Friday, 1 May 2020

ZOOM meeting

Virtual NWBA Meeting

Marilyn is willing to have a go at hosting a Zoom virtual NWBA meeting as a chance for us all to keep in touch whilst we cannot meet in person.  We will be able to  show each other what we have been working on, or lament the fact that inspiration is lacking!    We can also just have a general catch up. 

Some of you will already have used Zoom, but for those of us who haven’t, Marilyn will need your confirmation that you are interested by email to:

She then sends you an invitation to join the meeting. 
All  you have to do is just click on the day and time of the meeting - no need for passwords or joining Zoom yourself.

N.B.   you will need to download the app onto your laptop, computer or tablet. Tablet or laptop is best as you get a better view, but it can be done on a mobile phone as well. So, if anyone would like to have a go, do send your email address to Marilyn for a 
                        Zoom NWBA meeting on Saturday May 9th at 10.30 am.

Marilyn's pages from her Formby ABcdary:

From Jac :

Magellan hasn't progressed very far. I have finished going through the book for sailors names and I will get them typed up and sent on this week. I was going to go through the fabric strips and tack papers to them with the dates, important happenings and interesting stuff so that when we meet up we have a starting point for putting things together. But I managed to slice my thumb open while harvesting rhubarb so holding a needle, or anything that needs pressure hasn't been possible. Again a job for the next few weeks.

I did manage to do a book for ABC. The theme put me in mind of The ABC Murders by Agatha Christie so I thought I’d write my own mystery story.

In the eighties we inherited a lot of books from my parents in law, mass produced hardback books from the forties and fifties. Most of them were red (they had lost their dust covers over time). I wanted to try and reference that sort of a feel with my book. 

The whole text is on my website :

Friday, 17 April 2020

Lockdown week 4........

A few more designs towards the Magellan Project by Marilyn and Cath...........

I would imagine most of us are having motivation difficulties in this endless lockdown of our lives, but setting targets and weekly schedules according the psychologists is a good way to divert some of the stress and angst.

Large projects seem a bit overwhelming at the moment.   I keep leaving out  accusing bits of art  and media tasks that need doing, until I give in. So  now I have at last embarked on creating small saleable items for our next show when we have one.

Tuesday, 7 April 2020

Magellan Progress

Jac ...I have cut and frayed 33 yards 2 feet and 4 inches of canvas strips of varying widths ready for making the book. I'll make a start on marking it up with dates etc.

Jane has been experimenting with 'flying fish'

Joyce has been making 3D  ' nets'

Whilst Frances has been colouring 'sea monsters'  and now moving to 'anchors'.

Friday, 27 March 2020

Notes from the Bunker

Update from Simon regarding 'Spring Clean'  event at Editions Gallery


I hope you’re coping with the extraordinary circumstances we’re living through, and are keeping well.

A statement of the obvious (but we thought we should be explicit): our PV and exhibition(s) won’t take place in April. This decision has been made in line with government advice to support efforts to reduce the spread of COVID-19/Coronavirus.

We plan to reschedule when circumstances allow – maybe this autumn, maybe a ‘Spring Clean 2021’. It may be months before we’re in a position to know.

This is of course very minor in the wider context of the pandemic; priorities are health, safety & security.

We hope that you and your loved ones stay safe and well. Let’s look out for each other and show kindness in this difficult time.

All the best


Marilyn and I have been working (when the brain allows) on the Magellean Project.
So far no one has yet been in touch regarding taking up a subject from the list When your panic and stress has subsised and things settle a bit please have a think about it  as there is a tremendous amout of work to do.

Each blog I will include some new sites of interest to get the creativity going again........Don't forget the next project ABC.  Please sends pictures

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Magellan Project

Dear fellow artists

Having now read the book about Magellan’s voyage,I thought it might be helpful for you to have a list of the things I think we could usefully illustrate using calligraphy, appliqué, stencilling etc............... list below. 

So far..........?

  • Brenda has offered to do the so-called Patagonian giant, 
  • Jane the penguins and flying fish, 
  • Frances various imaginary sea monsters, 
  • Chris some bodies, 
  • Joyce weather and nets
  • Jac has started to piece together thCath e actual book - she has bought, and been paid for, the cloth.
  • Cath has volunteered for the Nebecula Major and minor galaxies etc, the Venetian hourglasses, and ships compasses?
  • Jane is working on  flying fish and coconuts

Inevitably some of what we have to do will be last minute because we can’t actually meet, but if we have things prepared the work will go easier once we can meet again.

Please let me know if you want to work on anything particular so that we don’t have hundreds of whales, for example, and please remember to work small-the book will be 5” deep at its deepest and most of the flora and fauna occur at the end of the voyage when the mariners are in, or nearing, the Spice Islands.

If you need to know where your item actually sits, please ask and I’ll try to tell you. Also please remember that this book will be rolled so keep your pieces fairly flat.
I’ve offered to dye some cloth in cinnamon, clove or red ochre, so just let me know if you need some.

I’d love it if you would send us  pics of work in progress, or indeed completed items.    Fran   will post them to the blog and Estella will post to Facebook, whilst I can post to our Instagram account.    This will also keep track of who is doing what. 
At least this will keep us busy over the forthcoming weeks!
Take great care of yourselves and keep well..... Marilyn

  • Wine in pipes sealed with cork and pitch and in casks
  • and hard tack biscuits (buscocho) , always with weevils later and doused in rat urine
  • Flour in wooden barrels
  • 7 cows and 3 pigs, other meat too
  • Barrels if cheese, almonds in their shells, mustard, figs in casks
  • Sardines, anchovies,, cod, tuna, all dried and salted
  • Fishing lines and hooks
  • Chickpeas,beans,rice,garlic,lentils,raisins (dry and wet),jelly, jams inc membrillo (quince paste), Vinegar (also used as a disinfectant), sugar, salt, honey

Creatures......and other items.....

  • Flying fish
  • Teredos or ships worms which drill holes in wood, inc ships
  • Rats and mice, bed bugs and cockroaches
  • Sharks
  • Penguins
  • Antarctic sea lions
  • Lots of fishes in shoals
  • Mussels, foxes, sparrows, small rabbits
  • Guanacos
  • Sea elephants in families
  • Sardines
  • Dolphins
  • A large black bird flying at night over the huts on the island of Mactan
  • Fighting cocks
  • 2 elephants
  • Chickens and peacocks (served as food)
  • Phyllium insects
  • Angel fish
  • Birds of Paradise
  • Whales
  •  Stars-the Nebecula Major and minor galaxies, and possible the Southern Cross
  • Indigenous peoples: Brazilians (probably Gurani pepple) with holes bored in lips and cheeks in which they placed green and white alabaster stones and bones.
  • Techuele Indians described
  • ‘Paul’, the Patagonian ‘giant’
  • Chamorros people with red teeth from chewing betel nuts
  • Phillipinos
  • Cebuan women singing and dancing
  • Cebu dictionary example (short)
  • Magellan’s death from a poisoned arrow in the leg on the isle of Mactan
  • Lines of the language sailors used, inc shanties
  • 16 Venetian Hourglasses to mark the time
  • 35 ships compasses
  • Medical instruments included mortar and pestle, scissors, a lancet, tooth extractor, enema syringe and a scale.
  • Lots of severe storms, thunder, lightening, huge seas. Some known as Williwaws
  • Several descriptions of St Elmo’s Fire
  • Eclipse of the sun
  • Active volcano in the Spice Islands
  • Pale blue glaciers and icebergs
  • Outrigger canoes and proas in Brunei

  • Medieval herbs, inc fennel, thistle,cicory, turpentine,lard, chamomile, honey, incense and quicksilver, stored in canisters. 
  • Bananas, coconuts, palm trees
  • Nutmeg trees
  • Clove trees
  • Cinnamon trees
  • A gold casket full of Betel nuts offered by an emissary from Tidore
  • Black pepper trees/bushes

Trade goods...........
  • Including mirrors, bells, combs, red caps
  • Armoury, inc harquebuses, daggers, rapiers, lombard guns, falcone guns, 60 crude rifles (versos). Pasamuros guns, 50 shotguns (escopetas). 3 tons gunpowder and cannonballs ditto
  • In Borneo, Gold daggers, quivers full of arrows with poisoned tips, spears, bucklers, blowpipes
  • Banners of parrot feathers, white, yellow and red in a large craft propelled by 120 oarsmen carrying the King of Bacan  

The surviving 18 European sailors did penance in Seville , walking barefoot, carrying candles  -  list of survivors available