Sunday, August 30, 2009

Art Journaling

This is what I've been up to this week...working on some small pieces of art in my journal.  Since I've returned to work, it's easier right now to journal because it's like creating mini pieces of artwork--plus, I can still get in a little creative time and see it through to the end.  This first piece is actually done on a piece of canvas paper.  I've used this paper in various classes and had a pad of it sitting in my closet for the longest time (I'm sure we could all attach that phrase to a quarter of our art supplies!).  I created a base with various scraps of paper left over from other projects.  I almost scrapped the whole thing in the beginning because I didn't like the color scheme, but I was determined to see it through.  After layering other paint colors over the "base", I was happier and moved forward with the images.  Of course, those of you who know me, know I love anything with Mary so here she is!

These next two pieces are in my art journal.  As you can see, I'm into the rays coming out of things right now.  I cut out the flower from an article in body + soul magazine.  The theme for July was "Let yourself flow" so that was the jumping off point for the page.
This last one was inspired by a quote I liked about the need to develop a strong inner spirit to help you deal more easily with the day to day things that usually consume and frustrate you.  
Hoping your week ahead is filled with good things and a peaceful moment sandwiched in there somewhere!! 

Monday, August 24, 2009

Life Defined

I love this "quotables" line- especially the cards and magnets!!  This is my newest addition just in time to return to work....

After a relaxing summer of taking time to do all the things I love: time to reflect, time to create, time to slow down, time to take in the little pleasures of life- I thought this magnet would remind me to keep in perspective what is truly important to me.  I recently saw this other quote by Annie Dilliard:  "How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." This got me thinking about how I should value my days more for what they are rather than as a means to some end, i.e. "getting through them" to get to something getting through the week to get to the weekend.  After all, how we spend our moments, our days, and our lives is often defined by what is most important to us...what we value.   I've been thinking that I need to embrace the day to day more often, even when it's stressful, crazy, unpredictable.  If I'm living to "get through" my days, then I'm really just "getting through" life and what kind of living is that?  Take a moment sometime this week to reflect on what is most important to you. If it's a person, tell them.  If it's doing something, do it.  Live your days!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A few more snapshots

Just a few more pictures of my project that I posted about on Thursday.  I'm going to find a spot to hang it in my studio today.  

Wishing you a blissfully inspired weekend!!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Inspiration Revealed

I finally finished the project I've been working on using the lamp shade frame I spray painted turquoise.  If I had to name the finished product, I would call it "Inspiration Unleashed".  I used a bunch of postcards, greeting cards, and clip art from Anahata to make the "tags".  I also used some digital words of inspiration that I downloaded from Rhonna Farrer.  I thought that the two went together well.  I altered the postcards with rub-ons and stickles and glued the digital art words from Rhonna on tags where they fit.  I also added some favorite quotes for a personal touch.  Last, I tied the smaller tags around the top of the frame and the larger tags along the bottom of the frame.  I also had silver glittered stars on wire that I twisted around parts of the lampshade.  To give it some movement, I hung butterfly mobiles vertically down the center of it and attached chandelier crystals to the bottoms of the strings.  I have a few more pics of some of the other tags that I will post tomorrow.
Until then...I will leave you with these:  

Isn't the possibility of something greater, different, calmer, more meaningful, more adventurous, or even more daring what really keeps us going from day to day?  Think about the endless possibilities and do one thing today toward making one of those possibilities happen!  

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Summer hues

Just soaking in the colors of summer before they're all gone!  We got up early today and drove north to Crystal Cove in Laguna.  If you have never visited this beach, it is a must see!  There is a tiny historic village of beach cottages that families would stay in each summer.  All of the cottages are now too old to live in, but visiting them is like stepping back in time. There is a restaurant situated right on the beach that is great place to eat at while soaking in the smells and sounds of the sea.  I love to come here to practice my picture taking skills (which need much refinement) as there are a lot of colorful sources of inspiration.  

As I walked through the surf, I thought about how another summer has come and gone, just like the tide coming in and out.  Each summer, I get time to myself to rest and revisit all that is important in my life and honor the parts of my spirit that make!  I purchased this cute little quote book today called "Spirit" and my favorite quote in the book is this:

There comes a time in the spiritual journey when you start making choices from a very different place.  And if a choice lines up so that it supports truth, health, happiness, wisdom, and love, it's the right choice.     -Angeles Arrien

I think it's important to reevaluate from time to time where our choices are coming from.  Sometimes choices are made out of necessity and other times out of love and sacrifice.  Each fall, as I return to the business and chaos of work, I try to remind myself that I must stay true to myself and make choices throughout the year that honor my spirit, which ultimately honors who I a woman, a wife, an artist, a creative being. 

Monday, August 17, 2009

Go green

Green tea, that is...this is my newest source of "energy" for crafting my days away.  Last month, they featured this edible green tea in Romantic Homes magazine.  It is 100% pure Japanese Sencha green tea ground into a powder.  The price seemed kind of expensive at first, but then you realize that you only need to use 1/4 tsp. per 8 oz. drink.  This powder allows you to make green tea lattes at home that taste just like the kind you order at that famous coffee chain we all spend too much money at.  
And...with this sugar-free vanilla powder from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, some ice, and a blender, you can whip up green tea frappucinos any time the urge strikes..bonus!!  They are so yummy (and addicting)!!!  
Supposedly, you can also use the green tea powder in various other recipes such as green tea cookies and muffins.  However, I think one green tea addiction is sufficient for now! 

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lucky girl

Thank you to everyone who stopped by to visit my blog this past week.  I feel like such a lucky girl to have such a supportive group of friends who continually encourage and inspire me!  I finally got around to picking a winner for the giveaway...using the most technical means possible- my Tinkerbell mug for the names and my husband as the random name generator.  He picked this sweet girl as the winner......

Congratulations JESSI!!!!  I will send out a special thank you to you in the mail this week!!  I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend!  I'm almost done with my inspirational project using the lamp shade so I will post pictures later this week.  

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Inspired by sweetness

I recently got this adorable paper with cute little ladybugs all over it.  The company is My Little Shoebox and it is just the sweetest!  I decided to make a picture frame for a co-worker whose wife just had a baby girl.  Last month, the Year of Color blog featured the stripe theme so I thought I'd apply it to this project.  The back of the paper had some cute little mushrooms which were too small to cut out so I decided to make my own out of felt.  I then stitched the "underside" of the mushroom and added some rhinestones for polka dots.  

No project would be complete without one of Kim's wooden cut outs.  The heart in the center is also a cut out I bought from her.  It gives the project some nice 3-D dimension.  
I also started on this project today.  I bought this lampshade frame from La Maison Rustique at their August barn sale last year and it has sat in my studio ever since, just waiting to be turned into something better.  I gave it a good coat of turquoise paint and created some inspirational tags to hang on it.  When I get them completed, I will post the finished product.  
I can't believe summer is almost over!  I am trying to cram in all the creativity I can before it's put on the secondary list of commitments!  What things are you trying to do before our waning days of summer are gone?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Mermaid's Treasures

I've been in the seashell-themed mood lately, especially since it's summertime!  I recently took a class taught by the very talented Cindy Gonzales at Guilding the Lily.  Cindy makes absolutely amazing crowns of all sorts.  This was her first class teaching and it was fabulous!  She had other crowns with her as well, some made out of gorgeous combinations of paper mache and tinsel...all equally amazing.  This is the crown I made....

I plan on placing it atop a white cakestand in my living room along with some other sea treasures I've been collecting lately.  I recently purchased this altered vintage clock at a barn sale and I think it will fit nicely alongside the crown.  

Once I get the supplies in the mail that I ordered for this altered bottle, my collection of undersea treasures should be complete!  

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Rockin' out with this girl...

                                            Photo courtesy of No Doubt Tour  Images

Last night we went to see No Doubt in concert.  I was lucky to get these tickets as this is one of the last dates on their tour.   The show was sooo awesome...only reinforced to me that if I were a rock star, I'd want to be Gwen!  I also wish that all my working out would produce the six-pack abs that she was sporting.  Ahhh...maybe in the next life!  The audience was predominantly made up of women, but during the song, I'm Just a Girl, she made the men all yell out, "I'm just a girl!"  I was seriously thinking, " all couldn't handle even one-half of being a girl."  LOL!  What is that saying? Anything you can do, I can do better...well, girls kick butt and Gwen proved that last night!  

Monday, August 3, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Isn't that what Frosty the Snowman says when he comes to life that first day?  I thought it fitting that I, too, begin my very first day of this blog with those same sentiments!  After months of wondering if I could figure out the technology side of this whole blog world, I have finally taken the plunge...thanks in large part to the support of many fabulous women along the way!  This girl has been especially wonderful in nudging me along and I appreciate all her support.  I've always remembered this quote I once heard from Oprah, "Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher."  The past year has been filled with moments of meeting new friends, learning from incredibly talented women, and becoming a better artist and individual because of those experiences.  Finally beginning a blog is just another step along this journey, and I am so glad to be sharing it with whomever wants to come along for the ride!