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Saturday, January 25, 2014

I don't do New Years Resolutions but....

In the past year or so, I've developed a habit of "catastrophizing" or thinking of possible icky outcomes to things. If I'm cooking I may think, "what if this has too much salt?" or "what if people don't like this?"  If I'm working on art I might think, "what if this color isn't working?" or, "what if I mess this up?" If it's cold I think, "what if the power goes out?" and on and on and on. I have named this The Devil In My Head and am becoming more aware of it.

Author Jamie Sams in The Sacred Path Cards says, "The shadow side of self, which inhibits growth, is constantly forced to die. These deaths occur on a daily basis whether they be our fear, doubts, our bad habits, negative thoughts, or our self-importance. . These deaths mark spiritual progress, and speak of the ability of humankind to Walk in Beauty. Every death of a shadow announces the birth of a new talent or gift contained in the self."

So this year, when the rascal starts up, I'll practice not believing what it says.

Monday, January 20, 2014

The pendulum is swinging

I haven't created much recently, due to family situations (somebody has to be the strong one.)  Now suddenly, all I want to do is art. Every morning. Balance would be nice but for now, I'm going to allow myself this interval as I think I've earned it.  Anyway, this is what I completed this morning. It's inspired by Anasazi rock drawings.
The top one is Sunrise, and the bottom one is Corn Maiden.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Before and After

I actually like both of these cards! The one on the top was the before with some collaged paint skins, lace, ink and modeling paste. 

The one on the bottom has additional paint, colored pencil and ephemera.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Three Feathers and Two Nests

I like to recycle boxes to make ATCs and ACEOs. I liked the blocks of color on this tissue box. Please scroll down to see how this evolved into an ACEO.

Step One

So, I put a few blobs of titanium white on the background, and smeared them with a palette knife.

Seeing the Feathers

When I first glanced at the white shapes, they reminded me of tall sails on a sailboat. Looking again, they resembled feathers. I went with the feathers since they are more in keeping with who I am and what I believe. I outlined them with a Bic Wite Out pen.

The Third Feather

For whatever reason, I didn't see the third feather until the next day. I scratched away some of the white and made the lines go in the opposite direction, for visual interest.

The First Nest

I made a Contact paper transfer. I prefer this to packing tape transfers, because the Contact paper has a matte finish.  I like to distress my transfers so that they are very thin, to allow the images beneath to show through. As I was doing this, I realized that one of my life preoccupations is looking through to the layers beneath. This is why I have a degree in Counseling Psychology.  These semi-transparent layers appear in other pieces of my art as well.

Life Lines

I decided to bring the feathers forward through the nest. I accomplished this with a series of dots. I have always loved Aboriginal art, and the dots are a recurring theme in my work. I like to use them to suggest lines of life force, similar to the lines in Zuni fetishes. I sometimes use them to connect things like the sun and animals, or animals and people. This comes from my belief that we are all connected to everything and everyone else. I added a little more definition to the feathers, and placed the second nest in the bottom left corner. I finished with more dots and, now we have "Three Feathers and Two Nests."

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Finding Inspiration

Harold Ramis (Egon in Ghostbusters)  says:  "Find the most talented person in the room and if it's not you, go stand next to him. Hang out with him. Try to be helpful."  The person he hung out with was Bill Murray.  Further, if the most talented person in the room is yourself, it is suggested by author Austin Kleon in Steal Like An Artist,  you might want to find another room.

The reason I'm blog hopping is that, it offers so many "rooms" to walk into. I want to surround myself with motivated artists who are in love with their work. What better way to find them/you?

Who knows, some of you might want to be in my room too!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Saturn and Moons

This ACEO began with the plastic wrap technique as mentioned in my next post. The planet is a scrap from another project.  Four moons circle through the cosmic dust.

Ley Lines

Happy 2014! This is my first completed canvas of the year. I painted on several layers of different colored acrylic paint and covered it with plastic wrap. When it dried I removed the wrap, and the resulting pattern reminded me of ley lines. I cut out shapes to suggest standing stones. Several layers of glaze, some oil pastels as a resist, some inking, and drawing with charcoal and colored pencils resulted in this. I love working with resists, and do try the plastic wrap if you haven't.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Tasting the apples

And when it happens that you are broken or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples fall all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could. Louise Endrich, The Painted Drum