Thursday, December 30, 2010

Two More

Remember THIS post. Well, I used some more of my painted canvas to make two more pencil/cosmetic bags and I just added them to MY Etsy store. I LOVE this piece of canvas and I am working on getting paint onto another large piece of canvas. I have a little project I have been working on for myself (I know, it's amazing, I am never working on my own stuff) to get me started on The Sketchbook_Challenge. It starts in just a couple of days. I've got my sketchbook, pens, watercolors, and whatever else, all ready to go. Just have to finish my project (it's so exciting). I can't wait to show it to you. But I had better get going...or I won't make it in time.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

If You Love Good Photography...

...check this out. THIS is my extremely talented brother Brent's smugmug gallery. Brent is an USAF pilot and has had a fascination with planes since he was born. He is also very artistic. A few years ago, he took up photography as his art form and his photos are pretty amazing. Of course, I am probably a little biased, but at the beginning of the year he set a goal to get one of his photos onto and he just posted his 100th! So I feel pretty justified in saying that he's AWESOME! He also has the above photo listed in the photos of 2010.Brent has always been an inpiration to me when it comes to setting and achieving goals and his accomplishments this year have been amazing. Makes my little (big) list of resolutions look much less daunting. Thank you Brent! Love you!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you a peaceful, wonderful, Merry Christmas!
With love,

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Painted Canvas Tutorial

Here's a little project I have been working on for Christmas. I took some pictures along the way so that you could see my process. It all began with a piece of inexpensive canvas that I cut to fit my kitchen table (the biggest work space in my house). If I had a bigger kitchen table, I would have made it larger, but when it comes to art, part of the creativity is finding ways to work with what you have.
I started by making some acrylic yellow/orange sort of circle shapes all over the canvas with my palette knife. Then I made some petal shapes with my palette knife using magenta, orange, white, and a little bit of yellow around my circles.
Then using a angled bristle brush, I added leaves with green, dark green, yellow, white, and a little blue. I then filled in the empty spaces with a mix of turquoise and white.
Using black fluid acrylics and water, I lined the petal shapes I found in the flowers and leaves. I can't seem to line anything without going back and lining it again. I LOVE to double line things. I also added dots for details.
Afterwards, I go back in with white fluid acrylics and add some more dots before I call it done. And that is the condensed version of how I painted this piece of canvas. Do you want to see what I did with some of it?
I made it into a pencil bag for a friend for a Christmas gift. And now I am off to finish sewing the rest of my canvas into more treasures. Have a good one!

Monday, December 13, 2010

On the Subject of Sketchbooks

Today I joined the Sketchbook Challenge. It begins January 1st and I am pretty excited. You can find out all the information HERE. I have been working in my sketchbook quite a bit lately because it seems that it is the only bit of art that I can find time for during the busy Christmas season. I can take it with me anywhere and work on it every free moment that I get. With my little compact watercolor set and my Koi waterbrush (Have I mentioned that I LOVE that thing!), I can even paint while helping out at my daughter's school or taking a shopping break at the bookstore with a Diet Coke. I am finding myself fascinated with other artist's sketchbooks too, that's why I am amazed at the timing of the Sketchbook Challenge. I know that I shouldn't be surprised at the timing but I am. I have been doing this art thing long enough to know that what you need always comes to you when you are ready for it, but I still find myself in amazement when it happens. I hope that I never get used to the "magic" feeling when the thing that I need appears at the perfect time. Now if I can just get better at the "trust" part of the whole thing. When things become frustrating, I need to trust that when the time is right, the thing I need will appear.My grandparents gave us a beautiful poinsettia for Christmas and I did a little sketch in my book of one of the flowers. I have been teaching art to my daughter's class at school so I decided to have them do a study on poinsettias. I had them do a quick sketch to understand the shape of the bracts and flowers before they tore the petal shapes out of tissue for their ornament project. They did great! I took my 4 year old with me and sat him down with all the supplies and just let him do his thing while I was teaching the class. I was shocked at what he did. His was every bit as nice as the rest of the class but I noticed something interesting. He just sat down and boldly did his thing while the majority of the older kids were somewhat panicked and critical of their work and not doing it "right" and using the word "can't". I HATE the word "can't". I had to ban the "can't" word from the classroom when I am teaching art. When do kid's develop this self critical attitude and fear of making mistakes? My little guy doesn't seem to have developed it yet but so many 9 year olds have. It is so interesting. What happens to them between 4 and 9? They had no reason to be critical of themselves, they all did wonderful art, but were so hard on themselves and some even seem paralyzed before they even tore a single tissue paper petal. I just found it so interesting, especially because when we become adults, we spend so much time trying to get rid of our fear of mistakes and critical attitudes. Apparently we didn't come into this world with these fears...when does this happen? Can it be avoided? I don't know but in an effort to combat this fear of making mistakes, I think I will go work on something scary...I think.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Book Fair

I LOVE book fairs! I am a total sucker when it comes to buying my kids books. I try to volunteer for at least one shift every time the book fair rolls around. I LOVE visiting with the kids at the school, most of which I have witnessed grow up during my daughter's time there. They are sweet, goofy, fun, and just plain adorable! LOVE them.
So, this afternoon was my shift to work the book fair. I brought along my sketchbook, pens, and watercolors to play during the down times. I was totally inspired by THIS amazing post by Alisa Burke. You absolutely must go check it Don't read another thing until you see it. Go ahead...I'll wait. Waiting....waiting....waiting.......

Unbelievable...I know! She totally amazes me. Here is the beginning of my Alisa inspired sketch.
I very much enjoyed working on this while there was no book shopping going on. The best part is, if you have a Koi waterbrush, you can pretty much do this anywhere. Everything I needed fit into a pencil bag. In fact, I think this page is calling me to finish it right now. So off I go. I show the finished product later. Go...get out your sketchbook...I'm telling you, this is great fun.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

My daughter and I made these little turkeys last night for Thanksgiving. She made them at an activity and we decided to make some more to share with our BIG family today. It brought back memories of my mom helping me make turkeys out of gumdrops and toothpicks and I can't remember what else, to take to my grandma's for Thanksgiving. And for me, that's what Thanksgiving is all I have the best one. I'm sure that I am biased (a little) but my family really is awesome. I love being with them and I am so grateful for them. I am truly blessed. My hope is that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving too! Enjoy your day.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Big Announcement

I have been hard at work here getting my little Etsy store up and running. Last night, I finally achieved my goal. Wahoo! I am excited to announce that my Etsy store is off the ground. This is something that I have wanted to do for such a long time. I had to overcome the fear of putting myself out there and just do it! I hope that my little prints and things find good homes and that they bring all of the joy to others that they bring to me. Right now, I have listed 6 prints and I will soon be adding more. Watch here for my Grand Opening Celebration, coming soon. It will involve another giveaway. You can check out my progress HERE.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Happy Day!

I finally made my way back to my blog. It has been a little crazy around here. There have been meetings for school, church, etc., house organization, an appraisal, teaching art at my daughter's school, cookie decorating, running an election, then, of course, there was Halloween (which is now a week long event apparently), and a thousand other little things. On top of that I have been working on getting my art business set up so I can sell some things. This is turning into a frustrating process. Do I register as a sole proprietor, LLC, or what? I have been asking around and am now more confused than ever. I could hire an attorney but that seems a little drastic to just sell a little art, not to mention it would seriously cut into my paint budget. Does anyone out there have any advice? I'm open to it all. I did, however, manage to finish another painting to have printed as a card.
Happy Day
5"x7" mixed media, on watercolor paper
I started this a while ago but I had it on the backburner while I have been working on other things. I'm trying to wrap up a few unfinished pieces and one that has been intimidating me for months. It's just sitting here staring at me every day and I really need to just be brave and work on it some more. OK I just talked myself into it. I better hurry up and get to work before I change my mind.

Friday, October 15, 2010

And The Winner Is...

Before I announce the winner of my little giveaway, I just want to give a BIG thank you to you all. Thanks for your kind words (I actually can't quite believe you were talking about me), thanks for your support and most of all thanks for being the wonderful friends that you all are (whether we have actually met or not). I'm so grateful for all of you and for the opportunity I have to share with you. And now without further adieu....

Here's my little random number generator. He's pretty dang cute if I do say so myself. And here's who he chose...
Congratulations Kandice! I will get it to you soon. Thanks again to all of you and I hope to have another giveaway soon (like to celebrate my Etsy store opening, for instance) so keep checking back.

Monday, October 11, 2010

My "Very Cool Surprise"

Last Saturday, I was feeling so discouraged. I had been having a very crappy week and then my phone rang. It was my mom. She said, "Dad is on his way and he has a very cool surprise for you." The only thing she would tell me is that I needed to open the boxes in order, which only piqued my curiosity. When my dad arrived, he started unloading all of these boxes, 8 in all, and I recognized that they were from my most amazing friend Deb. When I opened box #1, I found this:Sorry the picture is not great, but inside the box were prints of 6 of my art. There were six 5x7 prints and one 8x10. Underneath was an entire box full of 8x10 prints of my "Follow Your Heart" painting. On the back of one of them was a note from Deb. Here's part of it: "So I was figuring the other day that I've been VERY fortunate to follow my heart and I think you should too! I took the liberty of printing your first run of prints." Each box after contained hundreds of 5x7 prints of the other paintings. I just sat there speechless (and if you have ever spent more than 5 minutes with me, you know the significance of that statement). I am still in a state of shock. Deb is my absolute idol. She finds a way to make everything she decides to do a success and no matter what, she always follows her heart. For instance, she recently felt she was supposed to be living in Portland, so she sold just about everything, closed her storefront in Idaho, and moved herself and her two sweet boys to Portland. I just think that is so cool. She's such an example to me of just taking the leap, when your heart says "leap". You can see more of her work HERE. She's pretty amazing! As a going away present, I made her a little Scrabble tile pendant. I painted a heart on a piece of a 1958 map of Portland. In my boxes of treasure that she sent, she included vinyl prints of her pendant and Scrabble tiles, so I could share them with others.Once again, not a great picture, but hopefully you can get the idea. Diamond Glaze is used on the top, which makes for a difficult picture, but it makes it a bit dimensional, which I love. Deb's purpose in having my art printed was to help me jumpstart my art business and so I have been working on legalizing my business so that I can finally open my Etsy store and realize that goal. It is such an amazing gift and I haven't even been able to find the words to adequately express my gratitude. Here's is my altered book art journal page.
I used the quote from Anais Nin because it accurately describes my art journey and inspires me as I continue on this path. I also thought that I was an accurate description on Deb's journey too, so I used it again to make a painting for her as a thank you.
8x10 mixed media on watercolor paper
I started with a reference photo of one of my neighbor's roses. The photo was of a white rose but this one is much more colorful. I under painted it with turquoise, purple, orange, green and then finished it with a pinkish red. I think that I LOVE this painting. I really just went with the flow and overcame my desire to chuck it early on. After all of the layers of under painting, it was starting to look a mess, but I just reminded myself to trust in the process and keep going. I'm so glad I did. It very much reminds me of Deb and I hope she loves it too. She deserves it! Thank you Deb!
So with that long story being said, I feel like celebrating here on my blog, with my very first blog giveaway. I am going to give the "Follow Your Heart" Scrabble tile pendant (just like Deb's) to one lucky winner on Friday, Oct. 15. All you have to do is leave a comment here on this post before Thursday, Oct. 14, at 11:59 p.m. MST. You can also have a second chance if you post about this giveaway on your blog or Facebook page. Just leave another comment saying that you did so. The more the merrier! I want to celebrate my "very cool surprise" with everyone! Heck, I want to shout it from the rooftops! Good luck to all!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Powerful Words

When I was young, I remember my mom listening to Brian Tracy's "The Psychology of Achievement" cassette tapes while she did just about anything that she could do while listening to tapes. Even though I have never met Brian Tracy, he sort of feels like a part of the family. She credits Brian Tracy with changing her life and if you know her then you know that she is pretty incredible! While I was at her house, I noticed that she was reading this book.

She told me that it was also life changing, so I headed out to my local Barnes & Noble, and picked myself up a copy! I have listened to the "Psychology of Achievement" a gazillion times, but this book is even better. I LOVE it. If you are looking to make changes in your life, Brian Tracy is the guy for you. My mom just finished reading his "No Excuses" book and loves it too. That will be my next read. Anyway...Brian Tracy emphasizes the power of thoughts and words in your life. So I did a little journal page in my altered book about some of the words I want to be described as. Some of them I already am, some of them I am some of the time, and some of them I am still working on.
I painted the background with the palette knife and it was so much fun. I have been slopping around a lot of paint with my palette knife ever since. I love that thing!
And speaking of positive things coming into my life, I just received the most amazing surprise the other day, but you'll have to wait to see what it is. It is a GINORMOUS (is that even a word?) blessing to me! Stay tuned because it might just involve a giveaway (my first ever on my blog). Have a good day and go out and change your life!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

A Joyful Song

I've been working on this page in my "big journal" for a while. I find it funny (but not in the HA! HA! kind of way) that I found myself even working on this on the week that I was SO NOT singing a joyful song. I'm not sure if it is me hoping to sing a joyful song or my twisted sense of humor that caused this but that's the way it worked out. I'm also not sure that I am done with it but I'm sure I'll find that out later. Maybe add some journaling later or something. That's just the way art journaling works! You just never know.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Few Questions About Mr. Tutt

Since I posted my little altered book journal "Yankee Lawyer: The Autobiography of Ephraim Tutt" (or Mr. Tutt, as I like to call it), I have had a few questions about it. Mostly about the size of the book. Well, the cover measures about 8 1/2"x5 1/4" and it approximately 2" thick (but that changes every time I work in it). "Mr. Tutt" is an old book, there's a label inside the front that states that it was manufactured during wartime (WWII) but I chose it because 1) I like old stuff. 2) The spine was in good shape and I knew that it could handle being altered. 3) I like the color of the paper and felt it could hold up to a little paint and water and well, abuse. 4) It had interesting content that I felt I could work with.
I started by gluing together 2 or 3 pages with Mod Podge to give the paper good thickness. After gluing together a few pages, I'd tear out a few pages, to give the spine a bit of room when I started adding in extra paper and things. After tearing out a few pages, I found that some of the other pages would start to separate from the spine so I would Mod Podge a strip of fabric, scrap of paper, piece of patterned paper, or whatever I had sitting on my desk at the time, down the middle of the book to keep the two pages together. The page below had a crazy floral print fabric in the middle of the book. It's just there to keep pages from starting to fall out.
This "Tenth" page is about an awesome quote that my new friend Phyllis gave to a friend of ours and I just had to sit down and copy it. Here it is:
"For every nine people who denounce innovation, only one will encourage it...
"For every nine people who do things the way they have always been done, only one will ever wonder if there is a better way.
"For every nine people who stand in line in front of a locked building, only one will ever come around and check the back door.
"Our progress as a species rests squarely on the shoulders of that tenth person. The nine are satisfied with things they are told are valuable. Person 10 determines for himself what has value." -Za Rinpouche and Ashley Nebelsieck "The Door To Enlightenment"

This is a page about the party I met Phyllis and many other amazing women. Every single one of which, I would call a "tenth person" The Mark Twain quote (another of my favorites) was printed by my friend Deb on canvas and it was a lovely little sailboat and very much NOT me, so I cut it up and added my own touch. I glued the envelope for the invitation to the page and painted the background similar to the canvas colors. After it was dry, I added journaling and put the invitation back into the envelope.
Yesterday, my friend the wonderful Kate, came over for an art day. My aunt Ilene joined us, too. I just love getting together and creating with Kate and Ilene and we had a great art day. My son also was involved in the art making process and made me this picture. He was so proud when I glued it into my journal and used it for a page. The marker drawings in the middle are Jake's and the acrylic paint around the outside is mine. I think this is my first collaboration piece.

One other question I have had about "Mr. Tutt" is what brand of watercolors I used in my watercolor sketch. I have a small set of Windsor Newton travel pans that I take on the go. I use a Koi water brush (I LOVE Koi water brushes, I think they are, by far, the best water brushes) that I can fill with my water bottle or whatever I can find (gas station bathrooms, etc.) when I am travelling. I think that I have answered all the questions about "Mr. Tutt" but if there is anything else you would like to know, I'm happy to tell you about it. As for now, I'd better head off to bed.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Best Way To Remember

Nine years ago today, our country suffered a tragic loss. People's lives were changed and it was a dark day.
Four years ago, I remembered the five year anniversary in a hospital while bringing this sweet guy into the world. I can tell you for sure that he is a bright light in my life and the best way to remember September 11th. Happy Birthday Jake! I love you!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Getting Back Into Routine

Wowzer! I am always amazed by how difficult it is to get my kids back into school. It surprises me every year. I am one of those moms who isn't excited when my kids go back to school but after the summer I've had battling my health, I'm sure they are excited. I've been pretty boring. The last few weeks have been spent traveling and squeezing the last bit of summer out of the year. So most of my creative time has been spent with this little traveling treasure.
This is my altered book art journal. It started out as "Yankee Lawyer: The Autobiography of Ephraim Tutt". I picked it up at the thrift store. I'm not sure how Mr. Tutt feels about me cutting, gluing, and painting over his life story, but I sure am enjoying it. I also pick up bits and pieces from Ephraim Tutt's life and it is fascinating. I like to take it with me because the size is so portable and I use it more to document my daily happenings. At some point I intend to alter the cover too, but until it decides what it wants to be, I will just pack it around "as is". Here are a few of my favorite pages as of late.
The page on the left I painted in the hotel room on a trip to Utah. I was practicing with my acrylics. The page on the right I did about my trip when I got home.
The page on the left, tells about a GREAT day I had last week, when my aunt, Ilene, came over and I introduced her to art journaling. She did a flower similar to this in her art journal and it was AMAZING! I saw the scraps on my desk after she left and wanted to document the day for myself, so I made a sort of replica of her flower in my book, therefore, I can take NO credit for this page. I just wanted to remember the day. The page on the left is about my son's first day of preschool. My baby now leaves the nest two times a week for a couple of hours. I'm not sure I'm happy about that!
One of the things that goes along with my autoimmune issue I'm having is a complete intolerance for the sun. Even a little exposure has made me sick and I have to be very careful now. So, while my family was swimming at Lagoon, I sat under a tree and sketched what I saw. I was just doing a loose pen sketch and trying to work quickly before we headed off to something new. I finished the pen and the underpainting while I was sitting there and added the rest of the watercolor when I got back to the hotel.
I used the map of Lagoon as a base for the page and added journaling and ephemera from the day. I recycled patches of tissue paper to Mod Podge onto the places that needed more coverage and dry brushed a little paint on them.
Used the little notepad from the hotel to make a list, then glued it to a painted background.
Had to document our family's first visit to Chuck E. Cheese (we don't have one where we live) especially since my son ended up with these cute pictures. I copied the pictures on plain paper and used color pencils to color a little background on them. I also used the wrappers from his first PEZ dispenser, which he got when he turned in all of his tickets. Speaking of tickets, I found two in his pockets this morning while I was doing laundry, so I found a place to stick them in too.
This little book has been so much fun to take places. Yesterday, my son went to preschool and I came home and painted. I began a canvas board and an art journal page (in my big journal) and now I am wishing that my house wasn't such a disaster because I am dying to get back to work on both of them. So I am off to finish my housework ASAP. I've got some painting to do! Hope you do too!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Follow Your Painting...

...wherever it goes. This little painting had a mind of it's own. Very little of it ended up how I thought it would when I began. I started it as a potential greeting card design so I made it a small 5x7. I'll tell you a little secret: I have been trying to build up a little starter Etsy inventory so I can open my very own little Etsy story and fulfill a dream/goal. I, so much, want to get my little art business off the ground. I wanted to make up some small paintings that would be great little card prints. Uplifting, happy, great message, card prints. I started to feel a little panicky about this little painting because each and every time I touched a brush to it, I ended up doing something completely unplanned. Sometimes the trusting is just so hard. Magical, but hard. In fact, after I finished it, I realized that I, completely unknowingly, changed an entire word in my painting. I'm still a little annoyed about that, but I'm trying to take my own advice here and follow wherever it goes. So I'll just have to let it go.
It all began with a piece of vintage map of Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia, that I picked up at an antique store. I then glazed over it with blue liquid acrylics and a baby wipe. I painted the wings and the heart began as a collage piece, but you would never know because by the time I was done with it, it was completely painted over. The flower petals were painted on book text and the leaves are small green scraps. When I finished the whole thing, I glazed over it with some brown fluid acrylics and a baby wipe, then I added charcoal, because I just love charcoal. Charcoal changes EVERYTHING! Well, that's that! I'm off to bed soon. Tomorrow is a big day! Not only am I going on a little "girl day" adventure with my daughter, but my sister is going to finally get to have her baby. Hopefully this time tomorrow, I will be the aunt of another sweet, wonderful, new baby girl. Wahoo! I'm so excited!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Be The Bright Spot

This is a little painting I have been working on for a while now. I wanted a VERY textural background so I started with a piece of watercolor paper and added torn bits of book text, some of which was my grandma's. I love using meaningful things in backgrounds. It's like a little hidden treasure that only I know about. Then I added some stamps, a piece of lace, some fabric from the quilt I made for my daughter when she was born, and some random bits of ribbon from my ribbon jar. I then used my sewing machine to sew random spots of stitches here and there. I gave the whole thing a coat of gel medium and then painted over it.

"Be The Bright Spot" 9x12, mixed media, on watercolor paper

And here is my bright spot. It's my daughter's 9th birthday. I can't believe that she is 9. She is the best girl ever and makes my day....each and every day. She is always the one to give hugs and kisses and is so kind. We crazy love her. I have always LOVED making cool birthday cakes and parties for my kids' birthdays but this year, since I have been so sick, I have had to really simplify. I honestly can't do it this year and it's killing me but my daughter doesn't mind. She tells me it's OK and I just love her for that. She is so compassionate. I love this girl! Happy Birthday to my sweet Miss A! LOVE YOU!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Today's Art Adventure

This week, my little ones, have been showing signs of the big "B" word. That's right. The word that makes moms crazy (at least this mom). The word that kids use when they think that their mom needs to entertain them. Yep! They're BORED! Which means for me that I haven't been spending too much time painting. They were needing something to do and I was needing an art adventure, SO we decided to paint rocks.
Here is my 3 year old's paint experiment. It didn't take him long to finish his rocks, but he thoroughly enjoyed mixing paint and seeing what color he could make his rinse water.
Here is my 8 year old (at least until Monday) working on her masterpieces.
And here's our finished rocks. Since after applying paint to rocks, they are now too special to part with, my kids' rocks are now living in our home on a semi-permanent basis, but mine had a special purpose. My daughter and I headed out to the walking path that runs along the river and left my rocks for others to find.
She helped me find just the right spots for each and every rock and we had a great time trying to decide where to put them and wondering what the people who would find them would think. Where will they end up? Who would be the lucky recipients? Would someone throw them in the river? And if they did, what would the fish think? It's just so exciting to think about.
Hopefully, one of them will brighten someone's day. Because painting rocks just made a pretty happy art adventure for the three of us today. Now hopefully, I can spend tomorrow at my desk getting some painting done on one of the many backgrounds I have started that are awaiting my attention without having to hear the "B" word. Hey! A girl can dream.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

More Doing, Less Thinking

Which is just counterintuitive to me sometimes. What wrong with thinking about things, right? I'm finding that there's nothing wrong with thinking about things, the problem comes with OVER thinking about things. It begins to be a little paralyzing. So I did this little journal page with that in mind. I am learning that if you just sit down and do, all of the answers just fall into place, in the EXACT time that they need to and whether it's art or any other situation we face in life, it's the doing that brings those answers to us.
This page started out with as little thinking as possible. The background was painted over a few painting sessions with the small leftover bits of paint on my palette. I just hate wasting paint (it's so expensive, I think that's where the term "starving artist" came from, the paint's a killer) and my friend, Kate, gave me the idea to just paint it on something for a background later. She's so smart! So I started doing that with my leftover paint and ended up with this background. It was very random and I paid no attention to whether or not I thought certain colors should even "go" together. When I looked at the background, there was this green shape that looked like a leaf, so I added a couple more collage leaves and cut petals from book text, then painted over it with fluid acrylics. I stuck some pieces of collage with NO thought as to where and just started "doing". After I started doodling on them, I realized that one of the collage pieces had only one word on it, "DO", and it was further confirmation that I was on the right track. In the end, I really LOVE how it all came together. The answers came and it was a good reminder that I don't have to have an entire piece planned out in my head. I just need to start and TRUST that is will all come together when the time is right. I still may journal on it later, but for now, it's on to the next project that calls me to just "do something".

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Freaky Cats

Well, here are my "cats in bed" from lesson one in "Drawing Lab". You are supposed to draw them while your resting the paper on a pillow, mattress, or something soft so you have less control over the lines. Obviously I had not much control over the lines. The assignment was to draw 30 or so cats and since I drew a few pages with my non-dominant hand (those are way freaky), I ended up with some pretty goofy looking cats. The page on top is actually the best of the bunch, I think, the rest get progressively scarier.
Then you are supposed to chose a favorite (which is a challenge considering they are all a mess AND I discovered that drawing cats is NOT AT ALL interesting to me) and render it in another media. I was really bored with cats by the time I finished my drawing in bed assignment and needed a way to make my alternate media cat exciting enough for me to be willing to finish it. Then I thought, "I wonder what would happen if I applied some of the techniques I used in my Liesel Lund flower tutorial to this cat...hmmm....well, let's find out". As my art teacher used to remind me, "It's just a piece of paper, what's the worst thing that could happen." (Of course, I would usually smartly respond that a $10 piece of watercolor paper is NOT JUST paper, it's $10! Oh, how she must of loved me.) Oh, how surprised she would be to see me painting this cat:
Whoa! This is one freaky cat. My husband thinks it's kinda cool. He tells me that someone is going to relate to that cat. I'm not so sure, but I do know that it made my cat assignment MUCH more exciting. It kind of reminds me of something else my art teacher used to say to me when I was painting "too tightly" (which was most of the time), "You just need to go out and get drunk before you start painting", which is a problem for me considering I don't drink, but looking at this cat some might wonder about that. But nope! Completely sober.

Monday, July 19, 2010

OK! So I Skipped Ahead!

Recently, my long anticipated "Drawing Lab" book arrived and much to my absolute excitement, I discovered that one of my all time favorite artists had a tutorial in it. Which I found to be super exciting because whenever I look at her work, I always find myself saying, "How'd she do that?" I am fascinated by her things. She is Liesel Lund and although we have never met, I love her. I check her blog for new things every, single day, I think and when I found that she had posted the pictures from her "Drawing Lab" tutorial, only bigger, I decided to give it a try, even though it was found at the back of the book, I just went for it. So instead of drawing "cats in bed" (lesson 1) I skipped ahead. I NEVER skip ahead. This is SO unlike me. I have to do things in order, especially if a book tells me to. But I was so excited and I just did it.
Here's what I ended up with after following Liesel's tutorial, which can be found on her blog HERE. I started with a teeny, tiny, picture of a pink geranium and "Lieselized" it. This was so much fun. It used just about every type of medium, except collage, and did I mention it was fun? You just have to try it. In fact, I ended up trying it on one of my "cats in bed" (yes, I went back to lesson 1, I'm not completely liberated yet) but I will have to show you that another day. Oh, and here's another great reason to check out Liesel's blog today, she's giving away a copy of "Drawing Lab". Trust me, you really want it.