Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Still Here & Still Creating.

Dear friends, a few of you may have noticed my lack of online activity of late.
 At the end of February I deactivated my Facebook accounts, both personal and business related.
It's not a statement or stand of any kind, simply something I chose to do for myself. A way to simplify, refocus, and give attention to the nuances of one moment at a time, one day at a time, right here and right now with a fresh, undistracted ability to concentrate. It's probably not something everyone will get, but it has felt liberating for me.

I will admit to you that I am one of those truly introverted people who struggles to try being extroverted in order to grow friendships, develop my business and be able to share my art. It is not a hardship by any means. I'm happy to be who I am, but it is a reality that often hinders me from being highly successful in sales and promotions or online presence. I have peace with that because those things are not always so high on my priority list, but practically speaking, it is nice to be able to pay the bills. It's kind of ironic I suppose that years ago I started my career with a Master's Degree in Communications and jumped into the corporate world of Marketing and Advertising before getting into teaching and slowly working my way to where I am now.....stay at home mom and artist.

I spend my days caring for family and home, working out of my studio, teaching a few classes here and there (sometimes workshops, parties or camps). I help out at a local sign shop printing t-shirts and making signs (something I did in college), just three or four days a week while kids are in school.

I'll share something personal with you. Over the past two months one of the most exciting projects I've gotten involved with has been one of collaboration with a very good friend and photography mentor. We are making short photojournalistic video montages each month. They are little compilations of 1 second (or longer in my case many times) video clips put together to make a movie of "captured moments", completely unposed, life. We put background music on them and it sort of reminds me of what you might see in the intro to a TV sitcom like "This is Us" only it's about our own families. Supposed to be only about a minute long. Hahaha. My first attempt was narrowed down to about four and a half minutes. Next time I'll make a shorter one. It is a fantastically challenging and thoroughly enjoyable project. My family had no idea I was taking video clips the first month so when I sat them all down to show the completed video they were really surprised. I love that.

Well, enough with the personal monologue. Here's an excerpt from my first attempt at photojournalism through "videography" (isn't that a word? video & photography...I believe it is, or should be anyway)

P.S. Just because my FB is gone doesn't mean I am. I will definitely still be here, working away and available if you need artwork, a class, tutorials, photography, design work or other fun creative projects. I may not post super often or on any kind of regular schedule, haha ( I know. Terrible.) But at least if you follow me, your inbox is not bombarded with random posts every day. One plus right? 

God bless you blogosphere friends. Stay creative.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Boxer Project

Here is a peek at something I've been working on a little while now for a friend.

My friend had purchased a statue of a boxer that was in a bit of disrepair from an estate sale and asked if I could possibly paint it to look like her sweet dog.

Absolutely. Sounded like a fun challenge to me.

So, first I sanded it down getting rid of the layers of flaky paint. I cleaned it. And I primed it.
Then I began painting it using various snapshots she sent me from her phone for reference.

I love this particular photo.

Creating a three dimensional pet portrait was a unique challenge and one I enjoyed very much.

I am just about finished now and will put the final clear coats of polycrylic on the statue to protect it. Then she will just have to decide where to put it.

Hmm....I wonder if her dogs will think she brought home a new friend to play with when she sets it out, haha.
My little dog sure freaked out barking the first time he came around the corner and saw it. It was pretty hilarious.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Artsy Bed & Breakfast

Over the holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, we were thrilled to have family come at various times to stay at our home.

More family and friends = more fun and memories. Extra food, extra laughter, extra awesome.
But it also means a need for space to put people when they stay the night. Sure, we could stick them on couches and palettes on the floor....which we totally did with the kids. They love a good sleepover with cousins so it was perfect. But we wanted to share a special treat with the grown-ups. A little artsy bed and breakfast, if you will. And visitors were not the only ones to book this room. Jeremy and I stayed one night out in it as well and it was like our own little fancy retreat without the travel or booking fees!

Private wrap around deck with two chairs to watch the friendly visiting birds
Quiet view of gorgeous country sunset & sunrise
Private half bath
Queen size blow up mattress with adjustable comfort controls
Covered back porch with dining table, couch, swing and rocking chairs, quilts & screen set up for outdoor movie at night
Outdoor fire pit
all this and,
Access to the excitement of the main house only steps away.

Hmm....I'm thinking I might have to stay here again soon.

Wrapping up 2016

2016 - Teaching Classes & Hosting Art Gatherings in the Art Studio

Wow! What a blessing and a journey. Sometimes the most treasured and rewarding things bloom from steep trials and long hard work.

I am ever grateful for my students and their families, the fun things we have made together, the memories, the new friendships, the opportunity to grow right alongside each of them throughout this year.

I am looking forward to all that 2017 has to offer and all that we can contribute to it.

So, I suppose the short and sweet version of posting begs me to proclaim "that's a wrap for 2016".

I happily welcome the start of many fabulous new creative pursuits for the new year!

I'll leave you with a few snapshots from the last projects we did in kids classes at the end of the semester....

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Sugar Skulls & Screen Printing

This past week my students and I had fun learning about the cultural history and tradition of Dia de Los Muertos.

While exploring the annual celebration that has taken place in Latin and Mexican cultures for centuries, we learned much about their popular colorful decorations and artwork.

In particular, we worked with making sugar skulls.

In order to create our designs, I taught the kids how to take a vector artwork (our sugar skull outline), create a transparency, develop it on a printing screen, and screen print onto pieces of fabric and t-shirts using fabric printing ink. We heat set the ink and then colored the designs with bright colors using Sharpie markers.

Here are the young masters of creativity at work: