Exotic Birdbrains and Drop Caps

Not much doing today, I finished this jigsaw puzzle of the Exotic Birds Playing Cards which are from the Heritage Playing Card Company. Image courtesy of the Somerville site.

ExoticBirds_sm

I also painted three biggish drop caps for a calligraphy project. A pen pal of mine is sending me a pen in the mail which should be a suitable size for the calligraphy. The pen I have has a nib that’s a bit too wide for the scale. I used my new softcover Zeta sketchbook for the drop caps and that went well using pen and ink, gouache and watercolour pencils.

My Existential Playing Cards have shipped. Yay!

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The Existential Existence

Some people might wonder at my fondness for doing jigsaws of interesting card decks. What I like about it is that it can cement in my mind what I like. I do a jigsaw of the latest and greatest super new-fangled secrets of the universe deck and see how I like it.

Meandering around this month, I finally bought a playing card deck that I’ve had on my wish list forever, The Existential Playing Cards by Rita Orlov Rosenfeld. Looking at new decks, fiddling with puzzles of new decks, I realized that I nearly let this beauty get away. Sometimes the $20 deck gets shoved to the wish list as you reach for the latest and greatest shiny minty pizazzling gotta-have thing. You know, the thing you regret spending $97 on that is a good deck but not a pizazzling gotta-have deck after all.

I thought this was out-of-print and had a drop of the heart. Actually Etsy had cancelled the listing (I guess it timed out) without informing the seller and my note to her wondering where the deck had gone made her create a new listing. So I WAS able to buy it.

I am quite pleased.

ExistentialPlayingCardsJig

Hell is other people who don’t appreciate a fine playing card deck: philosophy reference #642.7

 

 

 

Gothic Tree is a Pain

I barely managed to get this jigsaw done of the Jeu Gothique playing cards. I got the image for this from Roddy Somerville’s Playing Card Sales site. I hope Mr. Somerville is well, he had such a passion and interest in cards and offered so many great decks on his site. Many, many of my most interesting playing cards are from him.

JeuGothiqueJig

The reason I can’t use the computer much is that I’m painting my tree in the hall. I managed to draw it in chalk on Friday, then on Saturday I managed to paint the lower 2/3 of it before having to stop for pain.

Today is Sunday and after eating and taking some aspirin, I’m strapping on my tendon cuff and s-l-o-w-l-y going to finish the top so that one whole coat is completed. I hope so much that I don’t hurt my shoulder. I just want to complete one coat, maybe 45 minutes work, and then I’ll leave it for the day and hopefully be able to put a second coat on half of it tomorrow, and half the next day, and thus finish it.

I am very pleased with it so far, but the pain is getting to me and I have to manage it in increments so I don’t end up spending weeks not being able to do anything.

TreeHall_sm

Happy Sunday!

Cryptic Moths in Spades

Arrrr Jim lad, there’s nothing like a deck of playing cards with moths.

These are the Cryptic Cards by Immy Smith. I suppose you could call this a semi-transformation deck, but her scientific illustrations of moths are gorgeous. She uses acrylic gouache on Bristol card. I’ve had these on my wish list for ages but they are quite costly for a playing card deck at $34 CAD which includes shipping.

CrypticCardsJig2

But that’s why they call it a “wish list”.

Oh man, let’s all go and draw insects!

 

 

Sort of an Ace in the Hole

This is An Ace in the Pack playing cards by Lesley Barnes, an illustrator from Glasgow, Scotland. She has a wonderful animation on her web site. She illustrates books and cards and all kinds of things.

AceinthePackJig

I don’t think she has finished these playing cards but here is some information on it. Since she sells through Etsy, I might have a hope of procuring one when she releases it. Although, in looking at her blog on the cards, she doesn’t seem to have updated it since 2011, so perhaps she’s lost the impetus to complete the project.

These illustrations remind me so much of a book called Russian Folk Tales that I’ve owned since I was a teenager. The illustrations were by Alexander Lindberg and Lesley’s art slightly reminds me of his, done back in 1967.

These charming, detailed illustrations made a good jigsaw. There you go Lesley, an interesting legacy: a digital jigsaw of your excellent work. Should you decide to complete it, let me know so I can purchase the deck for my collection.

I don’t know, is that not an incredible incentive?

Folio Fans Playing Cards

I found these playing cards on the Internet. They are published in London by Folio, an illustration agency that represents a number of commercial artists.  These cards were done by Julian De Narvaez, and I wasn’t sure when I saw them if they were antique cards or if he was creating new cards. It seems they depict some people holding fans, and they were listed at the Folio site under “Kensington Palace” so it might be a painting depicting cards in the collection of the Palace, it was not clear.

I had a go at them as a jigsaw, of course.

FolioFans

What else would you do?

The spouse is putting a third coat of paint on the front foyer, so after that cures for a few days, I will be painting my white tree on the wall. Finally, the fabled tree in the front entrance. I need to draw up a largish cartoon of my final design and then I plan to use white chalk to draw it lightly on the wall before painting.

Happy Sunday!

Jackass in the Box

JACK OF CLUBS

Jackass in the box,
Turn the key and up he pops;
On Midsummer’s Eve Take your dreams to bed,
Lest you wake a fool
With a donkey’s head.

JackClubs

There he is popping up and down trying to find a solution in his new image editing program, only to find after wasting all day on the computer, that the program doesn’t do the simple task he used to do in the other image editing program. It’s enough to make your head spin, or at least your Elizabethan collar. Hey, Donk got his old Photoshop brushes back though.

Mr. Shakey notwithstanding, there are all kinds of ways to feel like an ass.

Today I vow to paint drop caps with gouache and get off the bloody computer. Resist the urge to connect the external hard drive Donk!