Working hard on all sorts of things this week!:
By hannah stoney on February 28, 2014
I’ve been trying to take it all in this month — commit to memory and heart these immanent and blessed moments, rich with honey. I’m thankful for February, even if it does have an errant ‘r’.
By hannah stoney on February 26, 2014
Austin has been bright and benevolent this past week. It can never take winter all that seriously and it is about to burst with spring. Meanwhile, in my little atelier…
I have finished my ship! It’ll be going off to the scanners soon and I’ll wait until then to give you a proper overview.
2. London & Austin
I have also been working on a commissioned paper-cut of London and Austin. Lovely little project!
3. Illustration Night
I’m trying to be intentional about keeping illustration in my basket (not just paper-cuts) and so I have made Tuesday night Illustration Night.
I’m working towards a new diorama piece to go with my goose and so this week, I played around with watercolours. I’ve got a lot to learn but man, I really loved painting this little landscape. Move over Constable!
By hannah stoney on February 19, 2014
I’m excited to announce that my originals and a selection of prints are now available for sale at Mockingbird Domestics here in Austin.
I really enjoyed my visit to the store yesterday — a really tightly curated collection of design pieces, vintage collector’s items and work by local artisans. There’s lots of delightful treasures alongside worthy investment pieces. I bought myself a couple of silver-dipped vintage knives — so romantic.
They have an ethos of hand-picking and developing good relationships with local artists and that’s definitely something I deeply appreciate and respect.
& other than that, here’s some of the things that I’ve been up to in my studio this week…
1. Hummingbird Commission
I really loved working on this piece. It was a different scale to what I normally do (which tends to be either minute or massive) but I think it worked really well and I’m definitely going to try more of these little foresty moments.
Plus, it is for some of my dearest friends and so I was full of love-full thoughts when I was cutting it. They commissioned it to honour the memory of the two babies that they miscarried, so obviously this was a really precious thing to be a part of.
2. Goose & Girl
I am trying to wrest some intentional illustration into my working week and so I don’t lose my game. This image has been in my head for a while now and so it was satisfying to get it down. She clearly needs her own diorama scene though don’t you think?
3. Still with the ship…
Yup, I think that this is now officially my longest time investment in one single piece. I’m hoping to get it finished by the end of next week but in the meantime, I will be cutting and drafting, drafting and cutting….
By hannah stoney on February 14, 2014
The lovely, local photographer Raine Chism came to take photos of me in my studio this week. I’m normally pretty petrified (all puns intended) in front of a camera but we ended up chatting so much that I pretty much forgot about it.
She’s a real light magician. If you look through her website (which I’d recommend) she has a series called “December in England” which is one of my favourites.
Anyhow, I am so pleased to have this funny little moment in my life documented so thoughtfully and beautifully. Here’s a couple of her shots but you can check out the whole shebang and the accompanying interview HERE.
By hannah stoney on February 12, 2014
I’m nervous about this piece. It’s hard to tell at this stage whether it’s going to sing and I’m already 12 hours in.
It’s amazing how risky making art feels sometimes, especially when there is not an awful lot of leeway for time spent experimenting in your schedule.
But better to sink a ship than stagnate as the popular saying almost certainly goes.
By hannah stoney on February 10, 2014
Hello Austinites. I am selling my bird windows.
I picked up these windows at Habitat for Humanity and repainted them. The edges are a dark turquoise blue-teal and the frames themselves are white. Each contains an orginal, one-off, hand-drawn and hand paper-cut bird which has been sealed with hard-wearing, weatherproof varnish.
The birds were both chosen for the special place that they hold in the hearts of locals. I chose the Cedar Waxwing after an enchanting morning watching them raid a berry bush in South Austin. And as for the Purple Martin, if you’ve never been to Highland Mall in the summer to see the Purple Martins come in to roost at sunset, you’re missing a real treat and I would recommend it. It’s up there with the bats if you ask me.
The windows have been hung with builder-approved hardware [I know nothing of such mysteries and so I got a friend to help me] which will be included.
I can deliver locally or you can collect. They measure 3′ 2″ tall by 2′ 5″ wide.
They are $300 each or $500 for both. OBO.
By hannah stoney on February 7, 2014
I’m wondering why, as I sit here at the end of this week, I don’t feel more of a sense of accomplishment about what I’ve managed to do.
It has not been one of those weeks where all of my goals were scuppered. I ran my runs, I cut my paper, I learnt the things I wanted to learn, I opened my house to people, I did the homework, I made paper hats and marble runs and I even got to the bottom of my paperwork pile. But still, I feel kind of flat.
I think it’s motherhood that’s doing it. I did those things, high five, but yet I also snapped at my kids far too much this week, fed them way too much bread and let them watch too much telly. And there is grace, there is grace. I’m not trying to judge myself; my plate is full and I’m doing my best. God knows. And all in all, I don’t think I’m doing a bad job. Perhaps even a good one.
But oh it’s the weight of it that does it. When you’re parenting your failings count. There’s no “oh it doesn’t matter” about it. It does matter, it all matters, the good, the bad and the ugly. And every mother I know, even the most grace-filled ones, knows with great accuracy what she feels her failings are.
But in a way it’s a helpful bedfellow, this awareness. It keeps you humble in a good way. It makes you softer and much slower to judge. It undoes some of your lofty ideals and bumps some of your pride. It makes you honour your parents more as you realise what hard work it is. It reminds you continually, that you need other people and forces you to lean into them.
I remember as a teenager, I painted this picture of myself as a child on the beach for my mum and I wrote a note on the back thanking her for my happy childhood. She cried when she received it because in her mind she was still fixated on all the ways that they had wanted to give us more, even though they gave us so much, so well. Her heart was so aware of what she felt was lacking that she was shocked by all the fullness that I had experienced.
Another week of not being all that I would like to be. I hope that in the end, I too will be shocked by all the love that actually got through to them.
And on that note, I wanted to share this sweet poem that says it much better than I can. It has been going around my head all day and it comes from this lovely little book “What it is is Beautiful: Honest Poems for Mothers of Small Children” by Sarah Dunning Park.
ALREADY BUT NOT YET
I have already
run the dishwasher,
put away every
and sparkling glass;
but I have not yet
tackled the leaning tower
of soggy cereal bowls,
or that pan,
thick with bacon fat.
I have already
pulled warm, snapping towels
out of the dryer and into
my arms, folded them
in neat stacks;
but I have not yet
sorted the piles of soiled
clothes, or washed them
of their stains
and ripe smells.
I have already
drawn my children near,
tucked hair behind their ears.
told them how much
I love them;
but I have not yet
made it through a day
free of discontent, guilt
By hannah stoney on February 6, 2014
My moth paper-cut has been professionally scanned and is now available as a print on my Etsy store:
I have been very into my greys for about a year now but it is very easy to put other colours in the background and so get in touch if you’d like to order one with a different coloured background.
This week I have been busy drafting a new larger piece and cutting a very special commission piece. Apologies for the graininess of many of these photos — most were taken during my evening work slot.
I’m still working on my lynda.com Illustrator course…