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Mother’s Day in the UK is this Sunday, while tomorrow is International Women’s Day. This is a post I wrote in 2014 which some of you have seen before.

First Night Design

Benedicta Leigh 1922—2000Benedicta Leigh 1922—2000 [photo: David Sim] Born Benedicta Hoskyns in 1922, my mother spent a large part of her childhood on the island of Malta where her father was serving in the Rifle Brigade.

She later spent a year drawing from life at Salisbury School of Art. During World War II, she nursed with the Red Cross in Auxiliary Hospitals and Convalescent Homes throughout the country, also finding time to write, produce and play in several revues for her patients.

The war over, she trained for the stage at RADA where she received commendations from Sybil Thorndike and Laurence Irving and won the George Arliss prize as well as sharing the Dialect prize with Cyril Shaps.

Her subsequent career included repertory at Windsor, Bromley, Sheffield, Coventry and Nottingham, No Other Verdict at the Duchess Theatre in the West End (“stealing all the notices as the maid” she would tell me…

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Original & vintage art © First Night Design [www.firstnightdesign.wordpress.com]

Source: The Little Glass Slipper 1 Postcard | Zazzle

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Give Thanks Tote Bag by Sarah Vernon. The tote bag is machine washable, available in three different sizes, and includes a black strap for easy carrying on your shoulder. All totes are available for worldwide shipping and include a money-back guarantee.

Source: Give Thanks Tote Bag for Sale by Sarah Vernon

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 19 The Romantic Manifesto © First Night Design

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 19 The Romantic Manifesto © Sarah Vernon

Another week and another challenge. It’s week 19 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday!

The Romantic Manifesto: In this collection, Ayn Rand explains the indispensable function of art in man’s life, the source of man’s deeply personal, emotional response to art, and how an artist’s fundamental, often unstated view of man and of the world shapes his creations. In a chapter that includes an extended discussion of music, Rand explores the valid forms of art.

Is this me cheating? You may well think so. I have used a detail from a painting by Eloise Harriet Stannard (1829–1915) called Christmas Still Life. So that was easy! The title font is my old favourite, Zapfino Regular, while the author and ‘centenary edition’ are in Skia Regular. This painting epitomizes the art of good conversation to my mind. Gather your guests, set the table with good food and excellent wine and you’re off!

I don’t know about you but I loathe the cover (above) for the 100th centenary edition! It looks like it’s been thrown together by the office boy or girl who has no idea about good design.

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


Heavens to Betsy! My weekend has been totally transformed by an email from Zazzle telling me I’ve sold 25 of these Give Thanks Postcards.

The main image is a photograph of our garden – they’re actually Cretan olive trees in the background – and a couple of textures. I’ve used Photoshop to create a Thanksgiving scene with a pumpkin from The Graphics Fairy and an open book from The Cottage Market.

Are you wondering about the phrase ‘Heavens to Betsy’? I have to acknowledge that it’s one of my favourite sayings. I learn, however, that it’s fallen out of use and considered far too anachronistic. Tough. I shall never stop using it. It seems it originated in America in the late 19th century. No one knows who Betsy was and the etymologist Charles Earle Funk said the origins of the phrase were ‘completely unsolvable’. [#1]

The Oxford English Dictionary gives the first written use as from a short-story collection by Rose Terry Cooke, Huckleberries Gathered From New England Hills published in 1892. [#1; #2]

I’m also very fond of ‘Heavens to Murgatroyd!’ but I’ll leave that lovely for another day.

Available at the following galleries:
Redbubble
Crated
Zazzle US
Zazzle UK
Fine Art America
Fine Art England
Saatchi Art

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 14; The Incident at Montebello by Patti Moed

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 14; The Incident at Montebello by Patti Moed

It’s Week 14 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday. They have chosen another book by a fellow blogger—The Incident at Montebello by Patti Moed of Pilotfish. Ms Moed is an award-winning creative artist who’s worked as a university professor, writer, textbook editor, photographer, corporate trainer, educational consultant, and instructional designer; that’s some CV!

I have used a family photo which you might recognise from my treatment of it for When Worlds Collide. I can’t pretend the vehicles are spot-on for 1930 but I consider them close enough to give a flavour of Patti’s book (which I have already bought for Kindle and am very much looking forward to). The strap line I’ve used is my invention!

The Incident at Montebello is a historical novel based on a true event— In 1930, Italian Premier Benito Mussolini was driving through the Italian countryside with Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jr. when his car struck and killed a little girl, Sofia Buonomano. The Buonomano family is torn apart by Sofia’s death and is caught in a political firestorm that spreads from their village to Rome and across America and Europe. One family member, 16-year-old Isolina, witnesses the accident and recognizes Mussolini as the driver.’

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

#BLOGSHARELEARN LINKY PARTY OCTOBER 16/15

#MidLifeLuv Linky

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 13 Golden Valley Silver Flowers

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 13 Golden Valley Silver Flowers

It’s Week 13 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday, and I should be in time for the challenge!

I’ve kept it simple and used a marigold image from The Graphics Fairy.

The gals have chosen a book by a fellow blogger, Becky, who is donating 100% of her book royalties to help the refugees arriving in Europe.

In Becky’s own words:

I am a 28 year old PhD student in the field of neurovirology, freelance author and blogger. I’m much more besides that, but those are my professions.

I am a war survivor and former refugee and mostly I write real-life stories that happened to me or my close ones. I’ve seen a lot in my life and want to share my experience, hoping that someone out there might open his eyes and see it all in a different light.

I am a fighter for human rights, peaceful coexisting and a green planet. I’m against war – no matter where it takes place -, against trauma, post-traumatic stress disorders, pain, loss, hunger, injustice.

I dedicate all my stories to those who have suffered and lost and I donate from my author’s salaries to help people who are going through hell.

Feel free to join me and become a soldier of peace by following, liking, sharing or buying my recently published book (“Golden Valley Silver Flowers” by SB Selimovic).

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 12

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 12

Whoops-a-daisy! I prepared my entry some days ago for Week 12 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday, and then promptly forgot about posting it in time. Duh!

The challenge on this occasion was to do a cover for the horror film, The Cabin in the Woods (2012), a frightener if ever there was one.

215px-citwteasersmallI used a photograph taken by Mr FND when he was in the middle of nowhere trying to find the newly built Venice ferry port. I promptly added a lighted window from another photo of ours before doing the title, cast and director. Oh, and I also added one of my textured backgrounds.

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 10

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 10

It’s already Week 10 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday.

I must state that I actively loathe the work of J.R.R. Tolkien so you’ll find no fawning here! No matter how many people exhort me to, I will never again pick up copies of The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings and try to read them. Life’s too short.

Walt WhitmanI was so tired of dark colours that my original intention was to create something simple in black and white with the title, author, one of the protagonists, and a ring. I discovered a site that compared the characters to real people. Gandalf, as played by Ian McKellen, was likened to Walt Whitman, which tickled my fancy,  and I took it from there.

Once I’d dismissed the idea of black and white, I searched my designs and decided that the background textures from Turning Windmill might work rather well. I hope you agree.

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah


#photorehabcovermakeover Week 9

#photorehabcovermakeover Week 9

It’s Week 9 of the Photo Rehab Cover Makeover run by Desley Jane of Musings of a Frequent Flying Scientist and Lucile of Lucile de Goday. Actually, it might not be Week 9 — I seem to have got mixed up as I titled Green Mile #7; that’s what comes of dealing with far too many emails and an explosion of other people’s lovely blog posts!

I do know, however, that this week’s challenge, as you can see above, was to do a cover for George Orwell’s classic, 1984.

I chose to use I Can See What You’re Doing as the background to give the impression of a barricade. I added  the same photo from Unsplash that I used in Cabinet of Curiosities (the whirly window), and a medical drawing of an eyeball from The Graphics Fairy.

The font I’ve used (Bodoni) is not what I would have wished. I lost so many fonts last year when the computer died at the same time as the back-up (of course) and remembering the names and finding them again is proving almost impossible. The one I had in mind was what you might call ‘dirty’ and eaten into. Ah well!

Click here for instructions if you would like to take part in future challenges.

Take care and keep laughing!

Sarah

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