Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How do you say no...?

Now that the conference last month is over for work, its back to focusing on other work tasks that have been waiting for my attention.

When work is not crazy busy, I feel that I have the energy, mentally and physically to spend time on my other interests outside of work, but the problem is that sometimes I say Yes to too many things and then my collection of interests almost becomes a full time job in itself. Gah! (That's the sound I make when I'm feeling overwhelmed)...

My most recent editing has actually been for a recruitment ad for my dragon boat team - CYSM Sea Dragons - its on our facebook group page if you're interested in watching 30 seconds of awesomeness.

Last Tues, did a shoot for the 20th Anniversary International Chinese Festival Variety Concert at Melbourne Town Hall. It was a great mix of performers and the lion dance/martial arts/theatre story was a great idea but had way too many things going on and was a bit hard to follow. The operatic finale was the highlight. They've got heaps of events happening over the next few months - check out their website for the full program. http://www.icaf.com.au/

Coming up - there are more stage shows to shoot - Sat 17 Aug - is a Diablo Group Performance at Dallas Brooks Hall, Melbourne, 2pm and then Sat 24 is the  Celebration of the ROC Centenary CYSM Variety Concert, also at Dallas Brooks Hall which is going to be specatular with many well known performance groups including CYSM's special glow in the dark dragon which will look like the dragon is alive! They don't perform this one often because it requires a lot of training (in ninja blacks) and practising in the dark with purple lights to bring out the fluroscent colours on the dragon.

Then theres Dr Sun Yat Sen's memorial statue in October in Melbourne's China Town - a project 10 years in the making. The committee held their last fund raising dinner on the weekend so hopefully we raised enough to finish the project.

And of course - theres the long list in my head of all the craft projects that I've got for family and friends (and myself). I've got fabrics and ideas for a lot of them too that I'm itching to get started.

I'm also humbled (and excited) to have been asked by a very talented friend to assist with her creative project. All I can say so far is that 'modelling' is hard, mentally and physically, it requires a lot of energy. Whoever says modelling is easy, has never done it before.

And painting has come to a stand still in the third room - its completely painted in stark white prep paint begging for us to paint the colour. Our excuse has been that its too cold but once the weather warms up we gotta get a wriggle on. And then only ONE more room - my 'happy' craft room which will be painted in 'Yellow Spark' and decorated with pink and jade green tones. So close yet so far. Planning to take some time off in Sep/Oct to try and make some more progress on this front.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

One woman crew at the ICAF Launch

Just over a week ago I went along to shoot the launch of the International Chinese Arts Festival at the ACMI Centre where there was a premiere of a documentary about a Chinese Russian Australian artist.

One woman crew tonight with the camera to do the interviewing and reporting. It was funny trying to frame myself and do the piece to camera. First one was really good but then realised that half of me was off camera!

Sections of the artists Mural Painting was on exhibit and it was absolutely exquisite - the detail and the beauty was extraordinary.

Check out the website for more info www.icaf.com.au

Dragon boat racing!

My dragon boat team, the CYSM Sea Dragons are now recruiting and have a number of Open Days, so we've shot a 30s TVC airing tomorrow on ATVAA on C31, a community tv station in melbourne.

Its all so wonderfully cheesy! It's gonna be on during the ATVAA programs on Wednesdays 2pm and Sundays 7pm.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Evies Quilt - The Journey of 'Garden Gazing'

What a wonderful feeling of satisfaction when something precious and special that you've been pouring your heart into is so warmly accepted and enjoyed.

The quilt made it for my god daughter, Evie's first birthday and has now travelled to its new home in the US. I was sad to part with it as I'd only had a day to enjoy it when it was completely finished but so happy to see the joy that it brought - such squeals of delight.

I couldn't find the initial sketch that I did for the pattern but my aim was to try doing some pin wheels and puffy squares. It pretty much looked as I had imagined so I was very pleased.

Outside border of puffy squares and pinwheels
Laying out some of the pieced squares and cut pieces
- the yellow blob of fabric is for the tiger

I probably did these first parts a year ago I think and then it went into a long period of hibernation...but then with the news of them coming to Australia, I got my arse into gear - no more procrastinating.

I used a teddy bear pattern from a craft magazine as reference and changed it to a tiger. It took me a couple of goes before I was finally happy that it looked like a tiger and not a mouse or a dog.

Embroidery with wool to give the tiger stripes some texture
Tiger cut out ready for some interfacing webbing stuff
although in hindsight i realised that i should have done the embroidery
after I had appliqued it onto the quilt because you can see bits of the wool
under the light coloured fabric

Experimenting with the tiger placement -
originally it was going to be looking at a bee
and a flower but then changed to the swallow -
Evie's chinese name means Little Swallow
And she is born in the Year of the Tiger for
the Chinese Horoscope

Sketch of Swallow with Envelope from a pic reference
Original swallow that i made in pink feather material
but then I LOST it and totally chucked a hissy fit (poor Alex) and had a little cry
but just as well because I think it looks better in the light yellow

Finished applique with hand embroidery
'Evelyn' printed via iron transfer paper
Thanks to Lauren for printing for me cos my
computer couldn't reverse the text!
Another hissy fit averted - although I realised that next time
I can print out the text, scan it back into the computer
and then reverse it because the program now recognises it as
an image rather than text.

Finished centrepiece with machine applique on the Tiger
Originally I was going to name the quilt 'Evelyn's Animal Adventures'
But then I changed my mind to 'Garden Gazing' as its more of a spring afternoon
in the garden looking at flowers and birds and garden creatures.

Polyester wadding affixed with spray adhesive
to make the puffy squares more puffy

Hard at work on the machine quilting - in my pyjamas!

Pieced back - Iron transfer photos and left over fabrics inherited from
a quilt that my mother in law made for her grand daughter,
with some fabrics from my own cache
Putting it next to each other to see what would complement
& how I wanted the photos to be arranged
Pieced back with Evelyn's name in English and Chinese

Finishing touches - the binding makes all the
difference as it frames the quilt
When Evie and family touched down in Australia, it meant that I had a deadline I had to meet - her first birthday party. I got the piecing done in time but needed few more days to do the quilting and binding. Always forget how long binding can take! Finished at 3am!

Evelyn's 'Garden Gazing'

Some close ups of the squares and fabrics

Evie loves the colours and even her older brother loved it even though he's already got he's own quilt. She's very smart and recognised herself in the photos and was pointing to them and her mum asked her to kiss mummy and she kissed the photo of her mum! Such a cute darling.

Her cousins enjoyed it too - when I asked them to look for all the animals and objects.

I can't wait to have my own bundle of joy to make a quilt for - but considering that Evie's quilt took more than a year to make, then maybe I should start now....hehehe

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Something but nothing

Well...proof that sometimes the silent guilt trip rather than constant nagging will get me to get the job done.
I finally edited a script for an ATVAA program and did the audio voice over. Its a program about Scouts in Victoria and the producer and editor did a great chinese version. The guy who did the chinese voice over has a calming, soothing voice like someone who would be narrating a scenic travel doco piece.
Anyways, at least thats something done this week.

Plus also got a surprise in the post today of our first order of Threadless t-shirts - awesome!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Previous Craft Work

Well while we all wait patiently for me to finish my next masterpiece - here are some photos from my previous craft work.

Some baby bibs - fabrics courtesy of Lauren - supa kawaii!
My first practice piece - with cute bees chasing after ice cream that they can never get!

The finished piece for a friend's bday pressie - i appliqued a few dresses on the ties

Close up of the fabrics

My friend was thrilled with her apron - she cooks and bakes a lot but she said that she only uses this apron on special occasions because its so pretty. I really like the scallop edged template - I will have to paste the link for the template if I can find it again.

I always like how different the same template looks just by changing the fabrics!
I'll have to find a pic of my god son's quilt which is just a block quilt and get a pic off Lollybags who made a quilt from the same pattern but different fabrics. She gave me the kit actually for my first quilt and i just swapped a couple of the fabrics and added an extra border around the edge.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Project Updates

Hanging out with the god-kids over the weekend which was really special...and I showed my friend her daughter's quilt so far and she loves it and asked if I could embroider her name in as well and perhaps put in some birdies because her Chinese name means Swallow. So I'm glad I showed her so that she can contribute these ideas. =D

Would like to have a go at the 10x10x10 photo project, although I'm going to wait until internet has been sorted at home. Had it and then lost it! Computer is having problems detecting the router and estbalishing a connection.

Was mightly impressed that hubby painted the ceiling in the guest bedroom (without any hints, suggestions or nagging) while I was away over the weekend. There were glow in the dark stars stuck on the ceiling (in this room and the previous room), which the previous owners painted over! So we literally had falling stars when we scrapped them off.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Virgin Post

Well here goes it - first post ever!

Now that we actually have internet access at home, I can blog all projects on the go. 

We bought our first house last year, post 1940/50s , 4 room weatherboard and moved in Boxing Day, just over a year! With the help of family and friends, we did quite a lot. Let's say that our previous owners were a bit lazy in places and peculiar (i have infuriating fly screens that are on the inside of the house, that have to be pushed up for you to actually open the sash windows)

Before moving in, we ripped out carpet and underlay in the living and hallway, and vinyl in the kitchen.
Removed wall paper freize (not sure of the spelling there) which were different flowers in every room. Then re-painted the living room, hallway and main bedroom. Sky blue walls didn't bother me, it was the grey blue skirting board and picture rails that pulled the colours down. So we've gone light and bright with cream walls and white trim. PS. I'm addicted to home magazines

Study was finished over the holidays! Now just need to figure out how to put together a desk inherited from my brother in law. And 2 more rooms to go - the guest bedroom and my Craft Room - aka Happy Room cos i'm going to paint it a nice light yellow to lift the spirits. The happy room faces south so doesn't get as much sunshine. 

Finished - the Study!

Next room to paint - guest room

Last night, we had lots of heavy rain so it revealed a few drips around the place - I'm fussing and saying should we check it out in the roof/ceiling in case theres water pooling somewhere - hubby Alex's response is *shrug* its an old house - there are going to be drips....did i mention that the shower is blocked too...hahaha that's the thing with buying an older place - there are always a few things that will require fixing up.

I'm a beginner with quilting - my sister in law and mother in law got me into it about 3 years ago and I made a simple block quilt for my god son, which he lovingly and sometimes selfishly treasures to himself. So now I'm working on my second quilt for my god daughter and I made the design a bit different to challenge myself and try out some new patterns. 

I'm motivated to finish my god-daughters quilt cos shes actually here in australia at the moment - she's visiting from overseas. It was supposed to be finished for her birth - shes now 9 months - so I'm behind schedule - but definitely will finish in time for her 1st birthday - her mums throwing a bash for her while they're here. Its my first time doing applique and sewing pin wheels and so far I'm pretty happy with how its looking. Finishing touches on the applique - a flower and a bee - then the basting, backing, quilting and binding. I'm going to have a go at free hand quilting on the middle section - I'm going to try and quilt love hearts that match the hearts in one of the fabrics. Photos will be posted after the quilt is finished and given to my god-daughter - i love surprises so don't want to spoil the surprise for my bestie!

TV Programs:
A program on the Scouts Awards was already broadcasted in Chinese on ATVAA on C31, so I've been asked to do an English voice over. Just need to actually watch the program and correct some minor grammar in the existing script. Hmmm...difficult to focus on this task when I'd rather be quilting...

Cooking Program - omg - been in the pipeworks for ages - but my friend has volunteered to star in the pilot episodes so I better get cracking and get organised. Another friend who works in the hospitality industry has some how become my sudo casting agent and is lining up lots of interesting characters to star as cooks on my show too - it will be called "From Your Kitchen". I was thinking about calling it "Your Signature Dish" but then i dont know if Masterchef have copyrights to that expression! 

Kids Picture Book:
Another unfulfilled promise - so guilty - all pages have been laid out for the book and a few pages have been sketched, but need to dedicate a full weekend to really get this one moving.

But you know what - i was inspired and fascinated by looking through the Art of Graeme Base book at tLauren's place. Such talent, imagination and wit! 

i've got an idea for another kids picture book with sheep - more on that some other time