Monday, January 31, 2011

The Kings Horse

I am in a Facebook Art Journaling group through Milliande's network and this was posted one day last week. I just loved it.

The story is called "The King's horse". It's about a cruel king who ruled his kingdom as he pleased.Everyone was afraid of him and he only loved his horse. It got sick and he ordered all of his servants to look after the horse, like it was his own son.He then orders them to take it to the countryside, for it may get better there. It dies and afraid for their lives, they ask a young,country girl to bring the news to the King, in exchange for 6 coins. They warn her that the King threatened to behead whoever told him that the horse is dead. She is received by the King and explains that the horse was very sick and could not eat, drink or even breathe. "So, it is dead!", says the King. "You said that it is dead, not I!" She saves her life by using her cleverness and with her 6 coins, she finally manages to buy the little house of her dreams. The End! Phew! :)

The translation cames from Palma Rea, one of the members of the group.  I hope you enjoy it!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Out Of My Slump

I really have enjoyed my week off from blogging and yes I did miss it so I am back. So what did I learn in that week, I think just the fact that I said I was going to stop made things better all around. I found time to work on my network and posted a video and a few posts there. I decided I was not going to double post everything, it just takes too much time. So you can either check out the network or subscriber to my YouTube channel  to see anything that I am doing there.  In the studio I spent quite a bit of time and learned to just let go, to not worry about what I was doing, to just be.  I made some simple pages and thats ok because you can only do what you feel like on any given day.  I am giving myself permission to do that, to stop being so critical and just let it be.

This is for the sketchbook challenge.

and a few of the journal pages I made in the last couple weeks.

A face in watercolor crayons

This is my entry for the creative challenge on my site.

Another simple page, these pages were done a week apart, I found it funny that I used the same paper for accent on both of them.

I liked this image so much its is my call to spring, I really am ready for it.

Here I really wanted to be another Kate for at least a day.

Another face exploration done in acrylics. For some reason I am calling her Imelda, not sure where the name came from.

More journaling with a simple image.   Now its time to get back to the studio and make some more art.  I hope that you can find time to do the same.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Artistic Blues

I've been trying to blog for days now. I start a post and then just give up on it. The art just doesn't seem to be there anymore. Sure I have done a few journal pages or some sketches in my sketchbook but has anything been great no, the pages have been simple and the sketches lacking. I am just not feeling it lately. I wonder if the muse is out to lunch or if I am going through one of those periods that artists sometimes go through. Or even if this is just the winter blues or what is going on.

I've been through this before, I know all the steps to take the techniques to use to come out of the other side. It just seems to be taking longer this time, I have been toying with taking a blogging break. I see so many others do this and one of two things happens, they either come back renewed or realize they can't really give it up so are back the next day.  I don't know which one I will be, probably the latter. I have been blogging for six years now so maybe taking a week or two off is in order. I'll be back when I think I have something to show or say.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Finished bag

I finished the messenger bag and it was quite a challenge. There were virtually no instructions on putting it together.  I just had to wing it to figure out how to put it together. I added the lettering and swirls after the bag was put together. Some of it didn't turn out quite the way I had intended but I still think its passable for a bag.  The crow was first stamped and then painted. All lettering was done with brush pens.

I decorated the straps with little swirls. This is one of those projects that I think I could evolve over time. The bag piece under the flap is not decorated but I think it might be fun to decorate at a later date.  It might be fun to put an inspiring quote that you'd see every time you opened the bag. For now I think I'll use the bag and see how I like it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Video and a WIP

For those of you not participating in the sketchbook challenge I thought I'd share this great video from Diana Trout.  Its an exercise to get you drawing and looks like a lot of fun to do.

I've been working on a canvas Messenger bag to hold a sketchbook and a few other things. I got the idea from my friend Jolene, you can see her bag here

The pattern comes from this magazine and was designed by Lisa Englebreight

This is what the finished bag looked like in the magazine.

Here is a sneak peak on my work in progress.  First are some pieces of canvas painted in blue, turquoise and purple, which are my favorite colors

After Jolene had made her bag she suggested lining it. When you paint on canvas it can leak to the other side and really looks messy.  So I am going to add this fabric as lining.

I really do not know how to do lettering but that never stops me from trying.  I pulled out  a speedball pen and nib and tried a sample in black and it seemed too stark,  So I headed to Michaels to look for colored ink and the colors I found were not all that great.  So I pulled out my faber-castell brush pens and tried the word artist in them.  I like the look of all the different colors so I think I will use those pens to do the lettering.  Now to decide what words I write on it and to put the bag together.  I'll post the finished project soon.

You can see the finished bag here

Sunday, January 16, 2011

New Creativity Site

My blogging friend Effie has just opened a ning site.   It looks really good, if your looking for new inspiration or a place to hang out you can check it out here

Is it a Sketchbook or an Art Journal

For my word of the year I narrowed my choice down to the word focus. My focus is on completion on finishing things I start.  These can be old projects that have been around for years or new things that I start. To cement the idea in my head I like to do a art journal page on the idea. The page is fairly simple but the message does get across so I think that is all that is needed.

I am participating in the Year long Sketchbook Challenge and first I decorated the cover but didn't do much beyond that.  I tried some simple sketches on the first few pages, but there is nothing fantastic that I wanted to share.  I found myself trying to turn the book into an Art Journal and had to stop myself.

The theme this month is highly prized.  I found the prompt to be a little problematic as it can encompass so much.  I ended up adding a drawing my daughter did to the page and then doing my own little sketch.  Next came a few words on the idea.

I am really not too sure how to handle this sketchbook thing.  When I see some of the artists sketchbooks  on the site I see elaborated drawings with watercolor added so they really look like paintings themselves. I have always thought of a sketchbook as pen or graphite and I know that is limiting myself.  Perhaps if I were better at watercolor I would not hesitate to add it. So tell me what do you think the difference is between an art journal and a sketchbook?

This is the another page in the sketchbook.  I drew her from my own imagination, she is done in graphite pencils H and 4B.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Some Sewing and Knitting Projects

Since I have not managed any art lately I thought I would share all the things I made at Christmas time.  This year I ended up making quite a few things.   I couldn't show them when they were made but now that the recipients have them its time for all of you to see.

I made five utility aprons, this one is for my friend Celeste. She is a spinner and knitter so I added a sheep to all the buttons in the placket.

This one was for Janet, she loves purple so I went through my stash looking for purple fabrics.

I made a tote bag from this fabric for my sister last year, so I took the scraps to make her an apron this year. She really loves New Mexico so its perfect for her.

My sister Peggy loves coffee so I chose some coffee cup fabric for her apron,

and lastly my daughter loves cats so it had to be cat fabric for hers. One of our cats is a siamese so I made sure to applique one that  looked like Lucky.

Sarah started crocheting so I made her this holder for crochet hooks

This is the holder opened and you can see she has it filled already. I was really pleased on how well it turned out.  I had seen a similar one on Etsy so I made my own pattern and tried it in muslin first.  I tweaked the pattern a little before cutting it out of the fabric that Sarah picked out.

I also did some knitting, I made my daughter these fingerless mitts.   

Then after Christmas I made my sister Marianne this pair, and then Sarah wanted purple one's  so I made her a pair too! She kindly modeled them for these pictures, thanks Sarah.

Monday, January 10, 2011

It's war and a few paint and passes

When my friends were here from Salt Lake I discovered some yarn had been destroyed by mice.  They were not anything that important.  Just left overs from projects.  I had thought oh I am going to have to put all my yarn in storage.  I have it in wire crates so that I can see it all.  I just brushed off the damage to a couple isolated cases.  Then I found this.

This is what one of the fair Isle gloves I got in Scotland looked like.  That is a gaping hole on the side of the glove.

So I went out and got these containers. I have been putting all the yarn in these nice storage drawers. Its a lot of work to do this but I figured I had no choice

Remember when I was doing those paint and pass canvasses.  Well they are still making their rounds. They are pretty full so it was hard to find a space to put anything.  I have three to share today.

This one was my friend Sioux's.  I ended up adding the zentangle marks in the border.

This one is my friend Gemma's I added the checkerboard and enhanced the flowers on the bird

This one is  Violette's,  i added the crow to the piece.  Its her totem so I really felt it had a place here. These were really fun to work on.  I think the artwork is amazing.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sketchbook cover

Like many of you out there I have joined in on the Sketchbook Challenge.  Since this is a year long project I have decided to get a new sketchbook just for this project.  I stopped at Michaels to get one of Canson's Mixed Media sketchbooks.  I got the smaller size because I want to be able to carry it around easily. Here is a video I did of decorating the cover.

My daughter is doing a writing blog and it is very good.  Here is the link, if you are interested check it out.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Catching Up

I am trying to catch up but I feel like I am weeks behind everyone else.  After ten days of company, everyone has gone home now.  Time to reflect on last year and pick my word for the year. Alas there are already things starting that need attention.

I wanted to share with you some fun free things out there in cyber land this January.

Milliande is doing her Art Journal January series again.  She has a video daily, there is some awesome inspiration there.  You can check it out here.

The Sketchbook Challenge has started also.  Its a year long project that will really encourage you to get that sketchbook out and use it.  You can start any time. There are guest artists and monthly prompts and giveaways and fun to be had.  Check it out here

Strathmore Online Classes featuring their new line of Visual Journals began Jan 1.  These are free classes. This month Pam Carriker is doing a class and there will be 2 more additional classes in March and May by Linda Blinn and Roz Stendahl.  You can check those out here

Then there is Make over your writing in 31 Days.  It really more of a blog than a class with daily posts and ideas.  You can see it here 

This is what Santa brought me for Christmas. I have wanted a good camcorder so that I can start filming online classes myself.  So now I have no more excuses, I have the equipment I just need to learn how to use it and start filming.

Word of the Year, I have been thinking about this for some time. I was leaning towards Wellness but lately the word I had thought about choosing last year seems to be resurfacing.  Last year I almost chose finished or completion but changed my mind and embraced the word bliss.  Now once again I am drawn to finishing things. So I do not know if the word should be finish, completion or focus or follow through.  I have been looking for the word that encompasses all of this but I haven't figured out what it is yet. If you have a suggestion I would love to here it.

This past weekend I had some spinning/knitting friends visit from Utah. I pulled out lots of UFO's and went to work on some on them. I finished a pair of fingerless mitts for my sister and finished a sock for Sarah, just have to do the other one.  I had another sock 1/2 done so that is being completed now. I am coming up with a plan to finish all these things I have lying around.

Now that is just knitting, I have lots of writing projects in the unfinished states and I'd like to tackle one of them and just complete it. So I think this week I will take some inventory and see what it is that I am willing to spend the majority of my time on.

How are you planning on spending your time in 2011?