Category Archives: Rosanna’s Mosaics

EALING ART TRAIL – In 3 Weeks Time

BEATING the drum

The BEAT Ealing Art Trail event is gathering momentum and is taking place in 3 weeks time.

BEAT – Borough of Ealing Art Trail, is taking place over 2 weekends in September 6th – 8th and 13th – 15th.  I am delighted to be taking part for the third time this year. I will be at   VENUE 75  in the Brochure..

25,000 brochures have been distributed far and wide, and we are also keen to get them out and about in other London Boroughs.  Its a lovely pocket size A6 full colour brochure that shows all the artists with an individual profile, information on opening times, maps and anything else you may need to know about the event. If you want a brochure or if you can take a batch to your work place, school, community group, sports team etc. just give me a shout. The more we get out the better. We have 200 artists displaying their artwork in 80 locations so there is bound to be something for everyone to enjoy.

There is also a great website that has all the above info for visitors and you can download a brochure. Have a look and start planning your route, make sure that you include Venue 75 please! www.ealingbeat.org.uk

I have a new selection of mosaics to show this year along with my new range of coasters. Various pieces will be for sale, you can commission a piece of mosaic art or put your name down for a Beginners’ Mosaic Lesson.

I will also have a new “exhibition piece” on display which always prompts lots of questions on what materials and techniques I use. Part of the fun of BEAT is the visitors can talk to the artists about their work and see the environment they work in. I really enjoy that part as well as I love chatting about mosaics to anyone and everyone!

So put the date in your diary and come along and have a great few days out in our lovely Borough of Ealing, viewing some great artwork.

Fused Glass – Part 2

So it was with great excitement and anticipation that I set off again for the Piccadilly Line to Stoke Newington to collect my fused glass pieces I had made the previous week at my beginners’ lesson at Rainbow Glass Studios. This time we made it a family activity as Alan and I arranged to meet our nephew Tom who lives near there. We headed to the lovely Clissold Park again and had coffee and cake with Tom in the café before heading off down the High Street to the studio.

Eleanor (my brilliant teacher) handed over all my ‘treasures’ and was happy to answer the  long list of questions I had thought of since my lesson.  Tom came into the studio with me. He is the creative nephew in the family and does fantastic animation and illustrative drawings (you can find him on Instagram – Tom Henneberry). He was fascinated by all the lovely glass, cutting equipment and kilns. While I ‘oooh’d and aahhh’d’ over my pieces Tom and Eleanor were chatting and realised they were neighbours!

 

We then went for a nice lunch in the garden at The Clarence pub before buying our supper at the butchers. We then parted company with Tom and set off home so I could play with all my lovely spoils.

 

I can see great potential for using all sorts of fused glass shapes in my mosaics in future. I have a feeling it may become expensive!!!

 

 

 

Fused Glass – Part 1.

On Saturday I did a one day beginners’ Fused Glass course with Rainbow Glass Studios in Stoke Newington, north London. Wanting to make sure I got there in plenty of time I set off at crack of dawn to get the Piccadily Line to the other side of London. My reward was breakfast in the Clissold House Cafe in beautiful Clissold Park.

My tutor  Eleanor Watson gave me a warm welcome and told me that due to unforeseen circumstances I was the only student that day so I got a private 1-2-1  lesson!

Eleanor started with a thorough explanation of tools and equipment, different types of glass and then moved on to the  actual scary bit – cutting. As the position to your workbench is very important I was given a box to stand on so I could reach!!

Eleanor repeatedly demonstrated cutting and then it was my turn. Of course it is a totally different technique to cutting mosaic tiles so I had to forget mosaic and learn to understand how glass works. The hardest part for me was holding the cutter correctly. Once I got it, off I went – not at all scared of the beautiful sheets of glass I was slicing into.

mosaic with pre made fish, bubbles and boat.

After lunch we got stuck into making actual (sort of) recognisable pieces.  The reason I want to learn fused glass is to be able to make small shapes to go into my mosaics e.g. fish, boats etc. I have used bought pre-made pieces before to good effect so felt it was time to expand with my own designs.

With Eleanor’s help, guidance and encouragement I realised the potential of all sorts of pieces that I can make which opens up a whole new style and range of mosaics to me. We experimented with small fish, bubbles, leaves and then I tried larger pieces that can go into trees and lastly some sea/wave strips that can form the base of my seascape mosaics. There are so many different things to learn and I tried to utilise as many as possible, while all the time scribbling notes.

Eleanor is a brilliant teacher and I had a great day creating. She is professional, informative, patient and extremely generous with her knowledge, experience and materials.

At the end of the day we loaded a mixed ability and selection of goodies into the huge kiln you can see in the picture of myself with Eleanor. They will be ‘fired’ over a 24 hour period.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed my day and would highly recommend a course with Eleanor at Rainbow Glass Studios.  I came away with a feeling of exhaustion, satisfaction and a whole new vocabulary: Bullseye, running pliers, tack-fuse. I have to wait to go back and collect my treasures so all that was left was a slow walk through Clissold Park again before getting on the Picadilly Line to go home to the other side of London.

Coming soon:  Fused Glass – Park 2.

 

 

A NEW RANGE

Well I am delighted that summer has eventually arrived and the sun is shining. I love being in the garden and eating out in the evening. I hope you are all enjoying it as well.

I am delighted to report a new range – COASTERS featuring my mosaics. 

BIRDS & FLOWERS,     THE GREEN MAN,      HOPPER THE FROG

MATT TREE,  GRAPES & IVY,   GREEK FISHING BOAT,  SHINY TREE

They are 9cms diameter. I sell them at £4 each or 4 for £15 plus postage. Perfect for your afternoon cuppa or a glass of wine in the garden.

They were made for me by the lovely people at Creative Forge. This small Northumberland merchandising company was formed by Zoe, Steven and fellow artists who were keen to promote their work with quality products. Most companies insist you buy in bulk but for individual artists like ourselves who want to try out a range, it is too restrictive. What is the solution – create your own company, which is just what they have done!  Check them out, they are really helpful, friendly and create lovely products in small (or large) quantities.

If you want to order any of my  coasters just CONTACT ME 

 

BEAT – Ealing Art Trail continues to take shape and the Committee has been working hard. As you read this 25,000 brochures are being printed. They will land on my doorstep soon and then the fun will start distributing them all with the team.  BEAT Ealing Art Trail takes place on 6-8th and 13-15th September this year. We have 200 artists in over 78 venues so this 4th BEAT is shaping up very well. Do let me know if you have an outlet for brochures – an Art of Craft Group, Book Club, Yoga/Pilates Group – anyone that may be interested in coming along and seeing the amazing talent that Ealing artists will be putting on display. BEAT provides a rare opportunity to talk to the artists about their work, technique and inspiration. There is also an opportunity to buy an original piece of artwork as well as exploring the beautiful Borough of Ealing.

Enjoy the summer  now it has arrived – maybe with a nice glass of Pimm’s  resting on a Mosaic Coaster!

 

 

 

 

 

BEAT 2019

 

BEAT – Borough of Ealing Art Trail will take place on 6-8th and 13-15th of September this year. Put the date in your diaries.

BEATING the drum for BEAT

This is the 4th year of BEAT and it seems to grow bigger and better each time. We have 200 artists displaying their work in 80 venues throughout the Borough of Ealing. I will be taking part again and am also on the Committee with the self appointed title of “Brochure Queen” as I will be co-ordinating the distribution of 25,000 brochures with a great team of Distributors. The brochures should be ready in July so if you have any good outlets for them, do let me know.

I have really enjoyed my last 2 BEAT exhibitions. I was delighted to receive more visitors in my second year but am being realistically hopefully about numbers this time.

I like to display a ‘demonstration piece’ each time. This is a great way of showing a work in progress and as such people feel they can ask questions (they can anyway but the demo piece seems to prompt them). I then display the completed piece the following year. The first year it was my Tree of Life and last year it was a giant mirror.

I am also thinking of having some ‘themed’ areas this year and am  working out the logistics – watch this space.

 

 

My Mailing List

I have created a Mail Chimp Mailing List.

Opening New Doors of Communication.

The reason for this Mailing List is that so many people ask me when I am going to do the next Beginner’s Mosaic Lesson, or what date is BEAT this year, or how do I commission a piece of work. It seemed to make sense to create a Mailing List so that I can easily keep people up to date with what is going on, quickly and briefly as and when I have something I want to get out there en masse.

I will admit that I have struggled a bit with Mail Chimp but I think I am getting there. The best way to prove it works is to create and start using it, which is what I intend to do as soon as you sign up!

I promise I won’t bombard you with emails and you can always unsubscribe at any point.

If you would like to be added to my Mailing List please complete the Contact Form below. Rufus and I look forward to welcoming you.

Rosanna and Rufus

Quarterly Update

I can’t believe we are at the end of March.  I love this time of year, the garden is waking up, the sun is shining and the days are getting longer and lighter. These past 3 months have been busier than usual for me, here is my update.

NEW YEAR – NEW GALLERY

I was delighted when The Links Art Gallery in Whitley Bay invited me to display my mosaic art in their lovely gallery/café. This is a very popular spot for walkers, art lovers and tourists, right by the beach and is always packed with people. I have decided that all my work with them will have a ‘sea’ theme. 

COMMISSIONS

Like buses, 3 commissions came along at once! The fish are now happily swimming along in Rita and Derek’s kitchen in Norwich. The Daddy and Baby fish are replicas of Mummy (middle) fish which is made of ceramic. It was quite hard to match mosaic to ceramic  but I am really pleased with the colour match and the result.

 

Sunflower

Ann asked me to make this outdoor sunflower which she wanted to give as a present for her friend Lesley to hang in her newly restored garden in Cheltenham. As it was for outside I used Mexican and Irridescent tiles with slithers of red glass and mirror, which will give it a lovely shine when the light catches it.

Tony and Wendy asked me to make a Nuthatch for a friend’s birthday. I decided to give them a choice of style. The first bird is made of glass with a ceramic tile background and the other had a ceramic tile bird with a glass background – same mosaic totally different result. Can’t show you the pictures until the client has received it so I’ll post later on.

MOSAIC LESSONS

Following a large response at the BEAT Ealing Art Trail last year, I have been giving a lot of Beginners’ Mosaic Lessons – since then I have delivered to 24 people! I like to work with small groups of 3/4 so they get a lot of 1-2-1 attention. Everyone has taken away a lovely first mosaic, all totally different.  I now offer a Follow Up Session for people that would like to make another piece but either don’t have the space at home or don’t want to make a big financial outlay for materials and tiles.  If you know anyone who may like a Beginners’ Mosaic Lesson please CONTACT ME and I can send you an Information Sheet.

So, clocks have changed and the days will be longer now so it must be time to get out into the garden to do some digging and get some inspiration for my next batch of work.

I always like to hear from you so if you enjoy this Blog, my pictures or want to ask a question do LEAVE ME A REPLY below.

 

The Grape and Ivy Table Top

 

Original Insert

It is always nice to have a commission. As well as giving me a new project, it usually challenges and stretches me as an artist. So it was a great start to the year when my friends Val and Bruno commissioned me to make them an insert top for their outdoor table.

I’ve known Val since we both joined UIP in 1987 and we have been firm friends ever since enjoying meals, activities, City breaks and ski-ing holidays together with our hubbies. Val and Bruno have always followed my mosaic progress with great interest and they bought one of my earlier mosaics at my first exhibition.

My Sketch

As it was for outside I used Hardie Bakker Board for my base which Alan cut for me, exactly the same shape as the current insert, rather than a clean circle, so that is would fit perfectly . I then drew a rough sketch of the piece, following the original design but enhancing the grapes and leaves in quantity, size, shape and colour.

I started with the bunches of  grapes using round glass discs. I then made the leaves with glass tesserae and Mexican tiles, which are lovely to cut and shape. Once they were all in place I joined them all together with the ‘vines’ which I used making long strips of brown glass. This meant I could cut really thin pieces to make ‘tendrils’. I then moved on to the background which, as always, takes ages. In fact it took longer to do than all of the elements of the picture put together.

When the background was finally finished (whew) I asked Val if she would like to see a picture of it. At this stage if there was something she was not happy with, I could amend it but once it is grouted that is it – set in stone, or rather cement! I was delighted when Val said she would trust my judgement and wait until it was finished. I much prefer this then client can have the WOW factor as they see the completed piece for the first time (hopefully).

Val and Bruno are delighted with the completed mosaics, and so am I. Although I am normally very critical of my work this is definitely a favourite. The picture, style and colours are all so very ME and I really loved making the piece for them.

Grape and Ivy Table Top

I am looking forward to seeing the piece in situ in their table and I hope they will enjoy lots of evenings sitting around it, with a nice glass of something white and chilled!

What the Client said: “We love our new table top, definitely better than the original. We are so looking forward to putting it in situ and the red wine is ready to be uncorked.
Thank you Rosanna, it exceeds expectations as always.”
Bruno and Val

 

 

Mosaic Surgery / Q&A Session

 

Last week I held a Mosaic Surgery / Q&A Session for 2 hours on Monday morning. I promoted the event through my Facebook Page and also 5 other Facebook Groups I belong to.  My aim was for people to send a question via my FB page or they could Message me.  It seems that people are a bit ‘shy’ to post their questions on FBook but I had a lot of Messages with a whole range of queries and requests for advice.

Rather than list them all, I have amalgamated a few and show my responses below.

THE TRADITIONAL ART OF MOSAIC MAKING is one of the most ancient art forms used by the ancient Greeks, the Romans and several other cultures throughout the centuries. Like any great art, there has been ‘phases’ and periods’ throughout history from the traditional Roman style, the geometric Greek patterns, Byzantine and Gaudi to name a few. Mosaic art is still relevant today and again, takes many forms. The end result is totally unique and very different to any other art form.

VERSATILITY: Mosaics are incredibly versatile. They can be used in both indoor and outdoor spaces. Extremely durable and hardwearing they last for ages. They can be decorative, practical, tiny, huge, delicate and robust, 2D or 3D. Traditional, contemporary, pictorial, abstract – they can be anything your imagination can think of.

KEEP IT SIMPLE: The first mosaic I ever made was a small coaster and it took me all afternoon. I still have it, my lucky mosaic that comes with me on exhibitions and demonstrations.

Whenever I give a Beginner’s Mosaic Lessons I usually ask people to send me an idea of what they would like to mosaic. To be honest, most people over estimate what they will be able to achieve in a first lesson. One person bought along a picture of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers. Another saw my ‘Robin’ mosaic and asked if they would be able to make that in an afternoon – I said ‘I hope not, it’s took me ages to make and I found it very challenging’!! So keep it simple, a coaster, trivet or small picture is a good starting point. You can then progress to pots, mirrors and door numbers.

INDOOR or OUTDOOR? Mosaics are great for indoor or outdoor spaces and look lovely in a garden setting. I have a lovely sun/moon on my shed. Make sure you decide in advance where it is going to go as you may need to use different materials and adhesives for outside display. Mosaic pots overflowing with herbs look delightful and just imagine a lizard creeping through your rockery, or a sunshine stepping stone.

MATERIALS:
Different mosaic artists prefer using different types of materials – large bathroom tiles, crockery and china etc. I personally prefer small ‘mosaic tiles’ that are called ‘tesserae’. They are usually 2cm square and are either made of glass which come in a huge range of vibrant colours, or ceramic in beautiful muted shades like sage greens, mustard, soft pinks.

If you have any questions – please do contact me and I will try and answer.

 

Pictorial Review of 2018

HELLO all my BLOG FOLLOWERS and a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR to you all. I hope it is Happy, Healthy, Productive, Creative and Fun.

I always start the new year by looking back on my favourite images from the past year so here goes……