Monday, January 18, 2010


Elana is coming along! She is my first Goddess, and should be completed this week. It was amazing to me who she "came to life" once I began to add color and texture. I'm truly enjoying the process of my current class with Suzi Blu, learning much, and meeting some really nice artists, too. What did we do before the internet???

As for life, in general, my heart is a bit heavy because we rescued a 2-yr old yellow lab, whom we named Gracie, 5 weeks ago today. She is as sweet as can be ~~ very affectionate, and loves attention ~~ however, she has separation anxiety when we leave her, and has begun destroying things daily. She did really well for the first 3 weeks, but I suppose her true colors are coming out now. Last week, we began to keep her outside when we are gone, and she has ripped nice new holes into the lattice under our deck, destroyed several pots, and who knows what she will destroy today. Thankfully, so far, she hasn't destroyed anything that can't be repaired or replaced, but Mike and I are coming to the conclusion that this "adoption" isn't working, :(. So I emailed the NC Lab Rescue with pics and all her information yesterday, in hopes that we can find her a home where people are always home, or where someone has more knowledge about dealing with separation anxiety in puppies. I just hate that we've taken her in, and now she will be moving on to another home, once again, :(.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Catchin' Up in the New Year, 2010!

Wow, I've neglected my blog for so long, :(. Time to catch it up now! Christmas has come and gone, and now we're well into the new year. I hope this year will bring peace and prosperity to all of my friends, family, and the country ~~ and world! ~~ as a whole. We all certainly need it. I am reminded of all the men and women serving overseas to defend our once great nation, and am so thankful for their sacrifices and efforts; without them, where would we be? Today, we as individuals and humans in this big ole world, have a new beginning, in a new year, and I hope we can all make the best of it, coming together to promote the greater good for all of us.

Now, onto my my art, that I intend to make the focus of my blog. Things are growing well. I've completed Suzi Blu's Petit Dolls class, and am currently beginning Suzi's Goddess & Poet [G&P] class. G&P is most definitely much more difficult for me, although admittedly I am a bit intimidated by DRAWING faces (something I have never done...other than stick people and Petit Dolls that are not "realistic"), and thus have not been drawing and practicing as much as I should. I was initially highly disappointed in my first attempt at a more realistic face (below, I hope, lol):

However, when I remind myself of my previous skills and level of drawing abilities, I suppose she's pretty darn good, considering I've never drawn "realistic" facial features, or anything close!

For my second attempt, I found a painted portrait online and attempted to draw the woman featured in the portrait. Here's how she turned out.

She is fairly close to the portrait I used as my inspiration. I didn't want to attempt hair, so this image gave me a great option, using a scarf instead. After enlarging her lips a bit, I will begin to add some color pencil to her, and see where she goes . . . hopefully later today. However, I've looked ahead at the videos within the course material, and discovered that I shouldn't have shaded her so darkly with graphite, as the color pencils will not cover the graphite; rather the color pencil will only enhance the graphite. So, note taken ~~ "do not shade so darkly with graphite in the future!"

Christmas Day was an especially "blue" day for me this year. I had a strong longing for Mom's presence that I just could not shake, and also I didn't feel well physically. Perhaps it was a touch of an intestinal virus, or anxiety, I'm not sure. All things considered (including the call for icy parciptation) Mike and I stayed home, instead of doing our ritual trip with Mike's Mom traveling to his aunt and uncles home, and instead I played with some new toys I had received from THE Tim Holtz ~~ what better distraction could an artsy girl ask for? (A post I made on Tim's "12 Tags of Christmas" had been chosen for a prize, and I received several goodies from him just days before Christmas ~~ woo hoo!!!) So, I made a mixed media Valentine's piece that I actually sold yesterday.

I don't have a picture of this that includes the verbage I later added; in the bottom left corner, I added "We unlocked our hearts and found a beautiful thing called...LOVE." [Reminder To Self: take pictures of COMPLETED pieces in the future!] This was a great "therapy piece" on a sad holiday, and was a tremendous distraction that got me through Christmas Day.

My next piece, completed and sold since my last posting, was my all-time favorite piece . . . so far! She is Diva Mermaid whom is "learning to enjoy all the beauty surrounding her, and appreciate all that life offers," (the inscription placed on a label that was attached on the back side of her).

She was done using the knowledge I've obtained from Suzi Blu's Petit Dolls class, and embellished with seed beads, various threads, chenille yarn, and shaded with Distress Inks. I absolutely love her . . . and hope that she has found a happy home. I will definitely have to make a "twin" of her one day soon!

Something I find really neat about my latest Petit Doll pieces (and very potentially, my future G&P pieces!) is that I have begun to use, as their base, old boards that Mike broke years ago when he was taking Tae Kwan Do! So they have a rough, ragged edge to them, on one side, and I feel that gives them a more unique touch, and a rugged, more "grungy" texture and feel.

Obviously, I am truly intrigued by the concept of Mixed Media today, and thus am looking at EVERYTHING with new eyes . . . "how can I use this piece of 'junk?'" I LOVE the freedom and uniqueness this concept provides! I am collecting trash, cardboard, candy wrappers, wine labels, bubble wrap, ANYTHING with texture, and looking with new eyes at all of my surroundings. I recently found an old, rusty metal washer/ring in the driveway at work that I used on a piece that sold this week. Now, if only I can find a way to make housecleaning fun ~~ perhaps I should look for a way to use the dust-bunnies and dryer lint within my pieces!

Also, using Suzi Blu's Petit Dolls methodology, I painted an angel, whom became a feature on many of my Christmas cards this year! I lost inspiration for her half way through the process, and therefore wasn't extremely pleased with her, however I ran out of time, and wanted to get my cards in the mail, so I rushed to complete her, and was fairly pleased with her. Although I still haven't beeswaxed her yet, ;(.

Also sold since I last posted was a piece I did after returning from Creative Escape, based on the project taught by 7 Gypsies ladies, Deb and Paula! I loved this project, and intended to make several more of them . . . however I've had difficulty finding the heavy book board used as its base. The lady whom bought the piece was drawn to it because of the Japanese symbol used on the cover. And now I see that I never took a picture of it, :(. However, here is the same concept, made for a coworker, done in a Parisian theme.

K, so I'm off now to throw aload of laundry in the wash, perhaps vacuum (perhaps not!), and get down to business adding color to my first Goddess! Happy Day to all. As Tim Holtz says, "Enjoy The Journey!" . . . until next time, xoxo ~~ Jeanne