It’s amazing how a little encouragement can get the artistic juices flowing. I recently made a birthday card for someone. She loved it so much that she wanted to see other cards, so I made her more of the same one and many others that I thought she might like. She told others about the cards and they love them, too. And so I’ve been a busy little studio bee creating cards this week. Here are just a few. I make each card one by one, but some of them are available to order as a reproduction on my RedBubble site.
I indulged my love of paper this weekend at Paper Connection International in Providence, R.I. The company mainly supplies commercial paper sellers, but opens its doors to the public three times a year. Saturday was one of those times. There were lots of lovely textured and patterned papers, many of them handcrafted. I created a greeting card using the paper I bought as well as a mixed media painting–acrylic paint on handmade bamboo paper with collaged pieces from handwritten letters. This piece was created for the “language” theme for the April Creative Every Day Challenge. Oh, how I love paper!
The theme for the month of August for the Creative Every Day Challenge is “red.” I love red because of its boldness. I often work in bright colors so this theme fits me perfectly. This weekend I worked on two pieces in red. One is a drawing that will be a reminder to me that time to do my artwork can be found anywhere, if I look for it; the other is a card that is a tribute to a friend, my art buddy, with whom I spent Saturday being artsy and having a fabulous time. (I got the paper for the card on our art store trip.)
My drawing is a mixed media work in colored pencil, sharpie and pencil. I began working on it a couple of weeks ago, but I’ve been so busy that I haven’t been able to really sit down and finish it. I finally got the bulk of the color on it on Saturday as I sat in the parking lot of Lowe’s at 5:30 a.m.–no make up on, wild ponytail–waiting for the store to open at 6 a.m. so I could take advantage of the tax-free holiday and return home to get on my computer to apply for a state rebate for the new refrigerator that I bought. (Ridiculous what some people will do for a good deal, right?) So there I was, half asleep, working my little color pencils.
I mention this because my art buddy and I talked about “time” this weekend–how there is never, ever, enough of it to do all the things we want. We both have so many creative ideas buzzing in our heads, poking and prodding us all the time, but, ah, time…. But I told my very talented friend that I’ve decided that there is not some magical Time Fairy Godmother who is going to swoop down and bestow upon us perfect blocks of time to get our artwork done. So we have to just steal those little moments here and there to accomplish little goals that build up to finished pieces. Coming to terms with that has helped me do what I can when I can, and freed me from feeling guilty about not being able to get EVERYTHING done all the time. And sometimes this is not pretty. Sometimes choosing to steal some art time means the dishes will sit in the sink or the laundry will remain unfolded, but, hey, sorry cups and saucers and wrinkled blouse, I choose me. And, how blessed are we to have so much talent and creative ideas that we have to struggle to find buckets of time to hold it all?
The drawing is called “Queen of Hearts.” Note the sweetness of the face and the condition of the hearts. 🙂
The guiding theme for this month’s Creative Every Day Challenge is “small.” Anyone who knows me knows that I like big and bold–big and bold jewelry, big and bold colors, big and bold laughter, drama…. You get the idea. So small is challenging for me. I’m realizing that this would be a good month to focus on creating little bits of art in the way of my handcrafted greeting cards, because I only have little bits of time lately.
I’m way behind on creating new ones. I usually gear up for the fall Open Studios in Dorchester, Mass., much sooner than this. But the tough winter, overload of work at the office, and some indescribable malaise has made me sluggish these past few months. Hopefully, quick bursts of art will help.
Here are my latest cards. Both are made from the remains of a failed art project that I blogged about here.
My birthday celebration continued this weekend, courtesy of friends who prepared a lovely dinner and gave me perfect gifts–laughter and love. We all had a great time, as always. The star of the evening was the birthday cake, which by chance had one of my favorite colors on it–aqua–and lovely butterflies. I kept the butterflies and used them as inspiration for 3-D handcrafted cards.
For years, I’ve enjoyed creating works that are based on fractured space. I think that stems from my love of working with torn paper in the collage works I create. Taking things apart and reconstructing them in a way that makes the eye move around the piece is so much fun. I get totally lost in the process as I calculate which color, which piece will go where, as if I’m putting together a puzzle.
This new 9 x 12 work, “Silver Star,” was created using mixed media — pencil, watercolor and acrylic paint. I came up with the image working with the theme of “air” for December’s Creative Every Day Month. Can’t you feel the air moving around her?
Prints and greeting cards featuring the work are available here.
Thanksgiving and Christmas are truly artist holidays. Everyone turns into artists! We spent Thanksgiving in New Hampshire with some friends. There was a creative meal that was beautifully presented, a skillfully orchestrated cleanup in which everyone took part, and musical chairs as we all drifted from room to room in and out of conversation with each other. There were more than 30 people there! That makes the hostess who pulled this off my new superhero. Talk about a Wonder Woman! Fabulous.
I stayed electronically unplugged this weekend just to take a break and enjoy the moments. Here are some of my latest creations as I continue to make Christmas cards for the craft show at Wheaton College in Norton, Mass. It will take place Thursday (yikes!) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. If any of you are in the area, please drop by.
I hope you all had an absolutely wonderful Thanksgiving. I have so much to be thankful for—my loving husband and wonderful son who constantly lift me up with their unconditional love; my amazing Alabama mama and daddy who worked hard to give me the best that they could through circumstances that were not always the best; and friends who support me and make me laugh.
I am so behind on my blogging this week! It’s Day 21 of Art Every Day Month. Hard to believe. I’ve been very busy with work, basketball practice, Zumba, life, etc., but I have also been busy working on Christmas cards. This is the first time I finally have time to post what I’ve been working on. Here they are. Each one lovingly handcrafted. Enjoy.