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Sunday, February 27, 2011

It's My BIG Day....

It's the BIG day! It's the Academy Awards! You may have read my blog in previous years and know that I usually "attend" the awards. You can read about previous years here and here. This year is no different. I will be there (in my mind) on the red carpet rubbing elbows with the celebrities and big stars of Hollywood and the world.



I searched high and low on the internet for just the right gown to wear. It's always a tough choice but this year I wanted something a little different....not too sedate. I mean if I'm going to have this experience (daydream!) I might as well do it up right.


This first dress is beautiful and a bit daring but just not me....too much black!



I love leopard print but this dress might just be a little too much even for me!




A bit more subdued but still quite different. I like this dress a lot....



But I think this is the one. It was a difficult choice but this dress just seems to speak to me. Plus I like that stormy background!

I have to spend the entire day getting myself ready....bubble bath, manicure, pedicure, hair and make-up, sprayed on tan....all the essentials. It's not easy looking like a 26 year old femme fatale when I'm actually a 67 year old grandmother! But through the miracle of extreme imagination it all works!

Now I'm sure you're all wondering who my date will be for this big event. HB never wants to attend with me so I'm always forced to go with someone else. This year I had to turn down my favorite escort, Johnny Depp. And I also declined an invitation from George Clooney. Instead I'm going with none other than Colin Firth!



Who could resist that smile!! Yes, I know he's nominated for an award, and I'm sure all the TV coverage will show him arriving with his gorgeous wife but that's just a clever cover-up so we can sneak in without all the paparazzi following us!!

We'll be attending all the after-Oscar parties....eating, drinking and dancing 'til dawn....and hopefully celebrating his win. But if not I'll be there to console him and wipe away any tears he might shed. So be sure to look for us in the crowds. I'll wave to everyone and blow little air kisses.

Sanity should return by tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Some of My Blog Friends....

First off today I want to share with you a project from one of my blog friends Phoenix Peacock.



There's a button over there on my sidebar that will take you to the page or you can go here to learn all about it. Basically it's an art journal that will be passed around. You will have it for one week. Here's what PP says about it on the blog....

(1) Write or art journal about a community member(s) who influenced your life in a positive way. This could be peers, co-workers, bosses, teachers, church members, strangers, the person you sat next to on a train, really anyone who is a community member (but not family). What did they do? How did it effect you?
(2) Give love. Do one good deed that is not something you would ordinarily do and write or art journal about it. This could be as simple as smiling at everyone for one day if you don't usually do that, it could be volunteering your time, helping a neighbor, or anything else that serves the purpose of making somebody's day better and is not something that you already do.


I hope you can join in and help with this project.

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Recently Zorana had a sale in her etsy shop. I happily took advantage and bought one of her rosin paper journals. It came in the mail yesterday and I'm thrilled with it.



Not only did I get a new journal to work in but I also got a beautiful piece of Zorana's art on the front cover.



The back cover is very cool, too....it's all stitched and painted and looks fantastic. The picture doesn't do it justice!




Plus Zorana included this little purple bird card as a thank you! I feel as if I should be the one saying thank you for all the wonderful goodies.

If you've never painted on red rosin paper you should try it. It's a wonderful surface that takes paint really very nicely plus you get a huge roll of the stuff at a very low price. I have a roll that I found at Lowe's in the paint department.

I haven't had much inspiration the past few days so there hasn't been much going on in the studio. Mostly I've been going from one thing to another with nothing getting accomplished.

Monday, February 21, 2011

A Tale of a Tree Climber....

We have two cats, Harley and LuLu....they're inside cats and not allowed to go outside. A few months ago someone's cat in the neighborhood had kittens and they began showing up in our back yard much to the dismay of Harley and LuLu.

This morning it was quite a show....


Click on the pictures to get a better view

as three of the cats watched from the sidelines and a fourth one went out on a limb!



By this time Harley and LuLu were beside themselves, running from window to sliding door and back again.



The little daredevil actually went a bit farther than this before deciding it might not be such a good idea.



Turning around, the cat gingerly made it's way back down the tree....



and onto the fence....that's the daredevil on the far right. Some time during the "performance" one of the other cats got bored and wandered off. Harley and LuLu enjoyed the new channel on kitty TV!!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

An update....

I'm sorry that I haven't posted for a couple of days.. HB and I have been very busy and I haven't had much computer time. The last two winners have been notified and their postcards will be in the mail on Tuesday.

I hope to be back with some art to show you but nothing today.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Day Four and Continuing....

Whew! Who knew it would be so hard to do a post each day. I used to do daily posts and never thought a thing about it but for some reason this week has been a real challenge.

Plus I'm in my "gathering" mood. At times I'm very busy with a project but when it's finished I seem to go into a place where I like to have a lot of stuff around me in the studio. I think I'm gathering ideas and working through what my next project will be. Many times when I'm in that place I make collages. I like to have lots of bits and pieces on the worktable and then just put them together to make a collage. Something like my postcards. I enjoy putting random things together in a pleasing (to me) way.

For the postcard giveaway today I have....



This one has an Asian look. I used textured wallpaper, scrapbook paper, an image from a magazine and a sticker.



You may remember seeing this one before. I've added a few little touches to it.

Be sure to tell me if you want to be included in the drawing, and if you have a preference tell me which card you would like. I'll draw two names tomorrow. You have until noon my time (Pacific time zone) tomorrow to get your name in.

The names drawn for yesterday's postcards....ArtfulLee and Mary! I'll get your postcards in the mail ASAP.

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I've also been playing with paint. I love just slapping paint on to something! This time I painted some pages from the phone book.



Mary always makes such beautiful papers using old phone book pages so I wanted to try some for myself. Mine didn't turn out as nice as hers but I know I'll use them.

I think it's just about time to replace the brown paper on my worktable! I noticed in that last photo that there's a lot of paint on it. When I replace it I always keep the section where there's lots of paint smears. I'll add things to it and make more paper to use in collages....or I might get lucky and be able to create a "doodle painting" on it. Either way, I'll put it to use!

One more little tip that I do....when I buy stickers that I really like, I scan them into my computer and print them out so I have more copies of them! If I print them out on plain paper or cardstock I run them through my Xyron machine and make sticky backs or I print them out on sticky back paper. Either way, I get unlimited copies of my favorite stickers. This mostly works on stickers that aren't see-thru....but I bet you could print those out on transparencies. You know me....I'm always looking for inexpensive ways to stretch my supplies.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I'm Still Celebrating....

Day three of my week long celebration continues....with two more postcards to go into the mail. All you have to do is leave me a comment saying which one you would like and your name will go into the hat. You have until noon my time (Pacific time zone) tomorrow to enter for today's drawing.

Be sure I have a way to contact you for a mailing address. If both names drawn pick the same card I'll send it to the first person picked and the second name will get the other card.



This one is an inchie collage with a few additions of my own. Actually I think this is all from an Anthropologie catalog. They're just fun postcards....nothing spectacular!



The one above has a cool painted background that looks much better in real life than it does here on the screen.

The names drawn for the postcards from yesterday were Doreen and Carmelina....HB pulled the names out of the box for me. Your postcards will be in the mail tomorrow. Thanks for helping me celebrate five years of fun-filled blogging!!

And don't forget to stop by tomorrow for the next two postcards. You can enter each day.

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I thought I'd also take you along with me today as I was running errands. Kate mentioned doing photos about your daily life and it sounded like a fun idea.



First I got dressed....I'm wearing the funky shoes I painted and my usual blue jeans. And that's the crappy carpet in my studio!



We're having some wild weather today....rain, very windy, then sunshine, then rain again.



It was beautiful when I stopped at Target but by the time I came out it was raining again....I got wet!




I snapped this shot while I waited at a stop light....there were lots of Joshua trees right along the highway.




This is an area where I drive quite often and I love seeing the wide open vista....you can always see "weather" from this vantage point.




Almost there....




A stop for a few items at the grocery store....



I tried to get my shadow out of the picture but couldn't do it....all my shopping bags in the trunk of the car!




When I got home I realized the almond trees were blossoming! They look so pretty with their little pink and white flowers.

And now I'm home for the day. What did you do today??

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Day Two of the Celebration....

The week-long celebration of my fifth year of blogging continues. Thanks for all the comments from yesterday. I wasn't very clear about a cut-off time for each day so I decided to make it noon my time - I'm on the west coast. That gives me time to do a draw and post the next day's postcard.

So the postcard from yesterday goes to....Kate!! I only had a few names so I just put them all in a box and pulled one out. Simple and fast.

After counting up all the postcards I have, I've decided to do two a day, two winners. So for today's drawing here are the postcards....



The postcard above is another magazine collage plus it has a couple of stickers. Nothing fancy.... this is all just for fun. And the colors above are not quite so drab as the photo makes them....it's actually sort of a lavender and a dusty blue.



This postcard has scrapbook paper, some text and other ephemera....sort of an old world look.

If you would like to be in this draw, leave a comment saying that and be sure I have a way to contact you for a mailing address. Also be sure to tell me which card you would prefer. If both names drawn pick the same card I'll send it to the first person picked and the second name will get the other card.

If you entered yesterday it's ok to enter today and every day that I'm doing this. Please remember these are not "works of art"....several of them were done a few years ago but I thought it would be fun to send them out to someone. I like getting fun things in the mail and I'm sure you do too.

Have a great day....

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Week of Celebrating....



It's "LOVE" day!! And it's also the beginning of the week of my blogs fifth anniversary. I started my blog on February 19, 2006 and I've loved every minute of it.

When I started I didn't have a clue what I was doing but I had discovered blogs and wanted to be a part of Blogland. Mostly I started the blog so I could comment on other blogs. In the beginning I just wrote about personal things....I didn't have the nerve to show any of my art.

Obviously I got over that! Now I show you everything....the good, the bad, and the ugly!!



A couple of days ago I came across these postcards and other larger pieces of mail art stuffed in a box and I thought how sad. I should send these to someone. So just to say a little "thank you" to all the people who visit me, leave comments (which I love) and put up with all my craziness, all this week I'm going to be posting these postcards and other pieces of mail art.

Each day I'll show one piece that I'll send to someone. All you have to do is leave me a comment and tell me you'd like to be in that day's drawing. I'll use a random number picker and if you are the number chosen I'll send you that mail art. Be sure if you leave a comment that I have your email so I can get your mailing address.

This is just for fun. None of these postcards are masterpieces! But isn't it fun to get something in the mail other than bills and junk?

So here's today's postcard....



Nothing fancy! It's just some magazine collage, a few stickers, and I think the background was a paper towel that I painted. So if you want this postcard leave me a comment saying so and I'll put your name in the hat.

Be sure to come back tomorrow for the next postcard drawing.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Before and After....

Ok, I've worked and worked on this girl that I showed you yesterday, and this is the best I can do. I wish I had made the background darker to begin with but it isn't. And I didn't want to change the color of her hair too much.



I worked on her chin and her eyes quite a bit. I made the left eye smaller and if you look close enough you can see where I repaired it....



And just for comparison, here they are side by side....



I'm sure I could still improve on her but after awhile I get tired of looking at the same thing! I'm ready to move on to the next project. I think this one is A Little Bird Flew By....

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

A New Face....

I think it's time for some art today. This is done on a small stretched canvas. It's about 8 x 10" ....a little smaller than I like to work on but it's the canvas I grabbed first this morning.



I didn't take a lot of time with this painting (and it shows!!)



Her face needs work, especially around her chin and the eye on the right....and so does the ribbon. I'll most likely work on her a little more tonight. If I do, I'll show you what I change but for now here she is....a WIP!!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

My Name in Print!

Yesterday I received my complimentary copy of Studios and was pleasantly surprised to see I have an entire page! I thought it would probably be just one small picture since I'm not a big name in the art world....



Those are HB's fingers holding the page. I think he's more excited about this than I am!!

And just because we're on the subject of magazines/books I thought I'd share with you a montage of photos I recently took of some of the books in my studio....yes, I said some of my books! These are all artsy/crafty books....



I made a pact with myself this year that I wouldn't buy too many books. So far I've bought three new books. I'm not doing so good with my pact!

Monday, February 07, 2011

Combining Techniques....

Warning!! Lots of photos today! I tried to edit them down and believe me I discarded several so please bear with me.

As you know, I'm doing Julie Prichard's Mixed Media Melange class. And you also know that many times I don't always show what I do in the classes I take. Many times that's because I don't actually DO the lessons until much later....or never!

Now fast forward a bit....remember I mentioned that I had purchased Pam Carriker's Art at the Speed of Life book. I decided to jump right in and do the very first project in the book. It's on pages 16 and 17.

Now sort of combine Julie's class and the project from Pam's book and you'll have what I did today.

I had three 11 x 14" canvas panels that I had started painting on early last year and never finished them. Surprise, huh?!! So I dug them out of the stack and decided to use them. I gessoed over everything and began. There are so many layers on these panels now that I forgot what all I did to them! I know there's some crackle medium, tissue paper, collage, and a stencil that I pushed modeling paste through to get a raised design.

At one point they looked like this drying on my second work table amid a jumble of things....


(all photos are clickable to view larger)

Yuk!! They look horrible! But don't give up....



Here is the first panel on the work table. I love the colors and I wish you could see it up close to see all the texture and layers.



This is the area where I used the stencil and modeling paste. I love how it turned out.



This is the second panel on the work table. As you can see I'm going a bit darker with this one.



More of the raised design.



I love the texture!



And here is the third one on the work table. I really used intense color on this one.



Again, I love the texture!



Here they are all together sitting side by side.



This is actually the third panel with the stencil design on the left side of the panel.



This is the first panel with the stencil design at the bottom.



And this is the second panel with the stencil design on the right side.

I wish I had kept the colors more the same intensity so that I could hang them as a triptych. Maybe I'll go back and add some darker colors to the two lighter ones.

You can't really see it in the pictures but I used some silver rub and buff cream to highlight the raised design on each panel. And the letters and numbers are done with Golden's Iridescent Pearl.

I'm happy with how this project turned out. Combining techniques is fun and you get some really great results.