots of monotonous work but its great if I'm feeling uninspired as I'm still doing something. Good music is key! Polishing is done by machine or by hand with brasso - usually both to get the finish I want.

gluing a frame together - this is old dado rail

The frames - well I am trying all sorts. I make frames out of new wood, old wood, driftwood, copper, brass, anything I can get hold off that might work. I've even started making moulds of wooden frames so I can cast my own resin frames.

Finally I can put them together. I have lots of resins and frames lying around my studio. Over the weeks they come together in various different ways until in the end they are brought together and stay - the finished piece.

resins and frames - in flux

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

New work in Jam Records today

Dreaming in colour

There are ten pieces and they will be there throughout October to the beginning of November.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Jam Records 4th October

I'll be putting a few pieces in Jam Records, High Street, Falmouth on the 4th October. They will be there for a month. It's the best music and coffee shop there is and I'll be there for the morning if anyone wants to come say hi.

Tusk and claw


Just finished these two so I'll probably put them in. But I'm working on this exotic gold framed thing at the moment. Hoping to have it finished in time.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Happy accident

One of the pieces I was finishing today needed a bit of resin and I'd made too much, so I started filling a couple of small moulds - one containing a beautiful elephant hawkmoth.
I accidentally put too much catalyst in the last batch of resin I had made and I also, impatiently, poured in too much at once. Next thing I know I can smell burning and there is steam coming up from the piece.
The thing was getting so hot. Too much resin and too much catalyst = altogether too much going on in a small space = cracks! Had I wasted a really beautiful moth with my carelessness?

I was facinated though and settled down to watch the tiny spectacle I'd created by mistake.
Every few seconds a little golden crack would appear in the resin. I watched as it filled up with these little flecks off gold and the moth grew darker as it singed and disappeared beneath the cracks.
Macro fireworks.

Turned out quite interesting on the other side when I turned it out and polished it a bit.

...accidents can be OK.

Monday, 5 September 2011

September - back to it after a bit of a break

I've moved my kayak out of the garage to its new home in the garden to make more work space. Put up a wall of shelves to take all the stuff that was rapidly taking over my work benches.

Tidy garage all ready to work

Lots of bits I've been making over last couple of months ready to gather together into new pieces

Finished off a few things before I start new stuff. The ones below are really finished. The rest have to set and be polished before they are really ready.

like a secret

child inside

Friday, 22 July 2011

Fishtank does Riverbank, Truro

Fishtank does Riverbank 20th July

I have three peices of work in this exhibition at The Riverbank, Truro which is up for two months.

Root writing

I drift, I accept...

 'I am a collector of words, butterflies wings, beetles, seed pods, bottle tops, driftwood, shells, wire, bones, lines, colours. I create poem pictures with my collections by embedding them in resin. Over time, layer by layer the memories, the dreams, the beautiful things come together and, using recycled wood, copper, tin, gold leaf and resin, I frame them. I make them precious hoping that you will find your own poetry, make your own histories, dream your own dreams with my words as they shift through the layers.'

Only a few remember

I have been working away for years since leaving collage in 1990, painting and drawing mostly, but never brought anything to a 'finished' enough state to really show anyone. But now my daughter is growing up and my garage is set up just right I have shifted gear and am making again. I have finished quite a few peices and am in the middle of loads of new things.
I will put finished pieces and new work on here as it is made but maybe sketchbook pages and interesting things I find that inspire me or maybe pictures or the work in progress too.

My newest find is a collection of bird skeletons that were scattered in the ashes of an old cast iron stove - how or why I don't like to think but I find them quite beautiful and they will probably end up embedded in resin eventually.


This is a piece I'm working on using a birds skull and its wing.