March 31, 2009

En Tour


This Image is from the Library of Congress

Please use this "Freebie" in your art!

We're still on vacation, but had to pop in to say "Hi" and thank everyone once again, for all of the hugs and "well wishes" for a super vacation. We're having a great time!

We've been to Maine to see our family; and yes, I DID have some lobster! The kids are great . . .Everyone's doing well. We talked and talked, and laughed 'til I couldn't laugh any more. Of course, I cried when we left. Our time together seems to fly by too quickly. We're in Vermont tonight - The Green Mountain State, and we're beginning our journey home.

I've been taking some pictures (in between the raindrops!), and will post a few when I return. I miss making art, glue, paper, blogs, my dog, YOU, your art, your lives, etc. (Not necessarily in any type of order!) Be back SOON!

March 26, 2009

Away We Go!

Away We Go!!!
This Image is from the Library of Congress
Please use this "Freebie" in your art!

Maine, here we come for a much-needed, overdue vacation! True, this great state doesn't have swaying palm trees, soft warm breezes or aqua-tinted water . . . but it does have my gorgeous daughter, handsome son-in-law and three super grandkids! I can't wait to give "hugs" in person!!! (And somewhere there's a bunch of lobsters with my name on them!) (Did I happen to mention that I love lobster?!?!)

If you'd like to participate in the "Pay It Forward" giveaway, this will be the last post before the drawing. To enter, please leave a comment saying that you'd like to be counted "in". Cut off date for entering is Friday, April 3rd! If you do elect to participate and are lucky enough to win, you MUST post a giveaway on your blog. If you enter, please leave a connecting link so that I can advise you of your win. If you'd like to read more about the giveaway and the accompanying rules, please read my earlier post: "The Agony, The Ecstasy & The Giveaway".

While I'm away I'll have limited access to the matrix and will check into the grid occasionally. The plan is to be back in blogland in about a week. 'Til then - Hugs, blessings & serenity!

March 25, 2009

Crowabout Week #29

"Sisters"
8"x10" Journal Page

When this week's images were posted for Flickr's Crowabout Group, I decided to try a few new things. Usually I collage a 5"x7" page; this week tried a larger, 8"x10" page to flex my creative wings. Instead of using my regular base of gessoed chipboard, this piece has been collaged on Strathmore (cold press 140 lb.) watercolor paper.

Approximately ten of the given images were used for this collage, along with a few older ones; and the sisters were created using various components in a photo editing program. This week I chose not to use a vintage image and took a stab at trying to do some "original" lettering. Kudos to my fellow artists who create their own journaling - the jury is still out on my poor attempt!!!

The pearl background was done with Daler-Rowney pearlescent liquid acrylic ink (a first for me!). (I wish the scanner could capture the beautiful pink pearl luster.) Additional materials include assorted markers, Prismacolor pencils, watercolor pencils, and Pitt pens.


"Pay It Forward" Giveaway
A gentle reminder!

If you'd like to participate in the drawing, just leave a comment on my blog telling me that you're "in" and would like to participate any time between today and Friday, April 3rd. The three winners will be announced on Monday, April 6th.

If you do elect to participate and are lucky enough to win, you MUST post a giveaway on your blog. If you enter, please leave a connecting link so that I can advise you of your win. If you've entered, Good Luck!

March 23, 2009

Challenge: Une Paper Doll

Une Paper Doll
5"x7" Shaped Journal Page

This paper Mermaid Doll in her little house by the sea was created for this week's dans ma maison challenge, "Paper Doll" (il y a une paper doll).

The petite Mermaid Doll was created using a variety of images. The house is made from a cereal box. Acrylic washes of blue paint were used over a layer of gesso for the background. Other materials include Prismacolor pencils, watercolor pencils, a white marker and Pitt pens. The edges were defined with gold marker. Scraps of handpainted paper from an old book, along with a piece of multi-colored ribbon and handpainted polka dot paper form the roof.


"Pay It Forward" Giveaway
Reminder

A gentle reminder about the current "Pay It Forward" giveaway:

If you'd like to participate in the drawing, just leave a comment on my blog telling me that you're "in" and would like to participate any time between today and Friday, April 3rd. The three winners will be announced on Monday, April 6th.

If you do elect to participate and are lucky enough to win, you MUST post a giveaway on your blog. If you enter, please leave a connecting link so that I can advise you of your win!

March 20, 2009

Spring Surprise!


Today is the very first day of Spring, but Mother Nature had something else in store for us this morning! Imagine my surprise when I looked out of my bedroom window first thing this morning and witnessed snow falling!!! Daffodils and irises are on their bright way, but not quite yet. The lovely lyrics to "The Rose" immediately came to mind. Wonderful words of hope!

I'm out of the "pain" woods, finally. Still feel like I've taken a good shot to the jaw, but will live to dance again. Thanks to everyone who sent loving messages and hugs! I truly appreciate your healing vibes.

Just a reminder about the "Pay It Forward" giveaway. If you'd like to participate in the drawing, just leave a comment on my blog telling me that you're "in" and would like to participate any time between today and Friday, April 3rd. The three winners will be announced on Monday, April 6th. Again, if you do participate and are lucky enough to win, you MUST post a giveaway on your blog. If you enter, please leave a connecting link so that I can advise you of your win!

Have a wonderful, relaxing weekend. And . . . Happy Spring!

March 19, 2009

The Agony, The Ecstasy & The Giveaway!

Courtesy of the Library of Congress

The Agony
It's a good thing my loving husband of 34 years didn't look into my mouth before we got married, because he would've turned me down flat! Unfortunately for us, my teeth are a dentist's annuity.

Yesterday afternoon I had two dental implants. And last night . . . well, let's just say it was l-o-n-g night! Thank goodness for pharmaceutical intervention! Things seem to better this morning, and . . . on the bright side . . . I found out that swelling reduces facial wrinkles!!!! (Although I look a bit like a chipmunk with a mouthful of goodies!)

The Ecstasy & The Giveaway
Before I left for yesterday's torture, I received a message from my friend, Cathy, at Reflections of a Ramblin' Girl. Three lucky people, including yours truly, have won a prize in her recent "Pay It Forward" giveaway. Yaaay!!!! (I'm SO happy I won before I got to the periodontist. I could jump up and down, do the "happy dance" and yell "woo-hoo!" without pain!) Cathy's blog is a must read in my book. What a talented lady! You've got to stop by her blog to see her beautiful work.

One of the rules for participating in the drawing was the stipulation that if you were lucky enough to win, you have to post a giveaway on your blog too - in essence, paying it forward. Using Cathy's model, three winners will receive a lovely surprise sometime during the year. I'm not quite sure what the prizes will be or when they'll be delivered, as I'd like to do something special. This is my first giveaway, and I'm SO excited!

If you'd like to participate in the drawing, just leave a comment on my blog telling me that you're "in" between today and Friday, April 3rd. The three winners will be announced on Monday, April 6th. Again, if you do participate and are lucky enough to win, you MUST post a giveaway on your blog. If you enter, please leave a connecting link so that I can advise you of your win!

Good luck to everyone! I'm signing off to take more pharmaceuticals!

March 17, 2009

Crowabout Week #28

"Memories"
5"x7" Journal Page

My entry for this week's Crowabout Challenge is a tongue-in-cheek tribute to one of my favorite books, "Memoirs of a Geisha".

The image of the geisha (from the Library of Congress) has been enhanced with watercolors, Prismacolor pencils, acrylic paints and Pitt pens. Ten of Nancy's given collage elements have been used, along with two paper parasols (from the party store) and a few miscellaneous scraps. Rhinestones were glued into the center of each parasol for a bit of sparkle. (Unfortunately, the scanner sucks out the sparkle!)

Watercolors were used over some of the collage images to strengthen and enhance their saturated colors. Gold marker has been used for a few embellishments on the geisha's gown, for the "dots" on the purple background and to define and finish the edges of the page.

Happy St. Paddy's Day to You!
(A bit 'o the green for luck!)



(Image Courtesy of Cute 'n Cool Blog Accessories)

March 16, 2009

Challenge: House of Stains

House of Stains
5"x7" Shaped Journal Page

This little house was created for this week's dans ma maison challenge, "House of Stains" (il y a une tache). It was created on gessoed chipboard from a cereal box. Materials used include Prismacolor pencils, watercolor pencils, acrylics, stamps and Pitt pens. The edges were defined with a gold marker, hole-punched with a Cropadile and then beaded with glass beads strung on fine gauge copper wire. Gesso was used to make the stains.

March 14, 2009

Soul Food

Glass Wall-Pocket Vase

Spring has definitely arrived and I've pictures to prove it. They're not of crocuses, daffodils or the illusive Easter Bunny. They're pictures from the first craft show of the season. (Admittedly, I am a crafts festival junkie!)

The Sugarloaf Crafts Festival is in the area, so yesterday we took a much-needed"get lost day" to attend the show. It's a must-see event for me. Seeing other artists' work and standing in the midst of all the creativity is food for my soul and fodder for my mind. You are cordially invited to enjoy this virtual version of the show.

Earth Spirits Masks
www.earthspiritsmasks.com




Things to Wear





Scentual Things





Colorful Things





Amazing Dolls





Hope you enjoyed the eye candy!
Have a super, creative weekend!

March 10, 2009

Crowabout Week #27

Mother Nature
5"x7" Journal Page

I had a lot of fun with this week's Crowabout challenge and tried a few new things. One of the decisions I made was to use a different color pallet (although I still had to add touch of orange). Initially the background was painted with gesso and watercolor pencils; however, I used washes of Twinkling H2O's afterward. The H2O's really add a lot of shimmer and depth. I wish the scanner could convey the beautiful depth this adds to the finished page.

Additionally, I integrated some of Ingrid Dijkers techniques. The background "dots" and the edging around the perimeter of the page were applied with gold marker. Once again, I'm disappointed in the scan. It's unfortunate because the pretty, soft glow has disappeared. (Bummer!)

Approximately six of the supplied collage images were used - not including duplicates of flowers, rabbits, etc. Some of the images were manipulated in Photoshop Elements to make them larger or smaller or to produce the duplicates. The little kitty, birds and butterfly are from Dover Publications, and I hand painted the purple borders.

March 9, 2009

Surprise!

What a beautiful way to start a rainy day! When I checked into Blogger this morning, I found this wonderful surprise from Cathy Mendola (Reflections of a Ramblin'Girl). It was accompanied by the following message:

"This blog invests and believes in the PROXIMITY-nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement! Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers! Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this clever-written text into the body of their award."

Thank you, thank you, Cathy, for your friendship. And thank you for this lovely, meaningful award. Being new to blogland, I'm thrilled and grateful for the wonderful new friendships and comraderie that I've found. I can't imagine my life without this supportive, artistic community of like-minded spirits. You'll need to stop by Reflections of a Ramblin' Girl to read Cathy's beautiful words. They totally encapsulate what this wonderful new world is all about.

Later today I'll be passing this award on to eight more deserving people in the spirit of friendship and creativity. Once again, thank you, Cathy, for this honor. I am humbled and filled with gratitude.

Happy Birthday, BFF!

Original Barbie Catalog
(Personal Collection - From the early '60's)

An old friend is celebrating her 50th Birthday this today. My, my, my . . . how quickly the years pass, yet wonderful memories prevail. Yes, I was one of the original "Barbie" fans. In 1960, with a dollar in my hot little hand, I still remember the agonizing choice: Should I purchase a Barbie doll or a jar of "Dippety-Do" setting goo for my new hairdo? Was I a "big girl" or still a "baby"? Tough choice to make!!! While my Mom waited I made my choice, plunked down my allowance money and carried Barbie home triumphantly. I never regretted the purchase.


My Mom thought she was "homely". We (my sister, cousin and friends) thought she was totally glamorous. We spent many hours of creative play drooling over her couture clothes, well crafted and designed with beautifully finished seams, tiny buttons and snaps. We created stories and scenarios. We gave her friends, boyfriends, break-ups and many careers. We built wonderful rooms for her out of cardboard boxes, wallpaper scraps and scotch tape. She was more than a doll - She was a well-loved friend and an artistic muse.


Times have changed. Today a "tween" wouldn't be caught dead with a Barbie doll. They prefer instant messaging, video games and MP3 players. In today's society dolls are relegated to much younger girls. How sad! Barbie taught me to celebrate my individuality. Was I content with her white-blonde "bubble" haircut, red lips and nails? Hell, No! I was the first (and may I add only) girl on the block with an "altered" doll. My Barbie had to be different and was given a neat haircut. I pierced her ears and added posh pearl stud earrings (using the head of some straight pins). She was further accessorized with trendy pale pink lips and nails (courtesy of some nail polish!) , , , and . . .(are you ready???) . . . silver glitter eyeshadow!


Barbie also taught me to be an entrepreneur. I saved my hard-earned babysitting money to purchase small pieces of luscious fabrics, bits of trim and Barbie patterns to design my own line of doll clothes. When I reached the ripe old age of 14, I sewed tiny, originally designed outfits all summer; they were all were made by hand. I sold these couture creations to the younger Barbie devotees in the neighborhood and purchased a coveted peach-colored cardigan sweater with the earnings.

It's with great fondness and many happy memories that I'm wishing my very old friend and muse a Happy 50th! Interestingly enough, "Dippety-Do" has gone the way of curlers and body waves, but "Barbie" still rules!

March 6, 2009

Spring Ahead!

Just for the record, I'd have voted "NO!"
(Feel free to use these images in your artwork. They're from the Library of Congress.)

Just a reminder that this is the weekend we set our clocks ahead an hour for Daylight Savings Time. Or, as my husband would say, "Terri's least favorite weekend of the year!"


Reasons Why I Hate Daylight Savings Time
:
  1. Being a woman, there aren't enough hours in the day to begin with. This hour "goes away" and we will never get it back!
  2. I need my beauty sleep. I'm definitely not getting any younger!
  3. It bears repeating . . . There aren't enough hours in the day.
  4. It seems to take at least a week for my poor "Boomer" body to acclimate to the time change.
  5. Reminder . . . There aren't enough hours in the course of a day.
  6. Once the hour is gone, where does it go? Is it in a "holding area"? Is it like the TARP money? No one is talking!
  7. Might I say . . . With all that needs to be done, there just isn't enough time ever!
  8. During the course of the next week or so, it's disconcerting to find a watch that hasn't been turned ahead an hour. It's just a rude reminder that an hour has disappeared from our busy lives never to be seen again.
  9. Once again . . . There aren't enough hours in the day to accomplish everything I want to do!
  10. See reasons 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9!!!!!
That being said, be sure to "spring" an hour ahead! Have a GREAT weekend!

March 3, 2009

CrowAbout Week #26

"Hello, Kitty!"

My submission for Week 26's CrowAbout Challenge is a 5"x7" journal page entitled "Hello Kitty!". I somehow managed to use five pieces from Nancy's whimsical collage sheet. It truly is amazing to see everyone's creations and how we differ in our interpretations of the given images. This week a few of the members set the bar really high. If my page can make you smile, I'll be a happy camper!

Once again, this collage has been created on gessoed, recycled cardboard from a cereal box. It really seems to stand up to all of my use and abuse. (And, you can't beat the price!) Materials used include acrylic paints, watercolor pencils, Pitt pens and Sharpie poster paint pens. The yellow borders are from a previous challenge, and the pinkish polka dotted borders on the top and bottom of this page were painted with watercolors and embellished with acrylic paint. The central image of the little fairy is from the FLICKR Group - Collage Images (Not for Posting Art) - a special thank you to Suzee Que, and the wings are from Dover Publications.

The hand painted effect on the little fairy was done by coloring her with watercolor pencils, brushing a bit of water over the laid-down colored pencil, and then adding all of the little details with a black Pitt fine-point pen. Additional color was also added to the collage pieces in this manner. If you'd like to see all of the details, just click on the picture and it will open in a larger window.

March 2, 2009

Diva Dog


Have you ever noticed the correlation between people and their pets?

Lately I've come to the conclusion that my artistic soul is the spiritual equivalent of a terrier's sparkly spirit. Maybe that's why I have such an affinity for my little Mini-Schnauzer, Miss Tootsie, (who shall hereby be referred to as Diva Dog - Why? Because she really IS a true Diva!). Diva Dog is third in a line of Mini-Schnauzers.

One of the traits that I truly love about these feisty pooches is their insatiable curiosity. They're interested in learning about anything and everything, and they love to explore and have fun. For Diva Dog, life is a big playground just waiting to be explored. And if something doesn't work out the way she planned, she follows her little nose and points it in another direction headed off on another adventure! Dear Lord, please bless me with Diva Dog's outlook on life, as well as her spirit of playfulness and curiosity . . . . . but please keep my nose out of trouble!

PS Just for the record . . . . . I need a good grooming too!