Monday, 8 December 2008

Branching Out.

As you may know, I wear two 'hats'; as well as making and writing about art, I spent many years working with individuals and groups in a business setting. So, not being one to waste anything, I've decided to combine those two skill sets, and offer a new service; Quilt Creative Coaching.

I remember what it was like starting out as an art quilter. It was scary. At that time, there were very few books to consult, and finding another art quilter was...well...difficult, except on the internet. Which was why I started alternativequiltlist, on yahoogroups, so that I could communicate with other art quilters, and they with me and each other. That group is still going, albeit in a quiet, reduced form, but I wanted to offer the opportunity to work with me in a more direct way. I love helping people to find their own ways of working, their own process, at a rate and pace that suits them. So, I am offering to coach art quilters, at whatever stage of their development, from 'I'd love to, but I'm scared' to 'I've been doing this for years, now'. I offer a range of options that will, I hope, meet everyone's needs, but which will be tailored specifically to each individual. I don't want a lot of people working like me; I want lots of people working like themselves!

And whilst the service is aimed at art quilters, I can, in fact, coach artists from any discipline. Creativity is creativity, no matter how it is expressed!

The information is given below. If you would like to talk to me about it, please email me. I will phone you to discuss it. And yes, I do cover the US, Europe and Australia! If you would like a bit of a helping hand with your own development as an artist, I would be happy to work with you.

Why Coaching?
Most people who are interested in working with a coach, want to do so because they feel ‘stuck’ or ‘blocked’ in some area of their life. Quilt Creative Coaching is an opportunity to identify the issues that you feel are holding you back, and to create a plan to deal with those issues. It’s ideal for everyone who has ever said, I’d love to make art quilts (or art anything…), but I don’t know where to start. It helps you to assess who you are, where you are, and what you really, really want. Of course, it does involve a bit of hard work; I can help you to create a plan, and help you to stay on track, but I can’t actually do the work for you. Your investment in yourself, though, will have a number of dividends; you will have a clear focus and intention towards your work, as well as a plan of action for carrying it out.
What Would We Be Considering?
What is it we need when we start creative work? I have identified six main headings.

Ideas. No artist can be without them! No ideas = No art.

Materials. Same here, really. Though you might be surprised by what you really need, and what is simply wishful thinking or pure creative lust!

Techniques. How you do what you do.

Space. You do need a place to work. And in an ideal world, it would be a dedicated space. But it’s possible to work in any situation, if you really want to.

Time. I’m sure we all know about that one!

Support. Everything is much easier when the people around you cooperate and support you in what you are doing.

We would use these key areas to help us to focus on what it is you need to change in order to clear the decks for creative work.

How Does Coaching Work?

Quilt Creative Coaching is an opportunity to work one to one or in a very small, closed group with Marion Barnett (or Artmixter, as she is known in the blog world), an experienced art quilter, and a specialist in Self Development techniques. She will work with you, both over the phone and by email, or in person, to establish what is blocking your creativity, and how you can work with those issues to remove them, or at least to make them manageable. Each session lasts approximately one hour, unless otherwise stated, and will focus solely on you.
You can choose between a number of options. Where it is required, the diagnostic session is free of charge, and there is no obligation to continue with the coaching past that session. If you continue with one to one coaching, then you are also entitled to unlimited email contact to the end of your final session. Other services may include a review session, as stated below.

A one off diagnostic session, that helps you to focus on what the issues are across all six of the key areas described above, plus a planning session and unlimited email contact to the end of the final session. Duration, approx two weeks. Cost : £50

A diagnostic session, plus three planning sessions and unlimited email contact to the end of the final session. Duration, approx one month. Cost: £150 (£130 if paid in advance).

A diagnostic session, plus a session to look at each of the key areas, and a final session to review your success, and unlimited email contact to the end of the final session. Duration: approx two months. Cost: £350 (£300 if paid in advance).

A one off review session. This would last two hours, and would involve us looking together at your work, discussing its development and exploring potential new avenues for you to consider. This is best done face to face, but could be done by telephone, providing you have very good images of your work. A review session by telephone would be scheduled for the following week. Duration : Two weeks. Cost : £60

A play day. This would entitle you to a full day to explore techniques and materials that perhaps you have been avoiding, or wish to explore in a more extensive fashion. Everything in my fully stocked studio is at your disposal, and I will support you throughout the day. Lunch is provided. You could choose to bring along two friends, if you wish, and split the cost between you. There is no review or email contact offered with this service. Duration : One day. Cost : £120

A theme day. Start from scratch and build your own process for working with a particular theme. Everything in my fully stocked studio is at your disposal, and I will support you throughout the day. Lunch is provided. You could choose to bring along two friends, if you wish, and split the cost between you. There is no review or email contact offered with this service. Duration : One day. Cost : £120

About Me:
I'm Marion, a Scottish artist living and working in a tiny village in Norfolk. I have a portfolio of skills and experience, which I offer to share with you in a number of different ways. I make and sell art of all descriptions,with a current focus on mixed media and textile art for domestic and commercial interiors.

I offer workshops based in my studio, The Little Green Shed, for up to four people. These are bespoke workshops, but I also offer workshops for larger groups throughout the country by arrangement. I write and self publish instructional books for artists; my first has just been published (Lovely Lutradur with Dijanne Cevaal), and two more are in production. I am also happy to work one to one with artists on the theme of their choice, whether technique or process focussed.

I also offer coaching services to small businesses, based on my experience as a Human Resources and Self Development Manager. I believe that we are all creative, and that we are all capable of self expression, in any part of our lives, and my coaching is tailored to help you find the answers you already have, but aren't aware of yet.

If you would like to discuss any of these coaching services, please email me at I look forward to hearing from you...lets talk!

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Just For Fun!

It's not often you get the better of a cat. So when Tracy Borders asked me if I could make a poster featuring her cat, above, I thought, oh, yeah... And here it is. The poster is made from lutradur. Isn't he a beautiful puddy? If you have a cat, other pet or even a relative you'd like to feature in one of my posters, check them out here

And if you decide before the end of November, you'll get 20% off the cost of a custom poster in the newly extended VAST sale, which I'm involved in. That's $12 instead of $15... even a cat might be impressed by that offer!

Saturday, 8 November 2008

If You Have Had Your Eye...

on something in my Etsy shops, then now might be the right time to buy. I'm taking part in the VAST (Visual Arts Etsy) Holiday Sale, and twenty per cent will be taken off the price of anything you choose in either artmixter at etsy or artmixter's purelypainting at etsy. However, that does exclude Lovely Lutradur CDs, which you can find for sale here.

As you might know, my Artmixter shop on Etsy has all sorts of artworks in it, mainly textiles, mixed media and some hand bound small journals. Purely Painting, though, is just what it says... it has paintings of all descriptions. So, as I say, now would be the time to buy... why not go for a wee browse... you know you want to! If you do decide to buy something, contact me first, and I'll adjust the price for you.

The images show a piece from both shops, each one of my personal favourites. The painting is 'Matryoshka', and is oil on canvas. The textile is Curvilinear, a very recent lutradur piece. I hope you enjoy looking at them.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Summing It All Up.

I've never duplicated a post between my Blogger blogs before, but I feel so pleased with this one, I'm going to break my own rule. I promise I won't do it again!

I've been asked to run a short workshop on writing profiles, for one of my local WIRE groups. If you're a self employed woman in the UK, check out WIRE by clicking on the link in the last sentence. I designed the workshop, but thought I had perhaps better add my own profile, first, to see that the process actually worked.

It's not easy, telling the world exactly what you do in a few short sentences. Here's my profile, see what you think.

I'm Marion, a Scottish artist living and working in a tiny village in Norfolk. I have a portfolio of skills and experience, which I offer to share with you in a number of different ways.
I make and sell art of all descriptions,with a current focus on mixed media and textile art for domestic and commercial interiors. Start at my blog,, to get a feel for what I offer, and find a list of my online outlets on the right hand side column of the blog.

I offer workshops based in my studio, The Little Green Shed, for up to four people. These are bespoke workshops, but I also offer workshops for larger groups throughout the country by arrangement. I write and self publish instructional books for artists; my first has just been published (Lovely Lutradur with Dijanne Cevaal), and two more are in production. I am also happy to work one to one with artists on the theme of their choice, whether technique or process focussed.

I also offer coaching services to small businesses, based on my experience as an HR and Self Development Manager. I believe that we are all creative, and that we are all capable of self expression, in any part of our lives, and my coaching is tailored to help you find the answers you already have, but aren't aware of yet.

So there you go; me in a nutshell. You might be surprised by some of the things I do... sometimes I surprise even me! I think it reflects the different things I have done over the years, combining all my knowledge and experience in new ways. So, why now? I have, over the past few months, put Incapacity behind me, and become a fully fledged Small Business. I will, of course, try not to drone on about that here, but I did want to acknowledge a change in direction, somewhat. The demon depression is of course still lurking, but he behaves really well these days. Change IS possible, no matter how ill you might be. If I can do it, so can anyone else.

If you're interested in these services, please do get in touch, I'd be delighted to talk to you about what I do and how I do it. It costs nothing to ask questions... not the first time, anyway!! The image is my new logo... hope you like it. And wish me luck, won't you?

Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Who Says...

art isn't educational? I was intrigued by a couple of old stamps I was given amongst some ephemera. I liked them a lot, thought they depicted a truly beautiful woman, and made an ACEO with them. Today, I discovered that Katherine Anne Porter was an award winning US writer. I read a lot of US writers, including Willa Cather, one of my favourites, but I hadn't ever come across Ms Porter. Find out about her here

Or, if you'd rather, admire my ACEO, Remembering Katherine, in the picture above, and in my Etsy shop here

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Waxing Lyrical

Hurrah, it's autumn, time to get the encaustics out again... I get too hot in the summer to work with extra heat, ironing is bad enough, the heat of melting wax is just overkill. But now I can see it as an alternative means of heating The Little Green Shed, and enjoy working with it in the relative cool of winter.

I don't often wax particularly lyrical about work, but there's something about this piece, Autumn Wind, that just seems to invite it. For me, the piece evokes the colours of the autumn, their warmth, and the warmth of a beautiful Autumn day. The wax on top, though, is a dark blue, the blue of a chill wind, perhaps the first of the winter winds, reminding us of the chills that are to come.

This piece features wax carving, which shows the beauty of the colours beneath it. See what I mean... I'm waxing lyrical! You can find this piece in my purelypainting etsy shop
if you would like to see more detail shots....and see if you can find the leaf being blown about on that wind...

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Want A Workshop...

for a group of artists? Perhaps I can help you... I offer a wide range of workshops, including those that are described below. And there are more to follow; if you are familiar with my work, you will know that I work in mixed media and paint as well as textile, so I can offer a wide range of technique and process workshops. If you don't see it here, why not email me and ask about it; my email address is in my Blogger profile. I specialise in bespoke workshops.

I love working with groups, but limit the size to twelve at the most. I can teach in French, if you wish, and might even manage to do so in Russian, though it has been a while... And I have basic German, too, which could be brushed up. Are you getting the idea that I love to travel? You should! Hey, I even speak American!!! And as a special offer, book a workshop before March 2009, and mention the blog, and I'll give you a 10% discount on my already reasonable fees!

And watch this space... you could have the chance to come to work in the shed with me... or have some coaching time... contact me for more details if you just can't wait!

Workshop: Getting It Finished : Altered Quilts (1 day or 2 days)
We all have quilts that we have started and abandoned when we can’t ‘get it right’, but which we don’t throw away for any number of reasons. This workshop looks at how best to work with those UFOs; how to diagnose the problems and fix them, turning a problem child into a star! Each participant will bring a piece that they would like to finish, and together, we will identify the issues and come up with a strategy to deal with them, as well as looking at how we can avoid such issues in the future.

Workshop: Lovely Lutradur : Adding Colour Play Day(1 day)
This workshop introduces working with lutradur, and will allow you to try working with all four available weights of lutradur. We will experiment with transfer (disperse) dyes, paints, inks and chalks, separately and in combination, and create a useful set of samples contained within a hand sewn journal.

Workshop: Lovely Lutradur : Working With Transparency
Lutradur’s special feature is transparency. In this workshop, you will learn how to use it to best effect in combination with patterns and prints. Each participant will print a textile base cloth, and then design and make a coloured lutradur piece to cover it, making a unified image from the two layers, a quilt top ready for stitch. The two lutradur workshops may be combined over one weekend.
Workshop: Inspiration Journal (1 or 2 day)
I’m often asked where I get my ideas from, or what I do when I’m stuck. This particular workshop shares a number of techniques for generating ideas for work. Participants will select a theme and create a folded book with lots of different ideas on that theme, making it the starting point for new work, whether textile, mixed media or paper. This is a particularly helpful workshop for anyone who wants to begin to work in series. On the second day, each participant will develop one of the ideas into a cohesive piece of work.

Workshop: Working Intuitively (1 or 2 day)
This workshop lets you consider the process of making work. Often, we do the same thing, over and over again. We start with an idea, make the cloth, or purchase it, assemble the quilt top and then quilt it. This workshop encourages you to abandon that way of working, to mix up the order in which you do things and to combine techniques at different stages in the work.

Workshop: Learning To Dye (1 day)
This is an introduction to dyeing with Procion MX dyes. Participants will learn about the dyes themselves, mix and apply them. We will also try out making some basic patterns, using folded and tied resists. We will also try out overdyeing cloth that we don’t like.

Workshop: Learning to Dye Paint and Print (1 day)
This leads on from the Learning To Dye workshop. We will use thickened dyes to make dye paintings, as well as making mono and block prints.

The dyeing workshops may be combined to make a two day workshop.

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Celebration Time!

It's my wedding anniversary tomorrow, 29 years, but who's counting ? Well, except Robin and I, of course... he deserves a medal for putting up with me for such an inordinate amount of time!

It's also my Etsy anniversary, the Artmixter shop has been in business for a year, so I'm having a sale this weekend. Anything you buy, with the exception of the 'Lovely Lutradur' CD (which can be bought from this blog), will have 20% taken off the original price. Just convo or email me, and I will reserve the item for you and adjust the price. That includes all of the art quilts I have on Etsy at the moment, as well as some of my mixed media work, not to mention the totem dolls and my hand dyed cloth. Tempted? Then come and have a look!

Friday, 22 August 2008

Small Pieces...

occasionally resonate hugely. For me, Evening Star is one such piece. It is an ACEO, so measures only 2.5" by 3.5". But it represents all kinds of things... It makes me think of standing stones in my native Scotland, of the colours in the hills and moorlands there. Of the mysteries attached to the standing stones, their incredible power, whether individuals or groups. Sometimes I miss Scotland, but I can at least make art about it... find it here

Friday, 8 August 2008

Lovely Lutradur

Lovely Lutradur is an E-book, or book on CD, 88 pages long, filled with information on how to colour and use this versatile fabric.



Section 1. Learning about Lutradur

An overview of the material itself

Adding colour to Lutradur

Method for mixing transfer dye from powder


Transferring colour to fabric

Overview: the process in pictures

Section 2. Projects

Cutting Away/Reverse Appliqué



Postcards From Lutradur

Lutradur Through The Printer

Altered Quilts

Section 3. Gallery

Section 4. Troubleshooting

Section 5. Appendices

NB Section 3, The Gallery, is on a separate PDF file for ease of access and printing.

Lovely Lutradur costs:
Australia $25 inclusive of postage
United Kingdom 12 GBP- inclusive of postage
Europe 15 Euros inclusive of postage
USA $24 inclusive of postage

To purchase, click on the Paypal icon below. You will be charged in UK Sterling. Make sure that the address you have on Paypal is up to date, as that is where I'll be sending your CD!

Wednesday, 9 July 2008


is a new piece just listed in the shop It is a lutradur piece, which I stitched into and then added fibres using the embellisher machine, which felts fabrics into each other, as well as creating needlefelt using wool and other fibres. And then it lay about in my studio for ages, as it wasn't quite finished. Recently, however, I've discovered a latent passion for fuschia; I've always loved the plants, but not been so fond of the colour. However, I discovered it mixes wonderful strong orange colours when I bought a tube of acrylic paint that was on sale (I'm forever buying cheap paint...), and fished the solitary reel of fuschia thread out of my thread storage box. And it added the final connections the piece needed. Voila!

Tuesday, 10 June 2008


I've been making a lot of small work, recently, and though I would list a larger painting, for a change. Borderline is an original abstract oil painting, measuring 23.5" square. In some ways, it could be called an inner landscape. It was inspired by a Joni Mitchell song of the same name; 'Out on some border line, Some mark of in between, I lay down frozen in time, And woke up vanishing'. It is a beautiful song; I'm a real Joni Mitchell fan! I rarely make work inspired by music, but I love this particular song, and hope that the piece reflects it in some way. This painting is bright, strong, and features impasto, or textured see what I mean, check out the closeups here

Borderline, along with other oil paintings, can be found in my purelypainting etsy shop

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Here Be Dragons!

Well, okay, one dragon, but he's a biggie! Dragons are legendary for having treasure hoards, and this blue dragon is eyeing up a beautiful piece of glass made by my friend and fellow Etsy artist Chauncey; I talked about her on the other blog here. She makes wonderful glass jewellery, and very kindly sent me a couple of extra pieces with the larger one I talked about on the other blog. One of them just seemed to be perfect for this particular piece, and it finishes it off wonderfully, I think.

I'm entranced by glass, and have always wanted to work with it in my work. And now it's happening... isn't that wonderful! I'll be using other pieces in future works. Right now, though, like a dragon, I'm guarding my hoard against invaders...except for this piece, of course, it's in the artmixter shop right here (it's worth checking it out just for the closeups of the dragon and the glass!)

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Hand Of Friendship

has been kicking around here for a while, a small art quilt, but I decided to list it on Etsy today. It was made for a challenge, but didn't get as far as the actual exhibit, I think I was having a bad patch, and when that happens, everything stops.

I've made a number of pieces using hands. For me they are the ultimate symbol of creativity. This particular piece, though, reflects all the different gifts that our friends bring us; sympathy, love, encouragement, care, help, comfort, understanding, joy, enthusiasm and companionship. And that, of course, is just the tip of a very large iceberg.

I am fortunate enough to have a lot of friends; this piece is dedicated to them. All of them. Those I have met, personally, and my virtual friends. All of them, very special people.

Sunday, 13 April 2008

When In Doubt...

try something new. I had intended to make greetings cards before now, but never got round to it. But on a bad day, it's always a good thing to try something new, so out came the card blanks and these cards were created. Both feature a fragment of original painting (acrylic on acrylic paper), and each is unique. Sometimes it's impossible to find just the right card, especially for a man; I think these work really well (she said, modest as ever). To be found in my Purely Painting etsy shop. Guid gear, sma' buik, my granny used to say (great things come in small packages, for those of us not conversant with Scots). Hopefully, that's what I've achieved here. And I had some fun into the bargain! What more could you hope for?

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Signs Of The Zodiac

is the theme of a challenge that is currently running on Etsy amongst a group of ACEO artists. You can find our conversations here, if you're interested. I'm not sure quite how the conversation turned to star signs, but suddenly a challenge was born.

If you haven't already guessed, I'm a Gemini (talk too much, artistic, excitable, changeable...), and here is the card I made to celebrate that fact! Just about to pop it into Etsy
along with another card, 'Why Don't You Write?'. Simon and Garfunkel fans will recognise a song in there... See what you think!

Friday, 28 March 2008

Need A Little Inspiration?

Meet Millie The Muse! I have been making totem dolls for several years now, but Chauncey, one of my BBEST friends on Etsy, said that she thought they ought to be called muse dolls, because she thought that that was exactly what they were! And everyone who has one, has said that they keep it in their workspace within view, so I thought I would make a Muse Doll or two, just for fun. You can find her for sale here, if you feel you can't live without her!

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Tidying Up.

I know, it's not like me, but I feel the need for a little spring cleaning in my shop. So, I've decided that the paintings section is going to close, given that I have another shop, purelypainting, where my paintings are supposed to live! Others, though, I've reduced in price by at least half, like this one here, Winter Dreaming Spring, an encaustic painting. So feel free to drop in here for a look at what's on offer!

Another thing tidied away is my Dawanda shop; I felt that it wasn't for me. But I'm still lurking on etsy and mintd...and having fun!

Thursday, 28 February 2008

Two New Totem Dolls....

are appearing in the artmixter shop today. The first is 'Ash', and she represents the stability of trees, despite the fact that they change constantly. A good totem for anyone who feels that change is sweeping them away. The second is 'Dreamer'. She looks as if she is in a world of her own, dressed in floaty, dreamy clothes (silk and satin). Need to take some time out to dream? Dreamer would be your ideal totem. Check them out in more detail here

Wednesday, 13 February 2008

New Work...

small in size, but big on colour! Both of these pieces, Facing and Jungle Patterns, will feature in our upcoming book on lutradur. Both feature the same original linocut, have similar colours, but seem to me at least to be completely different in feel and look. See what you think!
ps and yes, both are on etsy...

Tuesday, 12 February 2008

When The Going Gets Tough...

the tough make art! This is Dragon, another of those pieces that have seriously complex cloth. In her case (she looks like a she, doesn't she?), I took orange commercial plain fabric, discharged and dye painted it, cut it up, reassembled it, and painted it with acrylic paints. I then quilted it and added a further layer of paint and dye crayon. And then, of course, I photographed her and added her to etsy ! See what you think; click the etsy link in the text to see some detail shots.

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Decisions, Decisions...

I've been thinking about Etsy, and what I make and sell, and finally realised that it's all Just A Bit Much. So, rather than spread myself thin, I've decided to turn my artmixter shop into a place where there is only textile art, and purelypainting into exactly that, anything with paint on it (other than textiles...). And I've also decided not to list any more mixed media, like this piece here... I've never really felt comfortable with collage, somehow making work like this is just not me... and I'm not even sure why that is. So I've decided to keep it for fun, and the occasional ACEO (with paint on, so that it qualifies for purelypainting!), and to close the mixed media section.

This is a very longwinded way of telling you about a half price (and sometimes more) SALE on the artmixter shop (click on the capitalised sale to go straight to the section). Help me make space for more textiles in the shop! And at home, of course!

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

It Seemed Like A Good Idea...

at the time... a new shop! Here, to be precise! Well, I can't help myself, sometimes. I thought I might limit this one to paintings, like this one, Autumnal Pavane. But there again... Either way, please do go have a wee look at my new venture! And trust me, it'll be the last for a while!!

Sunday, 27 January 2008


just about describes my Dawanda shop. Dawanda is a relatively new online shopping site, based in Germany, and so not a lot of people seem to know about it. Of course, you do, now! I've got several things up in my shop there, including this aceo, Blue Mountain, which I'm rather fond of. People do seem to be looking at my work there, which is good, I'd just like to sell something...break into Europe, as it were! Still, one step at a time, I suppose... you can find this card here and Dawanda itself here There are some interesting sellers on there... why not check it out?

Friday, 18 January 2008

Nice Surprises!

Two this morning, to be precise! One came from my friend Susan, with whom I traded cloth for a couple of her wonderful bags. Look, she said, at what I did with some of your I did! Here! Didn't she do a good job!

And then there were kind words from another artist about my work on my site at Talent Database So all in all, great things to wake up to! Hope you have a happy day, too!

Friday, 11 January 2008

New Work...

Three Red Dots, the image above, has just been added to my Etsy shop for paintings
It is a small acrylic painting, measuring 8"/20cm square, 1"/2.5cm deep, and is ready to hang. It is a new departure for me, I usually use oil paints, and I'm using techniques here, including printing, that I haven't used before, or haven't combined in this way before. It is always exciting to move into pastures new... I hope you like it too!

Thursday, 3 January 2008

Fame At Last...

It's hard to get yourself noticed on Etsy; in a network of tens of thousands of shops, it's difficult to stand out. Etsy has a system called 'the Treasury', where individual artists select some of their favourite pieces from among the (doubtless) hundreds of thousands of items. It's an honour to have a piece of work selected, and as you can see, one of my collages, 'Can You Forget Me' is included in this one, by theVintageZoo. What is exceptional about this particular Treasury, though, is that it has been selected to be on the front page for part of today! That's really exciting for me and the other makers in this collection, it's an honour! So, as you can imagine, I'm bouncing up and down with excitement today! Thanks, VintageZoo, and Etsy, too!