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Friday, 20 April 2012

Castle Hamster Mk 2 is painted!

Today the first coat of pink paint went on, and I was helped by Moira and Helen. Here Helen's little Theo applies his very first brushstroke, making him the youngest castle-painter in Scotland ...

... or do you know different?

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Castle Hamster Mk 2 is built!

At least 3 layers of paper mache (or more ... it felt like more) and the castle is ready for painting and decorating later this week.

I must say it will be nice to clear all the paste and newspapers away and get the table back.

SOMEONE is going to miss the raw materials though ...

... The Woozle!

There's nothing warmer and more comfortable as far as HE's concerned. Plus you get to do the crossword.


Thursday, 12 April 2012

Stunning Estonian cats!

A few weeks ago I met Katrin Eagle at the Lochwinnoch Arts Festival, and fell in love with her work. 

Katrin is a Scottish based artist of Estonian origin, and her work covers a broad range of media and subject matter. 

Currently she's working  in wool felt, often using her paintings of Scottish landscape as an inspiration for pictures. 

The cat picture I bought is one of a range of cats based on Estonian embroidery designs, and now I've framed it and hung it below my New Mexican 'sea-urchin/coconut-shell' masks.

I bought the masks ten years ago in Santa Fe and the friend I was with pointed out that I could hardly have chosen a more fragile souvenir. I went home with a suitcase packed full of bubble-wrap, and was amazed that all the masks arrived intact.

I think Katrin's cat looks really good with my masks, and I'm VERY impressed - and tempted by - her website!

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Easter Chick???

Here I am with my Easter present - an Eagle Owl from World of Wings from Luggiebank, near Cumbernauld. (The photograph, which was taken by Caroline Ross yesterday, was the Easter present, I hasten to add ... and a lot less fattening than a chocolate egg it was too).

I see from the World of Wings brochure that they also have parrots, so I might be contacting them again when There's a Parrot in my Backpack! comes out ...

Thursday, 5 April 2012

New Plans for Castle Hamster!!

This photograph was taken on Saturday 17 March, when I did an author talk in the local library here in Lochwinnoch as part of the Lochwinnoch Arts Festival.

It was taken by Lesley Adam of Adam Image Craft and the reason I'm posting it now is (apart from it being a BRILLIANT photo!) because this is one of the last times Castle Hamster will appear in its present incarnation ...

Yes, sadly, I've been finding the Castle Hamster set-up a bit of a pain to carry around and so, reluctantly, I've decided to build Castle Hamster Mark 2. And Castle Hamster Mark 2 is specially designed to FIT INSIDE MY SUITCASE. (which, of course, if I'd had any sense, I'd have made sure Castle Hamster Mark 1 did!).

So, here are the first pictures of Castle Hamster 2:

This one shows The Woozle checking out the initial shape to make sure it really WILL fit inside the suitcase; and with its lower walls and DETACHABLE TURRETS (a 'must', surely, for all itinerant castles) it DOES!

However, although Castle Hamster Mark 2 is altogether smaller and sleeker than its predecessor, it actually does have more floor space. It also has a smoother floor and bigger doorways, so the Toffee 'n Caramel Game should be even more exciting.

And this one shows it as it is today.

Two layers of paper mache have been laboriously applied, and when the fourth turret is covered the castle will be ready for its first coat of pink paint.

And when it IS finished, great plans are afoot - so watch this space!!!!