Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Bear Paw Bay Fire

When I was in Teton National Park the first few days the Bear Paw Bay fire was far off in the distance. The last 2 days we were there it was getting closer. The colors in the smoke were really fascinating. By the way this fire was started by lightning.

Here are some of the pictures I took of the fire.

The look of the fire changed by the hour. We could actually see the flames several time but alas I have no pictures of that.

Its been raining here all day and that weather is headed into the parks. Hopefully it will put out the fire. It was interesting to see all the colors of the smoke, it really had a beauty about it. It is interesting that something that is so destructive is also beautiful and renewing.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Artist Way week 6 Abundance

I spent most of week six at Teton National Park which is a place of abundant beauty. Its a place I call home where I really find I can rejuvenate myself.

I did my morning pages every day and had not one but two Artist dates.
I attended the little Indian Museum at Colter Bay. There was a Cherokee Artist there named DG House. Unfortunetly her website seems to be having a problem so I can't show you her wonderful art. Basically it is very bright colored animals. Ravens, Bears, elk etc. Her painting were lots of fun to see.

My next date was when we drove to Jackson for the day. Jackson is full of art galleries and I spent the afternoon just looking at all the wonderful art. What an uplift that was.

This past week I really was able to see an abundance in many different ways but mostly in the beauty of my surroundings in the art I saw and in the art I was able to create. My little corner of the world really is abundant.

Monday, September 28, 2009

The Joy Diet - Nothing

This past week the Joy Diet group focused on doing nothing for 15 minutes a day. I had it easy this week. I have spent the week camping in the Tetons. It was easy to be able to do nothing every day. It is also pretty much a part of my usual routine so I had no difficulty. That is not to say that I didn't have my mind wandering all over the place I think that is just part of the process. I like to have time to meditate daily but sometimes I don’t get to it. I just don't take the time.

This week was a reminder how important that is for me. The other thing is I like how Martha gives you options for the process, like being in motion. I so appreciate that she doesn't say you have to do it this way or nothing. A transition is so helpful.

One of things Jamie asked us to do was to make little vision cards for the week. I really didn’t have the materials to do a Joy card while I was out here. This is the one I made when I got home.

This is also the one I made on doing nothing…… I toyed with the idea of just a blank card but then I decided visuals were important. Visions of beautiful surroundings are important when I do nothing and I thought a time piece was very important. To make my cards I took an 8.5 x 11 piece of cardstock and cut in half. It is a small size to work with and I think it works well. These could be done on any size but I do like the small size as you could carry it with you as a reminder for the day.

Week 5 A sense of Possibility

image from net

I am a bit behind in my Artist Way postings since I was out of town for a week. So its time to play catch up.

This week is all about possibility. I have been doing the morning pages every day and took an Artist date in a used furniture store of all places. They even had collage materials there. I saw a very old journal but it was really expensive so I had to pass. This showed me that artist renewal can really happen anywhere. I enjoyed looking at the styles of furniture and so forth. A fun artist date.

Julia is always asking us to do lists so I thought I would share a couple from this week.

I try most things so my list of things to try if it weren’t too crazy are very out there.

1. Mt. climbing
2. Get in my car one day and spontaneously take a trip. I’d call my husband to let him know where I was and just let him take care of house and animals and so forth. Not sure where I would go but I think that it would be fun.
3. Decide to just go visit one of my blogging buddies that live far away.
4. Plan a trip to England
5. Really work on writing and submit something.

My list of forbidden joys, or things to do for yourself that you for some reason you don’t.

1. Buy more lingerie
2. Go to the ocean
3. Dye my hair in 7 different colors
4. Take a life drawing class
5. Buy a pair of fashion boots
6. Give myself permission to create with abandon
7. Buy myself some expensive wine
8. Buy a fancy cut of meat or exotic cheese etc
9. Buy some really expensive chocolate
10. Go visit my sister in Michigan

Make a list of Wishes
1. I wish I were on the Oregon coast
2. I wish that I had a beach house on a beach with warm water
3. I wish I could go to Ireland for a month
4. I wish I could go see some plays on Broadway or in London
5. I wish I could go to Squam next year
6. I wish I could go to Hawaii or the Caribbean
7. I wish I could get the momentum going on my book
8. I wish I could go to an Art retreat in Italy
9. I wish I could take a Goddess tour to Greece and Crete
10. I wish I had all my bills paid off
11. I wish I could find some local art friends’
12. I wish I could decorate and remodel my house
13. I wish I had plenty of extra spending money
14. I wish I could travel as much as I liked
15. I wish I had a macro lens for my camera
16. I wish I were in better shape
17. I wish I got more comments on my blog
18. I wish I could take a trip with Sarah when she graduated, somewhere in Europe
19. I wish I really felt that I could write fiction
20. I wish I had more wishes

After typing all these boy you can see I have the travel bug big time… There were more lists we made but I will not bore you with all of those. I did find that I put a lot of things on different lists. I guess those are the things I really want to see happen in my life.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Black and White

I am continuing to play with the pitt artist pens in my moleskine journal. So my subjects are black and white, first a loon from a magazine picture.

This is raven drawn from a photo I took. It was on my computer so I at least had a model to work from.

I took this picture a day ago at the Ox Bow turnout in Teton National Park. Everyone was looking for moose but I saw the raven so I took his picture.

Then that evening I tried drawing the him.

This was done from a photo I took a year ago. Its from Yellowstone NP but you can't really tell that. I think I am starting to get used to drawing with these brush markers. They are actually fun to use. Now I want some in color.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Found Art

Many of you may know about the concept of found art but for those who do not you basically pull out a picture from a detailed background. Sometimes you may see an eye or the shape of a shoulder or some body part. Sorry that I forgot to take any before pictures. I keep messing with her, not sure I like her yet but the process is sure fun.

While I was camping in the evenings I dragged out the art materials and finished a few pages. Here are the results. In this one I played with lettering sizes.

I had a bag of scraps and collage items with me. Why this pic of me was in the bunch I am not sure but I liked it.

This one of Mona has been collaged for a long time. It seemed to be missing something. Sometimes I find that I tend to worry about a page looking just right and I need to just let go. Maybe all it needed was some journaling.

I haven't drawn a face in some time. I like how she turned out. My faces are so much better when I have a reference photo. This time it was from a magazine. I think I am going to try an paint her.

I'll have some more art to show tomorrow and a travelogue later in the week.

Friday, September 18, 2009

The mountains are calling to me

In the morning we are off for a week to Grand Teton National Park. As you can see from the picture this is really one of the beautiful places in the world. I am fortunate to live just two hours away from here. I love going there, to just soak up the beauty of the mountains and the energy of the place.

This is Mt. Moran and a view I really love. I could sit and stare at these mountains all day. I am looking forward to some hiking and some time with my camera and more time to just be. Sure, I will be taking Art materials in case the weather is bad. I can do some journaling and drawing. Then there are the books I am reading and more. My laptop is coming with me so I can download pictures, but I won't have an internet connection so I won't be blogging for awhile. Enjoy your week.

The Joy Diet

The Joy Diet starts today. It is the latest book that the Next Chapter book blogging group is undertaking with the wonderful Jamie Ridler at the helm. I think we could all use a little more joy in our lives.

The book has ten ingredients for Joy

NOTHING: Do nothing for fifteen minutes a day. Stop
mindlessly chasing goals and figure out which goals are
worth going after.

TRUTH: Create a moment of truth to help you unmask what
you're hiding--from others and from yourself.

DESIRE: Identify, articulate, and explore at least one of
your heart's desires--and learn how to let yourself want
what you want.

CREATIVITY: Learn six new ways to develop at least one
new idea to help you obtain your heart's desire.

RISK: Take one baby step toward reaching your goal. The
only rule is it has to scare the pants off you.

TREATS: Give yourself a treat for every risk you take and
two treats just because you're you. No exceptions. No

PLAY: Take a moment to remember your real life's work and
differentiate it from the games you play to achieve it.
Then play wholeheartedly.

LAUGHTER: Laugh at least thirty times a day. Props

CONNECTION: Use your Joy Diet skills to interact with
someone who matters to you.

FEASTING: Enjoy at least three square feasts a day, with
or without food"

I think this will be lots of fun.. why don't you join us... You can sign up here

I found this wonderful site today called From Clutter to Shine and and have joined the Sisterhood of the Purple Bicycle. I love the idea and I always like to spread ideas. Go check it out here

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Some new classes

I signed up for some new classes today that you may find really interesting. First the lovely Mystele at Little Glimpses Studio is teaching her Gut Art class. Its all about painting authentically and to your own style and looks to be awesome. You can sign up here. If you haven't been to her blog I recommend it. She has wonderful videos. She does this technique where she pulls an image out of a painted background. Be sure to watch that video it is really fascinating.

Next I found this class through Nina Bagleys blog Ornamental. The Poetic Eye Point and shoot Journaling with LK LUdwig who wrote True Vision and many other books. It is all about using your own photos in your journals. Most of mine just languish on my hard drive so I am excited to be able to do more with them. You can sign up here

My October is going to be busy since I will be adding those to the the Artists Way and the Joy Diet with Jamie Ridler, which start tomorrow. Well all the work will get me prepared for Nanowrimo coming up in November. Sign ups for this year begin October 1st. Maybe this is the year you write that novel. I encourage you to come join the fun. This will be my fourth year. By now it doesn't seem like November if I am not writing along with thousands of other people from all around the world. If you have any questions about the National Novel Writing Month please email me.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Creative Person's Top Ten

I found this on Cynthia Morris's blog and thought it was so good I needed to share it here.

The Creative Person's Top Ten Needs

1. Need for creative space, as Virginia Woolf called a ‘room of one’s own’. Depending on what you’re creating, you may not need as big a space as you think you do. Write or draw out your ideal space and then assess how you have elements of that in place now.

2. Need for creative peers. When you’re on the leading edge of creativity, you need other creative people who understand the risks you’re taking and who encourage them. We need creative peers to talk, share, get insights and ideas and to encourage us. Commit to connecting with people who ‘get’ you more often. This is one of the most common reasons people hire me, because I ‘get’ them and what they are trying to do.

3. Need for creative fuel. In her book The Artist’s Way Julia Cameron calls this need ‘filling the well’. I get so inspired when I am out in the world seeing what other people are doing. A favorite source of inspiration for me is museum shops. The Tate Modern shop blew me away and gave me an idea for my work that I love. You can get inspiration from books, magazines, blogs art galleries, and other well filling activities. Wherever you get it, get it often. (This is where you’d list coffee!)

4. Need for imaginative space. This is different than physical space. It’s the time we need for noodling, doodling, wandering, and gathering thoughts. While it appears to be the antithesis of productivity, it’s actually vital to a productive creative cycle. Don’t pack every moment full of activity.

5. Need for the body to be expressed. We’re out in the ethers most of the time, us artists. We need to remember to take good care of our bodies by walking, dancing, practicing yoga, playing tennis, or whatever moves you regularly. I get so many of my ideas when I am exercising. Get moving on your terms, but get moving.

6. Need for your creative edge. Solving problems, pushing boundaries, developing something new is at the heart of the creative process. Rather than despair about how difficult it is to write a really good article, embrace the challenge of your craft. While you’re at it, embrace the challenge of your creative industry. For instance, publishing a book traditionally seems nearly impossible these days. Take that challenge on by either figuring out the publishing game or self-publishing. Relish the creative edge – you need it.

7. Need for ample amounts of faith and belief. When we’re making something from nothing, we need to be able to rely on faith and belief in ourselves and our work. Without this we can operate from despair and give up before our work is complete. Tap into your belief that you are on the right track, and do it often.

8. Need to have our work responded to. Whether it’s ego or a deep desire to share your creative work, most of us need for our work to be seen and received by others. This will vary for each person, some wanting just close friends to see our work, others wanting a wider audience. Just be sure to get feedback from the right people at the right time.

9. Need for certainty. Ironically, one of the needs for artists is the ability to live in uncertainty. Traveling the creative path can make you feel lost most of the time. That’s why certainty in other areas of life: home, relationships, income, can help you have a sense of being held while you soar. Have some rootedness so you can be ‘out there’ as much as you need to.

10. Need for time. This seems to be the need that people struggle with the most. If you never get any time alone to work on your art, your life will be filled with other people’s ideas and thoughts. Make choices that allow time for your art. The laundry, your e-mail, your garden will all be there an hour later, after you have spent time with your art.

Again, I did not prioritize these. While I believe we all share these needs, everyone will have their own sense of the needs’ hierarchy.

For more on this idea check out Cynthia's blog. She is a wonderful coach and has a great site.

Copyright 2009 Cynthia Morris. Cynthia coaches creative people to confidence and completion and inspires life as a creative adventure. Visit to get an infusion of inspiration for your art, writing and life.

A touch of grey

I pulled out my moleskine and tried out the Pitt Artist Pens Manga set. I did the scroll watching Pam Carriker's video. I think I got the idea down but just need more practice at it.

Then I tried the face and it was so much harder. I started with the lightest grey for the whites of the eyes and I think next time I will just leave them the color of the paper. I am so used to pencil and being able to blend it with my fingers. I am not really sure how to do that with markers. Practice makes perfect they say. I am sure this is not the first time I will used these.

I am amazed what Pam did with them in the Art Journaling Autumn issue. I know she also used the grey's in Neocolor II water color crayons too so I may try that also.

Learning something new is sometimes scary and you usually don't get it just the way you want the first time, but it is definetly worth the journey.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

You never know how a day will go

Here I was innocently reading emails and so forth when a friend suggested that I create a fan page for the Queen on facebook. So I spent the next hour figuring out how to make one. There is a link on my sidebar for facebook and in case you want to be a fan. I added a little discussion board too so check that out if you like.

I am being domestic today. Processed peaches and I may do some jam later today.

I picked up a set of these yesterday. They have all those grey shades in brush pens. I haven't used brush pens very much so I am looking forward to trying these out. The new Art Journaling magazine I talked about previously has a nice section on using them in your journals. I like trying new things as you probably can tell.

Do you have any art supplies lying in wait to be tested. Maybe today is the day you drag them out and give them a try.

Monday, September 14, 2009

My Aha Moment

Well my Aha moment is online for viewing. Here is the link

Artist Way - No Reading

The Artist Way task for this week has been No reading... I have found this to be nearly impossible for me. Sure I have given up recreational reading which has been hard. Not to read emails or blogs or magazines is a hard one. I will admit to reading email, its the way I communicate so there were things I could not ignore. There are a couple blogs I have looked at but not anywhere near what I usually read.

I got a copy of this and do you know how hard it is not to read it. I looked at the pictures the first day and then last night I gave in and started reading it, and yes it is wonderful.

This no reading thing is supposed to force you to play but for me it has just gotten me depressed. In the five days so far I don't see any big difference. The other thing I am finding is many of the things she asks you to do I have already done. So I tend to just overlook those tasks at the end of the chapter. So maybe I have already done the work of the Artist Way on my own. Or perhaps my resistance is all part of it.

I find all the childhood things hard to do since I have blocked most of that period in my life. I don't remember being artistic as a child at all but of course I must have been. I did do the letter from my 80 yr old self to my current self and found it to be really enlightening. I ended up giving myself some great advice. So it looks like the Artists Way does have something to teach me.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Books That Changed My Life

My friend Lorraine did this project earlier this summer. I was taken by it so yesterday I managed to do it. It was a lot of fun. I took a clipboard, ruffed it up with sandpaper and painted it with mod podge and just added paper. I also covered the back. Now I have one beautiful clipboard. This was a really fun project to do. Thanks for the idea Lorraine

This morning I did this page and it just doesn't photograph well. I tried writing with black pen and then white but I didn't like the way either one of them looked. I may need to redo the page by printing out the words and gluing them down. The prompt for this page is Books that have changed my life. These are just a few of the books that have had an impact on my life. There are so many more.

A Course in Miracles
Seat of the Soul
The Shell Seekers
Lord of the Rings
The Creative License
If you want to write
Writing down the bones
Wreck this Journal
The Power of Intention
12 secrets of highly creative women
Taking Flight
37 days
Dance of the Dissident daughter
The Artist Way

What would your list look like?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Journal Jar

I have been struggling for some time to get back to art journaling. I'd sit at my desk and look at the pages and nothing would come to me. It has been very frustrating. Yesterday I made a journal jar out of one of the canisters I had bought previously. I went to the site they recommended and printed out 150 journal prompts, cut them into little pieces and then put them in the jar. That should help for ideas.

Then I discovered it wasn't the ideas, something else was holding me back and I think it was me. It wasn't till this afternoon when I said to myself, this is getting ridiculous so I went downstairs to my studio, put on some music, put my painting apron on as sort of a symbolic gesture that now I was going to make art. First I had to clean the studio but then I set down to do these pages and two more that are not finished yet. It was one productive afternoon. All I could do is smile in the realization that my Muse was back.

I showed this before but now that the journaling is added it feels finished.

I couldn't figure what else to add to this one, but when I decided to journal all over the background paper it seemed right to me.

I built this around the idea of what was in the pocket. Can you guess? There is a hint on the page.

Just a crow wanting to come out of hiding.

I had painted the little squares a long time ago. I decided to just add collaged papers. There is journaling underneath the vellum sheet which is the last paper.

In this one I had painted the background previously and I hated it. With the choice of collage elements and journaling I think it looks great now. I like how that happens so I try to never give up on a page.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

SP Wednesday

Its only when I take a close up like this that I remember I have freckles. Funny how I never see it when I look in the mirror.

For some reason I liked the light in this picture even though it is out of focus. Maybe it shows me in a different way.

I love how the trees are blurred in the background. Here you can see our new windows. We only replaced two windows and now I want the whole house done. Maybe next year.

I saw this on Patti Digh's site this morning at it is so awesome I had to share.

Birds on the Wires from Jarbas Agnelli on Vimeo.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The aha moment experience

I had the most fun today. Sometime last week I was contacted by the people behind the aha moment. They found me on the internet and since they were coming to Idaho Falls they thought I might be interested in sharing my story. Of course I said yes. They arrived here this morning and my appointment was at noon. First I had to sign a media release and tell my story and they took notes on the computer. Then I went into the studio inside the trailer. I had to tell my story a couple times. Then they took several still photographs. They will be editing my film down to a shorter segment. They said it will be ready in about a week. I'll share the link then. Meanwhile you can check out their website for other aha moments.

Here I am holding my slate, it was given to me as a gift for participating. I felt like I was in a movie. At one point I had to say My name is Kate and I am the Queen of Creativity with the sign underneath my chin. I had the urge to say Take 1. It was a really fun experience.

Here is the slate close up. I think this is such a great memento. I think I need to figure out a way to hang it in my studio.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Another adventure

Yesterday we had another adventure. We decided to drive up to Kilgore about an hour and half from here. Thought we'd take the scenic way but despite what the sign said the drive was pretty boring.

We stopped at the Kilgore store. In a lot of small western towns it the store that is the mecca for activity. Its one of those general store kind of places with old tools on the walls, interesting items on the shelves and a place to get an ice cream. This one even had a pool table and a cast of characters that ran the place. I love going to places like this.

This is a sheepherders mobile cabin. We didn't see the shepherd but we did see a border collie. The sheep were off in the distance, too far for any pictures.

I didn't know the Nez Pearce had traveled through here until we saw this sign. I have been to the Big Hole battlefield in Montana where they lost their fight and it is a really sad place. I didn't feel that here at all, maybe because they were able to escape.

Then I looked up and saw these bronze statues of Indians on horseback. The area was fenced off so you could not get close to them. The looked pretty awesome on the horizon. I really like finding wonderful surprises when out for a Sunday drive.

After two days of activity I am spending the holiday home. I am warping my loom and then finishing cleaning the garage. Then some play in the studio. I hope you have are having a great day.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Kayaking and some insights

We went kayaking yesterday. We travel up to Market Lake often in the spring to look at birds and always thought kayaking there would be fun. The waterways are closed during the spring breeding season. Its an area that is a marsh with open waters and cattails and other vegetation. Sometimes you can come around an area an see waterfowl in their real natural state, it is pretty cool.

This was Dave's first time in a kayak this year and he was really enjoying it

We came across this muskrat, he was just swimming along eating some weeds. I eventually got too close and he went under water.

We saw many birds, mostly swallows which are hard to photograph. There were lots of ducks and we heard cranes several times before we actually saw them. They make this loud croaking sound and you find yourself saying 'what was that' till you realize its a sand hill crane making the sound. I was able to capture a pair in flight.

There was one time where the going was very rough and we were thick into weeds and you'd put your paddle in and you couldn't move more than an inch at a time. It was very hard on your arms. Dave kept saying don't put your paddle in so deep and its easier. So I would try that and wasn't making any progress. I kept reverting back to the way I usually paddle, which made it worse. He said he's go a head and made a trail of sorts but of course that didn't help me. I just wanted to sit there and not move. He was going in a straight line and off to the left I saw a section of more open water so I went that way and went around a section of cattails and met him that way. Then it was open water the rest of the way and a more pleasant time.

When I was doing my morning pages this morning I thought being stuck in those weeds is like being stuck artistically. No matter how much you try you are still stuck and feeling like you are going nowhere. You try the same thing over and over with no new results not realizing that what you need is to asses the situation and do something different. That is what I did out in the kayak and what I need to do in the studio. The Universe is so interesting sometimes. It can send you messages that you need to hear in the most surprising ways. Is there a message you have been missing?