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I've switched my website over to Squarespace, and you can now find me at http://www.marenchild.com/

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Children’s writing bootcamp

The ACT Writers Centre held a Children's Writing Bootcamp at Gorman House in Canberra over the weekend. We had a great turnout of writers and terrific presenters for the workshops. I've come away with lots of ideas for improving my craft, working with publishers, and being productive. My focus was on my Bunny Overboard story,… Continue reading Children’s writing bootcamp

How to paint a backdrop for a model train layout

Here is another backdrop for a model train layout that I painted recently in acrylic, with some notes about tools and techniques. I hope you will find my notes and photographs useful. I am finding the challenge of painting such a wide landscape very good for developing my painting skills. Tools - acrylic paints, a palette,… Continue reading How to paint a backdrop for a model train layout

Is oil painting easier?

I've used ink, watercolour, collage, pastel and relief printing, and have always heard that oil painting is easier than any of these. But the cleanup, the smell and the waiting time for the paint to dry has always put me off. On the other hand, the effort and expense of framing artwork made me think… Continue reading Is oil painting easier?

Painting trees for a train layout backdrop

I painted this backdrop for an O-scale layout over three weekends. The sky was already painted with acrylic. All the paints I used were also acrylics. I painted the clouds with a very soft brush. Then used a sponge brush to paint the hills. Next I painted some fairly detailed trees - gum trees and… Continue reading Painting trees for a train layout backdrop

Painting a backdrop for a model train layout in acrylic

I'm painting a backdrop for a layout that's set in the Mount Lofty area of South Australia. It's O scale, and a section of about 4 metres, but only about 30 cm high. The board was already painted sky colour (housepaint will do for that). Materials used Brushes: two foam brushes (1 inch and 2… Continue reading Painting a backdrop for a model train layout in acrylic