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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Is It Big Enough??

I might be watching a bit more TV since we just bought the new 52" TV (boys and their toys!!) and the new console....I tried to get a good photo but the lighting wasn't right so this is the best I could do.



That's Harley sitting in the window. And the picture that's hanging above the TV isn't staying but I just didn't get it taken down yet. We did all this last night after HB got home from work and my house is a wreck! There is styrofoam and packing stuff all over the place not to mention the two huge boxes everything came in! The old TV is going to our bedroom to replace the really old one that's up there now. The old entertainment unit is sitting in my dining room right now and I have no idea what's going to happen to it. Maybe a trip to the Goodwill is in order!

Now I'm just waiting for "Lost" to come back on so I can see all my bad boys HUGE!!

Since HB has a four-day weekend, I may not be around Blogland much until after the first. I'm hoping to get some art done but we also have plans to begin cleaning out and re-organizing the garage (fun, huh!) so maybe art will have to wait.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Crayons and Excellence....

A few days ago Tammy wrote about letting her inner child play by drawing with crayons. That really hit a note with me because I loved crayons as a child. I spent hours coloring and drawing, and thought there was nothing in the world better than a brand new box of Crayola crayons, and if it was the big box of 64 (that was a big box when I was a kid!) then all the better. Now they have boxes of 96 and 120....what heaven!!


photo from the web

I was picky! They had to be Crayola brand. I loved the look of them....all those pointy colors looking up at me, and the smell of them was part of their intrigue, too. When I sharpened crayons, I loved the little curls of color that came off....a pile of different colored curls was just so pleasing.


photo from the web

OK....I know I'm crazy!! But the thing is, I still love crayons. I buy the big box (I have the box of 96) all for myself....I don't blame it on grand kids or anything of the sort....they're for me! Last night I played a little bit with my crayons. I used a scrap of Bristol but I don't like how the crayons worked with it....everything was too slick. But I managed to do this....



I think next time I'll try different paper and will be able to get deeper colors. I didn't create anything as bright and wonderful as Tammy did but I like my sad woman anyway.

If you'd like to see some really incredible crayon drawings, you might want to check out this blog entry I did earlier....plus there's a great picture of my "secret" love!!

And last but not least, while doing some research about crayons I came across this interesting blog entry about making beads using crayon shavings!! Check it out!

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On some other news, Jeanie gave me an award for excellence, which I'm not sure I deserve. Personally, I think my blog has been pretty darned boring lately....but I do appreciate the award. Thanks, Jeanie!!



The rules are:

According to Cyberspace rules in the eUniverse of eAwards, acceptance of this Excellent Blog Award requires me to tag/nominate 10 virtual victims as excellent Bloggers.

Since I can give this out to 10 bloggers, why not even more?!! Why not give it out to each and every one of you that read this blog! I know some may think that's the easy way out but actually I LOVE each one of your blogs and would hate to single out just 10 of you for this special award. So if you're reading this....yes, that means you!....then please take this award and pass it on to anyone you like. And don't be shy about accepting this. I really do intend for each of you to have this award. I'll be watching your blogs to see if you accept!!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

What's in a Name (2)....

When I first started by blog, I wrote about my name here. I've never particularly liked my name mostly because it's so sharp sounding. Yesterday while browsing Blogland, I saw this on Dawn's blog and decided to see how many people had my name.



HowManyOfMe.com
LogoThere are
150
people with my name in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?



Apparently there are 577,914 people named Janet in the US making Janet the 89th most popular name (who knew!!) and 79,292 people with last name (actually I use my maiden name) making my last name the 426th most popular name and only 150 people with my combined first and last name....however if I use my married name it changes to 3,067,977 who have the same last name and becomes the 1st most popular name (do you know what it is) and 5,814 people have my first name as well as my married name.

Ok, enough of this foolishness!! Let's get on to some art! Yesterday the temps climbed back over 100º so I was a little sluggish....even with the a/c. I tried to work on my collage for Crowabout but nothing was working so I set it aside and just went with what came up. I finished a couple of pages in my art book....



Sorry the scan is a little crooked and I forgot to trim the edges.

This is the facing page....and I didn't trim these edges either!



I'm happy with how these two turned out. Nothing really spectacular but they have a calm look to them. Something I've been needing recently.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Shopping....Do You Love It?

Are you a shopper? Do you love the hunt....the quest? Do you live for days spent at the mall? Well, then you and I have nothing in common!!!! I do NOT like to shop. When they gave out the shopping genes I thought they said "chopping" and that sounded like something to do with the kitchen and cooking so I passed!

HB is the shopper in this family and he can shop 'til I drop. And over the weekend he did just that!


image from the internet/not my drawing

We recently bought a new tv, and since nothing comes ready to use anymore....what happened to that concept??....we had to find something to set the tv on. Our old entertainment unit (and I'm really stressing the old part) was waaaay too small and was something I had bought back in the 80's when I was single.

To make a very loooong weekend short, HB and I went to almost every furniture store around here and what do you think we found?? Exactly the same thing we found in store #1, and store #2, and store #3 etc etc etc! What has happened to originality of this country? Every time I go to shop for something I find the same things in all the stores....usually at different price ranges....but still, what if I want something different? What if I actually care about what it looks like? Or how well it's made?

I apologize for starting the week with a rant but I HATE to shop! Unless, of course, if it's for books or art stuff....then I can go and go!

So with all that shopping and running all over town, there was no time spent in the studio. And the heat has returned again. Last week was just a tab bit cooler and I was thinking that maybe, just maybe Fall was just around the corner. Well, if Fall is around a corner it isn't anywhere near here!

I hope you all had a great weekend. Mine was spent shopping so I'm not a very happy camper....we did find a console for the tv. It isn't exactly what we wanted but it will have to do. Now I'm exhausted, and I think I'll play in the studio today.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Doin' a Little Art....

On a personal note, this has not been a good day for me....but I did manage to spend some time in the studio. Here is what I did....



And this one....



Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The 10 Tiny Things Challenge

You know how I love to do meme's or little challenges, so when I saw that the Funky Art Queen had issued a challenge to find 10 tiny things and photograph them, I had to play along. I hope you do this, too. Look around. You'll be surprised at what you might find!

She said "Your definition of "tiny things" is entirely up to you." So here are two photos of tiny things I found around the house....I placed a penny in the photo to give you an idea of size.

This first one is a small collection of things Molly gave me....the biggest thing is the pitcher/teapot in the back and it's about 3" tall. She found these at an estate sale and knew I would love them.



The second photo is some little cups and pitchers. Again I placed a penny in the photo for size comparison....



The ABC cup and the little monkey glass in the background were mine when I was a baby! Yikes! These are antiques!! The teeny tiny purple teapot in the foreground was made for me by my dear friend, Gail. It's about 1" tall. The three little white pieces belonged to HB's mom. I like little things like this, and if it's also something that pours such as a teapot, a pitcher, or a creamer then I really like it!! Now go find your own tiny things!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly!!!

I'm in heaven this morning! It's actually cool! I think I can even feel a bit of Fall in the air....although I'm sure by afternoon it will be gone. I had my breakfast on the patio which is something I rarely do when it's hot....with the exception of our Sunday morning ritual of waffles on the patio. HB and I like to sit out there on Sunday mornings when the weather permits.

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Because I saw so many of you doing such wonderful pages on the Collage Play with Crowabout I decided to sign up and give it a try. I got the first collage page (for week three) and began to play around with it. I always loved the extreme-ness (yes, it is a word! I just said so!) of Carmen Miranda so that's where I started. Could I find pictures of fruit???? NO!!!! Why is it when I have an idea in my head I can never find the pictures I need to make it happen?

So I just decided to go with all kinds of silly stuff. So far so good. Then I ended up with this blank area where there really should be some words and .... yep! You know me....I froze! Nothing came into my brain. Words! What are those? I sat and sat and thought and thought and kept looking at the page but nothing came. So here is my slightly unfinished page ....



Maybe I'll think of something to add to it later. And I don't like her dress but again, couldn't find anything appropriate. I think this woman is a suburban housewife dreaming of being Carmen Miranda!

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Plus lately several people have posted photos and thoughts about sunflowers. I love sunflowers! They're so happy and a little bit goofy looking with there long, floppy neck (stem/stalk) and huge head. So I put together a few things I had and made this page....



The top quote says "We make a living by what we get, we make a friend by what we give" - anonymous. That was actually a postcard sent to us by a realtor. I kept it for the sunflowers and the quote.

Sunflowers remind me of my grandparents ranch in Kansas....the Sunflower state! And when HB and I lived in Colorado Springs we were not too far from Fort Carson. There was a section that the public could use for recreation and one of my friends and I used to walk those roads each morning for a total of five miles. There were giant sunflowers all along that area and they seemed to be saying "good morning" to us as we passed by.

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A couple of nights ago I tried something a little different in my moleskine but she didn't turn out....I messed up her mouth and tried to just color it in to make it better but that didn't work! Here she is anyway....



I was kind of going for an exotic look, maybe a little cat-like but she just looks WEIRD!! Oh, well....I try to show you the good, the bad....and the ugly!

Monday, August 18, 2008

I Got a Gold Card!!!

Did you all have a good weekend? Did you do lots of art? I hope so 'cause I'm ready to look at lots and lots of art today! I'll be coming around to visit so look out!

Last week I mentioned that Serena had given me an award....the BFF Gold Card. You can see I've added it over on the right side of my blog. Thank you so much, Serena!



The BFF Gold Card stands for Blogging Friends Forever so I really love getting this one, and I'm torn about passing it on because there are so many people who I wish I could give it to....everyone who comes here to visit me deserves this award but the rules say....

1. 5 people are allowed to receive this award.
2. Four dedicated followers of your blog.
3. One is to be new to your blog and live in another part of the world.
4. Please link back to whoever gave you the award.

So here goes....the first one will go to Gail because she is my BFF, best friend forever. We've been friends since we were about 9 years old and believe me that's a looooong time!!

Next one goes to Shop Girl. Thanks for always leaving me such wonderful comments and for keeping in touch with me no matter what.

Next is for Betzie. Thanks for encouraging me and inspiring me and always coming to visit my blog.

Then one goes to Mary. Thanks for also inspiring me and for hanging in there with me for such a long time. I always love seeing your comments.

And last, the one new (newer) reader from another part of the world would have to be Seuss's Cat from the UK. Thanks for your comments and for continuing to visit my blog.

I could give this out to everyone since you're all my BFF's. I love the blogging community and all the support and encouragement that everyone brings to it. So if you're reading this consider yourself my BFF and you're welcome to have the award, too.

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Now here's a little bit of art I did over the weekend....



Have a great Monday!!

Friday, August 15, 2008

A Few Bits and Pieces of Art....

I've been doing a little bit of art. A few days ago I made one of my trashy postcards....all bits and pieces from things I would normally throw away. I like how this one turned out. Even the postcard itself was trash....there were several of them in some kind of business stuff that HB received. I just collaged right over them and didn't have to change the size or anything.



I'm a sucker for animal prints! And that scrolly pattern seemed to go with it....and the big red rose is just so luscious. I like this one!

Here's another little drawing I did a couple of nights ago....I named it "Climb Every Mountain" ....although HB thought it was Christmas trees!!



And here's a zentangle....I haven't been doing these abstract ones as much as before (except for the ones for my project) but last night was very humid and sticky (even the a/c didn't help with that) and seemed just right for zoning out. Or would that be zening out?!!



I also did a couple of pages in my art book....this first one got the edge cut off when I scanned it. It says "delicious flavors"....



And here's the other page I did....



These pages are not facing each other! I try to keep my color palette somewhat the same on facing pages....or at least similar in some way.

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I received another award for my blog and I'll post that as soon as I decide who I'm passing it on to....it always takes me a little time to think about these things!

In case I get busy and don't make it back, have a great weekend!!!

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Just for the record....that little weather widget is all wrong!! I just checked it and it said 74º but my thermometer on the patio (in the shade) says it is 82º!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

How Quirky Are You??

Yesterday I mentioned I had been tagged to do a meme....six quirky things about me. So today I'm here to fulfill that promise. Sherrie is the one who tagged me and here are the rules:

Link to the person who tagged you. Ok, I just did that!

Mention the rules. Check....I'm doing that right here.

Tell six quirky, yet boring, unspectacular details about yourself.

Ok, here goes. It's been kinda hard to come up with six quirky things about myself. That doesn't mean I'm not quirky because we all know I am! But since I've been blogging for a couple of years it's hard to come up with things I haven't already told you so if these are repeats I apologize.

1. I don't like to join clubs or organizations and yet I will join just about anything online!! Just mention some group and I'm in! Numerous Yahoo groups, BlogHer, Amiglia, Ma.gnolia, Goodreads, Twitter, Shelfari are just a few of the ones I've joined but there are so many others. When I learn about these sites they sound great, I join, and then many times I forget about them! I keep a Rolodex on my desk just for ID's and passwords of things I join online....it's the only way I can keep track of things.

2. I don't do chit-chat very well. Small talk just doesn't do it for me. I love having in-depth conversations but that stuff about the weather (I know! I talk about the heat too much!!), and the latest gossip, is just blah! I used to run around with a group of people when I first moved to CA....there were several engineers, a couple of people who worked at JPL (very secretive stuff), and various other "brainy" types. We had wild conversations and I loved hanging out with them. We never did chit-chat! It was great. I hate that we've lost track of each other.

3. When I'm in the car I'm usually adding up the numbers on license plates! I know....weird! But they're just staring me in the face and I can't seem to help adding them up to see the final number. If it adds up to 21 (my birthday) I feel lucky! I also do a weird thing with colors but it's too hard to explain!!

4. I wish houses were designed with one big room used strictly as storage for everything. I think having closets and cabinets scattered all over the house is crazy when I could just go to one place and find anything I needed. Like having a mini-warehouse in your home. I know....I'm crazy!! But just think of all the time you could save going from closet to cabinet and back and forth looking for one thing. It would all be in one place and easier to find.

5. Many of you know I'm deathly afraid of snakes but did you know that I don't even like anything that has a snakeskin pattern? Even if it's fake!! My daughter once had a pair of snakeskin patterned pants and I refused to wash them....wouldn't touch them no matter what! And no photos of them either....snakes,that is....not pants!

6. I'm not into the "latest and greatest"....for example, I have an Oster blender that I've had since the mid 60's and it still works perfectly. So what if it's avocado green! It works better than some newer ones I've used so why get rid of it? I'm just waitning for avocado green to come back in style and I'll be all set! This applies to my car, too. Recently we bought a 2005 car but I still prefer to drive my little '90 Honda Civic with over 172,000 miles on it. Unfortunately this little quirk doesn't apply to art supplies!!

Now I must admit that none of these are really all that quirky but I'm running out of things to tell you! You can see some of my other quirky answers here, here, and here. I warn you there will be some repeats! You don't really think I'm gonna reveal all my quirky habits here for the world to see, do you?!!

Tag six other bloggers by linking to them. I'm tagging anyone who reads this and wants to play along!

Go to each person’s blog and leave a comment that lets them know they’ve been tagged. Ok, consider yourself tagged!

If you participate, let the person who tagged you know you've posted your quirks! I'll do this last one in a few minutes.

And here's a little drawing from my moleskine to finish up the day....



Ok, I'm taking my quirky self and going to the studio now. Have a great day!!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Sorting Things Out in My Head....

After having an email conversation with Lisa, I'm wondering if I'm getting hung up on something that really doesn't matter. I have always loved to find things that go together and then to create little vignettes....or collages. I love to see how colors and images mix and come together. That's what I did with my blue/green pages in the previous post....but is it actually journaling? No, I don't think so....at least not in the way I define it. It's more like creating an artsy page and I'm ok with that. I really don't have a lot to say on those previous pages except for placing the quote on there. And, again, that's ok with me. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I think I'm getting hung up on the definition of an art journal and whether or not it has to have my own personal, written thoughts contained in it.

With all that said, I have decided to create what I like and people can call it whatever they want....I'm not going to get bogged down in the small print of things. If I like what I'm doing, then that's all that matters! I am going to continue with the tutorials by Sarah mostly to learn techniques. But I'm not going to follow everyone else's pathway when it may not be my own.

We all create in very different ways....mine just happens to not contain words very often. That's me....I think I talk/write enough as it is and I don't need a bunch of words on my art to make it my own. That doesn't mean I still don't love to see art like that because I do. It just isn't my way of creating.

Whew!! Now that I got that out of the way....here is the page I did using armor. I like this one much better than the other "trial" page....and it actually has my own words on it!




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Now on to other things. I've been tagged to tell some quirky things about myself but I'll be doing that probably tomorrow. I have to think of some that I haven't already revealed to everyone! I've been blogging for a couple of years so by now I think you all know more about me than some of my family does!

Also I was recently given the Wylde Woman award! Thank you Alberta and Ava!! I love receiving this award because in my younger days I was a bit of a wylde woman! No, I'm not going to tell all my secrets but I wasn't always the little old gray-haired woman I am today!



Now I'm supposed to pass this on so here goes....

Lisa....because her blog is delighful! Full of fun and pretty bright colors and wonderful creative art.

Sharon....I love love love her art!! What more can I say?!!

Zorana....for the same reason as above! I love how she does faces and also has such wonderful little quotes.

Vallen....Very creative, always interesting, lots of colorful art and many times it's set to a song or a poem. Very original and fantastic.

Julie....another very original blog with lots of great information plus beautiful art. Julie is the one who keeps me informed about all the rituals and holidays and such.

That's as many links as I have time to make but please believe me when I say that I wish I could link this award to each and every person who reads my blog because you must all be wylde women to keep coming here! I love you all! Keep creating!!

PS - Ooops....I forgot to link back to Women, Art, Life: Weaving It All Together

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A Little Bit of Success....

I worked in a couple of my art journals today. In answer to a question, when I said I was working on three journals at once....no, that isn't all the journals I have going! Just the ones I'm working on right now.

Here is a trial and error spread that I did using some armor as suggested in Sarah's tutorial....I have another journal where I'm working on this same theme but these two pages were where I tested things. I don't like how these turned out but I learned some things and won't make the same misteakes on my other journal.



This journal is fairly small and has lightweight paper so it's just for testing things.

Then while I was on a roll (cinnamon with icing!) I worked on one of the unfinished pages from a few days ago. Here it is....



I got really frustrated because I was looking for certain words in my magazines and couldn't find what I wanted. I finally just wrote in the "who you are" but I actually wanted it to say "Discover yourself"

Then I did these next two pages just because....



In case you can't see the quote, it reads: "i beg you...to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. don't search for the answers, which could not be given you now, because you would not be able to live them. and the point is, to live everything. live the questions now. perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without ever noticing it, live your way into the answer..." It's by Rainer Maria Rilke

And here is the facing page....



If you see this, Lila, that pear in the teacup is for you!! When I saw it you immediately came to mind!

Ok, that's all the journal pages I did for now. I did do something in my moleskine last night....



She's kind of weird and a bit sad looking but she's what appeared on the page! Now I'm off to the studio again. It's been hot today but I'm hangin' in there!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Journaling, Drawing, and Printing....all in one!

Since my last post, where I once again went on and on ad nauseam about my frustrations with art journaling, I have turned a corner thanks to the help of Doreen....she sent me the link to Sarah's blog where she is giving step-by-step tutorials on how she creates her art journal. They began back on July 13th so I'm way behind the others but that's ok.

I'm sure many of you already know Sarah but I was completely in the dark! Sunday I think I was on her blog for at least an hour! If she has any kind of tracking set up, she will probably think I'm stalking her! I have gone back to the beginning of her tutorials and am following her directions....just putting my own spin on things so it's me.

And you know me....I'm now working in not one, not two, but three art journals. Each one has a different kind of paper so I'm experimenting to see which one I like best. Plus while something is drying in one journal, I can work on one of the others.

Needless to say, the studio is a mess but that's ok....I'm creating! I'm also almost finished with all the zentangles I'm making for the flickr book thing so that will free up some more time. Last night I started working on another face....just something small to do while the tv was on....



She's my big haired glamour puss!

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Recently my printer was giving me problems so over the weekend HB bought me a new one. I'm trying to make friends with it since it's so different from my old HP1350. Our new one is a Canon MX850 all-in-one and it's HUGE!! It takes up a lot more space than our old printer so LuLu isn't happy with it. She likes to sleep on the side section of the desk where the printer sits. Now her space is seriously cut down. I'm hoping this printer will be good for some projects I want to print. Does anyone have this printer and if so do you like it? We have two weeks to try it. I want to be sure it will take card stock and fabric and other kinds of paper without jamming or quitting on me....that's what happened with the HP. It used to print on just about anything but then it got cranky and only wanted plain paper!

Also, if you don't have this printer, what printer do you use and are you happy with it? I like to print on card stock so that's a must plus photos, of course, and fabric as I mentioned above. I'm just test-driving this Canon so if it doesn't do what I want I'll be searching for something else. Any input you have is appreciated.

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You may have noticed I added a little temperature thing to my blog. I guess that was a good thing to do because ever since I added it the temperatures have been down! Why didn't I do this earlier!! I do think the widget is a bit off though according to our thermometer on the back patio but at least the days have been a little cooler....no more triple digits lately!!

Friday, August 08, 2008

The Long, Hot Summer....

No, Paul Newman isn't here! I just like that movie title and it seems to fit how I feel. Maybe if Paul was here I might feel even better!!

During these hot summer months, I am finding it so difficult to maintain my blog. I have nothing to write about because I don't do much when it's hot! When summer comes, I go into hibernation!

The same goes for my art. I've been struggling (again!) with my art journal. I keep joining groups, taking classes online, and looking at tons and tons of art journals done by others....and yet when I'm faced with doing something in my own I just freeze. I love them so much and am constantly drawn to them so I keep thinking I should give them a try....but I just don't get it.

Here is one of the pages I fussed with for several days, and I still don't like it!



The thing I have trouble with is the actual journaling. I keep a written journal but I've never written and made art in the same book! When I start a new page in my art journal I usually don't have any set plan. I just wing it....usually beginning with some picture I like. But then when I have all the pictures and other bits and pieces glued down, I don't have any words to add to the page. As I've said here before, I'm not really good at writing or expressing my thoughts in words.

So with the heat, comes frustration with art and that doesn't make for a very interesting blog post! Hopefully I'll draw something soon and be able to share it with you. I'm working on several zentangles but they're for a book project on flickr so I don't want to show them yet.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Drinks, Anyone....

Even though it's been several days since I last posted, I still don't have much to show you. I did make another Calico Cat but it's on its way to someone and I won't show it until she gets it.

Last night I was sitting there in front of the tv, like a bump on a log, and I picked up my moleskine and sketched out a little cartoon-ish picture....



I drew the "face" shape first and then realized it had the shape of a martini glass so I just finished it that way. Not much art but it might make you smile. I named it "A Two Olive Martini"

Also I've been trying to work in my art journal some more. Nothing that I want to share right now but I am dabbling in it again. It keeps beckoning to me so there must be a reason. I keep trying and hopefully sooner or later I'll have some pages I feel are good enough to share. It's an art form that I'm constantly drawn to and I can spend hours online looking at our people's journals! Maybe that's why mine suffers....I spend too much time at the computer.