Google+ LISTENING TO THE SQUEAK INSIDE art by Kirstin McCulloch of LilliBean Designs: 2012

Thursday, December 27, 2012

☆ Season's Greetings

Season's Greetings to you all - I hope Santa was as kind to you as he was to our girls.

Although this post is a bit later than I planned, 
I wish you the very best for the festive season, and a safe + prosperous 2013.

I am taking a bit of time off, to restore my life + home to order after a frantic November + December, and of course to a some point relax with my family + at some point welcome our wee Beastie to our family.

All going well, I will be back mid January, with some brand new paintings, some new challenges, a new monthly competition + a new addition to Clan Mac.

I will see you all in 2013


Friday, December 21, 2012

☆ Starlight

I have been teasing you a wee bit with a new larger painting that I started at the end of AEDM + this week, amongst the christmas chaos, the sewing + baking of cookies, I finished it!

Many years ago, I had to create two major works as part of my art finals .  One of my major works was called 'Anonymous and Free', which had three large mixed media drawings of faceless people in crowds. I remember the first two were really easy to conceptualise and create, the third drawing didn't come together until the very last minute + I hated every minute of it. HATED. IT.

'Anonymous + Free'

So when I was inspired with the design + plan of this new painting, I remembered these old ones, and knew that it was time to pull them out + recycle them.

While I cringed when I revisited this one (and the others) I also knew that they were part of my story, and they would continue to be part of it.

And this is what came next:

I pulled off the collage pieces and papered the board 
I wasn't sure where to go next so I just threw colour on it until I was happy with the result

The beginnings of Starlight
Because it is so large, photographing it + showing the true colours was difficult. It is much lighter than this. It is also very similar to Wild, (the commission piece I did for my friend), but I was so inspired by Wild, I decided that I wanted something like her on my walls.

I was nervous about this one. The last time I painted something specifically for our bedroom, I hated it so much that it has been relegated to the darkest corners of my studio. (It is now a to be recycled project!) So I am so happy with the finished product.

Anyway this is my last 'big' project for the year - with (hopefully) only Beastie to come before the end of the year.

I have a few more little bits to share with you before the end of the year, but it will probably be very sporadic. It really is Christmas in four days, as much as I am not really prepared for it!

Have a great + relaxing weekend

P.S. There are heaps more progress shots of Starlight here

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

☆ Snow [illustration friday]

I love snow. Love. It.

But my town isn't high enough to have snow in the winter. The cold winter + blisteringly cold winds, but no snow.

And although there is snow fields in Australia, they are at least 5 hours away. And every winter, Bean begs us to go to the snow so she can make snow angels. One day soon, I hope we can do this with her.

So I am very envious, of you Northern Hemisphere dwellers, who either have snow now, or will soon.

And I know it can be tedious, and dangerous, but maybe you can take a minute to enjoy it for me!!

This is my 'SNOW' painting for Illustration Friday.

I would love to know your favourite snow stories or memories please, make me forget that it is 30 plus degrees celsius outside!

P.S  Those who have receive my December newsletter have access to an awesomely HUGE discount this months. (but you can only grab the code, if you subscribe to LilliBean News. For this month only those who subscribe now will still get this months code, but you have to sign up before December 31st.)

Monday, December 17, 2012

☆ What Makes Up Your Perfect Day?

What makes up your perfect day? Have you ever thought about it? What little changes could you make each day to change your day from good to great?

I have just had another huge + amazing weekend. With the countdown to Christmas, trying to fit every thing + every one in, is normally hard, but with beastie I am struggling with constant tiredness, and a baby who decides that the best time to be active + playful is just as I go to bed.

But like I mentioned on Friday, I was going to spend the entire weekend sewing projects that I should have started in July, and for the most part I did.

Usually these sewing projects are hugely disappointing for me, because I huge aspirations, and a very, very limited skill set, which frustrates me to no end.

So far,  I still have bits to do, but I am happy with how these projects are turning out. (like I said - so far!)
My girls are obsessed with bat girl. So this is a going to be a black ruffle tutu, with matching batgirl t-shirts (yet to be made!), so they can dress up as bat-girl. (I will show you the final product once I have finished it, but I am hoping they will be totally cool!)

For ages, I have wanted to make a small carry case for the girls to take with them on trips, to the cafe, to  nan's house, where ever, that would hold their pencils, a sketch pad, scissors, glue, erasers what ever, and this is the design that I went for.

Because my girls are lefties, I have put the sketch pad upside down so that drawing should be easier.

The dark material has made it difficult to see, but there is extra pockets in the front,  and a carry handle. Once I have made Bugs one (which is a lighter material) I should be able to show you the details.

If I made them again, I would add some stiffening, or hard plastic to give them more stability, but for the purpose that I am intending them for, they are totally fine.

I also had arranged a catch up brunch organised with the girls from my mothers group. I was so looking forward to this, we were all going to be child free, but when I walked into the cafe it was a surprise baby shower for me!!
Me walking in, totally surprised!
My totally awesome friends - I love these guys!
It was such an awesome morning. Great friends, good food, lots of laughter + gossip. A perfect Sunday morning! (An I was oblivious!)

And look at the awesome card my friend Liza made for me! She is only just discovering her creative spirit, but how amazing is this! I totally love it.

Looking back over my weekend, I have such an amazing gladness in my heart, and it occurs to me that I was able to combine many of the things that I know make up my perfect day - family, friends, creative projects, coffee, enough sleep, my husbands pizza, some exercise, hugs + laughter.

So I wondered if you have ever thought about what makes up your perfect day? What 5 things could you do every day to change your day from good to great? You will be surprise by how simple some things can be +  I would love to hear you thoughts. 

P.S. For those who have received Decembers newsletter don't forget there is an awesomely HUGE discount in this months email. But you can only grab the code, if you subscribe to LilliBean News. For this month only those who subscribe now will still get this months code, but you have to sign up before December 31st.) 

Friday, December 14, 2012

☆ Wild [Commissioned Piece Finished]

I have been a little quiet this week - no wee beastie news yet but I have been holed up in my studio. 

Remember that commissioned piece I was working on? 

Well I have finished + have had final approval, so I thought I would finish the final painting here.

Wild [commission piece sold]
I loved painting this one, although the strawberry blonde hair gave me a few head aches. I don't really paint blonde haired girls, and now I know why!

Strawberry blonde is not just yellow, or brown or flesh, or white. It is all of these, as well as some olive and red, and black, and pink. And yes I googled it!

At one stage I didn't ever think it would come together, I just kept layering + layering, but in the end I am really happy about it. And so is my friend, which is the main thing isn't it!

I am also very excited this week cause, I sold two other paintings this week:

Bird Song
You are Amazing. Always

Both of which are on their way to their new homes. Thank you so much Kyles + Sam - I hope you enjoy them.

I also wanted to extend a warm welcome my new readers + thank you to those who have been with me from the very first. I never really pay much attention to how many people have joined me in celebrating living the life I have always dreamed, but I my friend pointed out that there are well over 100 people. Thanks guys x 

I hope you have a great weekend, I have a last minute sewing projects + cookies on my agenda + yes, I know, I really should have started these in July not the weekend before Christmas!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

☆ Are You a WINNER? [Decembers Give Away]

**EDIT - sorry everyone, I must have I clicked the publish button instead of save, so while I have been compiling everyones entries, the post has been live without winners included! Sorry for any confusion that might have been caused - will you take baby brain as an excuse or is that only after the babies arrival?? Anyway winners are now below. xx**

Wow - last give away of the year guys. This is so exciting, because I wasn't sure when I started how if I would manage to give away something every month, or even if any one would enter to win.

How awesome then, that I managed to give away a prize every month. 

And now to the last of 2012. One lucky person will receive my original painting 'Whiskers on Kittens' + the other a set of original Christmas Tags 

So this months winners are.....

Winner of 'Whiskers on Kittens' is:

Winner of the Christmas Tags is:

Congratulations to you both. Please email me your postal address and I will send your gifts off to you shortly.

If you loved the tags, or would like your own piece of original art, check out LilliBean Designs.

And for those who receive my newsletter there is an awesomely HUGE discount in this months email. (but you can only grab the code, if you subscribe to LilliBean News. For this month only those who subscribe now will still get this months code, but you have to sign up before December 31st.)

Monday, December 10, 2012

☆ Waiting... [a life in progress]

Do you think much of December is spent waiting?

More so than any other year I feel I am waiting... waiting for others, waiting for things, waiting for dates to pass..

So what am I waiting for?

  I am waiting for floating shelves to arrive, nooks to be finished + an art work to be completed, to finish off our bedroom...
 I am waiting for our balcony to be free of all the crap needed to build our wall, so I can enjoy the balcony in the mornings again...
We were waiting, for a total of six hours over the weekend - for two, three minute performances. (but well worth it to see the awesome dancing of Bug + Bean)...
I have another three to five weeks of waiting for our wee beasties appearance. (My fingers are crossed for a close to due date as possible arrival - I have a life planned after the 5th of Jan!!)...
These two are anxiously waiting for two weeks to go by, to see what santa will bring them...
And this painting was waiting for some serious inspiration to strike....
but is now waiting for some serious time in the studio so I can paint the image in my head...

So are you waiting for something at the moment? I would love to hear your stories.

Have you entered this months give away? There is only 24 hours left until the last give away of 2012 is over + done.

Friday, December 7, 2012

☆ Cloaked in Darkness

I am not sure if I shared this with you all before the start of AEDM, but I don't think I did. If I was a good blog hostess, I would check, but I am too tired + lazy to do so. Apologies if you've already seen it, but on the other hand, I really like this journal page, so maybe its worthy of a potential second viewing!

I have a couple of works in progress on the go. Just bits and pieces, our house is full of works in progress, and I am working on a very large piece that will hopefully be just right for our bedroom, but I am never sure of how it will fit until the very end.

Have you ever decided to paint/ create something on a large scale for yourself? I would love to hear your stories! I did one last year, and in the end I hated it so much that I have hidden it away in the depths of our garage to become a one day project.  I might share a bit more on that next week!!

And have you had a chance to enter 2012's final give away yet? Best be quick, there are two prizes up for grabs and you only have until tuesday evening (AUST time) to enter.

CLICK HERE to see what's up for grabs.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


So has Christmas snuck up on you too? I remember in July thinking I should start making the few hand made presents I wanted to give my family then, but in the same breath thinking I had heaps of time yet.

Three weeks before Christmas and I still haven't started.

What about you? Have you bought all your presents? Stuck for some ideas? I thought I would share with you some of my favourite paintings + gift ideas from LilliBean Designs.  Maybe this provide some inspiring ideas for your gift giving this year.

Art Every Day Month Favourites - Available here
Some of my Favourites from AEDM - these are A5 size and so easy to just pop into a frame.

Inspirational Mini Canvases
These are some of my favourite inspirational mini canvases. They come with their own free easel, and look great on book cases, shelves or mantels. Anywhere there is a flat surface really.
Original Artworks
Some of my favourite original art works from the year. A mixture of A4 + A5 sizes, they are super easy to frame.

iPhone Cases*, 2013 Calendar + Prints
Want something else? You can grab phone covers*, prints of all my art work, (which you can purchase framed or unframed) or how about a 2013 calendar, which features many of my paintings from this years Art Every Day Month Art.

(*I have arranged only a few phone cases + other products as examples, but if the art work you would prefer isn't included it takes no time at all to upload it. Please email me the name of the painting + the exact item you would like, and I will create it for you.)

And some Christmas Tags + Cards to finish off 
What better way to finish off your Christmas shopping, but to add one of these cute tags or cards, to presents or to send to your friends + family.

And what about you in all of this gift giving? Did you want your own original painting or an inspirational canvas for Christmas? Not sure what you want until you see it? What about a gift certificate? Just email me for more information.

Have you had a chance to enter this months two-for give away? It's only open a short time, so pop on over to have a chance to win an original art work, or christmas tags. 

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

☆ COMMISSION PIECE [A Work In Progress]

After the hectic pre-Christmas + pre- Beastie, get together with my family last weekend, I jumped into working on this commission.

One of my fabulous friends, asked me to paint one of my girls for her sister-in-law for Christmas, and after finally catching up last week, and talking about my designs, I sat down to start. (Apparently there is only three weeks left till xmas... who knew right? And holy crap that means only 4 weeks until our wee beasties eta - eeek!)

So here are a few work in progress shots,

There is still some more to do, but I am so happy with the progress of this painting. It is (so far!) behaving!

So what are you in the middle of this week? Do you have anything interesting on your work desk? Can you see your work desk - cause mine is like a bomb hit it, I still haven't cleaned up after AEDM!) I would love to hear your stories.

AND DON'T FORGET, the last give away for 2012 is up now! Click here to enter

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Before I tell you about this months give away, I wanted to send a quick message to PRIMGAL who left a comment on the Christmas Tag Swap wanting to join in, but I haven't been able to email or contact you. If you are still keen, can you email me ASAP to join in?

* * * * * * *

So, Wow - I can't believe how quickly this has come around! The last give away of 2012.

And this month is another two-for. I will be continuing give aways next year as well, but I am not sure if there will be one for January - hopefully there will be one on or around the 15th, but it will all depend on the wee Beastie arrival!

So in this months give away, there will be two lucky winners.

And this months prizes?

'Whiskers on Kittens' original art + a set of LilliBean Designs Christmas Tags

So how can you be in the chance to win?

Just leave a comment below, saying 'pick me!'

That's it?

Seriously it is that easy.

If you really want to win this months prize, you can add a couple of extra entries to up your chances.

If you 'Like' LilliBean Designs Facebook Page = One extra entry
If you 'Follow' Listening to the Squeak = One extra entry
If you 'Sign up' for LilliBean Designs News = One extra entry (which by the way has an awesome discount this month!)

So in theory you can have up to four entries into this months draw, you just have to let me know in the comments, and by the way if you already do any of these, also let me know because you will automatically receive extra entries.

Because I want you to have these fabulous prizes before Christmas, the give away is only open until next Tuesday, 11th December 8pm Australian EST. So don't delay in entering (like I do all the time!), quick press the comment button + type the words 'pick me'!!

Good Luck

Monday, December 3, 2012

☆ AEDM - Monthly Round Up

So for the last time this year, here is my AEDM round up - but this time it is for the whole month. If you were participating in this years AEDM how are you feeling now three days past. 

After a huge rest over the weekend, and a bit of maintenance on my life, (washing that's been neglected, a studio that looks like a bomb hit it, a husband who I should at least spend some time with!!), I am happy to dive into December + Christmas, and then of course New Years + our Wee Beasties arrival. 

It's only when I did this collage that I realised that I managed to paint a huge collection of work, despite taking it easier this year. It surprised me!

But I am so happy + proud of my achievements this month, I loved joining in + I loved the challenge of it.

If you want to see any of the paintings in more detail, the links can be found here.


This week is no less busy - personally I have two dance recitals to help out with, family visiting, a house that looks like a hurricane has hit it, and a hospital bag that is desperately needed to be packed.

But besides that there is heaps going on here this week +  I wanted to give you a heads up for whats in store for Listening to the Squeak + LilliBean Designs this week.

Later today, I am hoping to send out emails to every one who signed up for this years Christmas Tag swap, so if you are joining me, please keep an eye out for that.

Tomorrow (Tuesday 4th) is this months give away + as it's the last one for 2012, it's another two-for. 

Want to treat some one to one of my paintings, calendars, or buy some Christmas card + tags to give to loved ones? You can click here to see more, or come back on Thursday when I highlight some of my favourites.

And lastly - this months newletter will be sent out over this weekend. And I will be offering a huge discount but only to subscribers of The LilliBean Designs News. (Which you can sign up for here) LilliBean Designs Store will be closing over the new year period, and re-opening late January, (all going well with beastie), with all new stock. So now is the time to snap you your favourite painting.

I hope you had a great weekend, and I would love to know if you were on the AEDM journey, or participating in your own journey, what you did over the weekend. Did you relax, or was it business as usual? 

Friday, November 30, 2012

☆ ANGEL [inspiration avenue]

I had so much fun with this weeks prompt. I love winged things, and angels are one of my favourite subjects to paint. And this one came together so easily, I was done before I realised it.

Can you believe this is the last day of November? I again, it was done before I realised it. As is AEDM for another year. And although Leah from creative everyday has monthly prompts, I rarely remember to join in, which is a shame because there are so many creative members who join her on her monthly journeys.

But this year it was so much easier to participate, and I think this was due to several things.

1. I gave myself permission not to create if I didn't want to - which meant it wasn't a chore, and I wanted to, needed to do something daily.

2. My brothers wedding wasn't smack bang at the start of the month, derailing me from the word go. (although that was a party I wouldn't have missed for anything!!)

+ 3. I didn't feel the need to finish everything daily. I allowed myself to breathe + live with the painting rather than just churn it out. Which means I didn't feel like I had cheated myself + just painted by route, I actually let myself enjoy each painting.

So tomorrow I will post my final weekly round up for AEDM, + I thought I would try + put together a collage of all my finished pieces, so you can see them all together.

Did you participate in AEDM this year? How did you go? I would love to know you feelings now that the month is over...

On to another subject, and my Christmas Tag Swap sign up was due to close tomorrow, but I decided to give you the weekend to finish, weighing up the pros + cons. So Monday morning (Australian EST) the very first Listen to the Squeak Christmas Tag swap, will be closing to participants.

Thank you to every one who has signed up so far, I am very excited + have almost finished my tag off.

Want to join in? Click on the image below:

Have a great weekend.

Check out the other talent artists participating:
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