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Friday, February 29, 2008

Postal Twilight Zone!!

I was beginning to think I lived in the postal Twilight Zone!! Way back in January I mailed two items to people....one was a surprise and the other was for a one-to-one swap. The surprise came back to me a couple of weeks later because the address label had fallen off! So I re-did it and mailed it out again and happily it arrived. The other item never made it to it's destination and it never came back to me so I have no idea what happened to it.

I did another drawing for the swap and sent it out. Then I waited and waited and finally I got an email that it has arrived! Whew!! Sending things in this country is a little easier because you can use a tracking number but once it leaves this country you're just on your own and both of these pieces went to Canada.

So now I can show you what I sent to Ang! I loved making this lady because she wasn't planned....she just appeared....



She's my "Lady of the Castle"....I'm not sure the photo shows the shading in the background but I tried to make it look like stone walls.

And this is the drawing that went astray....



This is not a good photo because the color is off but at least you can get an idea of what she looked like. Sorry, Ang, for all the delay but I'm so happy the castle lady finally arrived.

Rather than bore you with all my newest ACEOs I've decided to post them on the art blog....the link is over there on the right side of this blog.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Awards and A Winner and More....

There's so much to write about today! First of all, thanks to everyone who commented about my Etsy shop. I hope to get more cards added today and then keep going with it. I also got some much-needed help from my daughter and changed the profile and the descriptions of the cards. She gave me some good ideas. Thanks, Molly!!

I also received a "You Make My Day" award from Debbi Baker.



Thanks, so much, Debbi! Isn't this award beautiful?!! Makes me think of someone...who could that be!! (I think her name might be judie!!) And don't forget to visit Debbi's blog when you have a chance.

Now here are the rules for the “You Make My Day” award....you are to re-present it to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel happy about Blogland. Let them know through email or by posting a comment on their blog so they can pass it on.

As usual I'm on a tight schedule for computer time....still sharing with HB....so I'll think about the 10 recipients and list them tomorrow. There are only about 100 blogs that I'd like to give this award to!!

And now for the other business at hand. Last night was the final time to enter the giveaway for my drawing "Arpana, the Little Dancer"....I had 48 entries! I printed out all the names, put them into a tin and had HB pick one for me.



And the winner is NanaE.


This picture should be clickable so you can see the name.

Yay!! NanaE be sure to contact me with your mailing address so I can send Arpana on her way.

Ok, that just about sums it up for today. And don't forget to stop in at my photo blog to see my ABC Wednesday entry for this week.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I Did It!!

Gulp!! Ok, I did it! I opened a shop on Etsy....right now it only has two items listed. What a pain in the "you-know-what" it is to list something! I'm not good with words and so much of a listing is about the wording of things. I would appreciate any suggestions you might have as I'm totally burned out after just listing these two things! It took me most of the morning to do it.

My shop is located here.

Monday, February 25, 2008

A Monday Morning Mish-Mash of Things....

Maybe you've noticed that I've re-done my list of blogs over there on the right hand side. If I've missed adding your blog please let me know. It seems to get out of hand and I always put off working on it but I'll try to keep it a little more up to date from now on.

Also, how do you keep track of the blogs you read? Do you use Bloglines or something else? The reason I'm asking is I have used Bloglines for quite awhile but recently I have had several blogs just disappear from my list. I seldom delete anything from there and these are blogs that I've been reading for a long time so I wouldn't delete them! As I was working on this list last night I discovered several that were missing from Bloglines! Have any of you had this experience?

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Last year I "went" to the Academy Awards. (You'll have to scroll down through that post to see my dress and shoes.) This year I was going to go again but actually forgot to pick out my dress and shoes so I had to stay home. Poor Johnny had to go without me! He looked fantastic though!

I was sitting at home with HB and I was wearing a very stylish pair of black sweatpants with a black tee and a purple tank over that. On my feet I had black socks and my slippers. It was the perfect outfit for watching from home! And I was much more comfortable than last year!! :-)

I have watched the Academy Awards ever since I was a kid. This year I have not seen any of the movies up for awards!! My movie watching goes in streaks and spurts. I either watch movies all the time or I don't watch any for a long time. Did you watch, and if so, what did you think of it? I absolutely LOVED the mermaid dress that Marion Cotillard wore. Gorgeous!! And I also thought Katherine Heigl looked beautiful in that red dress she wore. Very Marilyn-ish.

Ok, enough of all that. Here are a few more of my gals....



I'm still painting more!!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Friday Fill-In

A few weeks ago I did a Friday Fill-in and then things got crazy and I forgot about them. But I finally remembered and here is mine for this week....

1. Coming home is the best thing about traveling. I like my creature comforts and like being in my own home, and to sleep in my own bed!

2. I love a good fire in the fireplace when I'm cold. And a nice cup of tea is always nice.

3. I often use markers and Micron pens when I create art.

4. I'm reading "A New Earth" by Eckhart Tolle right now; I am enjoying it....even though I'll probably have to read it a few more times to really grasp all that it says.

5. Religion is something I dislike talking about. Only because most people are trying to "convert" me or change my viewpoint.

6. When I visited Santa Fe I most looked forward to seeing lots of interesting art.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to painting a few more ACTs , tomorrow my plans include HB coming home and Sunday, I want to enjoy our Sunday morning waffles!

Here are a few more of my ATCs. I got them on the scanner a little crooked but you can still see them....



The one in the middle is "Not Your Typical Blue Haired Lady"....I haven't named the others yet. Do you think I need to add some words or are they ok as is?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

While the Cat's Away....

Thanks to everyone for coming to my blog's party. And don't forget....if you haven't put your name in the hat for my little harem dancer it's not too late. Just make a comment on the post for the 19th and I'll add you.

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With HB (the cat in the title!) still out of town you would think I'd have a lot accomplished around here....but you would be wrong! I did start out in a cleaning frenzy but that didn't last too long!! Those darn paints and pens kept calling to me to come play. They just wouldn't shut up so I finally put away the vacuum and went up to the studio. But since it felt so lonely up there all by myself, I brought all my paints and things downstairs to the dining room and set up shop in there! One more mess to clean up before HB gets home!!

I've been drawing and painting up a storm! I'm back to making ATCs/ACEOs. I have about 20 of them in different stages of completion. Here are three that are finished....



I'm thinking of opening an Etsy shop. What do you think??

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I'm Two Today!!!

Did you wear your party clothes?? I'm celebrating! I'm two today! Well, actually my blog is two years old today.



I sure hope the terrible twos don't prove to be too stressful. All those temper tantrums and such. I'll just have to be firm and set some limits!

But for now I'm offering all kinds of goodies. There are some hors d'oeuvres to start....



Then you can have something from the fruit platter....



or the meat platter....even though I'm a vegetarian I know many of you like meat so I'll oblige....



And what would a party be without some pastries?? Which one would you like?



There's coffee, tea, or champagne so help yourselves. And a party wouldn't be a party without a gift! If you leave a comment on this post within the next week I'll put your name in the hat for the picture shown below. You have until midnight on the 26th to enter.



HB thinks she looks like "I Dream of Jeannie"....but I've named her "Arpana, The Little Dancer" because Arpana means gifted, donated, given away. I think that's appropriate since she is my gift to you. I will pull a name out of the hat on Feb. 27th so be sure to check back.

Now let's party!!!!

NOTE: I wrote this offline and then pasted it in....plus I posted it very late at night and was able to maintain an internet connection. But I'm not sure how long it will last. This is the pits!!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Having problems....

I'm having lots of problems with my internet connection. If you've sent me emails or made comments today I haven't been able to answer them. I'm making this short and sweet as I'm not sure how long I'll be able to maintain the connection. This is crazy!! We have high speed internet but today it's just like molasses.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Spotless....well, almost!

Having the house to myself yesterday meant getting some cleaning done. Why is it so impossible to do that when my husband is home?! Almost every woman I've ever mentioned this to has said the same thing...."I can't clean my house with my husband there"....what's the deal with that?!! Actually when I have a lot to do HB jumps in and helps out. Plus he usually is the one who takes care of the floors, sweeping, mopping, vaccuming so it isn't that he doesn't help but for some strange reason when he's in the house I hate to clean!

So my day was just too exciting! I moved furniture and vaccumed behind and under everything in our family room....it's always the worst room since we practically live in there. In the evening I did manage to sketch out a couple more little ATCs but nothing "big" has come to my mind. I didn't read any in "A New Earth" although I have finished the first chapter. It's not a book I'll lightly read through!

Since my ATCs are just light sketchs and don't show up in a scan, I'll show you another older drawing I did using pointillism (thanks Sophie!)



When we lived in Colorado, a friend of mine used to go walking with me first thing every morning. Strange as it sounds we walked on Fort Carson property....but it was open to the public for recreational purposes. There were so many sunflowers along the road and they always looked so bright and happy that I had to draw some. Plus sunflowers always remind me of my grandparents who lived in Kansas....the Sunflower state!

Several of you have asked about HB's daughter....she's now home from the hospital and doing better. Thanks for your concern and your thoughts.

Now I'm off to tackle the rest of the house!! Beware dust bunnies! You have no place to hide....I'll find you!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Just a Little Bit of Art....

We had a hectic day as HB left this morning for AZ. He has gone to visit his daughter who is in the hospital right now. I stayed behind to take care of the cats and keep the home fires burning.

I managed to do a little bit of art last night. Ang, your picture is ready and in the mail....can't show that yet. The other thing I did was a little ATC....I haven't made one for months....almost forgot how!



The colors are a little dark on this but just imagine magenta and kind of a teal color.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Creating....

Today I posted my ABC Wednesday photo on my photo blog....you can reach it through the link at the right hand top of this blog. I had a tough time coming up with something for the letter "D" and finally kind of copped out and used my drawings.

I have several projects I'm working on right now (something for Ang, Lisa O, Pirk, and PIF and the Pink Project.) And things are a bit topsy turvy around here. But what else is new!

I was thinking about creativity the other day and it suddenly occurred to me that if I'm alive and breathing, I'm being creative! I'm creating my entire life experience with each thought I have. That really made me stop and take a deep breath. So with that in mind, I'm doing good with my CED2008!!

While gathering my drawings for today's photo, I came across some older things I thought I would share with you. So today I'll show you some leaves I did many years ago. I used the stipple effect....or whatever it's called.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Another Queen....

This will be a quick entry....I'm still sharing the computer with HB and he's been using it quite a bit lately. When I'm not on the computer that means more time to be creative in the studio.

I did this drawing yesterday....



It should be clickable to view larger.

I may do some more work on this one but this is what I have so far.

EDITED: I just did a little more definition work on her plus added just a touch of blue to her sleeves (I don't think it shows in the scan.) so here she is again....

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Re-doing an Old Piece....

Saturday I kind of re-worked one of my collages. This is what it looked like before....



I hadn't actually attached the piece of lace-like crochet along the side and I decided I didn't want to. Instead I did this....



This photo is clickable to view larger.

I like it better. I toned down the writing stamp in the lower right corner and I added a small key with a tassle in that same area and a skeleton leaf with a browned rose in the upper left hand corner. I plan to get some velvet ribbon today in either a brown or the sage-y green and glue it around the outer edge. This is not a finished-edge canvas....it has staples so the ribbon will cover that. Plus I think the ribbon will add to the romantic feel of the overall piece.

Friday, February 08, 2008

The Snow Queen goes to a Party....

She's very shy and a bit eccentric. No one knows for sure where she comes from although many rumors swirl around her....mainly that she's a distant relative of Nicholas and Alexandra.

She loves a party! She always arrives escorted by her trusted companion, Prince Pavlo, the penguin. She wears only white....white brocade, white fur, white leather boots. He wears his tuxedo. They make a lovely couple.

They circulate through the party, accepting food and drink when it's offered, but she never speaks a word to anyone!

She is indeed a Snow Queen....


Drawing is clickable to view larger.

Please visit eb's blog to see more of the party goers.

Creating in Many Different Ways....

Bet you all thought I'd given up on being creative since I haven't written much about it lately. Do not fear....I'm still going to my studio every day even it's just to sit there and look out the window and daydream. That's creative! I'm creating the thoughts. So the way I look at it, if I'm breathing and my mind is functioning then I'm creating!

I did get some wallpaper books recently and I've been messing with them. For some strange reason I just like to look at them. Texture and color are always things I love....or maybe it goes back to my childhood when my dad used to bring old wallpaper books home for me to use. When he did that I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!! And I guess I'm still the same.

One of the things I like to use wallpaper for is to cover those plain black and white composition books. I always seem to have a slew of them around and I use them to jot down all sorts of things. It's nicer when the book looks pretty so I used part of a napkin and some wallpaper and did this one....



The little "wrinkle" spots are just impressions left by clips I used to hold everything in place while the glue dried. They will disappear in time. Lila, this one reminds me of you....except they aren't indigo!!

I also used a little 4" x 4" scrap of wallpaper to experiment with painting. I did this little one but she needs some more work....



And last I saw on Lee's blog where she did a challenge using gesso and a magazine picture. I decided to try it but after doing it I realized I did it backwards!! The idea was to use a Sharpie to go along the lines of a picture and then to fill in the areas with gesso as in a paint-by-number way. I did the ouline with a Sharpie and then gessoed over the whole thing! Then I had to go back over all my Sharpie lines and this is what I got....



Yes, that's Angelina Jolie. I just liked the pose and decided to use her. Even though I didn't do the challenge "correctly" I'm still happy with it and may use it somehow in another picture....or maybe I'll just embellish Angie and see what I get.

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Yesterday you may recall I was given this award:



Sorry to post it again but since I didn't award it to anyone yesterday I wanted it to be here for the people today.

In receiving the award you are asked to share three things that you believe make writing good and powerful, then pass the award on to five blogs that exemplify good and powerful writing.

The things that I look for in a writer are do they keep my attention....are they entertaining. Are they "real" as in truthful and honest and do they cause me to make changes in the way I think about things. And are they witty or humorous. So now as promised yesterday I'm awarding the Powerful Words award to the following people in no particular order:

DebR because she is always entertaining, funny, witty, and she makes everyday life so interesting....plus she takes great photographs!!

Kai because she is so peaceful and gentle but her words are powerful. She inspires and enlightens us and makes us better people.

Judie because she has a way with words....she paints pictures with them and makes us all think about things from another perspective.

Suzie-K because she is entertaining, smart, funny, very creative, political, and lets me glimpse another part of the world....plus like DebR she takes great photographs!!

Julie because she is wise and knowledgeable. She teaches me so much in a gentle, easy way.

If you don't already know all these wonderful women then give yourself a treat and visit their blogs. You won't be disappointed!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Beautiful Gifts and Powerful Words....

I mentioned that I had received some mail a couple of days ago so I'm finally getting some pictures on here to show you. I received my first Valentine (of this year) from Kai and it was such a wonderful card....and what she said made me tear up. Here's a photo (sorry I'm just not a photographer!) of what she sent....



The big heart is shiny and has the cutest tiny little cookie sheet with heart-shaped cookies on it!! Thank you, Kai! I keep saying it but You're the BEST!!

Then I received the most incredible ATC from Julie. Her art is just so creative and so fantastic. This ATC was difficult to photograph plus I tried scanning it but that didn't work either. This photo doesn't capture the beauty of it at all....



I left this photo big so you can click on it and hopefully see some of the detail in this. It has a picture of a cat in the window of the house and the words read "One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that the cat has only nine lives." The background of this ATC is just so unusual and I love all the rusty bits that Julie uses in her art. Thank you, Julie! Your art is just fantastic!!

And as if that weren't enough, today I was trying to get caught up on some blog reading, and I visited Giggles blog. She had been awarded the Powerful Words award. I thought how perfect since I think she uses words in such a powerful way. She does such incredible poetry and so much more. She's a wonderful, caring, creative person.

As I read through her blog I was stunned to see that I was one of the people she gave the award to!! I never consider myself much of a writer....more of a rambler or a gabber! My grammar and punctuation are atrocious and I'm usually very sloppy about all of it. So I was especially surprised to be included in her list of people. This is what she said...."Janet for her consistently genuine blog, that exudes humor, love, joy, kindness on a whole consortium of subjects." Thank you, Giggles!! I'll try to live up to this but it might be difficult!



In receiving the award you are asked to share three things that you believe make writing good and powerful, then pass the award on to five blogs that exemplify good and powerful writing. This is going to be the really hard part for me!! And I'm going to take a bit of time to think about this so I'll give the award on my next post. I'm sorry to do it that way but I'm pressed for time today and I really do want to think about this.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Being Creative....A Little Bit!

So much has been happening here on this blog that I decided to move my ABC Wednesday over to my photo blog....makes more sense to me. So if you want to see my photos just go to the link at the right side of this blog.

I did this collage yesterday. I think it needs some words but I didn't have anything that seemed to fit. I'll keep looking for something to add.



I haven't been doing much collage work but this one just seemed to be calling to me. I may add some other bits and pieces to it but for now I'm just leaving it as is.

And isn't this interesting?? I just love graphs and pie charts. I know....weird! This is a chart showing where my blog visitors come from.....67% from the US but then look at some of the other countries!!



Fun and colorful and informative. I love it!!

Then Sue gave me an award.



I just love the little logo for this one. I'll have to say "right back at you" Sue! And I'll award this to all the bloggers and friends who read and comment on my blog because you all help spread the love! I know that's a bit of a cop-out but I would have too many people to give this to and you know I'm lazy about making all those links!! Afterall just look at how out-of-date my list of blogs is right now! I really need to update it but I never seem to have the time. One of these days I'll get to it and you'll all be surprised!! Plus I have mail that I need to photograph and put on here. I'll get that done tomorrow.

Let's all spread the love!!! It's the season!

Monday, February 04, 2008

Cleaning, Comparisons, and Confessions....

There are days when I just seem to drift through the hours and then all at once I realize that most of the day has gone by and where have I been....what have I done?! The whole weekend was like that. I worked in the studio for most of the morning on Saturday....I'm working on my entry for the Polar Festival so I can't show you yet. Then I had errands to run....darn....but we do have to eat!

When I'm on a roll with art and then I have to stop to do something else it always takes me a long time to get back to it. I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm just trying to distract myself so I won't be creative. You know, like self sabotage. I've been known to do that! Anyway I thought I would have some art to show you but sadly I do not. This morning I got up at 6 AM and went straight to the studio. I began cleaning and clearing the work table.



Do you think it's time to get a new cutting mat?? That one looks like it's seen better days! I can now see the surface of the table for the first time in quite awhile. I also organized all my unfinished projects and hope to make some headway with a few of them over the next few days.

I recently bought a portfolio to keep my artwork in. Before that it was here, there and everywhere and usually at risk of being wrinkled or stained or something along those lines. Finally I decided to show it some respect and buy it a place to live! I was a bit surprised when I began gathering up all of it. I didn't realize I had so much!!



One of the things I've been doing is researching how to go about having my art printed on cards, postcards, etc. If anyone has any good information about this please let me know. The print shops around here seem to dismiss me as "not important" enough for them to give me their time.

I had a couple of prints made for friends at Christmas time. One of them didn't get mailed until later because of HB's ordeal but it has finally arrived in South Africa! You can see it here at Sue's blog....plus she also featured a few of my other pieces in a comparison with someone very famous. I won't tell you who. You have to go to her blog and read about it!! Go ahead. I'll wait. (twiddling fingers while I wait!) I was thrilled and completely amazed. What did you think??

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Since I didn't post anything on Sunday here's a re-cap of my "to do" list:

1. Keep doing art each day. Even if it's just a scribble. I didn't do too good again this week!

2. Eat healthy meals and drink plenty of water. Try some new recipes and experiment a little. I did good on the drinking water part but not on the experimenting part.

3. Read more and watch less tv. I don't really "watch" that much tv but it is on most of the time. When I'm home alone I like the noise of it to keep me company but I think I'll try putting on some music instead and see how that works. I had to watch two nights of "Lost" but other than that I have been reading most of the time....so this was one I did pretty good with.

4. Don't sit around in my jammies until late afternoon!! I do this a lot especially when it's cold and if I don't have to get out for anything. But I should make an effort to get dressed and make myself presentable!! Not only did I not sit around in my jammies, I actually put on make up several days this past week!! Woo Hoo!!

5. Take more photos. I've been posting a few things on my photo blog and trying to keep that going this year. I like taking photos but around here the subject matter is slim at times! And I don't always get out every day....see #4! I did take a few photos this week. I'm thinking ahead for my ABC Wednesday project!

6. Write in my journal every day. I have to confess I didn't do this one!

So on to the next week and hopefully I'll complete even more of my list. I hope you all had a great week end and if you watch football I hope you're happy with the Super Bowl outcome. I didn't watch it but HB did and he's happy the Giants won. I think he likes to be for the underdog!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Friday Fill-In....Something New for Me

I've been tagged to do a meme (I won't forget, Sherrie!!) but just couldn't think of any good answers so instead I'll do this new thing I've just learned about from Angela called Friday Fill-Ins.

1. Once I was the editor of my high school newspaper! What must they have been thinking to appoint me?!
2. I hate being sick. And I'm sure glad this bug has decided to leave me alone.
3. Today at work I....well, since I don't work, this one doesn't apply! And HB and I are going to be gone most of the day....more about that tomorrow.
4. What's all the fuss over celebrities all about? They're just people like every one else. They just have a different kind of job. Why don't the papparazzi follow teachers around? I think they're much more important than Paris, Lindsay, or Britney!!
5. If I make a mistake I would be so surprised!! Just kidding! I would 'fess up and apologize and try to fix it. If it's in some of my art, I usually just leave it, put it away, and go on to something else....which is why there are sooooo many unfinished projects around the studio!!
6. When I woke up this morning, I thought which cat is laying on my feet? Then I reached for my book and began reading for a few minutes.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to absolutely nothing, tomorrow my plans include doing a little shopping and Sunday, I want to avoid the Super Bowl, if possible! HB will watch it but I will try to hide out in the studio.

There now....don't I lead just the most exciting life?? I'll have some art for you tomorrow, for sure! It's just a busy day today.