Friday, February 28, 2014

Windows Of My Heart

     Friday and time to turn the calendar page to March. Oh I can only hope for some Spring-like temps this month.  It's also Paint Party time -yay!!!

   Still working on (albeit slowly) my Draw Your Awesome Life and Draw Your Awesome Year  online classes (links  and badges at right sidebar). I was looking to see where I left off at the Awesome Life class and realized I never shared  some lessons I had done in January. So here they are.

  For lessons 4 and 5 we were to find an interesting leaf and branch to sketch and practice with and I chose these from the backyard.

                                                                      first  sketch

                                  using a technique for shading with only a marker and water brush

                                          practicing various drawing techniques with one subject

   and more techniques for varying sketches -note- the water colors were before I had purchased the Peerless colors which are SO much more vibrant!

  Those of you who stopped by last week know I shared my enthusiasm for a tutorial  YouTube video Serena Barton shared on her blog recently. Curb your enthusiasm? Not me! If you didn't check it out, go here for the links. I have two more canvases to share this week :)

  This is how the canvas started:

                                                   just  squares of paper scraps in my stash

   And finished:

                                                    Seek Within      (6" x 8" canvas board)

Reinkers, acrylic glazing medium, blue acrylic paint, card stock stencil, door image (Paper Whimsy), recycled dryer sheet, dress pattern tissue paper, typed words, pencil, black ink pad.

  the second canvas base:

  And the finished  canvas:

                                             My Heart Has a Window    ( 6" x 8" canvas board)

Reinkers, glazing medium, green/ green black acrylic paints, Victorian pattern wall stencil, window image and girl image (Paper Whimsy), found words, recycled dryer sheet, black ink pad.

 What I love most about creating these is just laying down the various papers,  seeing the transformation and  really just playing with mixes of reinkers and glaze directly on the substrate for some really good results. I either start with a word/ sentiment or an image and go from there.  BTW, Serena kindly took the time to send me a note and share my work on her blog. She also heartily agreed that if you create something inspired by her videos or her book or classes to contact her and let her know.  I so appreciate the time she takes with everyone and the fact that she has given me a way to put my  art and spirit into these projects.

  Who have you learned from in the world of art lately that really moves you to create and bring out your true authentic style? And have you told them and shared with them?

  Linking to Paint Party Friday, Art Journal Every Day, and Creative Every Day.

 Thank you all for your comments as always (I cannot thank someone personally though if the setting is a "do not reply") .

           " Your  every new journey is your new window opening to new ideas."   Mehmet Murat Ildan



Tuesday, February 25, 2014

All About Bunnies

 well... mostly anyway. Funny how this theme came together by my taking photos of a special set of coffee bowls and then my son sharing the most delightful You Tube video with me. But first I want share the gorgeous Valentines I received:

   From the top -a gorgeous digital collage from Debby in Canada, a pretty card with a vintage image from ARTchix Studio from Sallie in CA who shares a love of  ARTchix images, a stunning felted card that shimmers like magic -and those ocean colors had me swoon-from Patty  in VA,  the beautiful card with the awesome intricate die cut is from LuAnn-who actually lives only a few miles from me in PA-however, it took her card an extra week to get here arriving only last Saturday. Can you believe it? Thank you lovely friends for thinking of me with your special hand made greetings!

 On to the bunnies. I've always adored bunnies -especially the lops ( the long-eared ones) and have a bit of a collection of  bunnies. I'll only share a few I thought you might enjoy. But first,  you must watch this very short video. And my son is right -this could SO be me :)

  Here is a collage of a set of coffee bowls I bought in France some years ago:

  And to give you an idea of the size here is a pic of me at my aunt's house having breakfast in a typical bowl for coffee the last time I was in France (almost 6 years ago):

 This is a cute but unusual bunny that was gifted to me-do you know what makes it unusual?? Take a guess. I'll show you at the end of this post.


    And this is a small table vignette-books and bunnies :)

  Since St Patrick's Day will soon be here I wanted to start by making a fabric hanging to decorate:

 Asst. fabrics, transparency ( Paper Whimsy), crocheted lace, 4 leaf clover button, vintage buttons, rubber stamp, hand dyed ribbon, dowel, glitter glue. Too bad I couldn't capture the lovely look of the glitter glue all over the lace bottom. No, it's not sewn with any precision and there are loose threads but that's the way I like it and I'm sticking to it! 

 So did anyone guess about the bunny? It was a gift for my baby shower and here's what's special:

                                    His ears are a baby spoon and fork! Now how cute is that?

  Please feel free to join me over at Elizabeth and Bleubeard's for T Stands For Tuesday and see what all the lovelies are sharing this week. And now I will get a hot cup of tea while I hop along the link ups :)

      I thought this quote quite appropriate to end this post since it is flurrying at the moment.

              " In every winter's heart there is a quivering Spring..."  Kahlil Gibran

Friday, February 21, 2014

A Mix Of Projects

  Despite the fact that we've had such a  snowy, icy winter I have had robins in my yard and on the crab apple tree. Usually they're not seen in the winter so I was delighted and for me it's surely a sign of Spring:) So for Conny's Mix It Monthly challenge "Be Inspired By Pets" I chose to create a journal page around the robins and my love of birds.

  Bits of torn tissue were added to the watercolor page before adding the paint to give it some texture. The nest of birds image was torn from gift wrap tissue and glued down over top of a flower I drew and painted. The bird in flight is an image from Stampington.

  Here is a collage of the day a flock of robins visited my yard. It was an absolute delight to watch them "working" the crab apples off the tree!

  These are two more pages of lessons from the "Draw Your Awesome Year" class. These are WIPS-the watercoloring needs to be done next:

                                                   The pg. edges are lined with washi tape.

  My last project for today was inspired again by Serena Barton who recently posted a You Tube tutorial on her blog. For some reason I wasn't able to put the actual video here but you can use this link or go here to see it. It is really worth watching!

 My stretched canvas began like this:

 And here is the finished piece:

                                                         Beautiful Dreamer (6" x 8")
   Vintage image; patterned papers; dress pattern tissue; stencil; reinker glazes; acrylic paint; black ink pad.

  I've already begun two more canvasses which I'll share when completed. I'd love for you to share if you watch the video and create your own project (and I know Serena would too:)!

     Linking to Paint Party Friday; Art Journal Every Day; Creative Every Day; and Mix It Monthly.
 Have a great weekend everyone!

    " A lot of creativity comes from just being in a place where it is allowed to happen spontaneously."
                                                                                                            Carla Hannaford


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Giving Trees

                                                           The Giving Trees 8" x 5"

      I was so inspired to paint in my watercolor journal after seeing the wonderful post at Inspiration Avenue for the challenge this week "hearts and trees". Kim has chosen a beautiful selection of projects to inspire. I had this idea in my head and thankfully it worked on  paper too:) Products I used are acrylic paints, Caran D'Ache water soluble crayons, Staz-On ink,sequin waste, oil pastels.
   Being that it is also Tuesday I'm linking to T Stands for Tuesday hosted by Bleubeard and Elizabeth. I'm linking this to Creative Every Day and Paint Party Friday also.

    The following is a group of CAS cards I created for both the Simon Wednesday challenge (Get Krafty) - the first three cards, and the Moxie fab World challenge (Happy For Hexagons). If you are a card maker you must visit these blogs for a plethora of fabulous projects and cards!

    My cards all focused around this patterned card stock:

   I simply love this pattern from My Mind's Eye and decided to use it in several ways. Sometimes making a group of cards is as easy as choosing a favorite patterned paper from your stash. Make it a bit of a challenge then to make as many cards as you can from the one sheet. My cards took little time and though simple they still make for a lovely hand made card.

  Products Used: kraft note cards (Canvas Corp); yellow, white card stock (Paper Studio); patterned card stock (My Mind's eye); tissue paper; rubber stamps-Thinking Of You (Hampton Art), other stamps-(Hero Arts); yellow paper flowers (Jolee's Boutique); soft grey paper  flower (Recollections); felt heart (Hobby Lobby); felt butterfly (Michael's); Versafine Onyx black ink (Tsukineko).

  I know this is redundant but it is snowing again! I really don't know where else we can put all this I'm not going to worry about it and instead will be visiting blogs a lot today along with a cup of tea or two. See you around!

             " Come forth into the light of things. Let nature be your teacher."       William Wordsworth

Thursday, February 13, 2014

It's A Double Celebration!

  Pretend it is Friday even though my draft post says otherwise.

                                                     HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!

  Sending  wishes of love to all. This has been my favorite holiday for as long as I can remember despite that there were many years I did not have a significant other (of the male kind) to celebrate it with. I simply chose to celebrate the blessings of the friends I had made along the way. Of course now I have my DH of 30 yrs. now to celebrate with but also how apropos that our son would be born (over two weeks late-yikes!) on Valentine's day 26 years ago.
 So happy birthday dear Todd!!
  This is a pic I took of him with his MéMé (my Mom) on Christmas Day. She's about the only one he will smile with so I can get a pic-what's up with that???

 The other reason I'm posting this early is because we were hit with another 12 inches of snow since last night and we're supposed to expect  7 inches more with a chance of power outages! Look, even the snowman is getting tired of it:

                                                     this was a magazine page I've kept

 In keeping with the holiday I have envies I made to send Valentines in :

 I've mentioned in several posts that I love finding card stock cut out papers to use as stencils and this was another great find!

  Here is my February calendar spread in keeping with my Draw Your awesome Year class and Kate Crane's Calendar project. This was a specific prompt for the class:

  And if you're still with me  I have one more project to share. This is a card for the Simon Wednesday challenge this week. The theme is "get krafty"- use kraft card stock or the color kraft. I needed to get an anniversary card to a friend this week so this was the perfect opportunity to fulfill the themes for this post :)

  Products; kraft note card (Canvas Corp); white, olive, pink card stock (Paper Studio); patterned paper (Webster's Pages); clear stamp (Paper Trey Ink- Mega Mixed Messages set); Versafine Onyx Black ink (Tsukineko); floral border stamp (Magenta); Rouge Fluid Chalk Ink (Clearsnap); vintage button; paper flower (Spare Parts); die cut machine and Labels Eight dies (Spellbinders).

 My thanks to everyone again for your thoughts and words regarding my health. I am so happy to report that all my tests came out normal so all is well and all I need to do is keep track of my BP and stay on my med.

 So long as we don't lose power I am looking forward to linking to and visiting at Paint Party Friday, the Simon Wednesday Challenge blog; Art Journal Every Day; Kate Crane's Calendar Project and Creative Every Day.

    "Where your pleasure is, there is your treasure; where your treasure, there your heart; where your heart,    there your happiness".                 Saint Augustine


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Valentine Tea and More

   What do YOU do when your snowed in so much?  Certainly I get more art done, but besides that I cook and bake.  In the last week I made two loaves of pumpkin bread, two apple pies and a spinach pie-most of which is already gone thanks to hubby and son :). I'll usually have a piece to taste and then I don't touch it-mostly because I'm not  into desserts and sweets. Hubby and son are thin and in good shape so they don't need to worry and are most happy to eat up whatever I make!

  For T Stands For Tuesday with Elizabeth and Bleubeard I made a little Valentine's Day inspired tea tray:

                  Nothing says love like heart shaped goodies, doily, the color red and Paris!
That's the pumpkin bread I had with vanilla chai tea on my favorite little tray with one of my favorite mugs along with a vintage glass dish and napkin.

 Here are the pies I baked:

 The apple pies are my great grandmother's recipe and the spinach pie is something my son could devour in one sitting. It's an absolute favorite dish of his. I don't make it very often as it is time consuming though not difficult to make. I surprised him with it on Sunday when he came for dinner. (Racking points for when I need computer help again :)

 Last week I shared a pic of our dog Annie after I groomed her. I just had to capture another pic. Here she is sitting on  a heating vent to warm up when the heat kicks on:

                   I know, pitiful, huh? Is that a "BooBoo" face or what (hence her nickname)? She knew she wasn't supposed to be on it blocking the heat!

  This is some drawing I did for Lesson 3 in the "Draw Your Awesome Life " class. Unlike the "Draw Your Awesome Year" class these lessons are done in a small watercolor journal and honestly I really like the smaller format. This lesson was about creative contour lines, drawing what you see withoutt looking at your paper or lifting your pen. Yikes!

  I first tried drawing my left hand on a piece of tablet paper. I did add some knuckle marks after looking. Then I gave it a go in the journal:

  You can tell by the really wonky middle finger that I accidentally lifted the pen and placed it down where I thought it should be without looking.

 The second page of choosing a nearby object to draw was a bit easier. The lesson was more about getting down the basic shapes of things. I chose a bottle of lavender lotion.

  So that's what I've been up to . I'm also linking this post to Inspiration Avenue for this week's theme of  "Show and Tell" . See you on Friday- Valentine's Day- for a post full of heARTful inspiration!

 "Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves - slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future."  Thich Nhat Hanh

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Ice, Ice Baby!

  Oh yeah... so for those of you who didn't see my  post on Tuesday- we ended up with 8.5 inches of snow by Monday afternoon. And it wasn't done. Tuesday night into Wed. we got hammered with freezing rain and ice! The secondary roads are still really bad and with it being so cold very little is melting. So yet again I have had to reschedule appts. As it is I don't even know how tom. (Fri) will work out as far as a dr. appt. and grocery shopping.  However, we were so lucky in that we didn't lose power like the many thousands of those in surrounding counties. And I did manage to bundle up and take a few pics :)

      My poor yews, arborvitae and forsythia bushes took a beating but thankfully weren't damaged.

                                                                 Know what this is?

 Here's a hint:

  And the end result:

  Poor Annie lost so much hair that as soon as I finished she ran upstairs to the spare bed, pulled down the cover and curled up to get warm. I hated to do it but she was getting a bit knotted, especially since she has an undercoat of fine hair. If only she'd wear a doggie sweater...instead she chooses to run to one of the heating vents when the heat kicks on and -if we don't see her she curls up on it,  but if we're watching she just stands over it. Quite honestly I sometimes feel like doing the same :)

The  Simon  Wed. challenge blog theme for this week is "Have a Heart" so I created a tag and an ATC for it:

  The backgrounds on both are from gelli print papers. I used scraps of aqua tissue paper, remnants of a pink doily painted with glitter glue with tiny heart sequins in it, along with a digital print sentiment. The sparkly heart is from a $ store, the owl  is from JoAnne's.

 The final project I have to share today is my completed January calendar grid. For the last 2 years I have participated in Kate Crane's Calendar project . I did want to continue but wanted to do something different. JoAnne Sharpe's Draw Your Awesome Year was the perfect answer because she has us creating a completely different layout for each calendar month this year. January's grid style and drawing only(no ephemera, collage, stamps or stickers) definitely took a lot of time and thought but I'm very happy with it! Wait 'til you see February-much easier, and so pretty :) I'll show that one next week.

  In closing I want to thank you all for your positive thoughts and concerns regarding my issues with my health recently. The blogging community truly is the most caring and uplifting group anywhere. Because I haven't seen my doc yet nor have I gotten all the tests done I don't have much news-except that my BP is under control now with the med and the rhinitis is gone!

 How about joining in the fun with me at Paint Party Friday, Art Journal Every Day, Creative Every Day, The Kathryn Wheel, and the Simon Wednesday Challenge ?

       "In nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect. Trees can be contorted, bent in weird ways, and  they’re still beautiful."     Alice Walker