Rachel Castle - Things To Do with Painting

Jenny Butler
Jenny Butler
27th of April 2012

Thank you Rachel for a FANTASTIC week on the Guest Blog! We have all loved seeing your Things To Do this week and I think it's possible that Castle HQ might be the happiest place on earth! The music, the beautiful Castle bedding and cushions, piles of felt and inspiration and happiness all around = complete perfection. Thanks again, and we look forward to seeing your final exhibition pieces at Koskela in July. - Jenny x

This is the fun bit. If ONLY it was every Friday I would wet myself. Sadly it is hardly ever because we are so busy on the bedlinen/orders/embroidery/printing days that Friday is always catchup. So I would say once every blue moon I get to have a 'play'.

Today is new ideas day. I have a show coming up in July at Koskela in Sydney and here are a few things I am playing with for it.

Painting #1

I have been painting for a while now but have not until now really been 'ready' to put anything out there. Still not, how scary. Its hard on screen because we can't show fluoro colors, but the basic premise is layered pastels in the back, and full on fluoro colour on the front. I absolutely love them. I am making myself a GIGANTIC one, not sure which yet, for when our renovation is done. My present to myself. I am like a plumber with a badly leaking tap, in need of something nice in the house.

Painting #2

This is a really good one, I had it framed to see how it comes up in a white wooden box case, and this is what I will use for all of the paintings in the show.

Painting #3

Paintings 3 - 9 are unstretched. I paint them flat then have them stretched and framed. I find the better the base linen the better the result, so I use the best one I can find which is a raw flax linen primed in white acrylic. You will need to excuse the dimpling, as they dry they crumple, but stretched as in painting 2 they come out so beautifully.

The yellow in this is seriously fluoro. The backgrounds take FOREVER. I try to dry with a hairdryer to get them to hurry up, but this is pointless as they are best when I just leave them and come back the following day.

Painting #4

This is my favorite. It's a massive 4 leaf clover. You can't see but the background is intensely layered. I said to Daz if no-one buys this, it is THE ONE for our living room.

Painting #5

I am loving the texture of the note on this one, the matt layers behind. I like this one a lot, especially the colours.

Painting #6

Am loving doing something a bit more freeform. I forget everything. EVERYTHING. The prints and the embroideries are so exacting and precise because this in my head is the only way that I can get everything done. So for the first time in a very long time I am loving putting paint on linen and just being creative and not obsessing over perfect lines.

Painting #7

The fluoro pink and white I am loving.  Like anything, you can labour over something until you can't see the wood for the trees, and then sometimes it just works all naturally and organically and it is a pleasure. These days I COMPLETELY follow my gut instinct.

When I love it and Cleo my 12 year old loves it too, then it is a goodie. She is my greatest, most honest and accurate critic. The comments range from 'GROSS' to 'NAAAH DON'T LOVE IT' to 'NICE' which means it is a deadset bestselling winner. Actually there are only ever these three comments and nothing in between which is why she is a CASTLE father's side through and through. She is the best (seriously cutest ever) critic to have.

Painting #8

These are little criss cross ones that are really cute and fun. They are just such a POP of colour. Is it really bad for me to say I love this one too?

Painting #9

The shape here is really working in my opinion. It's a flower to me and I am loving the navy on fluoro.

The show may or may not feature any of these works. It is hard to say when any of them will be ready but I will be working from now until the last day of June making sure that I have 15 I am really happy with. There is one rule and one only. If I wouldn't have it pride of place in my front hallway, dead knocker in the centre as you open the front door, it hits the cutting room floor, i.e. it ends up in my front hallway front smacker the first thing you see as you open the front door!  That plumber thing, it's really not fair.

Painting #10

Just as an aside, because doing one thing at a time is just a bit boring at times, I have done a few little bits with medals. I love medals, they are so meaningful and I find them so joyously full of life and color. And this week it was ANZAC DAY and I get a little teary and sentimental for my Papa.

Things to do #11 and #12

This just some playing with texta and paint.... just putting together an idea, will it go anywhere, not sure. Maybe. Maybe not.

Second last thing to do #1

Sit at desk and keep doing emails. They are relentless. Luckily I love my life, and this is just one big part of it. I sometimes imagine this is the view my family have of me. From the back, doing the emails.

So tonight I will have a disco with them, One Direction, LMFAO, living room floor, Daz on Sonos, kids rocken their little socks off. Lord give me strength and I pray they will let me have something by Boy George or Marilyn but I so know they won't.

Very last thing to do #1

My goodbye to you all. Thank you for having me Design Filers. Your emails and posts have been overwhelmingly touching. Thanks, thanks, thanks and THANKS. Thank you for having me Lucy and Jenny.

Love RCx

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