Friday, January 25, 2013

Love Can Make You Fly

My last post talked about re-joining the Artist Trading Card group that I have been absent from for a while.  I finished my four sweet cards that day and I really really love them, so I thought I'd share the final pieces.  Not sure how well you can see the quote, but it says:  "Love is how you earn your wings" by Karen Goldman.  I love the image of this because to me it means that once you truly love, you feel like you can fly, like you can do anything--whether it's the love of a spouse or a child.

Painting whimsical and cute birds along with words and quotes are a few of my favorite things to create.  I am personally inspired by words and phrases so I love to include them on my art--hopefully inspiring those around me as well when they see my creations.

Because I so enjoyed painting these, I also think it will be fitting to make all of my February blogposts about things I love, whether they are books, people, events or activities.  So stop by next week to read about all the things I love.  The dark, cold days of winter typically get me down, so I figure how can I be in a funk when I'm writing about things that are special to me, right?  

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Love is in the Air...ATCs

I know it's still January, but I'm home recovering from the stomach flu and decided I could work a bit on my February ATCs in which the theme is love (of course, right?).  I haven't painted in a few days since I've been feeling miserable, but little doses today may speed the recovery, right?  Since the cards are tiny, I can work in tiny increments.

Here's a shot of the cards I did last year...

I've actually dropped by the wayside in participating in my ATC group for the past few months...November and December were busy so I sort of pushed this group aside.  Well, I feel a bit better after the holidays and I'm participating again in February, the month of love.  Since there is really no pressure to create to sell these little cards, they really are fun to make, especially since they are for my sweet and encouraging creative friends.  I see these as a little gift to them and the ones I get from them, I see as a gift to me.  A win-win situation, right:  creating a heartfelt gift and receiving a heartfelt gift!

This month I decided to use the quote "Love is how you earn your wings" by Karen Goldman on each of my trading cards.  I've only got the background painted so far, but I'm planning on painting a sweet little birdie on each one. Here's a little peek so far.

 I think it's a fitting quote because we met through a course that showed us how to use our wings to make "our creative businesses soar."   I must say, starting up again with this is really making me happy...I need to remember how much fun these really are to create!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

I'm on a Mission

When I hear the words "mission statement" I typically get a vision of a group of people sitting in a conference room hearing from the higher ups what the vision of their company is and what they must do to get there.  I never thought that I--as a person, and as an artist--"need" a mission statement as well.  My eyes were opened to realize if I want a certain kind of life and to practice a certain kind of living, I do need a mission to stay on track and not just let life happen to me.  When I get discouraged or get off track, it's good to have my vision in front of me (figuratively speaking) to make sure I'm doing things that align with this vision of my present and my future.

Through the artwork I create and in daily life I aim to:
  • bring joy to people through color, vibrance and uplifting images and words
  • encourage and inspire girls and women to believe in themselves
  • show that dreams matter and ARE important
  • help you show those you love that you are blessed and thankful to have them in your life
  • show girls and women that they are stronger than they think
  • let girls know that it's okay to be different, to be unique - being true to yourself is of utmost importance if you're going to live a truly joyful, fulfilling life

I hope that through my actions and my creations, this vision shows and I hope that it reaches others.  Thanks for supporting me and my vision.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Custom Paintings...Just For You

I know some artists don't really like doing custom or commission pieces, but I must say that I do...especially for a good friend or a family member I love.

A former coworker friend who moved a year ago (I wish she lived closer) is now having her third child, a girl.  When she first moved she commissioned me to paint these sweet pieces for her bathroom in her new house.

Now she is having me create two canvases for her new baby girl soon-to-be born this March.  I like knowing who I'm creating something original and special for, just for them, especially someone's sweet little baby.  I haven't started her new canvases yet, but I'll share them as soon as I can. 

Since I have custom commissions on the brain right now, I thought I'd share a few more custom pieces I've done for other friends and family.

The one above was done about a year ago for my daughter when we redid her bedroom to accommodate her Paris obsession.  This hangs over her bed so she can enjoy it every night before she falls asleep.

This is a gift I created last summer for my best friend Carrie's 40th birthday...we've been friends since first grade so she has been in my life for what feels like forever, so this piece had a lot of meaning for me while I created it.

This hand-painted picture frame was created for a friend from work for her to give as a gift to a friend she went to Mexico with.

The above three whimsical animal mixed media paintings were created for another friend from work for her sweet little boy.  Even though giraffes are my favorite animals in the whole world, I think I like the elephant one best.

Those are just a few of the commission pieces I've done in the past year.  If you are interested in a custom piece just for you, a friend or family member, I'd love to create one.  
Just let me know!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Good Stuff to Start off 2013

Some good stuff to start off 2013...

1.  I'm signed up and rolling along in the True Free Spirit Course by Mindy Lacefield of Tim's Sally...I just got enrolled and made my first free spirit girl yesterday.  I had hoped to get the course as a Christmas gift, but I didn't so I sort of purchased it myself since I really felt called to be a part of it.

The initial rough sketch of just her face seriously brought anxiety to me, but once I got painting and adding stuff I actually loved what I made.  This is where I left off last night.  I may add more or I may leave her here and just do another new one.  She is holding a heart in her hand.  Mindy told us to have her holding something sacred to heart, my feelings and the love I have for others is very sacred to me so that was my first choice and I went with it. I'm really trying NOT to second guess any of my choices, especially while creating!

2.  Brave Girls Club is again finding new ways to inspire and uplift women and girls and now they are heading around the world with their caring mission.  They are doing a Brave Girls Truth Card Exchange to help those who really need encouragement and Melody's first stop is to the Phillipines.  I made my card and it is ready to be mailed...I forgot to take a picture of it before I sealed the envelope, however.  They really are amazing women.  I had actually hoped and prayed that 2013 would be the year I would participate in Brave Girls Camp, but so far it is not to be.  I am not giving up hope though.  If you've never visited their website, please do--they are such vibrant, selfless and inspiring girls.

3.  I haven't formally chosen a "word for the year" like I did last year (my word was commit), but I guess I'm going to focus on acceptance and release so you could say I've chosen two words or just am planning on more of these two things in my life this year.  Maybe I'm a bit scared to pick them formally for some reason, not quite sure--maybe I'm worried that will make them seem like resolutions, and those typically haven't worked for me.

How about you?  How has 2013 started for you?  Have YOU chosen a word or a focus for this new beginning?

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