Saturday, May 30, 2009

Girl and Bluebird in the Rain

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She is so sad, did you know? She's standing in the rain, all cold and wet. She's shivering as the happy bluebird passes by. He's nice and dry carrying his pretty red umbrella. Sad girl has an umbrella too...why doesn't she just pick it up so she can be happy too? I'm not sure. I know sometimes I don't pick it up either.

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Sometimes in life we have problems that we can fix ourselves. The answer, tool, or umbrella is right there within our reach. All we have to do is pick up the umbrella and just allow ourselves to be happy. We are in charge of the actions we take and responsible for the ones we don't.

In my house, this painting has inspired the cheerful phrase, "Just pick up the stupid umbrella!" We say this with a laugh, but the point is coming across. My nephew got his cell phone taken away because his grades were falling...all because he didn't do the in class assignments.He was sad and I asked him, "Why didn't you just pick up the stupid umbrella?!" It was up to him whether he did the assignment or chatted in class. He laughed, but understood. I'm sure he was imagining himself standing in the rain just like my sad girl.

This painting just sort of happened and I'm glad it did. :) I wanted to do a red umbrella and work on my girls showing more expression in their faces. There was a good discussion going on over at Gritty Jane's and by the end of it, I was determined to find a new way to do an eye. I got to the point that I would add the pupil and decided not to. I wasn't sure if it was cool or a little bit creepy, but in the end, I think it makes her look more soulful.

She has joined my Dorothy and another painting on ebay.

Have a great day...and don't forget to pick up your umbrella! :)


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

If Happy Little Bluebirds Fly...

Why oh why can't I?

At least that is what my Dorothy wants to know! I've had the idea of a story doll for a long time and she is finally done! It took a Prim and Whimsy challenge to get my wheels rolling...I submitted her on the very last day just in time! I wanted to make Dorothy and show what she really wants, what is her heart's desire. What better place to put it than where her heart is? The diorama part of her is my most favorite.

Then her hair. :) And ruby mary janes!She's up one ebay now, with more explanation too. I learned a lot from making her and have several more versions of story dolls in my head. So fun!
I couldn't do this post without adding this clip. If you ever have the chance to get the soundtrack, do so! Listening to this song in the car...so crystal clear...it's like she's singing it in the passenger seat. Sigh...Judy is the best.

And so are you, for stopping by to visit...thanks!


Monday, May 25, 2009

The Last Art Masterpiece of the Year

I just finished my second year of teaching art masterpiece to the children in Lillian's class. In case you don't know, it is a volunteer program to supplement their art classes. We bring in a huge print, discuss it, and do an activity based on the artist we are talking about. I've really enjoyed teaching the kids and have tried to emphasize that they should enjoy the process and not be afraid to make mistakes.For the last class, I wanted them to play with clay and decided to showcase artists that are alive today and make their living with this medium. I brought in pictures of cute clay creations by Jenny of Polka Dot Pixie, Jenn of Noodle and Lou, and Dani of Ambitions Design.The morning of the class, a light bulb went off in my head. How GREAT would it be if the children could actually interview one of these fantastic women?! I knew they would be blown away by their art, but to talk to one of them would be like talking to a celebrity! I sent out an email to them to see if anyone was available and willing on such late notice.

You have to love blogland, you really do. All three artist were so sweet and supportive in their response! Dani was available to call in during my time with the kids and generous enough to offer her time and knowledge as well.

As expected, the kids loved all the whimsical creatures and people I showed them. Just as I was passing out the clay, the phone rang in the classroom. We put it on speaker and when Dani said her name, there was a series of gasps that swept over the room! They could not believe it! It was so long and such a shock to them that we had to laugh. :)Dani prepared a little speech for them and I hope she doesn't mind if I post it here. I think it's great advice for everyone, not just first graders! :)

I would explain how I make my living from art by sculpting..mainly Halloween characters (of all things..lol) all year long. It took me years to realize that I could make money on what seemed like a silly idea. The point is you never know until you try.

My love for Holiday arts also inspired me to start SpookyTimeJingles an online website where we sell Halloween and Christmas handmade arts all year long!

Also...often in art we can be hard on ourselves b/c we may think what we are doing is never quite good enough. We often think it should have been better.

When the truth is we are right where we are supposed to be. Art is a process just like anything else we learn to do. It can take us many tries to learn how to ride a bike or tie our shoes. It is the same with art, except the fun part is we can always learn something new to do in art. So you can never get bored!

Finally, the next time you are working on an art project and you think you messed it up or made a mistake. I say don't start over! Use that so called mistake and make it part of your project. Every single time I have made a "mistake" I have not given up but instead used in my work and it has always worked out and most times made the piece even better! So the next time you think you made a mistake-turn it into something else... Paint drops can become -polka dots or clouds. Smears can become mountains or even faces...whatever comes from your imagination!

Never feel like you have to color in the lines. Only do that if you want to. Those lines are only a guideline not a rule..so have fun!!

Afterwards, the children got to ask Dani questions. Lots of them were asking, "How do I make a ________?" Such patience Dani exhibited as she went through each creature...her best advice being to start with the belly...I'm going to try that because I always start with the head. As she talked about armatures, they nodded in their understanding...they loved her tips! One girl asked why her favorite holiday is Halloween...Dani replied because it's the one holiday that you can be as silly and free as you want to be...what a lovely answer.

I can't THANK Dani enough for taking the time to help me out this way. She definitely made a difference in their lives that day. Art isn't just something you do to pass the time, it's an everyday part of life and a wonderful outlet for all the little things going on in their little brains!

I'm posting some of their clay creations...check out the cat! I see a future Spookytime Jingles artist!

Here's a video of them saying thank you...they are always a bit on the quiet side because they've been taught not to disrupt the other classes, but they loved it! Thank you Dani! :)

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Sunday, May 17, 2009

Friday Freeze...a Moment of Why Not?!

WAY back, when I was going to ASU, our sociology class had to go out on campus and break social norms. As result, we created scenes. The old standby is to stand backwards in an elevator. My objective was to walk next to someone, at the same pace. She went faster, I went faster, and eventually the poor woman ran away from me.

Then comes youtube, and Improv Everywhere. When I watched them freeze in Grand Central Station, I thought, "I want to do that!" How fun would it be to take a normal day and make it just a little bit unique? I found a group in my area that pulls little pranks like these and it has been so much fun. The first one we did was a date night for Awesome Guy and I... a lot more fun than dinner and a movie! They even had a giant pillowfight at our outdoor mall! Then I got my niece and her friends in on the act...below is a video of our second "mission" together. For more info or see past missions, you can go to ImprovAZ, or look for a group in your area...there are SO many out there. :)

This was our group's first freeze. Another group found out about our prank and came to prank us! They decorated us and played finger gunfights around us, trying to make us lose our pose and laugh.

I love this group...it's one of those things I'll be glad I did when I'm old and gray in a retirement home somewhere. Carpe Diem! :)



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Feeling Glamourous

I hope you all had a great Mother's Day! We went up to Thumb Butte for a hike. There was a hard way and an easier way and I decided we'd do the hard way. I just about died. lol We pushed Maddie in the stoller too! I'm not a hiker, but it felt great afterwards knowing I survived. :)

I painted this before we went up. The text I've been using lately is from a book set in th 1940's (my favorite time period!). It's very Casablanca-esque. It's done on a thick sided paper mache base. I ripped out one of the sentences that caught my eye and it gave me the idea for the painting.

"He still detained her, wishing she would look straight at him, so that he could really see her face."

Funny thing is on the hike I was wearing a big, floppy straw hat to shade me from the sun. The wind was blowing so hard that it was putting the hat in the same way as the painting. Guess what? It felt just as glamourous as I imagine a woman during the 40's felt. As glamourous as you can feel as your hiking up a dusty mountain with prickly pear everywhere dragging a stroller. lol

Afterwards, we went to an arts and crafts fair on the Courthouse Plaza in Prescott...just about my favorite place in the whole state. I did not want to come home.

So my question to you is, in this day and age, what do you do or what makes you feel glamourous? Time to get your glam on girls!

Have a great day!


Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Truth & Babies...Babies & Truth


"She remembers how it used to be. She remembers when."

I got an email from Brenda (Hi Brenda!) that was too cute not to pass on. It's also pretty fitting for this painting I did on a paper mache base that is waiting to be mounted on wood. The email starts out like this:


'Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.' This is so true, no one is immune. Whatever your battle is today, my friend, here are some cute babies and bits of wisdom that will hopefully help make it all better. :)

A sharp tongue can cut your own throat.

If you want your dreams to come true, you mustn't oversleep.

Of all the things you wear, your expression is the most important. (Even more so when you live in Arizona, where everyone squints so much in the sun that we all look like we are giving each other dirty looks!)

The best vitamin for making friends..... B1.

The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.

The heaviest thing you can carry is a grudge.

One thing you can give and still keep...is your word.

You lie the loudest when you lie to yourself

If you lack the courage to start, you have already finished.

One thing you can't recycle is wasted time.

Ideas won't work unless ' You' do.

Your mind is like a parachute...it functions only when open..

The pursuit of happiness is the chase of a lifetime! It is never too late to become what you might have been.

Life is too short to wake up with regrets. So love the people who treat you right.. Forget about the one's who don't. Believe everything happens for a reason. If! You get a second chance, grab it with both hands. If it change's your life, let it. Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.

Adorable isn't it? I hope it made a difference in your day! Now go and have fun my lovelies! :)

Monday, May 04, 2009

Help the Dudas take Flyght! :)


Above is a painting I did. Below is the text I took from Diane's blog...love her, love her art, and think her son's band is pretty nifty too! :)

"Please help my son, Aaron, and the rest of his band, Flyght to win a $25,000 recording contract.
You can vote once a day.

VOTE HERE.
LISTEN HERE."

THANKS!!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Prim & Whimsy Gallery Hop!

Hey Santas, what is all the fuss about?

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What's that you say? Prim & Whimsy is having a Gallery Hop?!

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Lots of cute goodies are looking for new homes?

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Sounds fantastic! I'll see you there Santas!

These are the Santas that I started back in August! It's never too late to start shopping for Christmas, right? I figured out my own paper mache pulp recipe. The arid climate hear makes it perfect for drying. They look very sweet in candlelight...the glitter is my favorite glitter of all time and there is LOTS of it on there. Have a great weekend my lovelies! :)