Friday, 28 May 2010

A Homage to Tingatinga Painting and a Craft Book

The time flies and I keep promising to myself to update the blog. A great deal of the time is going into gardening and sometomes it feels as if my other life is suspended.  Now, at the moment I am still engaged in the BIG present making and cannot show any of that as the receiving person obviously should be the first to see. So I think I need to blog about some older projects.
The picture above hangs on my living room wall together with this one:

They are painted by Tanzanian Tingatinga artists Mbwana and Hassani from the Tingatinga artist co-operative in Dar es Salaam.  I get immense joy of seeing them daily and appreciate them more than words can tell.

Around the Easter we went visiting down South and my sister-in-law S took me to a QD store where they had wooden boxes for craft use for sale. These ones were £2 each!

I really wanted a couple of them to put little items in and hang in my living room. I have painted one of them and the second one is work in process. I chose the theme of those two Tingatinga paintings by making "polka dots" on black background and painting the insides with bright orange. Painting outlines of the figures is typical of Tingatinga, so I decided to paint the self edges with white to imitate this.

Craft books are a tricky topic. As I don't want to own more than what I use and find inspirational, I am quite picky. I find magazines often dissapointing and rather keep my money to invest in a good book. This book came with the mail today.

I ordered the Green Crafts for Children by Emma Hardy after reading about it in couple of other blogs. It looks really useful and is pretty to look at. Some of the entries are old favourites, but it does not hurt to have a reminder of them. Older children can also do many of the activities by themselves. The pictures and the layout are really yummy and clear at the same time.
 I like the fact that the book's point of departure is using natural or recycled materials with a few widely available and cheap bought ones. Here are a couple of pages from the book for you to admire.

Go and borrow it from the library to see whether you want to own it. I think it will be used here in the hut and also when I am supply teaching and lacking something to do.

Have a lovely weekend and tell me if you have come across any lovely and useful craft books lately.

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