I'm travelling into a new way of working, a new country, a new language, and a new hobby which I'm passionate about. Come with me for some of the journey...

Thursday, 17 September 2020

To walk beside you


Hello all!  I'm very behind on sharing tags with you here on the blog.  I've had a sudden rush of creative mojo while I've been here in the Czech Republic checking on the building work.  But now I'm heading back to (quarantine in) the UK to start packing up my stuff for the permanent move.  

So there might not be too much going on creatively in the next while - I'm not sure how I'm going to juggle it all.  But I've got plenty stored up to share - it's just a question of finding time to blog it all - so I'm back with a favourite trio today.  I notice I can no longer revert to Legacy Blogger, so this post may never see the light of day at all!  (No longer amused, as you'll see by the prologue at the top of the blog.)

These backgrounds are a combination of Distress Inks and Oxides smooshed on the craft mat - but the key ingredient (and the key element in my reawakenedmojo) is the addition of Speckled Egg to my favourite colour palettes.

It's a glorious colour by itself - veering from delicate blue tones to soft greens depending on context - but the joy for me has been in finding how it plays with the other colours I adore.  So there is Vintage Photo here, and some Rusty Hinge.  There's Stormy Sky and Wilted Violet.  And there had to be Pumice Stone too.

The tangled branches stamped to create the undergrowth are a Penny Black image.

And there's a Wendy Vecchi vintage text background embossed in white to echo the book page fragments behind the Paper Dolls.

I was feeling the lack of die-cutting ability, given I had only my travelling stash to work with... but the solution was these twig trees.

They were a fortuitous by-product of a weekend of hard work cutting, chopping and clearing overgrown plants and trees in the garden.

I wasn't doing it all by myself - a lovely young Czech friend came and spent one of his last weekends before starting his architecture degree doing most of the work... I was merely an assistant.  I think he thought I was a bit mad when I started hauling branches back out of the carload headed for the greenery skip which bobs up around the village at this time of year.  I now have a lovely collection of branches large and small to get creative with once I'm settled back here.

The Paper Dolls almost chose themselves.  The little guy in the hat is a constant favourite of mine - I could do with twice as many of him in each pack in every size!

And the toddler has also put in many an appearance on various tags and ATCs over time here at Words and Pictures.  He's carefully holding on to one of the branches to help with his balance.

I do like the seated girl too.  In fact, I glued on an extra branch for her to rest on.

The words are from Tim's Clippings stickers... found text without going to the trouble of finding it.

It's funny how, as you flick through the pages, the phrases you need just seem to appear.

You have to peer between the twiggy branches to catch all the words, which makes for a nice active engagement with the tags.

No need for anything fancy at the top - some simple fine twine finishes things off.

I hope you like them as much as I do.  And I hope you'll bear with me over the next few months.  It's been a busy six weeks dealing with builders and searching for flooring/showers etc where the chosen ones from 2018 were no longer available.  And it's going to be worse as I pack away my life's belongings and ship them across Europe.  

But sooner or later I'll be back in action properly... though maybe not on Blogger given New Blogger, which makes me desperately sad.  I'll have enough on my hands working out how life works in a new country, with a difficult language, and building new income streams given the theatre work is on hold for the foreseeable future, without struggling to deal with a platform which has been "improved" to make my life harder.

But looking on the bright side, it's a beautiful place I'm moving to.  I'm sharing some photos of South Bohemia on Instagram, so you can take a look if you would like to here... @b0hem1anh0me

Thanks so much for stopping by today.  Take good care of yourselves as the second wave takes hold.  Stay safe, stay well, and stay creative.

I want to cultivate the seed that was placed in me until the last small twig has grown.
Käthe Kollwitz


Valerie-Jael said...

Hi Alison, you don't seem to be happy with New Blogger! It's not as I would like it either, but I have used it from day one and have now got used to it, so don't give up. Your tags are wonderful, as always. I wish you luck wit your move and getting settled in, it will be hard but you are strong and will manage it. Take care, hugs, Valerie

Valerie-Jael said...

Hi Alison, I just played about a bit on Blogger, and it is possible to alternate the pics left and right and put text next to it. When you put the photo on your blog, you can choose for each one right or left, from the cons where you choose the size etc and then write your text next to it, no problem. Perhaps you can try again when you have a quiet half hour!

butterfly said...

Thank you so much for taking the time to experiment, Valerie. Again, it's about process. I've always written my whole text and then added photos. I will have to work the other way up if I have to select each photo first and then write text for it. And that interrupts the flow of the thought as I write fairly substantially. And as you know, I write a lot.

I'm honestly not trying to make difficulties. I feel desperate about it. I want to continue blogging, but I have no quiet half hours coming up... I'm moving house to another country. So my next quiet half hour is in March or April if I'm lucky. If I don't write blogposts in that time, the chances are my blogging is over. The timing is just really bad for me to be struggling to make changes in something which I used to be able to just do really easily and quickly, and which gave me great pleasure, when I'm making so many other changes at the same time.

I will try, but it makes me want to cry.
Alison xx

Helen said...

I'm sorry you are having such trouble with new blogger - hope you manage to get used to it and keep blogging, we'd hate to lose you! I do understand where you're coming from though with all the changes you are making in your life!!
Fantastic trio of tags,and a great bunch of branches you've appropriated!!

Joan said...

Beautiful art as always, I love the colours you use
As for blogger! Well I'm with you, I can't work it out and I'm about ready to call it a day


Christine Alexander said...

Alison so many people are feeling your frustrations, as a power user it must be so difficult for you.
I hope we don't loose you from blogger, I love seeing your beautiful creations and your descriptions.
Take care and I hope your move goes well :)

Christine said...

I so, so ,so agree with you in regard to new blogger. I have stopped blogging and am looking for a new program to use. I occasionally post a little something but usually text.
I blogged for the grandchildren I never see so that they could know me.....

craftytrog said...

Beautiful tags Alison, as always, and a great supply of branches!
Sorry to hear about your problems with new blogger. They seem to have sorted out the linking problem I had, so it's ok for me now. I hope it gets easier for you.
I had no idea you were moving permanently to the Czech Republic. Your Instagram photos are beautiful. Good luck with the move, and your new regular income ventures.
Have a great weekend,
Alison xx

experiments in paper said...

Gorgeous tags, from foundation on up. I could study the colors and depth for hours. Love the addition of dimension with the twigs, which work perfectly with the little folk. Thank you for connecting us to your IG Bohemia feed - absolutely enchanting and entrancing! And best wishes for your move. Exciting, definitely full of chores and decisions, but also discovery and revelation as you move into a new area and beautiful home. Look forward to seeing it through the seasons once you're settled. Meanwhile, safe travels/packing/move..... xxx Lynn

Nan G said...

Fabulous tags Alison. I too could sit for hours and study the color interactions. So sorry to hear the ‘improved’ blogger has got you in its throws. A difficult yet exciting time ahead with the move. But what exciting adventures await you in your home. I’ll link up with your Instagram so I can enjoy the beauty of the Czech Republic. Hope all goes well with the move. Warm hugs.

Mac Mable said...

Dear Alison.....By the time you have a spare half an hour to persevere with blogger it will be next year!!! Hopefully by then things should be finally settled on blogger.....LOL x.
I adore your tags...The colours, the layout and little extras are fabulous x.
Good Luck with the move and finding a steady income and I am looking forward to seeing what marvellous creation you finally use the branches and twigs for x. Sending hugs x.

Marci said...

I love the kind of purply tones on these. Beautiful tags.

pearshapedcrafting said...

First of all these are such a lovely trio - I love the rescued twigs as an addition to your backgrounds!
As for blogger...well...I am determined it's not going to beat me - I'm a stubborn little B! That said, there have been times when hubby has intervened and told me to come away from the computer! I agree it's frustrating and time consuming especially when there was nothing wrong with legacy! I had a quick squint at you IG photos but will be getting my tablet on over the weekend to see them properly! I remember the train journey to Prague from Vienna had some lovely scenery so will be coming back one day, who knows , a little trip further south may be in order! Take care! Wishing you an easy time through all you have to do! Hugs, Chrisx

Sue said...

Alison you know that I always love your tags but these really are special! I love the blues and browns together and the background text is the perfect touch together with the thread and twigs. I really can't get along with new blogger either, why they have to fix something that isn't broken I do not know. Take care and have a great weekend, Sue xx

paperwishesbyamanda said...

So sorry to hear blogger has become such a pain. I have not posted for a while now so I have that challenge yet to come. Like you, if it is too annoying I will just abandon the frustration. Life is challenging enough these days without extra stress. I will miss your blog but instagram is filling the gap for me these days. I was wondering how your work was going with the theatres going dark. I thought radio might have filled in? How exciting and challenging to move countries. looks beautiful though. Good luck with all your packing and hope you are creating again soon. Safe journey.

My name is Erika. said...

The saying is, if it isn't broken, don't fix it. What were they thinking of when they went and changed blogger. I'm not on instagram to see your photos, but the tags look great. Good luck with your move and quarantine. Hugs-Erika

Redanne said...

I never tire of seeing your blues and browns on tags and these are exquisite. The white embossing is beautiful and your found twigs are such a lovely addition to the tags. The little people are just perfect too.

Blogger is certainly a pain. Just when I thought I had cracked it (I admit it took many hours), I went in this week and the picture resizing element had completely changed.... I do hope that will get on top of your blogger issues and that you won't have to give it up. I love your photos on Instagram, your new home area look idyllic, I have a feeling you will be very happy there.

I hope you keep safe and well during and after your move and good luck with the packing. I will see you over on Instagram! Anne xxx

Tracey@Hotchpotchcreations said...

Hi Alison i'm really sorry to read about the frustrations of blogger for you, by them trying to make it a platform to suit all devices it has taken some getting used to. I use no other device but my laptop, I do not need to make sure my posts look good on tablets, phones etc.. but having played with it from the first changes I have got used to it and they have ironed out many of it's downfalls. I do hope when you have settled in your new home you will have the time to play around with it again, I do not use instagram anymore because of it's algorithm it began showing me things I did not want to see resulting in me spending far too much time searching for what I wanted to see.. Life really is too short isn't it.
Your tags are always so special, full of a story to be told and I will miss them very much if you do chose to dedicate them all to instagram but like our changing world I do understand. I myself am old school, I like cash in my pocket along with pencil and paper. I hope this new blogger will be like Vinyl and come back into fashion with avengence!!
Take good care of yourself & all the best on your epic adventure.
Creative wishes Tracey xx

Holly AKA KopyKat said...

These are fabulous! I agree, the new blogger is aweful.

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I apologize for taking so long to visit. It was definitely beyond my control. I’m trying to catch up, but it’s harder than I actually imagined it would be, especially with my very slow internet.

I feel incredibly lucky because I'm still using Legacy. However, I work exactly opposite to you. I take my photos, then write my words based on the photo. For me, the photo drives the story.

I wish you had better luck with your blogger, because I would hate to lose seeing you. I am not on any other social media site. I can't even get on Instagram because the photos go dark. And I can't join because I don't own a cell phone. Please relax and try to reduce your stress, dear.

Craftyfield said...

Oh dear, blogger.... spent a frustrating hour trying to place my photos the way I wanted them! I haven't cracked it yet but I have already found out that it doesn't like older browsers, Internet Explorer is totally unworkable. Carry on creating and blog later when, hopefully, the snags will be ironed out.

A beautiful trio of tags, the Wilted Violet and rust combination is gorgeous! x

Annie said...

Your trio of tags are fabulous Alison x I especially love the backgrounds and those twigs look amazing around the paper dolls x Great quotes too x

I feel the same re new blogger and hoped that the legacy blogger would remain a few months more !!! I guess I had better make time over the next few weeks to get to grips with it x

Safe journey back home x Whilst packing for the move will be difficult your new home looks amazing and I am sure you will be very happy there xx

Take care
Annie xx

Fliss said...

Really beautiful autumnal shaded artwork Alison and love them all with their gorgeous detailed background and natural additions.
I know just how you feel about the new Blogger format as I too have been struggling with it as various bits don't seem to work on my Mac are are driving me mad too.
Definitely not user friendly for us creative types.
Wishing you all the very best with your paking for your move and hope that everything goes to plan for you.
Fliss xx

butterfly said...

Fliss - that's really interesting... I'm on a Mac too, and it certainly seems to be causing more headaches for me than for many. I wonder if that's why. I know it's also partly to do with my blog-writing process, but it's a finely honed process after more than eight years and the thought of changing how I do it just to suit a malfunctioning "update" is frustrating to say the least.
Alison x

CreativSpirit said...

I love these beautiful tags, such lovely inspiration.

Cestina said...

Following what Fliss says I will try writing a post later today on my bog-standard laptop and see if some of the headaches have vanished...

And I shall protect all attractive twigs...

Cestina said...

Forgot to add - I mostly write as you do, all the text first and then insert appropriate photos.

Patty O'Malley said...

I absolutely adore these tags, Alison! They are so beautiful. May I ask what you do with your tags? Big hugs to you as you navigate a move to a new country, especially amidst a pandemic. I also do not like the new blogger. Why do they think they need to "fix" everything that is working fine?

butterfly said...

So far, I keep most of them, Patty! Some favourites on display, some in boxes. The occasional few have gone out into the world (and any projects made for PaperArtsy launches, whether for my stamps or somebody else's - usually Lynne Perrella - went off to PaperArtsy for their show display boards). But one of the plans once I'm settled in CZ is to start selling things - Etsy or some such platform. So keep your eyes peeled for updates if you're interested...!!
Alison x

Aimeslee Winans said...

Hiho, Alison! So exciting moving to a new place, and you seem to already be familiar enough. Oh to have Samantha Stevens' nose and just wriggle it and everything is moved haha. That was a Bewitched TV show reference from 60's America, sorry. Great good luck with the move and with blogger. Even though what you see of my blog is still legacy, I've been using the new to write my posts and aside from it always annoyingly defaulting to paragraphs instead of lines, I'm pretty good with it now. Wonders never cease as I was very skeered. XXXO

Annette Reed said...

Your tags look fantastic. I saw one on instagram so I had to check out your blog. Good luck with your move.

Anita Houston The Artful Maven said...

Oh girl I feel you on the blogger issue. I have cried...totally deleted two of my very long posts last week and I had to redo. I've written twice to fix two issues and those are better, but I write linear with photos lined and text lined up, so I am sure you ARE having a hairy time. I still don't have it down yet, but I am better this week than last. Pisses me off though that they changed it up and gave us no choice.
ANYWAY, your tags are gorgeous of course, and love the use of the sticks. Dreamy and soft yet a little eerie with the children in the woods. LOVE the balance.
Good luck on the move, also stressful I am sure, but I know you will be happy to be close to Mama!

Cocofolies said...

Sorry Alison, I didn't have the time yet to look quietly your last tags and watercolor pages, with all the details that I love seeing and reading.
Taking a bit of time this morning before painting.
I absolutely adore these three tags, wonderful use of your beautiful backgrounds, so inspiring!!!
I hope you can continue a bit to create this week again despite all you have to do certainly before leaving, if you feel mojo! :-) xxx

nwilliams6 said...

I am not thrilled with the new Blogger either, but I know we can't change it so we just have to muddle through until we get use to it. We need to hurry up and learn to work around it really well because that is when they will change it, and we have some hope of it being better. LOL.

Your tags are BEAUTIFUL. Lovely background, great extra details, and fun paperdoll choices.

So fun and exciting that you are moving - a new adventure. Your pictures show it is a beautiful there.


Felix the Crafty Cat said...

Hi Alison, loving your tags. Hope you're well. Stay safe and have a lovely crafty week, Angela xXx

Monika Gulyas said...

These tags are gorgeous! I love the real branches you added to them! And I completely agree with your statement about the new blogger! xx

Neet said...

I am sure you would not be content with showing your lovely artwork in any other way. I cannot come to terms with instagram and much prefer to blog as it acts as a kind of diary for me. Please stay and persevere or try something like 'Wordpress'. Anything, but don't stop blogging.
I don't know if you have mentioned why you are moving countries, if so I must have missed it but I do hope you will be happy when you finally get there.
Your trio of tags is beautiful. I love how you have used Speckled Egg with the other colours, it is a colour that seems to work with so many as I discovered when I used it with Cracked Pistachio the other day. It seems magical in that it takes on different hues.
Anyway your tags are beautiful and i am so glad the Paper Dolls just spoke as to which was to e used on each tag. Perfect.
Take care, Hugs, Neet xx