Monday, April 26, 2010

Wise Counsel

Well, the week before last in church, the speaker quoted a talk that I absolutely loved the first time I heard it and I still love when I hear quotes from it. The original talk was given by Elder Wirthlin shortly before he passed away. He talks about finding joy amid trials and how we can love the lessons learned from our difficulties. You can find it HERE if you would like to read the whole talk. It is one great talk and it inspired me to paint a picture in my art journal about it. I liked it so much that I refined it a bit and painted my first (ta-da) canvas board(i.e. real art).
"Wise Counsel" mixed media, painted on 11x14 canvas board.
I even had to practice my signature to sign my piece because I have never painted anything that needed a signature before. This piece started out with a collage of patterned paper, old book pages, old stamps (I knew my old stamp collection would come in handy one day) and gel medium. I painted the rest with liquid acrylics and charcoal. I really kind of LOVE it. Maybe because it's my first "real art", or maybe because of the quote, I don't know but I do know that I love the texture of it. I wish you could see it. I know that as my skills continue to grow, the time will come when I look at it and see "beginner work" but for now, I will just love it for what it is: My first piece.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


How do you know that spring is finally here? Well, I'll tell you. You open the door to find this on your porch.
That, my friends, is a beautiful, handcrafted "mud cake" that my children made just for me. Normally when I find a muddy disaster on my porch, I am not happy, but this muddy disaster 1) was a gift from my kids and 2) means that the ground has thawed enough to be able to make mud, and the thought that spring might stay around for a while makes me ecstatic! Usually, where we live, it is either blazing hot or below freezing. Summer and winter are much longer here and spring and fall usually involve some form of snow. Plus another sign I look for is pansies. When the primroses begin to disappear from the store and the pansies arrive, that means summer is not far behind. And guess what Jake and I smelled on our way out of the store today...that's right...pansies. Wahoo!
As I was signing in to post this, I noticed that this is my 100th post. I can't believe that I have had 100 things to say. Amazing. I know that some people do something fun for their 100th post but I guess this just caught me off guard. So not so fun I'm afraid. But thanks for reading my little blog anyway. It's been great to catch up with friends and meet new ones.
I've been working on a little page in my art journal after my last post. It was inspired by the word "shine" from the Nelson Mandela quote I used. After I finished it, I sat down to read my scriptures and was inspired by another "shine" quote, so I started that one too. I'm still working on it but "shine" seems to be the theme this week.
I truly didn't know where this was going to go when I started it. I just had the word in my head. The painting just led me along. I love the bright colors. I really haven't decided on what medium I prefer. Tonight I am going to "Open Art Night" at the local art guild and I am nervous. My painting is very different from anything that I have seen there but I hope to learn from the artists and have a good time. I just can't decide what to work on. I copied some of my brother's awesome photographs to paint but we'll see. I guess I can always gesso over whatever doesn't work. Well, I guess I had better get some things done so that I can go tonight. And thanks again for sticking around for 100 posts.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Let Your Light Shine

I've been working on this little journal page for a couple of weeks now. I knew I wanted to add a quote but nothing seemed right until the other day when I was reading my friend, Chris' blog and she had this one posted on the side. I had never noticed it before (I don't know why) but that day I did and I knew immediately where it belonged. Then when I began to glue down the words, I knew again that this was where it belonged because, it fit perfectly on the collagey (made up that word) area (which by the way, the little guy I was watching last week informed me was "the color of poo". Everyone's a critic). I LOVE this quote and since it is pretty small, here it is:
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear it that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; It's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." -Nelson Mandela

Great quote, huh? Thanks Chris for this and the inspiration. Not only did it finish this little page but gave me an idea for the next one I have started. You are the best!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Sketch A Day

I have been working to improve my drawing ability lately, so I have started a sketch a day journal. I sometimes don't have time in my busy day to get a big drawing done but I know that I can complete this tiny rectangle each day, without being overwhelmed. As soon as I am overwhelmed, I start to panic and when something I'm working on becomes more stressful than fun, I have a hard time finishing it. This is just a way to make sure I have at least a few minutes of drawing done each day, no matter how simple.
So far, I've kept it up for a week and it's still fun. Well, I'm off to do the not so fun task of feeding my family.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The Family That Paints Together...

...needs lots of stain remover.

We are having a great Easter today. We've been watching conference and I made Sunday dinner. That's a big deal because normally I take Sunday off. The rule on Sunday is: If you can find it, you can eat it. Oh, and also, don't wake me up from my Sunday nap! Anyhooo, after dinner the kids and I got out the paints (Alexis got new ones for Easter, lucky girl) and we've been painting.
Here's Alexis' watercolor. She painted it in her new art book. She is an awesome painter.
Here's Jake's painting. I LOVE the colors on this. Usually he doesn't want to join in the paint fun, but today, he really enjoyed himself.
And finally for a declaration I made in my art journal:
I never call myself that. It comes with much uncertainity and fear, but alas, there it is, I have said it. I don't know what that means for me yet, but I'm open to finding out. We're off to watch some more conference and clean the paint off my son's hands. He's freaking out about having messy hands. How is it that I love waking up with paint stains on my hands but my 3 year old can't cope with it? That seems backwards to me. Oh well, have a good Easter.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Brown Baggin' It

After seeing THIS post on Pam Garrison's blog, I decided to use some of her doodles to practice my ink sketching. Pam Garrison is an incredible artist and I LOVE her art journaling. I had this bag sitting on my desk and decided it would be the perfect thing to practice on. No expensive paper to ruin equals no pressure if it turns into a disaster. Just wad it up and toss it.
Here's my Pam Garrison inspired doodles on the back of the bag. I've been painting it a little here and there when I'm not working on another project but want to improve my painting skills.

I really like how it turned out. It's been a fun, "no pressure" little practice piece. You will just have to be surprised what I turn it in to. Actually, so will I. I'm not sure exactly what to do with it yet, but I'm sure I'll think of something. I'm always open to suggestions.