Saturday, January 31, 2009

Hula Hooping for Fun and Health

A group of my Artist's Way ladies were discussing hula hoops when we got together to create our Vision Boards a couple weeks ago. Laura, one of our ladies, happened to know someone who made custom hoops: Carl of Mr. Tie Dye. Carl agreed to take advance orders and then meet us to 1) give us our custom-made hoops (we got to choose our own colors!), and 2) offer "how to" hoop suggestions. Friday night was our time to meet. Robin, owner of Pilates and Presence at Play, made all the arrangements and hosted the event at her exercise studio and home.

Carl demonstrates a few techniques to get us going.

Jill and Laura show off their hooping skills.

My only problem (well, not my only problem) is that I don't have a space big enough inside my house to do any hooping - so to the parking lot it will be! If you're driving by on Commercial Street and see me twirling my violet, orange, and green hoop, please give me a little honk!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Mixed Bag Thursday

Thursday was a busy day for me, full of artful play. It started in the morning when my friend Destree came over for a play date.

I futzed around with my sunflower a little more in preparation for my Mixed Media class later in the day.

Destree is part of the Altered Board Book Round Robin and I had just finished my two pages in Dawn's book (don't look, Dawn, unless you want to see what I did to your pages!). Here is the two-page spread I did in Dawn's book:

Finally, in the afternoon, I headed to the Art Department for my Thursday afternoon Mixed Media class with Cynthia Herron. We had a little show 'n Tell from what we created last week.

For this week, we were to select a single image to repeat four to eight times, arting up the image in a different way each time. I started by experimenting with Sun Prints (fortunately, there was sunshine yesterday in the afternoon).

Here is the beginning of my grid of birds:

And while I was out waiting for my sun print to "develop," I noticed a really cool living space above Greenbaum's Quilt Shop and the Art Department!

Stay tuned for more on my Grid of Birds, as I think I'll call it.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Artist's Way: Recovering a Sense of Integrity

Last night was week four of our 12-week group. The focus was on integrity and the women had lots to discuss. Even Sinatra the Art Cat got in on the discussion.

Our creative activity for the evening was one I learned from Gretchin at Scarlet Star Studios, and it is called Creating a Life Map. Basically the women all chose events from their life and illustrated those events in the form of a map. Their creations were beautiful, but too personal to post a photo. Instead, I’ll show you their stocking feet as they gleefully played with oil pastels and watercolor pencils!

I’ll leave you with a quote I have written on a little bulletin board that greets the women as they arrive (along with flyers for art opportunities).

Bag o' Crap

I love sharing my treasures – no matter how I stumble upon them! This time around, it was another gift from my friend Sam, who owns Lil’ Gypsy in Salem (that's her storefront above). She also has a shop on e-bay where she sells wonderful and unique items. Every once in a while she calls and says she has a bag o’crap for me. Last Sunday was the day I received my bag o’crap.

As a side note, we went to breakfast with Sam and her family at a new place in Salem, Word of Mouth. Fabulous hashes (I had the vegetarian and it was delicious). After dining, we all went bowling (my scores were: 163, 155, and 167! Yowsa!). It was a great day.

Then at the end of it all, I got to go home and look through my goodies. Here’s more shots of what I received:

Monday, January 26, 2009

Fanciful Dream Houses - Round II

A couple of weeks ago I offered the first round of a new class, Fanciful Dream Houses, in Portland. The story behind this class and photos of the first class can be found by clicking here. Well, I offered the class again, this time in Salem at the always fabulous Stampin' Cat Studio. The class went splendidly and once again I came away inspired and uplifted by spending the afternoon with eight delightful and creative women.

Their creations were beautiful and thought-provoking and I am pleased to share them here.

And then, everyone was so gracious with their kind comments:

I liked the tremendous encouragement, knowledge of materials, ability to help “students’ at all different levels and genuine creativity.

I loved all of the multitudinous parts – great selection! Receiving only positive feedback and encouragement was nice.

Lots of good ideas and great “doodads” to share. There was plenty of time to finish (I hate to be rushed!).

I loved the general idea of the project and enjoyed the variety of materials which were available. I also liked that each person was able to make their own design.

Excellent class – inspirational – too fun for words. Many opportunities to experience many products.

And finally, this special comment:

I can’t tell you how much the whole class uplifted my soul through the afternoon! It gave me rest and inspiration – thank you so much for giving us this great experience to work and create. I was able to go back home in a better/stronger frame of mind – life felt good again and this came during the creation and how I changed the course of my house. Several things that amazed me at the class were, as always, the BRILLIANCE of everyone in making their dream house! And wow, what fantastic creative women!

I've been asked by both the DIY Lounge in Portland and Stampin' Cat Studio in Salem to offer the class again - soon!

Rest in Peace: Canvas Project Ends

I decided to conclude my Canvas Project for the time being. Some of you may recall I started this project on June 2, 2008, the idea being to add some sort of art every day to a large canvas. If you want to learn more about the idea behind this, click here.

The project was a success and I made marks, glued images, splashed paint, and attached embellishments for six months.

The decision to put the canvas away is two-fold. First, I accomplished what I had intended and that was to get into my studio daily and play (well, it wasn’t always daily . . .). The second reason is that I need the space in my studio for my daughter and grandson to sleep. My daughter, Amy, is in the final six months of obtaining her teaching certificate through Willamette University and beginning next week, she will be commuting from Portland to Salem to do her student teaching in health at North Salem High School. On Monday nights she has a class through the master’s program, so rather than driving every single day from Portland to Salem, she will be arriving on Sunday night and staying with us until Tuesday afternoon. In addition, I’ve agreed to hang out with my two-year old grandson Emmett on Mondays and Tuesdays. Here's the little guy the last time we hung out (Emmett is the one on the right, that's Howard on the left). We've even bought a grandparent membership at the A.C. Gilbert Discovery Village and that's where this photo was taken.

All this wordy-ness is to say that in my studio is where we have a futon, which I plan to make up and leave out so that I’m not constantly shifting art supplies, especially the easel (yes, my new easel) and my big Canvas Project. So, yesterday I collapsed my easel and carried it to the basement. As I was carrying my canvas down, I had the brilliant idea to at least hang the canvas on the wall leading to the basement. I am down there several times a day, so I’ll be able to admire my vibrant canvas regularly. My Canvas Project is gone, but not forgotten . . .