Friday, 31 May 2013

Artful Readers - May

If you saw my post for ARC April then you'll know that my book for April became my book for May :)

So, my book for Darcy's Artful Readers Club for May was "Bring Up the Bodies" by Hilary Mantel.

The synopsis...

"By 1535 Thomas Cromwell is Chief Minister to Henry VIII, his fortunes having risen with those of Anne Boleyn, the king's new wife. But Anne has failed to give the king an heir, and Cromwell watches as Henry falls for plain Jane Seymour. Cromwell must find a solution that will satisfy Henry, safeguard the nation and secure his own career. But neither minister or king will emerge unscathed from the bloody theatre of Anne's final days."

The review...

You can gather by the fact that this took me over a month to read that I didn't really enjoy it. I've read some "historical fiction" before but mainly Conn Iggulden which is a bit more...sensationalist? Anyway, I really struggled with the style of writing and the language used, which is obviously meant to reflect the period it is set in and although the story itself is interesting, the book never really drew me in. Not the book for me and I don't think I would read any more books by her.

The art...

I actually took some work in progress pics this month - feel free to skip ahead to the finished piece!

All of my pages are being done in an old hardback childrens book which I picked up in a charity shop. I don't feel too bad about covering up the pages as a lot of them have been scribbled on with crayon!

The page I worked on this month is the other side of my World War Z page and as you can see at the bottom some black had seeped through the page. The text is quite big in this book so I decided to cover it up with some smaller book print and some tissue paper, which I crumpled to add a bit of texture.

I then painted over it all with a mix of brown, red, yellow and gold paints.

I drew a Tudor Rose and coloured it with ProMarkers.

And then attempted to copy a portrait of Anne Boleyn.

I doodled a border around the page and added the Tudor Rose and Anne.The page was then completed with some gilding flakes so that the tudor rose didn't seem to be "floating" on the page quite so much and, of course, a quote from the book.

My book for next month is "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett.

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Circle Journal - April

Our Circle Journal theme for April was Hans Christian Andersen tales, chosen Now, I didn't really think ahead as to what I could do so when Darcy told us the theme I realised I had no clue as to which story to go with!

After lots of procrastination I went with The Nightingale - I found a few different versions, although they are all obviously fairly similar.

And here is my page, first of all showing the mechanical Nightingale...

The page then opens out to show the caged Nightingale (this is where some of the versions differ as he isn't always caged)...

The cage then lifts up to show the free Nightingale...

Hope you like it!

Monday, 27 May 2013

Circle Journal Pages

I've realised that I'm a bit behind on sharing my circle journal pages. I'm actually behind on doing them - the drawback with not posting a journal on I suppose!

February's theme was Jayne's and she chose Beatles lyrics. My page was for Jackie. Now, I'm not a massive Beatles fan so I had to resort to good old Google to check out their lyrics. I eventually settled on "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds". I used some Octopode Factory images as I felt they went with the lyrics and tried to use colours that are mentioned in the song...

March's theme was chosen by Lynn (I think!) and was "Technology". My page for this month was for Lea. Now, I must admit I really struggled with this one. I originally started off thinking of doing a steampunk style page but thought that everyone else may end up doing that - or not, as it turns out! As hubby works in electronics I asked him to get me some resistors and capacitors and then trawled the web for a quote that I felt I could work with. And this is what I came up with...

I'm currently working on April's page, the theme of which was chosen by me :)

Monday, 20 May 2013

Artful Readers Club - April

I have a confession to make... my book for April for Darcy's Artful Readers Club was meant to be "Bring Up the Bodies" by Hilary Mantel. I was still only halfway through by the end of April...ooops. But looking at my list again I realised I'd put "The Host" by Stephenie Meyer on it - which I read back in March before I went to see the film! So, The Host is now my April book and I will review Bring Up the Bodies for May (which I have finally finished). Hope that's clear!

I imagine most people have heard of Stephenie Meyer as the author of the Twilight saga but she has also written The Host, which I was aware of but had never got around to reading. I had no idea of the plot until the trailers started appearing for the film and was actually a little surprised to find it's along the lines of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

The synopsis...

"Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away. The earth has been invaded by a species that takes over the minds of their human hosts while leaving their bodies intact, and most of humanity has succumbed. Wanderer, the invading 'soul' who has been given Melanie's body, knew about the challenges of living inside a human: the overwhelming emotions, the too-vivid memories. But there was one difficulty Wanderer didn't expect: the former tenant of her body refusing to relinquish possession of her mind. Melanie fills Wanderer's thoughts with visions of the man Melanie loves - Jared, a human who still lives in hiding. Unable to separate herself from her body's desires, Wanderer yearns for a man she's never met. As outside forces make Wanderer and Melanie unwilling allies, they set off to search for the man they both love."

The review...

This book, like Twilight, is aimed at "young adults", so is a nice easy read - I think it only took me a few days to finish it. The author deals with the conflicting thoughts of the two women very well and it's not difficult to follow who is "speaking" each time. You easily find yourself sympathising with the "alien" and understanding her point of view so the book was interesting in that respect. If you like books in this genre then I think you'd definitely enjoy this book. As for the film..."it was alright" was our response when the credits rolled - the book is much better!

The art...

I've been working on this on and off for a few weeks - I've attempted a face - she's ok, apart from one eye being bigger than the other! Her eyes are silver - the trait that indicates a human has been taken over. The silvery strands around her head are the "alien" - they enter through the back of the neck. And I put some planets around the page to indicate all the planets Wanderer has inhabited before coming to earth - I couldn't resist a bit of doodling though!