Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Sweet Sweet Man...

So today it is time to
and celebrate because this is the day that this guy :
came into the world !
Happy Birthday, My Sweet, Sweet Man !
This One's for you !

I know you're the one,
now and forever.
I am thankful everyday that we are on this journey together.
May this celebration day be full of love and laughter !
I love you, David.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Blue Birds, Paul's Wings, Black Cats and Other Queenly Silliness

So the question for today is :

"Can repeating the same activity over and over and over again lead to insanity ?"

You be the judge.

(Turn up your speakers a little and play the soundtrack now.)

Pause here until music starts...

Scroll down really slowly - to the beat if you can...

Okay, you have enough info to make your decision now. :)

Turn down the tune and check out the sunlight photo session Cosmo and I had in the bay window in the studio...

crazy crossed eyes

sweet little boy (when he is sleeping or snuggling)

"No, Mama, I won't eat the leaves or dig in the dirt. No, no, nono no !"

And "THE" shot - the beautiful and silky soft Cosmo Kitty, also known as Little Boo.

I have decided to move on, leave the birdies aside and work on other things

as I get stuff together for my Craft Fair on November 14th.

I think it was a sound decision, don't you ? ;)

(The Lovebirds are still available in the Etsy Shop - if you want a Blue one, just let me know in a comment. ;) )

Happy Thursday, Beautiful Ones !

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Big Heart Walking Gets Rocked !

So I have this new ritual that I have started in my studio ever since I bought that new great dresser from the thrift store and I have a little more surface space to play with. I created a little altar space. I have a gorgeous-smelling soy candle that my aunt Lise gave me for my birthday there, along with a silver bowl of Rock My World rocks and some other little objects that mean a lot to me. I also have some of my favorite painting and art objects hanging on the wall above the altar.

I have been trying to start my creative time in the studio by lighting a candle and then picking a couple of rocks to set the mood for the day. It feels good - like a little prayer time - and somehow prepares the space for my creative expression and play.

These were the rocks that picked me today. ;)

I think I can work with those - lots of juicy stuff there!

Speaking of juicy stuff, I have to share a gift I received unexpectedly in the mail last week. It made me cry when I opened it. I felt so special, so loved and so cared about. A true gift in every sense of the word !

It has been over a month since Squam. Some days it feels like it never happened, like it was all just a dream. But then, I think of the people I connected with, the people I will know for ever, even if we never get to physically meet again.

Corrine and Me - Sept.2009

One special person I connected with was Corrine. She lives in MA so there is a very, very good chance that we will be getting together asap to play. In fact, I am working on making it happen as we speak !

Corrine was my housemate in Porter's Lodge and we also took both of Judy Wise's class together. You can learn more about her at her blog : dos fishes. I shared lots of good stuff with this talented and very loving lady during our Squam adventures and she comes to my mind often. Well, I guess I come to her mind too, because look at what she send me in a box just about the size of a bread box last week:

There was a canvas piece of her wonderful collage art with it's awesome sewn paper in it, adding that amazing texture and line...

And there was a golden box that held a gift from Nature that Corrine knew would

touch my heart big time !

How beautiful a Heart Rock is that !!! I love, love love it !

What touches me the most was that this kind, wonderful woman thought about me, knew that receiving such a perfectly thoughtful gift would touch me immeasurably and that she took the time to package up all that love and send it to me courtesy of the US Postal Service so that it would arrive as a surprise at my door ! That just blows me away ! It makes my heart sing with joy. So thank you, thank you Corrine, for this love-filled gift. It rocked my world in a beautiful way !

PS:(Corrine is an amazing animal lover and has rescued many furry friends from horrible ends. She recently lost her beloved 14 year old dog, Blossom, and I know she could use some loving vibes and thoughts sent her way as she goes through this mourning, so if you can add her to your loving list today, that would be so wonderful.)

As my friend Patti would say, be someone's angel today !

Big love, Beautiful Ones !

Monday, October 26, 2009

Spilling It Is Great for the Soul !

So the days have been looking like this outside the window of my studio:

Magnificent Fall days in the mid 60's. Perfect weather to be outside.

And I did do a little of that. But while these perfect Fall days are happening, I have also been absorbing and being inspired by the great on-line Spill It Class that Carmen Torbus is teaching.

If you remember awhile back, I said I won the tuition to participate in this class and I am so very grateful for that. I have learned a lot from Carmen and her great videos. I learned a lot from her painting techniques and I so enjoyed how her style helped me loosen up with paint. I learned too that I adore Golden Fluid acrylics even more than I did before the class after learning how Carmen uses them. I learned that I like to paint with my fingers but that I do prefer brushes and paper towels.

Most of all I learned that I can create beautiful things on canvas. This may sound like a small thing but it was big for me. In the past, I was very intimidated by canvas. They cost a lot more than one sheet of paper, even than a sheet of watercolor and I just felt like I wasn't a good enough artist to work on canvas for some dumb reason. But now, I am in love with the texture and the depth you can achieve on canvas. That was a great thing to come away from the class with as is the wonderful support and inspiration you get from all the other participants and from Carmen herself. I highly recommend this class !

So let me share a little of what I did.

Here's one piece I did, starting with a 9X12" canvas gessoed black.

I dripped and smeared and spilled and stamped and rubbed the surface with many different colors of Golden Fluid acrylics. I ended up with kind of a mess and wasn't sure at all where I was going with it.

Carmen also had us color photocopy images to use for collaging on our canvases. She suggested using your own sketches or journal pages. I made copies of my paint puddle people that I had made in my journal way back in June.

("Fruition" - canvas, collage and acrylic paint)

Add a nicely rubbed in coat of Pthalo Blue, a touch of white and Pthalo Green on top of the whole canvas, my paint puddle angel, some more collage pieces (orange pieces and tree) from my own stash of painted papers, a bit of gold metallic paint, some ink lines done with the dip brush and some black ink around the edges, and here you have the completed canvas above, "Fruition".

Another piece I did was on this rectangular canvas I had bought at the Christmas Tree Shop. Three ugly painted canvases with nice thick gallery edges for $4.00. I covered the ugly with a couple of coats of white gesso and then went to town the Carmen way. I spilled, and smeared, finger painted and stamped and made this gorgeous blue background. You can see some of the details in the texture more when you click to enlarge it but it is hard to capture it in a photo and it it too big for my scanner.

Again, I used a colored copy of a page in my journal. This page was called "She dreams of dark beauty. " I used an image transfer technique that Carmen shared for this piece. The hardest part was waiting for the gel medium to dry over night.

My transfer worked well except for the details of the girl's face. I ended up cutting out the girl from a second copy and gluing it on top of the transfer with gel medium in order to have more details to the figure.

Then I added painted collage papers and some stenciled sequin waste dots. I also added black paint with a sponge and some yellow oxide transparent paint in some drips here and there. Finally I took out the India ink and the dip pen. I tried to write the word "Nocturne" on the left had top of the canvas but hated how it turned out. Luckily I was able to wipe most of it off when it was still wet. I added some other scribbles here and there to finish the piece.

(Nocturne - canvas collage and acrylic paint)

(click to enlarge.)

I am liking this ! Two pieces of my own art, on canvas, that I would happily hang on my walls in my house. That is a cool feeling ! In fact, "Fruition" is already hanging up in front of my desk in the studio. I am really happy with both of them, and with all the great things I have learned about myself and the creative process. Big thanks to Carmen again for her great class and for letting me be a part of it !

Happy Monday, beautiful Ones ! Hope you have some chances to get messy this week !

Saturday, October 24, 2009

GPP Street Team Crusade # 34 - Come Over To The Dark Side

So I haven't participated in the GPP Street Team Crusades for a while. I don't have any particular reason except that the months seem to have flown by since the last time I participated. I looked back and found that the last monthly challenge put out there by the wonderful and talented Michelle Ward that I participate in was in May - GPP Street Team Crusade #31 - Make it Your Own. I have to say I really missed it. It has been one of the things in the Blogland community that has connected me to so many wonderful people !

Well now Michelle and all the other Crusader are up to # 34 - "Come Over To The Dark Side" , and I am happy to rejoin all the fun, the camaraderie and the great chance to play all inspired and revved up by Michelle's wonderful prompts !

Now I am no stranger to black. Not only is a big bulk of my wardrobe black, but most every piece of my art work these days have some element of black in it - be it the rich black lines that come from my dip pen and my India Ink or the yummy black gesso that I have found from Golden that often makes an appearance. I love how black makes all the bright colors I love to use pop right off the page.

Well, Michelle's challenge for us this month was to start a piece in our journals from a black background and run with it. Here's how my adventure unfolded this morning :

Here's my black gessoed page. I did that a while back. I love prepping pages in my journal ahead of time with paint splashed backgrounds or with this yummy black gesso.

I was feeling a little wonky this morning. You know, crooked ? I know we all get like that sometimes. I am still learning that I don't have to stay like that all day even when I wake up like that. This morning, I decided to turn to a new and wonderful tool in my arsenal of "getting over the blahs" tricks.

I went to meditate.

While I was sitting and breathing, a mantra popped into my head. Something to hold on to, to breath with and to help me shake the crappies at least for a while.

The mantra was " In this moment, it is all okay."

Along with the mantra came an image. I knew I wanted to do a piece for the crusade this morning, and as I was repeating my mantra in my head, I saw what I wanted to do on my black background. The image of the lotus flowers came to me. I have never really used them in my art work before but their story blows me away. They grow in mud, you see. Icky, stinky mud. And from that mud, this vibrant, powerful, and beautiful flower emerges.

Hey, if the lotus can do that coming out of the mud, I should be able to get rid of those crappies and find a way to bloom today, right ?

So here is the page developing. It is a dark and rainy day here in NH, so I had to use my flash for the photos, so please excuse the strange color shifts and exposures in my shots.

I added some gold watered down Lumiere Metallic paints around the petals.

I added some black line work with my dip pen, some writing ("In this moment it is all okay." over and over) and some detail in gold gel pen and the word "mantra" with a stencil and a sponge in white paint.

So are the crappies all gone ? Not completely but that is okay. Everyone is entitled to a crappy day now and then, right ? I definitely enjoyed the moments when I was playing and focused on creating my vision from my head on the journal page. It didn't look exactly like it did in my imagination but I am happy with how it turned out. And I do love the black - it reminds me of what I see behind my eyelids as I breathe in and breathe out during meditation. And I do love how the colors pop off of it.

Here is another recent piece that fulfills this month's "Dark Side" challenge but rather than begin with a black background, I painted black gesso over a bright page that I had used blues and oranges on with hand carved stamps. Then the lettering is added with a stencil and white paint on top.

I love how my hands glow on this one and that is achieved because of that "darkness".

So I am off to visit the Crusaders now and cheer them on for their undoubtedly great work in taking up the "Dark Side" challenge. You should go and check them out too. Ain't nothing wrong with visiting the Dark Side once in a while! ;)

Happy Weekend, beautiful Ones !

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Queen and Cosmo in the Aviary

Turn up the sound and have a little boogie to this one ! Chica and I just did and it was great !

Here's some shots David took of me and Cosmo in the Studio/Aviary yesterday.

No, the cat is not a big help !

But if I hold him just right, I can get a snuggly purr massage and still get the job done !

I don't look too miserable, do I ?

Happy Thursday, little birds ! Now, go use those wings !

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Enjoy Every Lick of It !

So this morning, I just had to journal !

I have many things on the to do list. But I had this feeling like it all could wait until I had taken some time to nurture myself, to play and to express some gratitude for the lessons I am learning.

I needed to be completely IN THE MOMENT with myself.

Journaling does that for me.

Art Journal Page - "Enjoy Every Lick !" - October 21, 2009
Here's the page that came about quite quickly this morning.

The great thing is that I have many pages of backgrounds all ready prepped in my journal, so I can get going more easily when I do take the time to just play.
The images, the words and the composition just kind of jumped out of me.

Love it when that happens !

I can see the influence of my wonderful Judy again in how this page turned out

and also in the process of PLAY that I went through to create it.

It is so cool to start adopting new little "tricks" into your play time, inspired by others.

That's another awesome thing about being a part of this Blogland art community.

So much to inspire everywhere you go !

Makes for some very fun play time when you just go for it.

A little of me, and little of what I see, a little more of what I feel and

Voila !

Happy Journaling Camper !

Yesterday evening, David and I went to the beach at Hampton to gather some rocks for the Rock Fairy.

Soon they will be covered with the white stuff and she needs a good batch to keep her going for the winter.

We headed there right after David got home from work at 5:00. We had about 45 minutes of daylight left to gather rocks after we made the 30 minute drive.

The light was kind of gorgeous at the ocean at that time of day, at this time of the year.

Sort of foggy blue, misty, blurred and soft.

I took pictures of us in my usual arms length way and captured this somehow without a flash.

I love the blur!

It shows that light pretty well. And I love David's prayerful look.

He was probably praying that I hurry up and take a photo and let him get into the car to get warm ;) , but I think he looks beautiful anyway !

Gotta love this guy ! He puts up with my crazy stuff all the time.

I love that soul mate man of mine so very much !

So I am back in the studio with my birdies and rocks now. I am so thankful for all the orders for my treats ! It just thrills me to know that things I make with love are leaving me and being loved elsewhere !

I added some more birdies to the Etsy shop as I sold 8 of them from there this week. Only the Yellow Bird was left from the first day I listed them. How come the Yellow Bird ? I don't know! I love the yellow zebra bird, myself. I guess it will find a good home when it is time ! ;)

I added a new black one that I just love ! I think it looks like a mini-crow. Cute, right ?

Back to the Aviary as David is calling the studio now !

I promise to take some time later today to catch up with some blog visits. I haven't missed too much, but I feel like I am a little disconnected from my Blogpals and I don't like it !

In the mean time, I am sending big love and hugs to you, beautiful Ones !

Happy Wednesday !