Wednesday, April 29, 2009

SP Wednesday - Child of Light

The soundtrack :

Snow Patrol - Run

"Light up, light up,

As if You had a Choice..."

"Child of Light" collage - 2007

Kim, Age 5


"Child of Light" self-portrait - Ogunquit, April 2009

Happy Wednesday ! May it be full of light.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Mother of All Apron Swap !

Remember when I teased you all a while back with this :

Those were two detailed shots for the apron I was working on for the Canadian Chickies Mother of All Apron Swap. Each one of us in the group was to make an apron for a partner. My partner was the lovely, sweet, supportive, talented and kind, Arlene from ArtdeMe.
I am not much of a seamstress but I was super pleased with how my apron turned out. I hand-painted the background pieces with fabric paints, using hand-carved rubber stamps and a bunch of stencils. I then appliqued cotton quilting fabrics with crazy zigzag stitches to recreate the design from this "Hope" card I made recently for another Blogland friend.

Here is what the apron looked like before I finished sewing :

And here is what it looks like on my perfect apron model, Arlene in Edmonton, Alberta ! (Yes, that is a "Starry Night" chair beside her - painted by the talented Dawn Supina, who is our swap hostess extraordinaire !)

Arlene loves her apron ! She even thinks it has magical healing powers.

She called it the "Apron of Hope" in her email to me with the pictures. Maybe there was a little white witch magic in it from the Queen. ;-) There was a lot of love put into it, that is for sure ! I am so proud of how it turned out and so glad it made Arlene feel so good !

Arlene has created an apron for me too and it is winging its way to me as we speak ! Such a beautiful thing, sharing the creative joy and artist love all around !

This is wonderful bunch of women that I get to play with ! Lucky Queen, don't you think ?

Beauty is as Beauty Does ?

Art Journal Page - "Beauty Queen"

(Dress and face original artwork by me, legs and arms from an Oprah magazine photo)

How many times in your life have you felt truly beautiful ?

I feel like I was beautiful for about 10 minutes out of 43 years. Okay, on a good day, maybe enough hours here and there to make up a couple of days worth of beauty. Not such a sweet average!

Yesterday, I had an ugly day. You know the kind when you just really don't like what you see in the mirror at all. In fact, you kind of hate it. It may be because it is spring and time to change into a lighter wardrobe, show a little more skin, and have less layers to hide the multitude of pounds gained from quitting smoking in the past year. Whatever the cause, I was feeling UG--LEE !!!

I am an artist, and I am a seeker of beauty. I see it everywhere, in people, in nature, in man-made things, in moments... I even really see the beauty in my own creations a lot of the time. I think I make truly beautiful things. But I honestly have to say that I rarely, almost never, see myself as beautiful.

I have been taking a lot of pictures of myself lately for self portraits and things. It has been hard to see the results of those photo shoots sometimes. I don't like the woman in the photos very much, other than her eyes and sometimes her face. I sure as hell don't think she is beautiful !

I have been told that I am beautiful by others before. Dear ones, who love me, and really see me. When I hear those words, and see myself through their eyes, I may have a moment when I believe it.

I hope I find a way to believe it most of the time, instead of just for moments in time. Seems like a slight possibility some days - like on those super-ugly days. I think I would be happy with just not feeling ugly as often as I do. I think I will start there with the work anyway.

Will I ever feel truly beautiful ?

There is always HOPE.

(As I was pondering these beauty questions this morning, I came across this video clip at the wonderful and inspiring Brene Brown's blog, Ordinary Courage. Some more hope, I guess ! )

Have a beautiful day, Beautiful Ones !

Monday, April 27, 2009

For Today

So I found this lovely, once a week list on Snap's blog Tales from Twist Lane. She found it here at The Simple Woman's Daybook.


Outside my window...spring buds on the maple trees bursting open.

I am thinking...that I need some new clothes to wear for spring.

I am thankful for...the sweet time I had with my man this past weekend

From the yet slightly crisp asparagus, steamed and served with a homemade balsamic vinaigrette

I am pants, a teal colored t-shirt and my "party on my feet" flipflops

I am creating...pages about being a "nice" girl in my art journal

I am meditation class from 6:00-7:00 pm - Heaven !

I am reading... blogs written by my most magnificent and inspiring friends in Blog land

I am hoping... that I can start eating better and lose a few pounds gently and lovingly

I am hearing...the tweets of birds and the gentle whirl of the fan in my studio

Around the house...kitties and dog are dozing

One of my favorite things...tulips that are just opening in my garden - especially the new "Parrot" variety !

A few plans for the rest of the week: working on some earring and things in the studio, lunch with a friend and getting outside as much as I can

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

The incredibly beautiful stain glass piece that my David created for my aunt Lise (with a little help from some friends) !

To read more Daybook posts or learn how to participate, visit The Simple Woman’s Daybook.

Ocean Side R & R for the Queen and her Man

So the hubby and I were fortunate enough to spend the weekend in Ogunquit, Maine. The weather was more summer-like than spring-like with temps in the 80's even at the seacoast.

This was the view from our hotel room at the Anchorage by the Sea, right on the Marginal Way. We spent two days and nights looking out at this :

With so many beautiful sights to see, like this :

(I could have watched the waves crash on the rocks all day !)

there were watchers of all kinds facing the sea

Of course I had to take some time for some Queen of Arts fun with the camera :

I even put the toes into the water (This foot shot is for you, Joanie !) !

It may have been warm outside, but the water temp was around 42 !

There had to be some "Rock My World" action too !

This pile of rocks was already started on this big driftwood log :

So I added the "let it go" rock that had been sitting on my computer for a good long while, bringing it back to its watery roots.

It made me happy to let that one go. I also left this one

on a bench along the Marginal Way to make someone else's day.

It was a pretty wonderful weekend for David and me. Some definite R & R as a couple which was needed and so appreciated. It felt like we were away at some resort down south thanks to the weather, though we were only an hour from home. They do things up nice, over there in Maine, from the wondrous ocean views to other cool things that you see when you look up :

Just goes to show,

you can get there from here

if you take the time to go.

Friday, April 24, 2009

GPP Street Team Crusade # 30 - Cat Got Your Tongue ?

Okay, so I think anyone who has spent any time with me, virtual or real, knows I love WORDS ! I read signs everywhere, I spell words with license plate letters (in Canada, esp.), I am a whiz at word games of all kinds and I love to use words in my art work. In fact, I think it is hard to find a piece of mine without words in it in some form.
So when Michelle gave us the challenge to USE Our WORDS in the 30th GPP Street Team Crusade, I was really gung ho ! I started looking back at some of my favorite "Wordy" pieces from a few years ago right up to the present. That was when I realized how easily words come to me, from all different sources, and find their way into my art journal.

Sometimes I use the words as the "paintstrokes" (click on any of the images to enlarge) :

Art Journal piece - Words as Paint, 2007

Or as accents, like here around the spirals :

Art Journal piece - "Don't Box Me IN !" - 2007

Sometimes, I print them out ont the computer in a font that connects to the page somehow :

Art Journal page - "Gross Gordon", digitally altered, 2008

Sometimes, I hand-write a favorite quote, trying to make my handwriting look good by doodling it up a little :

Art Journal page - "Breaking the Shell", 2008

Or I just cut out words from an old book and see what "poetry" happens :

Detail of Art Journal page - "Love Paths" 2009

There are times when a single word is the focus :

Art Journal Page - "Courage" - digitally altered, 2008

Or an entire phrase :

Art Journal Page - "I Got The Power." - April, 2009

Often, the words of others will get mixed in with my own :

Art Journal Page - "I'm Sorry", April 2009

I know there are those who think that Visual Journals, or Art Journals should rely more on images than words. I guess that is one way to think. Some may think I use too many words in my art pieces. Whatever ! This is how I like things right now, though this experiment in visiting the "wordiness" of my pieces made me think about trying out some non-verbal pieces and see what happens.

The best thing about Art Journals for me has always been that there are no rules ! I get to do it MY WAY ! Wordy, yes, but I love it too !

Now leave a comment if you are so inclined ( I always love to hear from my Blogland Pals !) and then go visit the GPP Street Team Crusaders and check out their Wordy Fun ! Such a bunch of talented peeps !

Have a great weekend !

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

SP Wednesday - Portrait Of an Earth Girl

Self-Portrait Wednesday

Spent some time in the sun on this fine Earth Day. Took out the tri-pod and actually got a shot of myself that I really love. I love the look in my eyes the best, I think.
Made me think of this song :

Want to say a huge

Happy Birthday to Baby Kate

who turns one today, Earth Day Baby that she is. Photos from her birthday celebration tomorrow !

Bless this Earth, our home, and all its wonders.

Happy Earth Day !

Friday, April 17, 2009

Guess Who's One !

Who me ?

I am one already ? You must be joking !

Now leave me alone. Can't you see I'm painting here ?

Yes, my beautiful niece Kate (who takes after me already !) is turning one next week on the 22nd, Earth Day ! I can't belive how fast the time has gone ! She is the coolest baby I have met in a very long time - so smart and wise yet curious, silly and fun at the same time. I think babies being born in this Time are pretty special. It is almost like they are arriving into the world with some added knowledge and tools that they will need to change things for the better around here. Well, that is my hope, our hope, right ?

Anyway, we are having a birthday get-together this weekend for my my budding artist niece (did you notice she was painting in green !!!;-)). David and I and Chica are headed up to La Conception, Quebec with a few carefully chosen gifts for the girl and so looking forward to seeing her and her Mom, Dad and big bro, Thomas. The weather is supposed to be delightfully spring-like and there is sure to be cake and ice cream involved ! I can't wait to breathe in the fresh country air and snuggle that baby girl tight !

Happy Spring Time weekend ! Catch you next week !

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Looking at the World Through Emerald Glasses

Colorful Spring by French Ties

A beam of Sun is teasing my eyes

To make them open

Through the window, green, everywhere.

Green grass, green trees, green heights

Flaming early Spring landscape.

Some bright dots of yellow over there

Shy rose buds softening the air,

Here and there, poppies-like red patches

and above, the blue hat of the sky.

Green, playing with the lights of wonder

Green grinning, conductor of colours,

Green spreading, to awaken the details

And left dark tones weeping in the corner...

Green, such a wonderful Spring painter.