Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Art

Just had to show you the pumpkins my 13 year old carved. There is an art to this- even if you are following a pattern!

The patterns were in an old folder; you tape it to the pumpkin and poke a bunch of holes around the design- then remove the paper pattern and set to cutting all the little pieces out.

It's weird- this child has very little patience for much, but for the past three years, pumpkins have commanded her full attention- and certainly command the attention of the adults taking their kids from door to door!

If you click on them, you can see a larger photo of them.

This is pumpkin number two- Heidi didn't want to carve hers, and Chloe didn't have a lot of time, so she chose an "easier" design... wouldn't have been easier for me, but compared to the first one she did this weekend, I guess it is easier...

Where does she get the patience?!?
I wouldn't even have considered it... and it even has a hanging spider.

She actually spent more time on these pumpkins than on her costume- because it isn't cool to have mom's help any more... but she was happy with how she dressed- and even more so because she was able to wear her footie pajamas underneath! lol

I had to cut her little friend off (she was dressed as a voodoo doll and looked great) because I don't publish other peoples' kids' photos without permission. You know.

Hope you all had a happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

How do I know?

I don't have photos to post this time, because this is not about something I have completed or something I am physically working on. This is about something I am wondering about.

The biggest thing art has done for me, is bring me self-awareness. I don't even know how to fully describe it- it's like being awakened after a long, deep sleep.

Since moving here, I have been awake, aware- but I always have this feeling there is more. The problem is, I spent the first 40 years of my life ignoring my inner voice, not trusting myself or my judgement, not believing that I have anything worth saying.

That has changed since I married my husband and moved here to be with him. I have been here, in the US, in this marriage, in our home, for over two years now and I feel gloriously excited, because I know I am on the right path for me. I do have something to say, and I have so many ways to say it. I want to trust myself, if I can only figure out how to know when to really listen!

But how do I know when my inner voice is telling me I need to do something specific because it is where I NEED to be, and not just something that I WANT to do because now I can?

How do I learn to listen and really understand that voice, that intuition, the one that really knows what road is mine right now?

What approach do I take? Do what is calling to me and trust/hope that it is right? Do nothing because I can rationalize myself out of it, or find a reason why I can't do it? I am just afraid of wasting time on the wrong thing. I have already spent a lifetime doing that! lol

Maybe it's best to take that leap of faith and do what feels right. What is the worst that can happen? I learn something? I find the right road while I am on an interim one? Neither of those things sound very negative, do they?

Maybe if I can bring myself to be more open about learning- not only techniques, but about ME and what makes me tick, I will be able to create what a friend of mine calls Soul-Work, and I will be better equipped to deal with the emotional issues that need to be addressed in this household.

Okay- so when I look at it THAT way- what wouldn't I do to get there?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

What's new and link to a giveaway!

Good morning Fellow Artistes!

I have been a bad blogger! My excuse is that my luncheon last week took up a lot of my time- and this week, I have been working away at a little Halloween scrapbook for my swap through Scrapzville.

Felicia at Scrapzville is an absolute wonder- if you like making mini albums, you will LOVE what she does and should go visit her blog to see her talent in action!

Last night was the meeting of a little art group I belong to. We started it about a year and a half ago, and there were about a half dozen of us coming regularly. Then we added some new people and lost most of the original members, so we still really don't have any kind of a mission statement or specific purpose.

Each of us is at a different place in our artistic journey, and many of our goals are different. But we always enjoy being together, so we keep going. Personally, though I don't have the time to commit to my creative side, (nor the talent to pull it off yet!), my art is very important to me. I NEED to always be making something, and it is is inspiring to surround myself with people who are like-minded.

We meet once a month and bring either works in progress for feedback, or work we have completed to show everyone.

I brought my Italy panels with me last night to show and get this: my husband was actually worried that I was taking them down for good! lol  He really likes them and was happy to know they were just leaving temporarily. It feels pretty great to have made something to hang in our home that he likes as well as I do!

Here is how they look on the wall- you can click on the photo to see it larger.

I have to tell you about a necklace that my friend was wearing to our meeting last night- she bought it at a little shop and it was made by a local artist. It says on the front: May I be excused? and on the back: Thank you.

How simple- and how funny! How many times a day, especially with two teenaged girls at home, do I ask myself that very question?! I think I need one of those to wear EVERY DAY. lol I bet everyone could think of a time that being excused from something would be just great!

And last, but certainly not least, you should go over to Artsy Butterfly- Cathy is having her very first giveaway, a couple of photo prints. The shots are both taken at night, and are simply stunning! Of course, I love photography and have never been able to take good night shots. I suppose I had better get going and take a course on how to use my camera properly!

You should make some time to look through Cathy's blog while you are there. She is a talented photographer with a great sense of humor, you will enjoy looking. And she has an Etsy shop in case you see something you can't live without!

So, at the advice of one of my fellow bloggers, Connie, at Dirty Footprints Studio- TURN OFF THE COMPUTER- GO MAKE ART!!! And that's just what I am going to do! Have a good day all!

Friday, October 8, 2010

My art this week...

My art this week was creating peace for myself when I most needed it and creating tasty food and a pretty setting for my get-together today.

Monday morning started off very badly with a family thing (I have two teenaged daughters at home- 'nuff said, right? lol), and I was feeling really low.

Instead of letting myself get into a funk about it, I did what housework absolutely had to be looked after and then spent the rest of the day in my studio, letting off steam through my hands, and it was wonderful!

Tuesday was my only son's 20th birthday. He lives two thousand miles away from me, and it is always a little tough to not be there on special celebratory days- but we had a great chat on the phone and he had a great birthday. Very fitting- he's a great guy. (I almost said kid. Yikes.)

Tuesday I also had my car in the garage all day, so there was the traveling back and forth for that, between the cleaning and planning and researching and creating.

Wednesday they came to put the very last finishing touches on my kitchen and not a moment too soon! I spent a good portion of that day in my studio as well, as I was making some little quilty ornaments and trying to finish up my Italy panels so I could hang them on the wall before Friday.

So what about Friday caused the hurry?

I belong to an antiques group with my neighbor and today was my day to host the group for lunch and a program. I had two co-hostesses who helped with planning, food, set up, and clean up.

I had to borrow most of the dishes and silverware we used, as there were 19 of us! I also had to borrow a teapot, coffee pot, sugar bowl, creamer, and large coffee maker... Thankfully, I actually have seating for 19 people, believe it or not! lol

I made lasagna and fresh dinner rolls, one of my helpers made an amazing spinach and fruit salad, and my other helper made the moistest, tastiest pumpkin cake for dessert.

I presented the program on the history of quilting, and after that I showed some of my quilted things (bed quilts, art quilts, bags/purses), and everyone was so kind and excited! I had invited the others to bring a quilt to show and talk about, and that was just the most fun- in fact, we are going to continue with it for the show and tell for next month too!

In the middle of the photo, to the right of the fireplace, you can kind of see my Italy panels hanging on the wall. I haven't finished the 9th one yet, but I hung what I had and I had a lot of great feedback on them today.

It was kind of scary; this was not only the first time I have entertained a large group (ever), but it was the first time that I had a lot of my work out for people to see. But I got so many positive comments it was very cool!

Here are the tables all set up for my guests. Don't you love the flowers? My neighbor Elizabeth and her husband were here at 8:30 am this morning with a bunch of vases and freshly cut roses from her garden!

All of my lovely guests had a good time, as did I. After everyone left, I wondered to myself how on earth I got here? I wasn't nervous today at all- I felt complete confidence in my abilities to entertain my friends, to feed them, to present an interesting program... when in my past, I would never have been able to pull any of that off. And not because of my lack of space- I just didn't have any faith in myself or my ability to do anything well enough, and that always caused me a lot of stress.

Today was stress-free. Not only that, it was fun! And it is all because I am growing into the person that has always been inside of me. I am loved, I am treasured, and I am free.

My darling hubby spoils me ROTTEN, I have to say. What a beautiful home we are making together. I am a HAPPY, HAPPY girl!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Some awesome people and sites to check out!

Writing my earlier post today made me think of the numerous generous people I am in contact with every day through blogs and websites, and how much talent and generosity is out there!

A number of these artists are so giving with their time and information- there is a number of them doing free tutorials or giving instructions on how they made something so you can too.

This is by no means a complete list of what is out there- but whom I have on my list right now that is generous with their talent.

In alphabetical order:

One Designer's Journey: - videos of crafty things and recipes

1st Floor Flat: - video tutorials of art & stuff

alisaburke: - recipes and how-to's for art & photography

Art Freebies: - free vintage-type images for you to use in your art

Creative Carmelita: - step-by-step instructions for many different things

Heather Thomas: - step-by-step instructions for machine quilting

Hub Bub: - lots of video tutorials for art journaling and Creative Revolutionaries

My Art Journal: - mixed media tutorials & tips/hints for craft shows

Scrapzville: - video tutorials about everything scrapbooking & monthly swaps

Teesha Moore: - how she does her art journals

The Magpie's Nest: freebies and tutorials

The Three Muses: - weekly challenges for anyone to join

Why not visit these sites and see what you think- and leave a comment for them. We bloggers LOVE comments!!!

What we do

As an aspiring artist, I follow many blogs and visit many sites every week. These blogs and sites give me inspiration, ideas, HOPE.

Those of you who make art, know for yourself that art is a healing thing! And those of you who don't make art because you think you can't- think again! It is in ALL of us to create things, to express ourselves in some artistic way.

Art takes many forms. There is art to making a beautiful home for your family and loved ones. There is art in growing food or flowers. There is art in cooking a delicious meal. There is art in donating your time and efforts to help others.

And then of course, there is the art we create to adorn our walls, our bodies, our furniture, our surroundings.

Any of the things we do to make our lives or the lives of others more beautiful, is art.

The community of artists is a generous and giving one. So many artists out there are helping people find peace and healing through art. They are helping people find their voice, and that is a spectacular thing!

There are so many online courses you can take to learn things, and with them you get a community of like-minded people surrounding. These people can often become friends. How cool is that???

Many of the courses are for a fee of course, as these wonderful people do have to make a living like the rest of us. And we should support them in their endeavours because what they do is important!

However, every once in a while, someone offers some instruction for free, out of the goodness of their hearts, because they have this need to reach out to those who might otherwise have to miss out on learning because of their financial situation.

I am going to tell you about one of those artists today: Tam at

She is offering a free, four-week course on healing art beginning October 18- but registration is open now.

It is open to everyone! It costs nothing- but if you can afford the price of a class, why not make a donation or look at what classes are available for purchase on her site? If you can't afford to do that, please post about this class and add a button- spread the word so more people will go to Tam's site and either join the class or buy stuff- or both! Spread the love!!! Because that is what artist do!!!

You will find the button on my sidebar. I think it is going to be a great class. Wanna join me there?