Wednesday, April 24, 2013

at home in my studio at last!


Home at last : ) my dear friend Linda Kunsman made this ornament for my husband Steven and I a few homes ago . . . I cannot even remember which one, maybe Deercliff Road? Anyway I love it and have continued to move it with me and give it a new place of honor. Now it is hanging on the armoire in the dining room that holds many of my art supplies.

Today, I have finally unpacked and found a home for all of my supplies in my art studio/office!!! Phew. It is not perfect, but IT IS DONE! I struggled this time with moving into a smaller art room and not having the same "containers" to put things in. It took me six months to unpack and set up, but I have done it and I am so proud and happy.

I took a quick video when I finished today and you can find it here via this link or watch it below if you are reading on my blog. Steven is taking me out to dinner tonight to celebrate, hee hee! I am so looking forward to creating more art. Yes, I have done some, but the last few boxes have been taking up space on my counter and I have not been able to work. It was getting depressing! Now I look forward to trying out the gelli plate I bought a month ago! I hope you enjoy the video with me doing the commentary. I'll be back!



Adventure is worthwhile in itself.
   ~ Amelia Earhart

Monday, April 22, 2013

Decorating with Art :)

I wanted to hang my recent returns from the ARTchix Studio Blue ATC swap so I could enjoy them a lot more. I thought you might like to see what I came up with . . .

The little stars are courtesy of editing the photo in PicMonkey . . . 
It's a free photo editing program I love & use all the time. You might enjoy it!


I attached the ATCs I received together with blue washi tape on the back.


I had six ATCs that I put together into one strand . . .

To see them all in more detail with credits, please go here.


Then I wrapped the tape around the piece of yarn I use to display art in my studio!
I like how the ATC display came out and I think it goes well with the rest!

On the bottom left is a beeswax collage I received the other day from my dear friend and talented artist, Sharon Borsavage. The package included a gorgeous necklace I ordered (that Sharon made) and my book from our altered book exchange . . . I wanted to hang her collage up right away.




I so love this piece Sharon made for me.
Our altered books were based on the themes of birds and nature!
* It is perfect *


Thank you sweet, talented Sharon!


I had my husband take a couple of photos of me wearing the necklace Sharon made...

Steven gave me the short necklace and Sharon made the gorgeous longer one. 
She calls it Messages. It's made of copper, freshwater pearls and a coral piece.
No wonder I fell in love with this piece! Sharon describes it like this... 
"I feel a true connection with nature with this piece, very serene, organic, and peaceful."
~ see more of Sharon's art-ful jewelry HERE ~


What a great way to decorate with art!!
Hope you have fun doing the same - put up some ATCs or a postcard
and EnJOY!! 



Risk the truth with those you love and give them the gift you would want yourself.
    ~ Unknown





Sunday, April 21, 2013

wonderful swap returns . . . .

I thought I would share the really wonderful swap returns I recently received, for your enjoyment! I'm doing a mail art swap on a monthly basis with Jo Urbani and Jewels Welsh, plus I signed up for the ARTchix Studio Blue ATC swap. That was so fun to do - see my ATCs here. Yesterday I received an Awesome BLUE package from Nikki Smith, the swap hostess. Inside were really some first rate ATCs plus extra goodies from Helga, the owner of ARTchix Studio and Nikki -wow!



A huge thanks to the creators of the ATCs I received, such beautiful art. I can't wait to decorate my studio! I was so super psyched to receive one of Helga's ATCs and one of Nikki's too -wow! 

THANK YOU!

For the mail art, our theme last month was The Language of Flowers. I love how this phrase sounds and in fact have now ordered a book on the subject via a recommendation from my friend Frieda Oxenham. I shared my own mail art here earlier based on the theme the language of the orange blossom, find it here if you missed it. I used photos of my very first Orange Tree that is growing in our yard . . . which now has lots of little green Hamlin oranges growing on it and more blossoms are forming at the same time! But even more fun I think than creating my own mail art was receiving mail art from Joanna & Jewels. 


Jo created the sweetest postcard and envelope using Daisies





Jewels picked the French Willow and a corresponding quote that I really like . . .


You can read more about the techniques she used to create her postcard HErE. Below I did a collage in Photoshop to show you the back of her envelope with the front below on the left and the postcard and the back of it on the right . . .



I hope you enjoy! I also received an incredible package from my dear friend and talented artist, Sharon Borsavage the other day. It included a gorgeous necklace I ordered but also my book from our altered book exchange that we alternated working in... it is really something! I want to add a wee bit more to the book as there are a few blank pages left and then I will share it with you. Thanks for your patience as I wind my way back into my art life. xo lenna


Who so loves believes the impossible.
  ~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Thursday, April 11, 2013

ARTchix Blue ATCs


I had the pleasure of participating in the ARTchix Studio Blue ATC swap. I was really happy to see Helga announce this swap as I knew very well that a deadline would nudge me to create (and it did!) Of course time got away from me and everything was sent in on the last possible (deadline) day . . . but on the positive side, I did accomplish making them. The idea was simple: Make 6 Artist Trading Cards using the color blue and use an ARTchix Studio item on each ATC. 

I used ARtchix ART blast playing cards as a base, the ones with birds printed on them.


I started with watercolor crayons around the edges in shades of blue.


Then wet the crayon marks (watercolor) and spread the color around . . . 


I added sayings from various ARTchix word collage sheets and gave all the birds crowns


and I added bits of Transparencies from ARTchix Studio -see the blue edges:


I glued on beads and added a bit of glitter . . .




The backs belong to the playing cards . . . 


 All six of my ATCs scanned . . . 

They are a bit different, not perfect and pretty, but they are interesting, unusual, blue, filled with birds and creativity and ARTchixStudio and fun and experimenting . . . just what I needed! 

Thank you Helga and also to our hostess Nikki for organizing - so appreciate it!!

~

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage.
  ~ Anais Nin




Monday, April 8, 2013

A birthday collage


One of the new friends I've met in Florida had a birthday a few weeks ago 
and I was inspired to create a collage for her . . . 


Debbie and I first met during Gratitude Dance on Siesta Key beach in 2011.
Gratitude dance is when we free dance on the beach with or without veils (silk scarves) and invite the public to join us if they wish. They usually are very entranced by the colorful scarves in the wind. It's all about feeling grateful for our many blessings and dancing that gratitude with joy! 
Here is Debby, when we danced together on Christmas day : )


and my friends Cheryl and Kathy with more scarves and dancers in the background



Debbie loves the sand, the beach and water, dancing and she also often uses this image:


These were my inspirations . . . heart, love, friendship
dancing, beach, sand & gratitude

below is my process - and my studio!



my studio is more filled up now but at the time I had found my paints,
my gel medium and my collage materials


1. spread gel medium


2. rip papers and apply to canvas, cover with more gel medium


3. paint a heart and sprinkle beach sand


4. paint rays to resemble image, more sand from siesta key beach





5. find the saved quote -wrapper from small Dove chocolates, a 40-calorie after dinner treat!
(attach with gel medium)


6. Add loose lines with a permanent marker, wrap it up, give it to Debbie at a party she gave . . . have fun dancing the night away!! 


The journey is the destination.
  ~ Dan Eldon



xo lenna

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Zen and the Art of Painting with Bill Buchman


Bill Buchman warming up with his Zen Brushes

Even though I have not spent a lot of time in my studio these past few months, I have managed to do a bit of art here and there, and I attended a workshop. Some of you may remember the classes I took last year with Bill Buchman, notably his Creative Breakout class -wow! I had such a good experience in his class learning and being inspired by Bill's art that I looked for another workshop with him at the Longboat Key Center for the Arts this winter. In February, Bill offered a two-day workshop called Zen and the Art of Painting. I signed up in a flash!

Bill Buchman

Bill demoed and spoke about the Zen approach of reacting to the moment. On the painting above which is in his creative breakout style, he used oil pastels to enhance the painting and spoke to us about what 'enhancement' meant and how to go about it. I filmed much of the 2-day workshop with his blessings and am currently working on a series of videos. I've finished 4 videos that are unpublished as I am not done going through the material yet! When the editing is done they may even be put together to create one longer video -I will let you know. While filming that first day my camera ran out of memory before Bill did his demo of the Ensō circle - but, I was still able to take photos of Bill painting an Ensō with the brushes he designed, see below. 




Zen brush


Zen Pen

Yesterday I took those photos and a couple of short video clips and created a cool Animoto slideshow video. To view the video either click here or start the video below. From Wikipedia:
Ensō (円相) is a Japanese word meaning "circle" and a concept strongly associated with Zen.
In Zen Buddhist painting, ensō symbolizes a moment when the mind is free to simply let the body/spirit create.

Yes, the Longboat Key peacocks are a small part of this art video : )



After Bill demoed all of the students had a chance to do an Ensō. Here's mine:


I tried to be very free and in the moment while I was painting and this is encouraged here. When it was done, I saw a bird in my Ensō, do you? Below is another Ensō Bill that painted, one of his wonderful figure drawings and a photo of him getting into his demo!


Check out his website for much more. He has available books he's written, instructional DVDs, brushes & pens plus more info and many photos . . . 



In March, Bill was part of the Fine Arts Society of Sarasota's Studio Tour. 
My friend Cheryl and I visited his wonderful studio - 1800 sq ft!!! 


That's all for now, I hope you enjoy and thank you for the warm welcome back : )

Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.
  ~ Vincent van Gogh

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