I’m Back!

I had such good intentions with this blog. And then I broke my wrist and had surgery (a plate and 9 pins!) and I couldn’t do much for awhile. It’s amazing how much you use two hands for things (getting dressed, bathing, driving, etc.). Because I incapacitated my dominant hand, I couldn’t write or paint or use scissors…in other words, my art life just stopped.

And I was grumpy.

So I did my hand exercises once I was given the green light, and went to my new office/studio and tried to find something artistic to do. This is when I discovered the joys of alcohol inks! I had to have my studio mates open the bottles for me, but I was finally able to play. Alcohol inks are so vibrant, and when the colors swirl together they make new colors! And I loved it! I will confess that the flower images on the pieces shown below were done with my right hand about a month after surgery. And yes, my hand was sore afterwards!

Here are some examples of how I spent my time recuperating…

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Paper Dolls – Spring

I have been so inspired in my new studio! I have my books, my pens, my papers, my paint…it’s a bonanza of arty goodness! Pam and I have been discussing all the different art techniques and classes we want to offer. I can’t wait to share more with all of you once we start finalizing things.

One of the projects that I have been contemplating involves paper dolls. I don’t know exactly why, but I have always had a fascination with paper dolls. There is something about making mini people and dressing them. I have made dolls in the past, so obviously there is something appealing about personal arts and crafts.

A couple of days ago two thoughts came to mind, paper dolls and seasons. Could I make a seasonal paper doll that I would like? Here are my 2 experiments for Spring!

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Paper and glue paper doll – Spring

 

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Digital paper doll – Spring

The first paper doll was made with paper, glue and ephemera. The second paper doll is digital. There are many resources online for paper dolls and I had quite the fun time online looking my choices.

Which do you like better? Any interest in making your own seasonal paper doll?

My office/studio!

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316 East Fourth Plain, Vancouver WA

 

More pictures of my new office/studio! I haven’t decided exactly what to call it. Office sounds so official and business-like, and studio sounds like I consider myself an artist. After all, artists have studios. And calling myself an artist makes me nervous. Because if I call myself an artist, doesn’t that mean I think I’m good at it?

Yes, even deciding on a word can send me down the rabbit hole!

One of the definitions of “artist” is a person who practices any of the various creative arts. I guess that makes me an artist!

Which means I have a studio!

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OMG! I have an office/studio!

Well, things have changed since my last post. I now have an office/studio! And I wasn’t even looking for one!

The past few years I have been withdrawing from the world. I have stepped back from groups and activities and pretty much hibernated at home. I could tell a big change was coming, as the old fell away, and I waited for the new to show itself. Turning 50 and my children leaving home finally pushed me into asking the big question “what do I do with my life now?”

I started Life Book 2015 in January, connecting back with my art. To be able to create and play has been so much fun! And hard work! I think the Life Book work has finally prepared me for new opportunities…and one of those opportunities is a new office!

The fabulous Kathryn King was looking to expand her office, and the suite of offices next to her were available. Kathryn asked Pam Dusenberry (a fellow Life Booker!) and me if we had ever thought about having studio space. We both said yes, and then started talking about how fun it would be to have workshops, and open art times and sharing our love of art with other people.

Next thing I know, I have an office/studio! In Vancouver! I know, right? Me, working in Vancouver (I live in Portland). Pam and I share an office, Kathryn has an office where she sees her clients, and then there is a bigger room where we will have classes and workshops. I don’t know what I will be doing specifically, though stay tuned, because I will be posting it here once I know.

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Kathryn and Pam writing their intentions on the wall before we painted.
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Pam’s husband, Kirk, painting. What a trooper!
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The fireplace!
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Kathryn’s office.
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My words of intention written on the wall.

 

Here are my thoughts right now…art workshops, studio time, reading tarot, teaching tarot classes, graphic design, Photoshop Tutorials, etc.

The possibilities are endless!

Spring Equinox, Soul Collage and Greeting Cards!

My friend, Kathryn King, is hosting a FREE Spring Equinox event this Saturday evening in Vancouver. I will be there selling my greeting cards! (Here are some of the ones available…)

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Here are the details…

March 21, 2015 A Free Community Event with East Wind Ceremonies & Friends to celebrate the Spring Equinox. Are you ready to embrace Spring and all the possibilities it offers us? Kathryn will be releasing her new CD Raven’s Light and we will have a number of other local musicians to share their music. There will be tables with local art for sale, a place to make SoulCollage® cards, as well as poetry books and readings. A special guest will be available to apply “fairy hair” for anyone who is interested (minimal cost).

6-8pm: Fairy Hair, SoulCollage®, Art for sale, local music.
7-8pm: A celebration/ceremony to welcome Spring
8-9pm: SoulCollage®, Art for sale, local music.

Location: Vancouver Unitarian Universalist Church located at 4505 E. 18th Street. (Sanctuary)

Sadness reflected…

I dreamed about my friend, Meg, last night. This is the second time in 10 days that I have dreamed about her. Meg passed away in 2012 from breast cancer, and she was my buddy on our breast cancer survivor dragonboat team. In both of the dreams, Meg looked good, and was still going to die from breast cancer. Both times I awoke feeling sad, missing her.

I know these dreams are echoing the anxiety I feel about the dragonboat team starting a new season. I love my teammates, and sometimes I am so sad about how many fabulous women we have lost.

Now to be truthful, it has been times like this that I would be heading for the chocolate (and all the other carbs that boost serotonin).

But I can’t do that now.

I have chosen to severely limit sugar, gluten and dairy. Coping through carbs is not a really great long-term strategy, so I have to find another way. Since I am working Life Book 2015, I decided to see if I can work my grief through art.

So here are two pieces (thank you, Joanna Sharpe, for the techniques) I worked on today. Version one is using watercolors, and verson two is digitally colored.

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Life Book 2015…new adventures in art

I am now at Week 7 and I am totally surprised about which buttons of mine are being pushed! I’m totally loving it! I’m discovering new art products and am feeling very inspired.

Week 5’s offering is the feather. It’s collage, watercolor pens, and Posca paint pens. I am totally digging the Posca pens. Notice the white paint in the image? That’s a Posca white pen! The first attempt at the feather resulted in it looking more like a tree. I like this attempt better.

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Week 6’s lesson was Seeds of Love. I loved this lesson. As a matter of fact I am currently working on more pieces using these techniques. There are lots of layers of watercolor crayon, Posca pens and acrylic paint. There is also a lot of “smushing” (blending and adding and blending and adding, etc.) involved which is really fun and involving.

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Life Book 2015…Week 3

I love words…reading them, writing them, studying them. And to turn words into art? Love it!

Week 3’s lesson was taught by Joanna Sharpe and focused on using words in our artwork. I have been trying for years to get a handle on making cool word art, and I was always just a little off. Of course, I would make something, it would look amateurish and I would stop in disappointment. The truth is that I didn’t practice enough to improve. Isn’t that just the lesson?!

So, as recommended by Joanna Sharpe, I have an ongoing journal to practice my lettering. I’m still critical, but even I can see improvement the more I practice.

Our project for Week 3 was to create an image and quote using watercolor and pens. It took several attempts but here is the final project. Notice, I used my Word For The Year in my quote!

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