Thursday, January 26, 2012

Routines and Calendars

I know many people won't agree with this, but I actually love January! It's the end of the holiday hustle and bustle and a time to start organizing and getting back to "normal" (whatever that is). I've already filled up my new datebook through March, but I like planning ahead. It makes it so much easier when something pops up unexpectedly. If it doesn't fit in the calendar - I politely decline. It feels much better than over extending myself.  It also helps so much with commissions. I can pencil in my non-commissions pieces around my schedule. It helps keep me on track from week to week.

If you are an artist, what do you do to help organize your studio time?

And for those of you that are enduring bitter cold winter storms, remember, it soon will pass. Here's a quote that I just love.

 Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence. - Helen Keller.

 I just finished up one large commission and have another one to start right away. I'm loving that we have an unusually warm January here in the South. I have natural light in my studio and these bright sunny days make it such a cheerful atmosphere to work.

Here is a piece I finished last month. It has already found a home with a collector.

 "Quite Contrary", 20" x 20" (in private collection).

We are getting ready for Mardi Gras here in the South. Just for fun, I'm in the middle of planning a fun Mardi Gras themed dinner party. Sssshhh.. Can't give away details just yet.

Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Happiness is....

I love to post on my facebook page about the little everday things that make me happy. You know - the things that make you smile and say "how cool is that?". Especially when you stumble upon things unexpected. Unexpected "happy surprises" are really the best, aren't they?

Happiness is when I walk into a local home improvement store to get bird seed (you know, to make the birds happy) and stumble upon a paint sample freebee.

Happiness is.... taking your daughter to Books A Million and stumbling upon 50% of date planners, and not just plain ones, but artsy ones and one tailor made just for me.

Happiness is.... opening your art show reception guest book to find the word "happy" peppered throughout the comments your guests made about your work.

See what I mean? Things that just make you smile.

Here's a piece I created last week. I started working on it during a couple of rainy days here in the South. This is in the early stages.

And below is the finished piece. I love including a positive quote, phrase or lyric in my paintings. This one says:

"It may be raining, but there's a rainbow above you."


"Rainbow Above You" is 20" x 20" with 1.5" deep sides painted to match. and has already been claimed by a collector who likes happy art.  That makes me happy.

Thank you for stopping by. I'd love to know you stopped by, so please leave me a comment, and if you are an artist, include your blog link so I can stop by. Have a great day!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Art Reception and Scrapbook Clippings

My art reception was this past Saturday, and the weather was warm and bright and sunny. What a blessing for a weekend in January. I propped the doors open and we hung flower balloons on the sidewalk, which appropriately matched the flower shaped sugar cookies. Three of the new pieces I created for the show sold, along with the Mardi Gras dachshund painting that someone had put in the window display. Thank you to all my friends and family and collectors that came out. I even got to see one of my former art students from 10 years ago - all grown up! Here are a few pics from the event.

After reading the comments left in my guest book, I now describe my art style as:
"Happy art with a twist of funky"  

(just so you know)

I was pleasantly surprised that my hometown newspaper not only included the information about the show and reception in their paper, but they took up almost half a page for it - and in color! This page is definitely going in the scrapbook.

If you are out and about, please stop by the Ouachita River Art Gallery this month to see the show. One of the sold pieces is still there (the collector generously offered to let it hang for the next few weeks). The gallery is at 308 Trenton Street (Antique Alley), West Monroe, open Tues-Sat 10-5pm.

If you haven't already seen the artists' blog hop I recently participated in, scroll down to my previous blog entry for New Year's inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by. Have a great week!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Art and Artists' New Year Blog Hop

Last year I connected with a group of fabulous artists through the participation of Kelly Rae Roberts' ecourse. We have continued our interaction which has resulted in support, advice, inspiration and The Fly Tribe Girls Blog Hop!

We were asked to choose one word for 2012.
My word is: inspiration. 
Websters defines inspiration as:
-the action or power of moving the intellect or emotions
-the act of influencing or suggesting opinions
-the act of drawing in; specifically
-the drawing of air into the lungs

What do you draw inspiration from? Is it music? Are you inspired visually by taking a nature walk? Do you paint from your feelings deep within?

I love the definition that Webster's uses of "drawing in" and especially "drawing air into the lungs". Sometimes I feel I can actually "breathe in" inspiration. It can be either from sounds (music), visually (color combinations) or even from smells. I draw or make a note of the inspirations so I don't forget them and use them for later.

I also want to BE an inspiration. I love hearing from someone that they have been inspired by me, or by something I said or something they saw me do. If we all inspired others, it would be a chain reaction that would never end.

I have been inspired by music lately. There is scientific proof that light, color and sound are related, and I don't doubt it one bit. I met a blind artist a few months ago that said he "hears" color in music. Close your eyes and listen to your favorite music. Imagine what colors you can "hear". What color sounds happy? What color sounds energetic? Learn to tune in all of your senses in your art.

Here is my "inspiration" piece. It's called "Life's Been Good", and it was inspired by music.

"Life's Been Good", 20" x 20"  (sold to private collector).

Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I hope you received some inspiration. Feel free to leave me some feedback in the comments section, then continue on with the blog hop by linking back to the Fly Tribe Blog Here.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Time for a new Calendar!

Wow - what a year! It was a couple of days after Christmas when I realized that I forgot to get a 2012 calendar. I went out to the mall to where for eons we had a calendar vendor set up every year, but they weren't there! Found a funky one at Hobby Lobby.

We celebrated the new year at our home with family and friends. I was digging up New Year traditions and found out that it has often been thought that the first visitors you see after ringing in the New Year would bring you good or bad luck, depending on who you keep as friends and enemies. That's why most people celebrating on New Year's Eve often do so with friends and family.. What a blessing it was to have spent this time in such good company. We spent the evening doing fireworks with the kids, eating too much, playing some games and just enjoying each others' company.

I'm still running pretty much full-blast here. In just a few days I'm having a little reception at the cooperative artists' gallery that I belong to. I'm the featured artist for January. There is no better way to start the year with another party, right?

This is the piece of art I used on the cover of my invitations. The theme I chose for my art pieces is "Secret Garden".

If you are local and would like to attend, the event will be held at the Ouachita River Art Gallery, 308 Trenton Street, West Monroe, Louisiana on Saturday, January 7, 2012 from 2-4pm.

I hope everyone has a wonderful new year. Thanks for stopping by!