I spy: Bryanston Organic and Natural Market

I spy: Bryanston Organic and Natural Market || Open every Thursday & Saturday 9am-3pm

Visited another market in Johannesburg. Cozy and relaxed vibe. Great place to pop by. I was really pleased because I found one artist who has a bit different style from typical ‘acrylic paint on canvas or paper showcasing African people silhouettes and animals’. It is smth I have wanted to try myself.

On a different note, something for other moms out there. Was happy to find Pure Beginnings baby wipes here. I have been using Jackson Reese’s Kinder by Nature wipes which  I ordered from Amazon but guess what, shipping to South Africa would cost 50 euros so I decided to try out this South African organic baby and kids skin care brand that had good reviews. Wanted to order online but luckily found them here first, bought some to try out. First impressions: good wet feel and not too intense scent. Baby looks happy too👌😄

UPDATE❗Love these wipes!!! Definitely will keep using them. No rash, no bad smell, nothing. Buy them bulk from Dischem Rosebank Mall which is definitely cheaper that I spent when I first bought them from the market🙈

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Eve writes: Do something

Woke up today and got really active – breakfast, diaper and clothes change for both of my kids, shower, some cleaning and then suddenly I felt it coming. The feeling when you don’t want to do anything. Arghh, but it was only 9:30 am and I was home alone with a baby and a toddler. So what to do when you don’t feel like doing anything? Do SOMETHING. Whatever it is, just do it! I mean.. I am lucky because my toddler won’t let me sit around and stare at the wall all day nor sleep. And because he loves to listen to some music and dance and draw, we did all of those things. I thought I would just lay in the bed and let him do all the dancing and drawing but of course you can guess how that turned out. We danced and laughed and then this little art piece happened and danced some more and all of a sudden I had so much energy in me😄🐻

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I spy: Artist Rose Kamoto

I spy with my little eye..beautiful artist Rose Kamoto, who I met at the Rosebank Sunday Market (read about the market more from my previous post here). Rose is a self-taught artist from Kenya. The market had so much ‘noise’ and colours, but Rose’s art, just as colourful as the market, still stood out for me. I don’t know what it really is about her art, it kind of reminds me of so many other street artists here in Africa, but there is some sort of spark, something extra in her works. One specific style she is creating stood out the most. These are dancing Maasai women. I didn’t have much time to talk to her at the market, but I did some Googling and read that Rose spent time living among Maasai tribe in Kenya and this has influenced her art a lot. This is really fascinating because the Maasai are among the few tribes in Africa who still strongly stick to their culture. And as it turns out you can visit some Maasai tribes villages to experience their culture, traditions and lifestyle (in return for a fee of course).

I also snatched myself one piece of Maasai women dancing. I would of wanted to buy a bigger piece, but right now it is not the right moment and I am not interested in keeping it hidden in the closet for a few years before framing it and hanging it up. So now I am a proud owner of this smaller piece and I love it. Elegant, sophisticated and gorgeous, don’t you think?

I am not sure right now, where you can buy her art besides the Rosebank Sunday Market (as I understood, she is frequent seller there) but if I have some more info I will update the info here. Also you can e-mail her directly: rosecrafts@hotmail.com

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I spy: Rosebank Sunday Market in Joburg

Last weekend we went to visit Rosebank Sunday Market in Johannesburg. It is located at Rosebank Mall’s 4th floor carpark section. It is held every Sunday from 9 am – 4 pm and it should offer live entertainment every last Sunday of the month. They describe themselves as follows: “shopping experience includes an array of tasty delights, interesting bric-a-brac, unusual antiques, original clothing and a eclectic assortment of hand made and creative art and craft market stalls”.

It was cool. There was plenty of space to move around with two strollers, nicely divided sections for crafts and vintage. I was more interested in the crafts section this time but I will definitely go back there some day to spend some more time looking for vintage items and as I read from their website there should be some sort of rooftop bar even (or maybe the bar meant 2 or 3 tables and chairs in one corner, then I already saw the place 😀 ).

Anyway the marketplace was fun way to spend time with my family and do some art shopping. I bought one piece from the artist named Rose Kamoto (will tell you about her in my next post). Because of the location my husband even got to expand his Lego collection thanks to the Lego shop in the mall 😀 . We decided that if we are not heading out of town on the weekends then we’ll try to go and explore other markets Johannesburg has to offer. I already made a list of some I found interesting but the thing is most of the markets are held on Saturday and they are all in different places. Joburg is a BIG CITY, so I think one market per day is all our family can handle right now. Go explore and give feedback! Xx.

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Creative break: Hand print

Getting messy and creative with my almost 2 year old is one of my favorite time during the day. The way he concentrates while painting with his hands is mesmerizing to watch. You can say it’s just a hand print by looking at the photos, but as I watch him choose color, how intensely he thinks while choosing, how he positions his hand, how he plays with it and how every time he just makes a few hand prints and then signals me that the artwork is finished.

I bring out the watercolors for him to just play, but every time it is me who is learning so much out of this play and i believe so is him. I love how coloring brightens our day and our mood💛💙💚❤️💜

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Spotlight: Gerti Saaler

My first interview here is with one truly talented designer – Gerti Saaler. I had the pleasure of working with her for few years and I have to tell you, she has A LOT of great ideas. I mean it! Whenever we had to do some brainstorming, she came to the meeting prepared with so many awesome ideas. And she is the type of designer who really pushes herself during the projects, she is honest when she feels like something is still not right or finished and she pushes herself so much to deliver the very best. All of the examples of her works here are notebook covers for popular Estonian Formula Notebook.

I haven’t seen Gerti in a while, but have been in contact with her and as my previous post already showed you, have asked her to do some personal projects for myself (fingerprint poster, my wedding invitations etc). So let’s see what she has been up to lately.

Gerti, how old are you and where are you from?

I’m 27 years old and I’m from Estonia.

When was the first time you thought about art like “Hey, this is cool. I should keep doing this”?

Probably when I was 13 and started practicing seriously, drawing from reference and trying to get things to look right. There’s something very cool about realising you want to make things from your brain.

What can you tell us about your studying of Media and Advertisement Design in Tartu Art College and how has it inspired your current body of work?

I don’t know if “inspired” is the right word here since I think of my education as mostly technical. It was more about being given tools and taught how to use them. It’s been very useful for my day-to-day job. As for illustration, I had general painting and drawing classes for three years that helped me with anatomy, color and light. I quite miss painting with actual paint sometimes.

You have a very versatile style, tell me what mediums do you usually use and what are your favorites?

Nowadays I work 95% digitally. My favorite way to draw is on my iPad using an app called Procreate. On the computer, I use Photoshop and my trusty Intuos4. I do still keep a sketchbook in my drawer for whenever I want to work out an idea or composition on paper, but I don’t really draw for the sake of drawing.

Tell us a bit about your creative process?

I get an idea in my head and try to sketch it out first. If it doesn’t look like what I’m thinking of, I try again. Rinse, repeat. If it seems like I can’t make it work from imagination, I look for reference and work from there. When I’m given a brief by someone else, for a commission or editorial illustration, it’s firstly about solving the problem, setting up the composition, and then choosing a style and so on.

What’s the most difficult aspect of creating art?

Finishing things.

What are your biggest inspirations – whatever they may be?

Even though it probably doesn’t come across in my work, I love dark, horror-esque surrealism; my favorite painters are Francis Bacon and Edvard Munch. Lately I’m really into comic book artists like Tula Lotay, Kevin Wada, Phil Noto and Jock.
I think the great thing about inspiration is that it can come from anywhere. I look at nature photos a lot for color palettes, or movies to think about composition and lighting.

How do you feel social websites such as Instagram are influencing art?

I think there’s a bigger onus on the artists to promote themselves than before, since social media is accessible to everyone, so there’s really no excuse not to do it. But there are so many platforms, and the upkeep can take a toll on the time and energy you have left to work on your actual art. The downside of everyone being on social media is that everyone is on social media, and it’s hard to stand out. Cultivating an audience is important, but also difficult.
As for instagram specifically, I think it’s one of the less useful places to post since the only user interaction is to “like” it, compared to Tumblr or Twitter or Facebook where you can actually share the post. Models like Patreon are pretty interesting, though. I think that system made a lot of creators happy when it started out.

Do you have any book suggestions from art or simply inspirational field?

To be honest, I’ve neglected books and reading, since they require so much unfocused attention that I don’t think I’m even capable of anymore (unfortunate side-effect of the internet). My favorite educational/inspirational medium is actually the video essay, especially on the subject of filmmaking. Even though I draw static images, I think there’s a lot to learn from filmmakers, as they are storytellers above all. My favorite channels that I heartily recommend are:

What are some words of wisdom for aspiring artists?

Talent is utterly overrated, it’s the hard work that counts and actually gets you to places. Practice is paramount!

Instagram: grrti

Thanks!

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Creative brake: Fingerprint poster by Gerti Saaler

Fingerprint poster by Gerti Saaler

This cute personalized fingerprint poster was a collaboration between me and one really versatile designer I have known for a few years now, Gerti Saaler (Instagram: @grrti ). I had the idea that my wedding should have one of these guestbook posters, but I wanted it to portray mine (Leo) and my husband’s (Capricorn) astrological sign all tied up in a love bundle and Gerti was the star who made this all come to life on paper. Love it!

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