I am taking an on-line class (my first!) taught by the wonderfully talented Carla Sonheim. While working on her project yesterday I decided to “kill two birds with one stone” or “two arts with one gelli pad!” The piece above was done using her techniques and my brand-spanking new Gelli Printing Plate! You can see her class info here:
It started yesterday, but anyone can sign up at any time and work at their own pace. This works great for me, because I’m busy, busy, busy. I still have dependants who depend on me! Young teenagers, who often don’t want to hear my opinions but still needy when it comes to rides, money and food!
Page 158 of Great Expectations finds Pip going for a late evening walk with Herbert Pocket then to see a Theatre show at half-price. This is still Pip’s first day in London, Saturday. In the morning they go to church at Westminster Abbey and then another walk in The Parks. There are many horses there which remind Pip of his step-father Joe, who helped raise him. (Joe is a blacksmith and often makes horseshoes.) He starts to feel sad about all he’s left behind, the country, Joe, Biddy too, I’m sure. It all seems so far away, even though he was there just this morning, saying his good-byes.
Monday morning arrives and Herbert starts his work-week. I think Pip is going to tag along.
My Gelli print is of Westminster Abbey. I had fun using this new mono-printing technique for the first time on this piece. I used acrylic paint. If you are interested in learning about it, sign up for Carla’s class!
Herbert talks about his career to Pip. He says he insures ships. And has grand plans of trading in the East and West Indies (silks, spices, dyes, drugs, precious woods, sugar, tobacco, rum and elephant tusks)! This all sounds very exciting, exotic and profitable to Pip. But, Pip then finds out that Herbert is not actually doing any of this – trading or insuring. He works in a counting-house and informs Pip that it pays nothing. But, he is “always looking about” for an opportunity to pursue these dreams.
Happy Early Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!
Miss Havisham (not Estella) is the one who lost her mother, young,
and grew up spoiled by her brewer father. (I got confused and thought
Herbert was talking about Estella. Easy to do with Dickens!) Miss
Havisham’s father dies, leaving her a wealthy heiress with a wasteful
and extravagant half-brother.
As Herbert tells Pip all about Miss Havisham, he throws in bits of
advice on how one holds his silverware, wine-tumbler and dinner-
napkin properly. Pip is not insulted ain the least and they both
giggle at Pip’s ignorance in these things.
Herbert continues: Twenty-five years ago young Miss Havisham meets
and falls in love with a man.
Pip is hanging out at the run-down Barnard’s Inn waiting on young Mr Pocket. Pocket finally arrives carrying a sack under each arm and a basket of strawberries. He has been to the Covent Garden Market shopping for some goodies to make Pip feel more at home.
They seem to get along well, laughing while struggling to get the door open. I think they will become fast friends!
I wondered if Covent Garden Market still exists in London after all these years. This is what I found out:
Yes, it does! It is a district in London that currently contains some trendy shops, restaurants, markets and theatres on the eastern fringes of the West End. It was once a small open-air fruit and vegetable market.
It fell into disrepute (brothels and taverns took over) in the 1700s, becoming a well-known red light district of London! The Parliament intervened and by the early 1900s it became a nice place to shop, see a show and gather with friends and family, as it is today.
At one point, a massive, beautiful arched ceiling with green beams was built over a large portion, creating an indoor market and shopping mall. I did this sketch based on several pictures I found. I got out my ruler and attempted some perspective! Haven’t done that in a very long time. And probably won’t do it again for a long time!
If any of you have been to Covent Garden Market, let me know what you thought of it. I would love to go to London someday and check it out for myself!
Page 148. Only 264 pages to go!
Pip and Wemmick arrive at Barnard’s Inn where young Mr. Pocket lives. Pip is NOT impressed. (He had high expectations of London – hoping it all to be more grand than his simple village back home.)
He describes the Inn as the “dingiest collection of shabby buildings ever squeezed together in a rank corner as a club for Tom-cats.” Love this description! Sounds pretty bleak – dismal trees, dismal sparrows, dismal cats and houses.
Very colorful language from Dickens on this page 148: “dry-rot and wet-rot” and “rot of rat and mouse and bug”. They find Mr. Pocket’s room up some creaky stairs and Wemmick makes to leave Pip. They shake hands good-bye. Pip will be seeing Wemmick much more, especially since Wemmick is the keeper of his funds.
I created this acrylic painting/collage incorporating some of the dismal, bleak colors used to represent Pip’s first impression of London. Hope you like it! I will soon get back to my sculpture heads and finish those up. So glad Spring is almost here. I’m tired of the bleak, dismal winter weather!
Jaggers eats a quick lunch, standing and drinking sherry from a flask. (He’s a very busy man, too busy to sit for lunch!) He informs Pip of his sleeping arrangements for the coming week: a few days with young Pocket, then on to his father’s place. (Young Pocket’s father or Jaggers’s father? This is not clear.)
Pip is also told what his allowance will be (VERY generous – lucky Pip!) and where to shop. While walking with Wemmick (Jaggers’s clerk) to his first place to hang out, Pip sizes up Wemmick: he’s a dry, short man with a wooden square face, probably a bachelor, judging by his frayed clothing.
I’m glad to be back to posting, from my short Spring Break. I plan to get back to posting regularly, despite the fact that I HAVE to get started on my taxes! argh
I took a wonderful mini-workshop today at The Encaustic Center in Richardson Texas (just north of Dallas) taught by Deanna Wood. So much fun! I have never painted with wax before and let me say, it’s addictive! I’ll have to go again soon. Here is a link to their website in case you are interested in learning about it too:
I worked on four pieces during the workshop. When I got home, I adapted one to fit my page for the day.
Page 144: Dickens implies that Jaggers pays people (or bribes them maybe) to lie on the stand for his clients. He has a “helper” named Mike who has found a drunken man with a black eye. Mike claims that this fellow will say whatever Jaggers wants him to say. Jaggers gets upset at Mike for saying this out loud! This drunken fellow, dressed up as a pastrycook, will claim that he was with the “accused person” on the night in question, all night. Jaggers is not pleased at all with this “witness” that Mike has found and he sends them away.
Here are a few pictures from The Encaustic Center workshop and link to Deanna’s website also:
More encounters between Jaggers and the people in the street, people he is representing in court, I believe. But not sure– he’s really rude to them, asking if they’ve paid Wemmick yet, threatening to drop their cases if they say a single word and shoving them off. Really!
Maybe these are people who are truly guilty of some crime (of owing money, behind on their debt, stealing, etc) and Jaggers knows he can treat them poorly, like scum.
Jaggers leads Pip back to his office and they are met with the clerk and a man named Mike, dressed in velveteen and a fur cap.
I’m having Christmas in February! I had ordered some supplies from Blicks online (some Neocolor II crayons and Le Pen fine point markers) and they arrived yesterday afternoon! Not only that, but I got a tip that a local discount store had bunches of acrylic paint on sale for 99¢! I bought 20 tubes! Bonus! So it was a good day for art supplies and me. I tried out my new Le Pen markers on this sketch of Pip newly arrived in London.
It’s a hot summer day in London: “dust and grit lay thick on everything.” Pip can’t take the head casts staring at him any longer (in Jaggers’s office) so he goes out for a walk. He ends up by St Paul’s and Newgate Prison. Quite a number of people are milling about mostly smelling of spirits and beer. Pip takes this to mean that court is in session.
A drunk minister of justice gives Pip an interesting tour of the gallows yard, where the convicted are publicly whipped and hanged, and the Debtor’s Door. Poor Pip gets a sickening feeling about London. He gives the guy a shilling just to get rid of him and end the tour!
He then walks to a different section of town and discovers that other people are also waiting for Jaggers.
I am still working on the two head casts and will add more layers of plaster today. In the meantime, I did this painting collage of Pip’s profile. I think it came out nicely. I’ll post pics of the head casts soon!