Monday, August 31, 2009

My Inspiration

I just realized that I have been using the new CED theme "inspiration" for September and we aren't even there yet. Ok, tomorrow, close enough! There are so many things that inspire me but one of the biggest is nature. I love looking at a flower up close and carefully digesting subtle color changes, every vein of every overlapping petal and the amazing textures of them all. I tried to create a simple journal page (on a piece of cardboard) using only a few colors and highlighting one of my flower screen images.
"nature captures my attention as fast as a million spores releasing from a dandelion bloom"

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Bautista Style and CED "Inspiration"

Back in 2005, I traveled to Seattle for my first time to attend the ArtFiberFest retreat hosted by Teesha Moore. I took workshops with DJ Pettit and Traci Bautista and the third workshop escapes me at the moment. I am a huge fan of both these artists as they are huge source of inspiration for me. I continue to watch for their upcoming workshops hoping that there will be one I can attend here on the east coast.

During my workshop with Traci, I made the most adorable journal book that was put together using dyed papertowels, stamped cardstock and various other special papers including some of Traci's artwork that had been copied for us. I have yet to finish the spine of the journal but I look at it frequently so that I won't forget how it was put together and I love all the fun colors and uneven pages in it.

Yesterday, I couldn't help but want to play with black and white collage images, most that I have created myself. It's very important to me to be able to develop my own images to use in my artwork and Photoshop Elements has helped me do a lot of this. I took the black and white collages and stamped, painted, and added lots of color then pumped up the saturation in PSE. I plan to make some more of Traci's adorable journals to give as gifts and these will be the covers. Here is a pic of the journal made in Traci's class and two of the collages I worked on yesterday.

Unfortunately there won't be much play time today as housekeeping responsibilities and the beginning chapters of International Management will fill most of my day. (I really can't wait to be done with those classes.)

Hope your day is inspirational!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Closing the weekend...

It's Sunday night, still humid and rain showers start and stop while the crickets chirp non-stop; summer nights. I know as soon as the 3rd or 4th snow hits the ground , I will be wishing for more of this heat. (The first few snow falls are exciting and romantic but the rest give way to the bleak, gray days of winter.)

I can honestly say I had a productive weekend. I started with screenprinting my weeds and wildflowers, attended a Virtual Art Picnic (great job Leah!) and finished by laying out my screenprinted images in a format for an art quilt. I am really excited about the potential for this project and the off-shoot of various other projects using the same format. I'm trying my hardest to keep my eyes open to prevent Monday from arriving, but I know it won't be too long now before I crawl under my clean sheets and succumb to the sandman.

Here's a peek at my screenprinting endeavor. Lots of great images to work with!!!


Saturday, August 22, 2009

Virtual Art Picnic

What a fantastic experience!!!! I highly recommend the Virtual Art Picnic for everyone. Leah was a fabulous moderator and she led us through her essential elements to consider for the VAP and led us through a short meditation before we started creating. The plan was to work fast and intuitively, not think so much about what the finished product should look like. Just PLAY!!! So I did!!! I wanted to focus on the color pink. I started by grabbing a couple of faces from magazine clippings and b/w flower images, which seem to be consistent in my artwork, and layered with paint, paper and stamps. This is the better of the two that I worked on together.

It was a great experience discussing the experience with the others on the line from OH, FL, VA, UK, MA and MN. It was a great small group and fun to listen to the experiences of each person and how their time breaking away from the group for an hour was spent playing and being creative.

Thanks Leah, great time, great experience and I plan on spreading the word!!



I can't help but look ahead to the fall. I am an autumn kind of person always feeling really connected to the change of seasons from summer to fall. Refreshing, renewing are just a couple of words I associate to this time of year. There was a point in time where fall left me really depressed. I think a few significant events had occurred in the fall season and even though I would look forward to the change, I was burdened with old ghosts and couldn't fully embrace what I loved about the season.

More so than any other season do I feel the opportunity to start again new in the fall. In one way, it is time to regroup. Time to wrap up and summarize like some fiscal year-end. But along with looking back comes a strong sense of looking forward and beginning anew. Today, I find myself wishing for these feelings of transition to begin. I know I won't feel the change until the leaves begin turning and the mornings become cool and crisp, but I will be here patiently waiting for it. Until then, I have to remind myself to live each day and find something beautiful in it. Today, I start with the Virtual Art Picnic, led by an amazing artist, woman and creator, Leah Piken Kolidas. I'm hoping to get a jump start on my autumn transition through letting go and playing with a group of other creative people. Check out Leah's website here.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Penobscot River - Castine, Maine

Remember the sense of wonder as we discovered beauty in the simple things. I can't explain exactly how it felt, but this weekend was an amazing journey of exploration, self-discovery, bonding and nurturing. This truly is a special place to be, to learn and to grow. The Penobscot River is the longest river in Maine named by American Indians meaning "waters of decending ledge". It is this river that has captivated my family for years. We grew up here summer after summer and I consider myself sort of a half-time resident. There is nothing more beautiful than this place. It will stay in our hearts forever. This weekend we got to share it with my niece and nephew who have never been there.

They loved it! They opened their eyes, explored the beach, tried new exciting things, hung out with their cousins and played, swam and played more! This place does that to you. As a child, I remember singing songs I made up down at the beach when I was alone. I saw one of my nieces doing that same thing and it brought me back. It brought me back to the millions of memories I have about this place, it's beauty and all it has to offer; the seagull that would eat out of my grandmother's hand when she called him, the crab apple tree which was the location of many crab apple fights, the rolling lawns where we played croquet with all of our cousins, the big rock that I never climbed because I was too scared, and the big rusty boat.

New bonds were formed, endless hours of sight seeing ending in icecream on the dock in Castine where the boat owned by the Maine Maritime Academy, the State of Maine, is docked. They were drawn in by it all. Engrossed in digging for clams and finding flat rocks to paint. Jumping off rocks into the salty water. Watching the sun set across the river until everything turned black only lit by the millions of stars in the clear sky. They are under the spell cast upon all of us who know and love this special place. They too can feel the excitement, wonder and peace pervading their bodies and drawing them in. They had a taste of what we know and experienced year after year, summer after summer and they will want to return as many times as they can to get their fill. And we will bring them here to this special place so they too can feel the magic.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Weekend time....

It is absolutely beautiful up here in the northeast today....all sun, light breezes...perfect summer day. This weekend promises lots of creativity. I was up playing with PSE until midnight last night so I can tell I'm off to a great start!

There is only so much time left before I have to finish up my last classes for school. I'm charged up to get it done but really hate the lack of creative time I will have because of it.

Make the most of your time today!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Maine....where life is perfect

It's almost that time again......
to revisit childhood through every smell, sound, feeling, touch and taste
to take long peaceful walks along a special beach on a foggy morning

to fall asleep listening to the fog horn across the water
to watch lightning and hear the thunder from distant summer storms

to smell the delicate mix of salty air, grassy fields and fresh lobster
to hear the heron, ducks, seagulls and seals as they go about their busy days

to see the beautiful sunsets across the water

to just be a part of this place forever ingrained in our hearts

Thanks for a lifetime of memories
Nannie and Fadder xoxoxox

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Fields of Envy

I can't tell you how good it was to get up this morning, make some coffee and sit down at my worktable and paint. What a difference there is in how free I feel right now and how I felt a month ago. Surrounded by peace and calmness, I can focus and think and let myself be guided by the moment. A combination of feelings are wrapped up in this simple display but I love how easy it came to me. I think I might even start to get up extra early on the weekdays to begin like this. I know it will be harder to tear myself away from it to go to work but what a way to start the day! Maybe I will get myself into journal mode afterall.