Monday, December 6, 2010

It's been a long time, plus a big surprise!

Well it appears I was wrong when  I thought working on the condo was only reason that was going to keep me from my artwork, turns out pregnancy is also a good excuse.  This is quite a surprise actually. In fact I could not be more surprised if I were to wake up with my head sewn to the carpet. 

I had pretty much given up hope for having a family, and was struggling with the question of whether or not to go down the fertility path.  Which I didn't really want to do to be honest. Besides the expense, which wasn't affordable, and as much as I would like a family with mulitiple children, I certainly did not want to have a litter of them all at once.Though I have to admit it is more efficient that way to get it all over with in one birth.  In fact, for awhile I was hoping I would be having twins for that very reason, but no such luck. 

The strange this is, as happy and excited as we are, I'm still in denial that come June this baby will actually have to come out.  Not really looking forward to that part.  In fact I'm quite scared.  I suppose when the time comes it will all work itself out.  But really, it would be very nice, if science could come up with another way to have children that was less scary, painful and intimidating.  I have 6 1/2 more months, anything is possible right?

In the meantime, I'm happy awaiting the time when the gag reflex turns off, and the heartburn and bloating go away or least subside.  This is why I am spending most of my days like a beached whale on the couch reading instead of painting, updating Etsy and Facebook, twittering etc.  If my doctor is right and these ailments go away in the second trimester, I expect I will return to the studio, and finish some very neglected paintings.   At least I hope I do. :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"Essie Car Go"

Just wanted to introduce my latest painting!   This is "Essie" the snail, short for "Essie Car Go", but don't worry she won't end up on anyone's dinner plate, thanks to her wide innocent eyes and friendly smile, no one can bear to punish her for eating all the pretty flowers in the garden. 

Kind of like the banana slugs in my garden, they constantly munch my flowers but are so cute I feel sorry for getting mad at them, and of course I let them stay.  Total pushover I know.  :)

Anyway some of you may remember her as work in progress pic a couple months ago on Facebook.  At that time all I had done was the shell and background. She's been waiting and waiting in my studio  for me to finish her, because I couldn't decide if I liked her background or not, but after decorating it with bright yellow flowers, I decided it could work after all.  She's been almost finished for a month, because I've been too busy and maybe a tad lazy to glue the flowers down, well over the past weekend I lit a fire under and butt and actually sat down did it.  Finally she is finished! 

You can find her on Etsy as an original right now.  I will have prints up soon, and most likely postcards, necklaces, and greeting cards, depending on how popular she is. 

Hope you all like her!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sometimes you just have to believe.

Well after a long accidental absence I'm finally back in the art world!  I feel like I missed out on so much these past two months, and I can't wait to catch up with you all, and see what awesome creations you are making. 

Thanks to everyone who left lovely supporting comments to my last post.  I honestly didn't intend to ignore anyone, and I loved and appreciated everyone single comment, so I'm very sorry If I didn't respond to you.  Things should be much more calm these days, so I should have plenty of time to do things properly now.  :)

So our rental is renovated and finally rented, yippee!  That's a huge stress taken off our shoulders.  And frankly I was quite sick of going over there so  it couldn't have happened at a better time.  Now I can play with art!

Which reminds me the picture you see above is the first painting I've done since the rental remodel.  It is a large 30x30 canvas and I just basically had a blast playing with colors and background.  I made it for me, because right now there are things going on in life (which I will talk about another time, but not bad) that made me realize that sometimes you really just need to sit back and believe. Not only in the universe, but in yourself.  I made this painting as a reminder to myself to do just that.  The fact that I made it for me, gave me a lot more freedom to experiment.  Or at least I thought it did.  I didn't worry about how it came out, I just kept putting color on until I felt like stopping.  It sure was a lot of fun!   

I'm selling it as a print, postcard and greeting card.  Not sure about selling the original yet, think I want to keep it around a little longer.  But, today you can buy the Giclee print on Etsy if you are so inclined.   :)  The greeting cards and postcards will come later this week, and I will post them to Etsy then. 

Thanks again for not giving up on me! 

Friday, October 1, 2010

I won Another giveaway! And...just a little drama...

"Finding Connections" by  Elizabeth Gonzalez




First, I want to say, thank you all who commented on my last post.  I'm sorry I didn't get back to everyone individually, but as you know, it's been crazy hectic.  My computer time has been cut 95%, so it's been pretty hard to get things done.  But I do appreciate you all, and thank you for sticking by me, during this non artistic time in my life.  I can't wait to get back into my art community again, and start creating.

Second, I won yet another blog giveaway!  This time from the lovely Elizabeth Gonzalez, who works wonders with ceramics. If you never seen her beautiful work check out her Etsy store, you won't be disappointed.  Seriously though, this is getting a little weird.  I've never won any kind of contests/giveaways in my life, and all of a sudden within the last few months, I've won three!  I can't believe my good fortune, I sure must have done something right, to deserve all these lovely gifts. :)  Thank you so much Elizabeth, I can't wait to get my beautiful mug!

In other news, I almost had a night to paint on Wednesday. Almost.  You see Wednesday afternoon,  Mr. F and I decided to forget remodeling, and made a very late descision to hop over to San Fransisco for very late lunch. Well we had a lovely meal at a Thai restaurant on the beach, but just as we sat down, he got a call from work saying he needed to come in.  Of course we are over an hour away, so it wasn't until almost 7 pm that we made it back to San Jose.  Long story short the problem was solved before we got there, and so we decided to go home early for once.  

Of course this was the first time in nearly 3 weeks that I had any chance at all to paint, so I was just about to settle into my studio when the craziest thing happened.  My vision went horribly wacky in one eye.  Naturally, the first thing I did was panic. Actually that's an understatement, I worked myself into quite a lather.

I mean a sudden change in vision is never a good thing right?  I totally thought I was either going blind, had a detached retina, or having some kind of stroke, or other neurological condition.  All of which would require cat scans/mri's, surgery, hospital stays, etc. none of which sounded very pleasant.

See that' the problem with having worked in the medical field for 10 years.  I know just enough information to be a danger to myself. 

Anyway, after much drama, confusion, panic, etc, It went away. Just like that.  By this time we were halfway over the hill on the way to the emergency room.  Just in case, we continued over to the valley, and went to my mom's house.  By the time we got there I perfectly normal, but I realized that I was absolutely starving, having not eaten much in the city due to needing to rush back.  Being the perfect mom, she had dinner all ready for us, and managed to calm me down.

Thanks to Google my step dad figured out what the heck happened to me.  Want to know what my problem was?  

An Ocular Migraine.  Yeah. All that fuss for a little eye headache.  Apparently you don't need any pain with one either, which I didn't have. But all my visual symptoms were right on.

I feel like a complete dork now, but that was honestly one of the scariest things that has happened to me physically, well next to the time I drank too much Pepto Bismol, and well, I won't go into details, and completely gross you out, but  let's just say strange things can happen, and I thought I was bleeding out.  I almost hugged the emergency room doctor when she told me all I had was a side effect.

Anyway, thank goodness for family and a wonderful patient husband.  It was so nice to have a place to go to, and people around me to help ease my fears when  I was feeling so scared.  

Still It's been awhile since I saw the eye doctor, and I do need new glasses, so I think I'll pop over soon and have everything all checked out.  

Needless to say I never painted that night.

And now?  I have to get back to spackling the baseboards. Ta ta for now!





Thursday, September 23, 2010

I may be gone a while longer...

Hi all!  I just wanted to pop in real quick and explain my almost non existent online presence these days.  Life has been crazy busy, and all my days are now spent helping my husband remodeling and getting our condo ready to rent or possibly sell.  Not that I am in any way qualified to be doing carpentry/home repairs, etc, but someone has to help him, so I do what I can.

We've been at this for 2 solid weeks now, and of course that means no art time for me, especially since we get home every night around midnight, and by then all I can do is collapse on the bed, and watch I Love Lucy until I fall asleep. 

I have about 10 unfinished projects waiting patiently for me in my studio, and no clue when I will be able to get back to them.  I'm hoping within the next week we will be done.

 Meanwhile, I haven't updated Etsy recently due to the fact that there aren't any new items to show, and I'm not tweeting or having much to say art wise on FB either. It's so strange being out of the loop.  I sure miss my little art community!!

Anyway, I hope you all understand and don't forget me while I'm gone.  :)  I promise to come back soon with a bunch of brand new pieces to show off!  

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Changes, sales, and thoughts...

Wow, it's been a busy week! 

First I want to say thank you for all the congrats you guys left on my last post.  I'm loving my prize from Juilette, and it hangs proudly in my studio and looks great!

I have a lot going on these days, and it's good stuff!


Right now, I feel as if I'm at a real turning point in my life.  Like I'm on a threshold with one foot over the edge to a more successful art business, and one foot still lingering not quite sure if it's really happening. 

This week, I had my first "big" sale on Etsy.  One lovely lady bought 3 of my canvases.  I had to say to goodbye to Ellie, Hootie and Heidi, some of my very favorite pieces, and it was a little sad, yet very exciting at the same time. 

The piece I will miss the most is "Ellie".  No doubt about it, Ellie was a turning point for me artistically.  It was the beginning of a new look and a new, wonderfully fun series of animals.   I loved the freedom I felt when I painted her.  It was one of those moments, when you really let go of all fears, and just enjoy the process of creating and painting.  It's one of the best feelings in the world, when you can just let loose have fun, and that's exactly what happened when I painted her.  I hope they all enjoy their new home!

I've had a few more sales this week as well, another "large" sale and a few others, so I'm feeling like all my hard work is finally paying off. All the painting (well that's the fun part), listing on Etsy, hours on the computer, tweeting, marketing myself etc. seems to be working.   My store is getting more exposure, and so is my art.  It's all very exciting.

I feel like I'm on a new adventure, and I'm loving the ride, let's hope it keeps going!

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Look What I Won!!

"Me and My Monster" mounted print by Juilette Crane
I'm so excited you guys!!!  I won this lovely mounted print by Juliette Crane!

Seriously, I tried hard to win this and left a total of  4 comments on  The Handmade Gift Guide blog where the giveaway was taking place.  Guess it paid off!

I really wanted this one so bad.  I just love it, because I feel that I can identify with it so well.  It will have a special place in my studio, and I can't wait to get it!

Thank you Juliette and the Handmade Gift Guide for having such a wonderful giveaway!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Hello, updates, and an announcement

Just popping in real quick to say hi, give a few updates, and  to make a formal announcement (a bit late) about my artwork that is making it's debut at the Itty Bitty Boutique in Downtown Campbell!  I'm super excited about this new venture, and I really hope I do well. 

Right now I only took two shelves to start with. If things go well (hope hope hope!), I'll of course add more space and inventory.  :) 

In the meantime, I'm working hard on the business side of things.  My new website is up and running, and I might add, very proudly totally updated! 

I'm working everyday on the Etsy store and have been devouring many tutorials on how to make your shop more noticeable etc.  It's a slow process I think, and definitely a huge learning curve, but I won't give up.  There are times though, when I really think what is the use? But I'm guessing everyone has low moments like that when they are trying to start a new business.  Please tell me I'm right!  

Not much art is actually happening this week, simply because I've been so busy.  I haven't been home much either, so that doesn't help.  But I am working on new stuff, mainly a giraffe, a whale (still!), a hippo and a snail.  I suspect the snail will be done first, probably because he's smallest.  :)

That's all for now!  Hope everyone is doing well, and has a great weekend!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"Fang"

"Fang" Mixed Media Collage available on Etsy
As requested, here is a cat painting for you! I just couldn't resist with the colors, they seem to be favorites of mine.  :)

This Kitty's name is "Fang" and is on an 11x14 canvas. It is listed in my Etsy shop for those of you that might be interested. There are a ton of layers involved in this piece, and at one point I started to wonder if I was just wasting paint, but as usual things finally started to click, and now of course it's one of my favorites.

I'm also working on several new paintings including finishing my whale, a hippo, and a giraffe. So excited about these!

I'm sorry I've been absent from blog hopping lately but I found that I just needed to stay off the computer a bit, and enjoy summer while I can.  I was spending all day long on the computer between FB, Twitter, Blogs, classes etc, and I had to put a stop to it, and unfortunately the blogs were cut out of my day completely as they were the ones that took the most time.

I'm working on slowly trying to implement them back into my daily routine but with a strict time limit. If I read a  little everyday,  I hope to be able to catch up with you all eventually. 

That's about all for now, I hope to get more painting in this week, but we have family visiting, so It may be a tight squeeze trying to fit all that in.

Hope you all have a great rest of the week, it's almost the weekend!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Hope


I've been really busy lately with family so not a whole lot going on art wise, but I did manage to do 2 new pieces.  This one is called "Hope" it is 16x16 on canvas, and was directly inspired by "The Missing Face" with Ewen McGregor and Charlie Boorman.

You may remember that after watching that movie I was deeply inspired to become part of UNICEF, and help where ever I can.  And since I can't exactly donate hard cash right now like I want to, I'm trying hard to sell some of my art for their wonderful charity.

This piece will be for sale on Ebay with the proceeds directly going to UNICEF.  I so hope it sells.  I will also be selling prints in my Etsy store, so if you miss out on the original never fear.  :)

Now a few weeks ago, I asked if anyone was interested in making an art piece and selling it on Ebay with me to donate to this charity and this is piece I made for that.  If any of you are still interested, let me know.  I'll hold off on listing this one until we can all list together.


This next piece is 8x10 and is called "Give".
This one is also inspired by the "Missing Face" and will be sold (hopefully) for UNICEF as well.  I am going to post this one tonight to Ebay though, so if you are interested please stop by here.  I will of course have prints for sale on Etsy too.

In other news, I now have my artwork (prints, necklaces, postcards, and a few originals) selling in a boutique!  It's the cutest place called appropriately, "The Itty Bitty Boutique" and if you are local it is in downtown Campbell.  Definitely stop by if you can, it is a great place to buy handmade gifts from local artists. 

I'm also working on potentially selling with another store, but I don't have all the details yet, so as soon as I know I will tell you!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A brief update, whale wip, and new things ahead...

Well I thought it might be time for an update!

Lots of happenings going on behind the scenes here.  Some very exciting stuff,  which I will definitely tell you when plans are more solidified. 

For now, I have this Whale WIP to show.  It's what I'm working on lately.  It's a little bit further along than you see here, since I worked on it yesterday, and I definitely hope to do more to it today.  Maybe even finish it if I'm ambitious enough!

I just haven't been doing much in the studio lately.  Everyday I'm off on a hike, motorcycle ride, and/or playing in the creek, so it's been really hard to focus on art, with all this summer weather happening.  I'm also obsessed with traveling right now, and really wish I could do a mini vacation, I want to go to Oregon so bad!!!  But unfortunately I don't see that happening this summer.  So in the meantime, I'll make use of all our lovely resources we have in our mountains.  Other people vacation here, so I can too!

Oh yeah! My new website should be making it's appearance later this week.  I just have to figure out how the heck I transfer my domain name.  Hopefully it wont be too hard.  I think I'll be keeping this blog for now.  I'm still liking it better, but eventually I will have to make the switch over to the website I suspect just so everything is more cohesive.  Time will tell.

Also as some of you may know I got some new postcards in!  2 more designs are on their way, which is why I am waiting before posting them on Etsy. That will make a total of 11 designs now!  I want to offer them all as a group, or in packs of five. 

And of course, I'm still selling my art for UNICEF on Ebay so if you are interested in owning an original collage or my Ellie the Elephant print please hop over.  All the profit will go to UNICEF which is a terribly worthy cause. 

That's it for now folks, I'll have some exciting news to post later this week hopefully!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

New painting, hikes,motorcycle rides, and not much else getting done...

Hey everyone,  I have a new painting to show you all!  Actually it was finished a while ago, but I forgot to post it.  I call this one Grow.   It will be for sale in Etsy maybe tonight, but definitely by tomorrow.  I'll also have prints available.

I'm still working on my whale, in fact I haven't done much too it except start the background, but it's coming along, I actually really like how it's turning out. I may even do a work in progress pic on the next post. 

I've been busy going on hikes and motorcycle rides this week, so not much art or business stuff is getting done. I really need to buckle down this week and focus, but it is so hard with summer here, and the days being nice, all I want to do is play.

One thing I am focusing on though is finding a way to help my Unicef cause.  I really want to be able to contribute to them but am finding it hard. Now that I am an official Unicef volunteer (!), I figure I best get going on my contributions, so I listed that Fairy Tale collage on Ebay in hopes that it would sell, but sadly, so far it hasn't.  It does have one more day to go though, so there still is hope.  :)   I think I just don't have the audience to sell much right now so my stuff gets buried among the thousands of other things Ebay has to offer, of course, hopefully all that will change someday. 

I'm also still working on getting more artists together to make an art piece in order to sell on Ebay with the profits going to Unicef, so if you are reading this, and interested in participating please let me know.  A couple of you have responded and I'm so glad and excited you are wanting to do this project with me!

In other news, I am finishing up my new website, and I should roll it out later this week, or early next week.  I think you will like it!  I have the option of having my blog on there as well, and think I might use it, but am worried I'll loose followers if I switch, plus I really like blogger and am very familiar with it so it's hard to change.  I'm still making my mind up on that. Of course I'll let you know when the time comes .:)

Oh yeah, my Hootie the Owl print has been sold and relisted on Etsy!  If you are interested please stop by!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Fairy Tales, my recent obsession with Unicef and Ebay

For those of you who have been following my Facebook updates, you may recall that my husband and I have been watching a movie called "The Long Way Down."  What it is, is an 8 hour documentary about Ewen McGregor and his best friend Charile Boorman riding their motorcycles from the tip of Scotland to the bottom of Africa.

Even if you aren't a motorcycle rider, it is still enjoyable and pretty impressive to watch. In fact I HIGHLY recommend this movie.  I loved it so much I'm going to re-watch the first movie "The Long Way Round" (London to New York by way of Siberia)  Fantastic!

Besides riding the bikes, you see gorgeous scenery, ruins, culture, exotic animals etc.  But they also highlight several stops to Unicef sites in Africa.  What you see there is very eye opening to say the least.  I tend not to read the news simply because it's depressing.  A terrible excuse I know, but the way I thought, was why insert more problem/drama into my life, I already have enough I don't need anyone else's.




Well guess what?  My drama?  Is nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  I feel completely spoiled and rich after watching this movie.  I am extremely grateful for what I have, and I really don't need anymore.  I thought I did, but I realize now, no I don't.  I can't tell you how much it put my life into perspective after seeing children orphaned and living essentially on the streets because both their parents died from AIDS.   Children who have to learn to be aware of land mines right outside their front doors.  And on and on and on. 

I don't want to go into too many more details for fear of sounding all preachy, but I want you to know it really touched me to see this.  And I immediately felt I wanted to help in some way.  I know it will have to be small, but something is better than nothing right?   Well I thought and thought how the heck can I contribute? Yes I could donate money, but as rich as we are(compared to them)  that needs to go to bills unfortunately.  So I come up with a better idea.  I will use my resources and sell one of my collages!

I found out if you list on Ebay you can set the amount of the sale proceeds to go to your favorite charity.  So I did!  I listed the piece you see above called fairy tales, and 100% of the profit will go to Unicef!  I'm very excited about this and truly hope this piece sells.  If you like what you see, and would like to buy it please wander over to my Ebay listing.

I sure hope it sells!!  Oh and I really want to get a group of artists together to sell 1 piece of their art on Ebay and donate the funds to Unicef.  I think it would be such an awesome way to band together as artists and give a little something to those who are less fortunate.  If anyone is interested let me know!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Thanks yous, a commission and few other things


Hey everyone!  I just wanted to say thank you so much to everybody who participated in my blog giveaway!! It being my first giveaway, I didn't really know what to expect, but I found out that is was really a whole lot of fun!  I definitely plan to have another one, and yes, I will have my handy assistant pick the names again.  :) 

I'm so glad you all enjoyed the video of him.  At first I was only going to take a bunch of step by step pictures, but then my husband said why not take a video?  Well yeah, why not?  That was a great idea!   Anyway, don't be surprised if you see him staring in another video at the next giveaway.  :)


Now the picture you see above is a commission I did for a friend of mine.  It is for her little girl Zoey.  My friend is a huge lover of ladybugs, so it came as no surprise that when she asked my to do a painting for Zoey that a ladybug would be involved.  I had a lot of fun making this, but I have to say I had trouble with the face.  For the longest time, this poor bug looked like Al Jolsen.  I found it was a lot harder to paint facial features, when the whole face is black.   Anyway, I'm off tomorrow to give her the painting, and I really hope she likes it!

Right now I'm currently working on a lot of things.  I've got 2 other commissions to get done for friends, and I am still trying to make more of my animal paintings.  I've already got a whale started, and really want to do a cat right now too.  Unfortunately I haven't had much time to paint, well no time actually, as I've been busy outside of the house enjoying summer.  Finally!

And also trying to get a lot of the business side stuff done.  I just ordered new business cards, mailing labels and a set of postcards which I can't wait to get, and show you.  I'm also working on a new website, and I'm so excited about it.  I can't believe I'm saying that because I hated the making of the website I have now.

In fact my husband did it for me, bless him, but the problem is I have no clue how to update it.  None.  And he is always so busy working that I hate to bother him with it, therefore nothing new has been posted since it first went up.  Obviously this won't do.  So I took matters in my own hands and went to Squarespace.  So far I'm loving what I can do there, and the best thing is it's all on my own!! 

And one last thing, I've been trying so hard to get around to everyone's blogs and see what you all are up to, but this past week has been super hard to keep up.  I'm so sorry I've been missing in action lately, I assure you I love reading and seeing what you all post, and am trying to make it a point the rest of this week to properly catch up with everyone. 

Thank you so much to everybody who has been dropping by and leaving comments, I just love hearing from you, and I am truly thankful for all the new friendships I have been making.  This has been a wonderful experience for me, and I couldn't have gotten this far, without all of you!  Love you guys!! 

Monday, July 19, 2010

And The Winners Are....

Okay all, it is official!!  The giveaway  results are in.  I had my handy assistant pick the names.


Of course he needed to be bribed a bit.  Here he is right before the pickings.  


Naturally I didn't want to disturb his slumber, so I made a few preparations in the meantime.  I laid out all the names of everyone who commented and placed a crunchy treat on top.  Then we took the treats and made trail from his box to the names, well, take a look for yourself, click the video to see what happened...


 
Don't worry you aren't going deaf, there isn't any sound.  It's not the best resolution (sorry 1st video), and of course while trying to film, we had a incident with a skunk and another cat, so that confused things a bit.   

Now In case you can't see the video for some reason, here are the winners...


1.  Is Curly Girl Art!!  You are now the proud owner of this print!


2. Is Michele From Pipi La La!  Congratulations you won my CupKate Necklace!



And last but not least, Sunny Lee won a set of postcards!


Okay winners, please email me your address, so I can ship your prizes to you!

Thank you all so much for participating!! 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

3 new pieces and a bunch of inspiration!

 I have a few new pieces to show you all.  I'm on a huge roll right now, and I'm painting like a maniac, right now I'm working on a commission but I have lots of new art lined up.

This past week, I was totally inspired by a post by Ophelia over at Ophelia's Art.  She talked about how her daughter just jumped in and starting painting a canvas with no care as to how it might come out, whether or not she would muddy her colors etc.

She was just being a kid and having fun and letting the creativity  flow without worry.   It totally came out awesome too!

When I read that post, I had spent the last few days trying so hard to catch on up on blogs, Twitters etc, that I was sick and tired of the computer.  I wanted to paint, but felt physically and emotionally drained.

After reading about her daughters painting, I was so inspired to try and paint as freely as a child would, that I ran to my studio at 11:30 pm and went for it.  I created two canvases that night and finished them the next day.  That started the ball rolling for a series of paintings that I want to do.  Different whimsical cartooney animals!  They are so much fun to create, and I now have a very long list of critters I want to paint.  I'm so excited about this, and I have Ophelia's daughter to thank!

So here we go, I have to two animals to show you, and one canvas from a while ago that I finally finished.
The little guy you see above is called Hootie, and he is on a 12x12 canvas.  His body is actually fuzzy!  I used hot pink flocking on him, and I love how it came out!

This is Ellie, and is actually the first canvas I did that night. It's so simple but I love it, and it was the best painting experience I've had in months!


This is the piece that was inspired by It's A Small World.  I gave her a slightly crazed look, and I used gears because I always liked the gears the Small World Castle had, so I made my own and put them in her hat.  Somehow it just seemed to fit. 


Tonight I will be listing these paintings on Etsy along with a bunch of new prints, so keep your eyes peeled for new art! 

Also don't forget I'm having my first ever blog giveaway which ends on Monday July 19th, and there is a 20% discount on all my Etsy items for those who participate in the giveaway!   All you need to do to qualify is leave a comment on this post

Monday, July 12, 2010

My First Giveaway!!!

Alright everyone it's here!  Just like I promised, in the spirit of good fortune, and just because I feel like it, I'm having my first ever blog giveaway starting right now Monday July 12th!

I will be picking and announcing winners in 1 week on Monday July 19th.  Names will be picked at random, quite possibly by my studio assistant if he's up to the job.  :)



All you have to do is post a comment in the comment section.  That's it!

There will be 3 winners!  The first will win a giclee print of your choice of these pieces....


























Make sure you let me know which print you prefer in your comment!



2nd prize will be a necklace!


















And 3rd prize will be a set of postcards!















EVERYONE who participates will get a  20% discount in my Etsy store for the next two weeks!  Starting today Monday July 12th and Ending Monday July 26th!

Ok go post your comments!  Good luck to you all!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Patchwork Bird

Finally!!  I have new artwork to show!  Some of you may recognize this one as the bird with purple glitter spots.  Well those are long gone, and now we are sporting a nice patchwork look.  Which I totally love!

I'm so thrilled to have this one done, as it has been sitting in my studio for several months waiting to be finished.  The tail feathers are a tad hidden within the background but overall I'm pretty happy with it. I may or may not add a lite outline to the bird to make him stand out more.  Not sure yet, but I am considering it.  What do you think?

In other news, I'm a little bit pleased with myself right now, because I have been semi keeping to my schedule I set for myself.  I basically got rid of the time slots and just make a list every day of the things I want to get done. 

It works much much better as so many things pop up all day long for me, it's hard to assign specific slots of time to do things.  Though I am keeping myself limited on the amount of time I spend checking emails, social media and blogs. 

Believe it or not, yesterday I managed to cross everything off!  Including getting through a lot of blogs.  I still have a few more to catch up on which I will be doing right after this post, but I'm really, really close to being caught up now, and that is a HUGE relief. 

And, I'm still planning my blog giveaway for Monday, so be sure to stop by and check out the goods.  There will be a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place for winners.  I'm pretty excited about it. It's the first one I've done.  

Also, I have a question for those who use Flickr.  Is anyone else having trouble logging in?  I'd say about 75% of the time the Flickr page refuses to load.  This has been going on for months, and needless to say I have just about given up on the site.  Is it just me or does this happen to anyone else?  

I think that's about it for now.  I'm just working my way through blogs and to do lists today.  I even managed to put the computer down, and do some gardening.  Finally!  I now have very pretty colorful flowers all over my deck!

Ta Ta!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Look What I won!!!




                     "Possibility" by Erin Carver

Woo Hoo, I'm so excited!  I found out yesterday I won a print of this lovely Possibility piece from Erin Carver!

It's the first thing I've ever won, and I couldn't be happier.  This is a perfect piece for me right now, as so many new doors are opening, and I'm taking very scary steps trying to start a creative business and putting myself out there. 

I love that is says, "You are Full of Possibility".  Because it seems to relate so well to what is going on in my life, and that really the possibilities are endless.  The only trouble is, I don't always remember or realize it.

 Therefore,  I'm going to hang it up in my studio so I will always be reminded of this very important truth.

Thank you Erin!

But wait, I have more exciting news!!!

I made my first ever Etsy sale!  Yipee!  At first I thought I was being charged something that I didn't buy when I saw the email, but then I realized it was an actual sale!  I can't tell you how exciting that was.  Now I just need to keep the store updated, so I can hopefully continue getting  more sales. 

Anyway, It's been a very exciting week for me.  :)

And, since I seem to be having a run of good luck lately, I thought I'd spread this good fortune amongst all my blog, Facebook, and Twitter friends, and have a giveaway myself.  This will happen on Monday so please stay tuned for the official announcement.

I've also got new work photographed which I will post tomorrow.  Now however,  I need to catch up on emails and blogs.  I can't believe how fast it all piles up when you take 3 days off for a Holiday.  I'm going to be crazy busy all week it looks like.

Hopefully soon I'll figure out this time managing thing.  I went out yesterday, and searched the stores high and low for the perfect day planner. I'm like Goldilocks, I need one not to big, and not too little, not too bulky and not to ugly etc.  It has to be just right.  I'm picky that way.

I finally found one for 20 bucks at Staples which honestly seemed a little steep for nothing more than a spiral notebook with a calendar in it, but it did have all I asked for so I made the sacrifice  and dished out the dough.

Once I got home, I sat down to fill it out, only to find that I really can't put myself on a schedule very easily.  Especially this coming week as I have out of town relatives coming.  It seems like every day I seem to have some kind of commitment come up that throws a huge monkey wrench in my creative schedule. 

Plus I can't figure out if I should give myself specific times to actually make art.  I'm afraid if I tell myself I HAVE to paint everyday at 5:00 pm, that I won't feel like it.  I tend to paint at totally random times, when the mood strikes me,sometimes that is midnight, so having an actual time slot might not work well for me, and I'm afraid I'll rebel against my own rules. 

On the other hand, It is very clear that I can't be trusted to use my time wisely when left alone without any kind of discipline (or supervision for that matter), as I'm inclined to accidentally while away all the hours of the day on the computer, so a strict time schedule might actually be good for me. 

But that means I have to be the one to enforce it. Which  is a total joke.  I'm giggling just thinking about it. It's a known fact that I don't have a good track record with either discipline or willpower, so I honestly don't know how  this schedule thing is going to work.  It will definitely be interesting.

And the bottom line is, I just spent 20 bucks on a calendar, I better make it work somehow.  Wish me luck!!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Kicking Fear to the Curb!

Thank you everyone who posted such encourging and lovely commets to my last post.  It felt a wee scary to put myself so out there, but I'm very glad I did.  Apparently I'm not the only one with these fears.  :)  And it's good to know I have some company in this area. 

Because of your generous support, I was able to push some of those fears aside and finish two paintings!  A 3rd one is super close to being done, and yet a fourth is just beginning!

 I'm so so proud of myself for leaping into my studio and picking up the paintbrushes.   Granted I still haven't gained control of my time managing skills, so by the time I actually make it in to the studio is quite a bit later than I originally wanted.  Yet the fact is, I am getting in there even if it is at 10pm.   Will work on that!

On that note, I thought I'd post a couple pics of how things are coming along.  These are not the finished products, as I want to save that unveiling until I get everything photographed properly next week.

Here we go...

So remember the purple glitter spot diseased bird from few posts ago?  The one you see above? I just could not get past the tapioca/disease look this bird was sporting, so here is a sneak peak of what I've done to improve it...
Sorry, you can't see it all yet.  :)  But seriously, I like this much better.  And that reminds me of something one of the commenters shared in the last post.  It was Chrissy who relayed something that Kelly Rae said to her.  And that was, "There are no mistakes!"  I loved that saying the minute I read it, and you know what?  It's so true.  Had I not made the "mistake" of putting the disease spots on this bird, I would not have thought to cover it up with tiny scraps of paper, thereby creating a patchwork effect, which I'm such a sucker for.  Thank you Chrissy for sharing that!

Now, remember this photo from last week?

Well here is a preview of what's happening with  it....


And....

Getting my painting skills on! 

That's all for now!  Working on the Mad Hatter piece and the Small World piece today, hope to have pictures to show soon. 

Have a great weekend everyone!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Afraid To Paint

So this week, I've done nothing about my time management issues.  I managed to get caught up on the Flying Lessons class last week, and was pretty proud of myself for that, only to fall seriously behind again this week.

Then I saw the A-Team over the weekend, and well that prompted a serious bout of nostalgia, which meant of course I needed to watch re-runs all night on Hulu.  

On Monday, I spent nearly 3 hours agonizing over the best feed reader to use, in order to read my blogs.  That whole project initially started as a way to save time. Yet, quickly became the complete opposite.

What I really really wanted was something like Tweetdeck to read blogs in.  No such thing exists, so I settled on Bloglines, which is working out fairly well.  It does indeed save me time, and it is really nice to see at a glace who has updated their blogs all in one spot. Though, I think Tweetdeck should do us all a favor, and add blogger and Typepad etc. to their list of social networking sites. 

And of course, I'm still busy keeping up with all the tweets, FB updates, blogs etc. of all the new artists I've met, and have been having a great time.  The only snag is, I haven't done much art.  Oh I've been in the studio.  Once or twice.   I've looked around a bit, sat in the chair, got on the computer to print a few things, only to be distracted by itunes looking up songs from The Andy Griffith Show, (yes it was that important that I downloaded the Crawdad Song), picking up supplies, and moving them around, staring at the walls... well you get the picture.  I didn't do squat. 

I had a bunch of excuses as to why I couldn't finish the half dozen or so paintings that I've started.  None of them very good.

The only thing I've really done is make yet another background, which is the picture you see above.  I seem to be specializing in those lately.  Part of the reason is I'm busy using my time in not the smartest of ways, part of it is I've been gone a lot, and the other part is, well probably the biggest part, is because believe it or not, I'm afraid to finish the paintings. 

Does that make sense?  I'm actually scared of my own art.  You see each background I do, I have a plan for.  I know exactly what I want on it for the most part, but I'm afraid to start that part of the process because I'm afraid I'll mess it up.  I seem to moving into a new direction, and I am wanting and trying to draw and paint more in my work.

So the collages, I'm working on require me to draw the subject, and then paint them, and that worries me, because I feel I'm not good enough yet to try doing that.  I'm worried that it won't come out the way I see it in my mind. 

I'm feeling a lot of the things we've talked about in class too.  Mainly, who do I think I am to think others will be interested in my art? and Will I be able to make enough money to make art my career? ( I've been on disability for the last six months, so I'm using this time to see if I can start a creative business, hoping that I can a least contribute to a few household bills again.)

It's true I'm feeling intimidated (and inspired!!) by a lot of the wonderful art I'm seeing out there, and I know I've read on other blogs, some of you are feeling the same way.  It's a nasty thing being intimidated, but like Kelly says, we need to be true to ourselves.  Put ourselves into our art and into our blogs etc. Well I'm putting myself out there for you all to see.  Hope I don't scare you off.  :)  But the honest truth is I am afraid.   This creative journey can be crazy scary, frustrating, overwhelming etc. BUT it is also exciting.  And most of the time, it is the exciting bit I am concentrating on.  But for now, I'm letting the fear in, acknowledging it, and hopefully waving good-bye to it very soon!   

Friday, June 18, 2010

Time management problems....

I have been having so much fun connecting with folks and finding amazing artists from my Flying Lessons class from Kelly Rae Roberts.  It has taken up a lot of my time lately all this blog hopping, Facebooking, Twittering oh my!  I am still seriously behind in my class, which I'm trying somewhat unsuccessfully to catch up on today, If only I could stay off my Tweetdeck!

Also I've spent entirely too much time, fiddling with my blog appearance.  I have changed to the lighter background, which I think is easier to read, but not the best for my photos.  Hmmm....  Still deciding on that one, and things may change again, not sure yet.

Also I still have the 3 columns as you can see, but now I notice that when I post my blog link anywhere like Facebook, it brings up the stuff in my left sidebar, instead of the blog post and picture.  Argh!  Not sure how to fix that one, I may go back to two column because of that.  If anyone knows how to fix this please let me know.  :)


Anyway, despite all that business, I do have a few things in the works artistically that I've been fooling around with this week.  So I thought I'd give you a peek into what's been going on...

The first pic you see above is one I just started the other day.  This is the start of the background for a Mad Hatter piece I want to do.  I sure hope it turns out!!



And this is another work in progress, that is actually almost done now. I was inspired by the characters in "It's a Small World" for this piece. I think I'm also going to do one of the Small World Castle.  Hopefully.  :)


And finally, my studio apprentice hard at work!!

That's all for now!  I'm off to school now, hopefully I can better manage my time next week.  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A little something you probably didn't know about me...


Alrighty, so I thought I'd post a little something about myself for a change.  I mean I know I always post about myself in a way, but I don't really post about who I really am. 

I have noticed that most of my posts tend to center around what I am making artistically, and that's it.   As this is an art blog, I thought that content to be most appropriate.  But then after taking Kelly Rae's Flying Lessons, I am learning that I need to put ALL of me out there for you all to see. You know, so we get to know one another, and connect better right? 

Well here is a little story I am sharing with you about a phobia of mine. If you are going to get to know me, you may as well know the good, the bad, and the ugly.    

Now, some of you may recognize this post from my first blog, which was actually non art related.  That's right.  I had another blog.  It became pretty popular too.  I even got a little award.  But then the pressure to create a post all the time for my "public" got to me, and I gave it all up when I found art again. 

Originally I wanted to keep the pressure off,  and keep this blog mainly about art, but I realize this might make things a tad stale.  I'm thinking there isn't much personality to it.  And I'd thought I spruce things up a bit. 

So here you go, a glimpse into my neurotic side...

This is a little story about ticks.  Just to give you some background here,  I hate them. With all my heart.  They gross me out and scare me silly.  In short, I have a HUGE phobia of them. 

Now, this little phobia of mine has become quite dangerous and is very likely to get me into trouble sometime. Let me give you an example of what I mean.

Last summer I was driving to the grocery store. Earlier that day, I had been on a hike, and as it was getting cool out, I had put on a black sweatshirt (the color is important here).

About halfway to the store, I am stopped at a stop sign and notice something moving on the sleeve of my sweatshirt.

As I start driving again, I simultaneously inspect my sleeve. Big mistake! It was a tick. Just one lone tick, making it's way down my arm, along my black sweatshirt.

Black.

Ticks are also black.

Do you know what went through my mind after I finished screaming? Yes I did scream. Loudly.

I kept thinking how many other ticks were on me, that I couldn't see because they blended into my black sweatshirt. Not only that, but where did the first tick come from? My neck? My hair? My shirt? My pants?

The possibilities were endless.

I was positively freaking out. Shudders, screams, much flailing of the arms, hyperventilating, and rising panic all ensued, at the thought of the possible hordes of ticks dispersed along my body.

And all this was happening while I driving on a two lane, windy, mountain road.

As I tried to brush the phantom ticks off me, I would swerve into the oncoming traffic, but luckily pull out, just before a car sped past.

Sensing imminent danger. I hastily spun my car around, and sped home as fast as I could. Once there, I ran into the house, shedding clothes along the way, and jumped into the shower.

After a good, thorough scrubbing and inspection, I was convinced that it was safe to leave the confines of the shower, and put clean clothes on. I never went back to the store that night, as I was sure my car was positively infested with those bloodsuckers.

All that commotion for ONE tick.

And that? Wasn't the worst episode. Allow me to share just what happened on the night of the scariest tick moment of my life.

The scariest tick moment of my life happened when my husband and I were very first dating.

Since we were a new couple, we did wild and crazy things, such as staying up late on weeknights, eating junk food, and go for late night bike rides and hikes.

As usual, one night after work, I made my way over to his place for dinner. It was pretty late, since those were the days when I worked until almost nine every night.

Sometime after dinner, we decided it would be fun to go on a late night hike. There was a nice hiking mountain right near his house, so we drove up there.

Technically,
I don't think you are supposed to hike there at night. Especially at 11 pm, but what the heck. Rules were made to be broken right?

The view was spectacular.

The weather comfortable.

The trails, thin and grassy.

Grassy.  Tall grass to be precise.

That should have been my first clue. Long grassy weeds in the hills? Tick city.

Just so you know, I have been on hundreds of hikes, in all kinds of terrain, and I have never once picked up a tick. Never. Ticks were the absolute furthest thing from my mind.

Our walk was lovely, but was stopped short when I felt something crawling up my leg. As I bent down to brush it off, I noticed it was a tick.

Trying to be cool, in front of my relatively new boyfriend, I tried to minimize my panic and flailing arms as I furiously checked myself for more.

When I noticed yet another one, all hell broke loose.

Obviously, I didn't mean to shriek so loudly. But, I just couldn't help it. I flew towards the car, and started a massive inspection.

My boyfriend somewhat alarmed by my loss of composure/coolness, followed at a more sedate pace.

The more we inspected me, the more ticks we found.

Clothes started flying off of at a rapid pace. Ticks were hiding in every nook and cranny. Apparently they like armpits.

Soon I was .... well naked. As in buck.

I was still furiously inspecting my body, when I noticed the bright police lights shining in my direction.

Oh dear god.

I flew into the car, but was too scared of my clothes, to cover myself up, so I just huddled with my arms crossed over me, as best I could in the front seat, with the cop light beaming into the car at about a million watts.

I can only imagine what our little scenario looked like. A young couple in the mountains late at night, near a parked car, the woman completely naked. The only odd part would be the fact that my boyfriend was fully clothed, and we were standing outside the car.

At any rate, he managed to talk to the cop and convince him nothing untoward was going on. In exchange for not getting written up for trespassing, and or indecent exposure, we were told to leave. Which we gladly did.

We drove the short distance home, but I was still huddled in the front seat without a stitch of clothes on, as we made our way down the city streets and stopped at all red lights.

Back at his house, I ran from the car to the bathroom at top speeds, lest his roommate, and or a passing neighbor saw my nekked self.

Another furiously long shower, and I was deemed to be tick free.

That was almost 3 years ago, and despite the episode last summer, I am actually getting better now, that I live among the little buggers on a daily basis.

Just the other day, I found one, lodged in my jugular.

I really feel like I'm improving.

After all, I only screamed once, and hyperventilated maybe twice ...

Monday, June 14, 2010

A Few Things I'm Working On

I haven't been in the studio much in the last few weeks, which means I have loads of projects lying around waiting to be finished. 

After spending almost the whole day on the computer blog hopping, checking Facebook, and Twitter, reading my class notes, etc.  I finally got sick and tired of sitting in one spot staring at a monitor. 

I was starting to feel anxious in a way that meant I needed to create.  The only problem was I didn't feel like it.  So I sat and wasted even more time contemplating whether or not I should paint, when finally after some Twitter encouragement, I decided what the heck, and gave it a go. 

I'm working on the middle piece right now, but it is drying so I gave myself permission to take a break (like I needed one), and post this real quick.

So the picture you see above, are 3 WIP's. I've been hanging on to them for a while now, and just can't seem to finish them.  The bird on the right, I'm kind of skeptical about since it looks like he has a disease. Which reminds me of tapioca pudding.  Which to me looks like a disease.  I can't eat that stuff with all those little bumps floating around it grosses me out.  Always has.  I don't eat rice pudding either for the same reason.  Yep I know I'm strange.

Anyway, the bird looks like a flapper chicken with a disease worthy of Bewitched, something along the lines of "purple glitter spot syndrome". 

But I am really curious to see how these guys turn out.  The middle and left one, I have specific plans for.  It will be interesting to see if they turn out like I am hoping. 

In other news, I'm sure you have noticed that I changed the look of my blog.  That's another thing I spent far to much time on today.  I really wanted to make it a 3 column layout, and after fighting with the new blogger design center for a hour, and finding out my blog template no longer exists (what the heck?), I finally found a proper tutorial.  So I got it done, but now I don't know if I like it.  

The blog looks really busy to me now, and I'm not sure how good that is.  In one way it is awesome to have the extra room, but on the other I liked the simplicity of the two column look.  Decisions, decisions.  What do you think?  Is it too much?

Although if you say it needs to go back to two column, I don't have a clue how to change it again.  Doh!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Such a Lovely Day!


 So today, I finally got the inspiration fairy to come by and say hi.  I wasn't in full blown artist mode, but I did get the urge to go into the studio and create something.  I ended up making a bunch of backgrounds, and while they were drying the hubby and I set off down the road to the Scout Ranch.

The "Ranch" is a park (for boy scouts actually but they are never there) that has lovely hiking trails and a creek (the same creek that runs through our yard).

What we usually do is walk to the park, pick up Rico who's a dog that lives next door to the ranch, take a small hike to a little beach area, and then walk the creek back home.  Rico as usual follows us the whole way through the creek, so we have to to drive him back home when we are done.

Since I don't have any art to show, I thought I'd show you some pics of our adventure today.

I wish I had the camera for our walk through the creek, but as we have to wade up to our shoulders in some parts, I thought it best not to bring the camera along on that part of the journey.  One day, I'll have to bring it when we don't take the creek home.  It's amazingly beautiful out there.

Anyway when we got back, we ended up taking our cat Monkey for his daily walk, and since I was inspired to take pictures, I brought the camera along.  So come along, and take a walk with us.  Here's a small peek into my neighborhood...




This is outside our front door.  Our front yard is actually one huge deck, and a driveway, and this clump of trees is what you see right away.



Monkey walking the hood.  Notice how important he is. 





 Another shot of the hood.  I love how nature-y it is.




Here's some flowers from the field above...



A bit of the neighborhood road.  Notice how it's not paved...


This is Lily one of the neighbor's cats.  Secretly she is Monkey's girlfriend, but he won't admit it.  Actually when he comes up to her, he stops walking, sits down and refuses to move, until she leaves.  Contrary to popular belief, this isn't because he's scared of her.  Nope, he's actually jealous of her, because whenever she is out we shower tons of attention on her and ignore him, and she eats it up too, twirling and prancing like a little ballerina. 

Well, that's it for now, I took a ton more shots, but they didn't come out so well, so this is all I have for today.  The photo of the tree with a face in the beginning, is a tree sitting right in front of our deck.  A friend decorated it for us on day while we were gone.  I love it!

BTW please excuse the amateur photography.  I am experimenting with effects, and can't seem to get the rounded corners right.  Plus I don't know how to get rid of the frame around the photos, so I realize it all looks a little hokey.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

WIP Update

Just a quick update to show what I've done to my WIP from last week.  It is definitely not done yet, but I can tell you it has gone through so many stages. 

This last stage was an attempt at covering up the houses and basically starting over.  But after a few swipes with the brayer, I kind of liked how it was looking, so I stopped.  Now I'm letting it sit for a bit, while I figure out what do next.  Any thoughts?

So, I haven't been spending any time in my studio lately, which is really starting to bum me out.   It's not that I don't have the time, though I admit with Kelly Rae's  ecourse, I find myself on the computer much much more, trying to catch up with all her wonderful posts, not to mention all the comments, Holy cow! And, I'm also trying to blog hop and meet the folks in class. Which is a full time job right there. :)

It has been such a wonderful class and experience, and I'm so happy I signed up for it!

As expected, I'm learning tons of cool stuff in class, but for some reason, my desire to create actual art has vanished.  Again.  I so hate when that happen. , I wish I knew why I go through these phases, but at least I now know lots of other artists struggle with it too.  I always sympathize when I read on someone's blog how they are in a creative slump.  It just isn't any fun!   And I really hope it returns soon.  Because honestly, I miss creating. 

Fortunately, through class, I've been finding some really cool blogs and artists out there, and that has been inspiring me a lot.  Now I just need to step in the studio and start painting!

This blog in particular by Chrissy has totally inspired me to be creative in a new way for me.  I now want to    bust out the camera, and take a zillion pictures.  Perhaps to use in my collages somehow?  Hmm... Anyway, I'm so inspired by her photos of San Francisco and Napa Valley, that I want to head out there tomorrow and see if I can get a few cool shots too.  Luckily I live an hour away from SF so this is very possible. 

Then there is Juliette's blog   who's adorable whimsical creations are getting my creative juices flowing again.  (Thank goodness!)   I just love her characters! 

Actually I found a lot more people that have been inspiring me, but if I list everyone, this post would be about a mile long.   No lie.  I'm loving what I see out there!  It's so awesome we have the internet to meet people and see each others art, I can't begin to imagine how people connected artistically with out it.  It sure is a whole lot easier!