Thursday, March 31, 2011

Paint Party Friday- April 1st!

 The challenge at Inspiration Avenue this week was to do a self portrait- and what a challenge it was!  I decided to do a more "comical" view of myself- from my Halloween pictures.  Those of you who don't remember, here's a refresher:
I did take the liberty of flipping it- I'm not sure why, but I prefer it this way.  Anyway, I decided to post it in it's unfinished-ness for Paint Party Friday- my new favorite Friday hangout!  Hopefully, I'll be able to pull myself from the party to get this finished- if not, I'll be posting a WIP at IA as well as PPF!  My current thoughts on this piece are; 
  • the stripey section- I like the dark tones, but want to change the green- maybe pale cobalt?
  • not sure I like the green roses am again thinking of cobalt plus more magenta.....
  • there will be more abstracty white/cream lines swirling throughout
  • the three "squares" represent my children and will feature either butterflies or Koi
I wanted to be really playful with this and try to capture the "fun" of being an artist- being able to play pretend every time I pick up a paintbrush....also I've been loving Steampunk lately so I threw a little of that in there too and of COURSE, I had to have flowers in there!
I also got a kick out doing this, because I need something to represent myself in my traveling sketchbook.  More on that later......
So Happy Paint Party Friday- see you guys tomorrow!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Hello Spring"

 So, here is my "Venus a la Klimt" or "Birth of Venus" I haven't quite decided yet.  But she is done and I am using her for my entry at Inspiration Avenue.  The theme for the week is "Hello Spring" and since it was my turn to host, it would be pretty embarrassing if I didn't have anything to submit!
 I had another reason for needing to finish her for today.  The gallery that shows my work is featuring me and three other artists at an opening tonight and they wanted a couple more pieces for the window.  So, that's where she is for the time being.  I'm excited and nervous all at the same time- it's been more than 20 years since I had an opening!   Earlier this week, I actually had a dream that I showed up for the opening without any clothes.......that's when I realized that I was a bit nervous ;)

Enjoy your weekend, my friends.  And be sure to stop by Inspiration Avenue to see a bounteous collection of Spring inspired art!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Paint Party Friday- March 25th

This week I've been working on a new painting inspired by Botticelli's "Venus" and influenced with Klimt's use of flowers.  And it has kicked my butt!  You wouldn't believe how much paint I've thrown at this canvas, but it is finally, finally coming together to match what I saw in my head upon beginning.  I try to alternate my really tight flower paintings with my looser canvases of women.  And for some reason, it's much harder for me to do the loose free one; maybe because I follow my photographs very closely with the flowers, and I don't have the same kind of safety net with the ladies?  I dunno, but I love painting both so that's what I'll continue to do!
For now, here's my Venus a la Klimt (for lack of a better name- any suggestions would be MOST welcome :))

I like her much better up close than from a distance.....not sure why ;) 
Happy Paint Party Friday- be sure to stop by to add a link to one of your own paintings OR just to see and marvel at all the talent over there- it's amazing group of artists!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Happy St. Paddy's Day"

The challenge this week at Inspiration Avenue was "Happy St. Patrick's Day" and of course it had to be something green!  I've been sharing my progress on my current painting which features a green zinnia and 'tho I'm not quite done, it's close enough that I'll submit ti without feeling too embarrassed ;)
 Really, all that's left to do is tighten up the zinnia a bit and the black and blue salvia needs to be softened a bit- there's also one leaf that I haven't done yet.  So, not much left and then time to do a new lady!
Be sure to stop by Inspiration Avenue to see all the entries for the week- they're certain to be varied as always and likely to be full of GREEN!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Paint Party Friday!!!

In my blog travels this week, I discovered that many of my friends are joining in on Paint Party Friday and now, so am I!  Here's what Eva and Kristin had to say about it, "Acrylics, Oils, Watercolors or Mixed Media Big Works or Small Pieces Finished Paintings or Works In Progress All Painting Accomplishments are Reason to Celebrate!
Please join us for a Paint Party...A Place to Check-In, Meet and Chat with Other Painters and Have Some Fun!"  Sounds like my kind of place!
Since I never posted the finished product of my "La Femme" I've chosen to share her at the party.
For more pictures and information, check her out in my Etsy shop.
Happy Friday and hope to see you at the partay!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Still having computer woes and a little more of my Zinnia......

Have you ever heard the saying about the shoemaker's wife going barefoot?  Well, my husband is an IT guy and I'm still without my computer 80% of the time.  I can usually sneak online for about 10-15 minutes before it freaks out and goes black screen on me.  Bill has tried several things to fix it but to no avail and now it's gone for long enough that it's kind of been put on the back burner.  I wouldn't mind so much, but my computer is the only one I can upload photos to which makes it hard for me to blog.....for now, I race on; upload my photos to my image software and then if I'm lucky enough to maintain a connection long enough to get on Picassa, load my pics there.  THEN, I'm able to blog from Bill's Think pad and use Picassa to add photos......arrrgh!  But at least I do have options even if they're a bit convoluted!
So, I just managed to get my pictures of my new painting onto Picassa- of course they're from Monday and I've done more painting since then....but still, it should be enough to at least give you an idea of where it's going.  My goal is to finish it in time to submit for this week's challenge at Inspiration Avenue.  The theme is St. Paddy's Day and what could be more appropriate than a green flower, I ask?
So here she is:
 Since taking these pictures, I've added more lime green and softened the back ground and the Ultra marine blue Salvia is well under way.  Hopefully, the next time I post about this, it will be DONE!
So long for now,

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Black, White and Pink"

The challenge this week at Inspiration Avenue was "Black, White and Pink"  I actually had a painting that I'd done for my daughter's new room which is in exactly those colors, but I never went up to take the snap and at this moment, she's still asleep, and would probably not be thrilled to have the flash go off in her face :)  The canvas is hung over her bed.......
SO, that led me to Lily, our Tuxedo kitty who of course is black and white with a pink nose!
Be sure to pop over to Inspiration Avenue to see what everyone else came up with.  There's sure to be a lot of art and as always a huge variety of interpretations!
Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Dragonfly Design Studios now Offering Art Lessons

Beginning in April, Stephanie Mealor Corder is offering semi-private art lessons from her home studio in Winnona Park.  Her program is based on teaching the elements of art through traditional techniques while encouraging imagination and creativity resulting in some beautiful art!  (To learn more about Stephanie, please see her profile on the left sidebar.)

Blind Contour Orchid The children did a line drawing of an orchid with oil pastels and then painted in the background
Spring Session Details:
  • 90 Minute Classes- Spanning 6 Weeks
  • each lesson period begins and ends with sketchbook art which includes imagination prompts, preliminary work and "free art"
  • a variety of watercolor techniques will be explored
  • Each child will produce 3 Quality Art Projects in the theme of "Spring"
  • Classes are $240 for the 6 weeks session (or $40 per week) payable in advance
  • Supplies are included in the fee
  • Classes are limited to 6 children per session with age range of 6-8
"Musical Art"  Art in the format of musical chairs- a fun way to warm up for the day!
    My art lessons are based on my training as a professional artist and 3 years of teaching 80+ children from pre-k to 12th grade.

    1. the Most important thing to me is to get the child excited about creating art- get that passion for creating in place, and the rest will follow
    2.I'm more interested in quality rather than quantity-
    all projects are done with top quality materials, designed to last- no fading construction paper here nor yet any Popsicle sticks either!
    3.The elements of art are as important to my projects as is exploring the magic of art- I love to hear the kids say, "Oooohhh"
        "In Your Face"  Do YOU see the faces?  These were profile portraits that the kids glued down to create the illusion of a vase.
    Classes begin in the Wednesday, April 13th lasting from 4:00- 5:30.  Sign up here by leaving a comment with your email written out- like this: stephaniemealorcorder at yahoo dot com to avoid any spam issues.
    I am SO excited about this!

    Sunday, March 6, 2011

    What's Up in the Studio- New Zinnia in Progress

    Oh Zinnias, I just can't stop painting them- they always inspire me and here I am painting another!  I love these chartreuse ones paired with Black & Blue Salvia-I  just ADORE that color combination!  This painting is from a series of reference photos I took a couple of years ago for my "Green with Envy" painting but there were so many photos I wanted to use them again, here.

    Much of this is just under painting, but you can get a basic idea of what it's going to look like:)  This canvas is the biggest I've ever worked with- it's 12" x 24" and a lot of the time, I work with it in my lap because my desk it just too small to accommodate two feet of canvas!
    And I haven't added the ultramarine blue of the salvia yet- just their black throats, and again; under painting.....
    Here's my reference; so you can see the blues

    And here's the first painting I did from these photos:
     In this one, I changed the background from the turquoise that is my house, I really cannot remember now why, but I did and thus, struggled with it- first it was white, and then yellow (a brighter yellow)  and then gray and then white again until I finally laid in this soft yellow......for what ever reason, the background is usually the hardest part of any painting I do....weird, right?
    This week, I had no time to do anything for Inspiration Avenue, but the emails have been pouring in all week from folks who did create something for the theme, "Celestial" -be sure to pop over there to see- as always, it's sure to be a gorgeous collection full of diversity and beauty!
    For now, cheers!

    Thursday, March 3, 2011

    It's A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.....

    Our neighborhood is being torn apart street by street and put back together by the gas company.  They are updating their connections to each of the private residences.  As you can imagine, it's caused something of an uproar around here!  It started with mysterious spray paint markings up and down the streets.....
    We *hear* that they will carefully dig up any plants that are in the way of their work and return them to their original  condition.  However, I KNOW Georgia dirt or as many call it CLAY takes a lot of time and effort to amend....and when you dig deeply enough, no matter how nice the top soil is, that's just what you hit and unless you work to turn it, that's what remains after the hole is filled in!  SO, I took pictures yesterday just in case I need to contest any changes.
     They marked the area at the base of this telephone pole..... So I'm wondering if they'll have to dig up my Otto Luken Laurel- it's not my favorite plant but it does add some nice structure :0)

    Tho' you can't see it here, there's another mark across from this rose bush- the rose is Perle d'or and my favorite.....I really hope it's not in the line of fire!

    Anyway, the reason I took these pics is I heard that last year, some of my neighbors had to threaten to sue before their garden was restored to it's original condition.  I know it might sound crazy, but I NEED like flowers- they are a major source of joy in my life- if I'm having a bad day, all I have to do is wander the garden and I'm instantly happier!
    Here are some of the other pictures I took.....
    An overview of the side garden; this Adirondack was a roadside salvage and soon it will be supporting another of my favorite roses; Jude the Obscure plus irises and Anemones, peonies and delphinium.....
    Another view of Perle d'Or with a foxglove at it's base- that bloom is gonna be HUGE!  Also Coral Bells, more Delphinium and Peonies.
    My daffodils haven't done as well this year, but the ones that have bloomed are pretty :)
    So there's my documentation and I'll be like the crazy old lady on the street watching these workmen like a hawk- thanks for letting me vent!

    Wednesday, March 2, 2011

    Sisterhood of the Traveling (Sketch) Books

    My friend Jaime at Artsyfartsyme is hosting a Round Robin of sketchbooks and she still needs 5 people to sign up!  I'm posting about it for several reasons, ONE- since I basically hounded her until she set it up, I feel like I should help in any way I can:) plus the fact that I WANT to help! TWO- I'm super excited about it and want to get started ASAP and THREE- she only needs 5 more people to get going!
     Altered Journal by Design 4 U
    So here's the low down:
    • We are going to have 10 open slots for this first time around (plus me and Jaime equals 12)
    • The theme is the 12 months of the year
    • Jaime will assign each person a month to create a 2 page spread based on the month they've been assigned
    • We will each need to purchase a new sketch book for this project (we'll be mailing these, so keep size and weight in mind for mailing purposes.) 
    • Each month, we'll mail the sketchbook we've been working on to the next person on the list
    • At the end of the 12 months, we'll receive our original sketchbooks filled with art for each month of the year!
    Exploration Journal by Altered Alchemy
      It might sound like a lot of work- but really it's not- it's one 2 page spread a month- plus if we just do variations on our designs for each spread- then we don't have to come up with a completely new design for each sketchbook!
      I'm planning on making mine into a garden journal with pages between each month for notes, plans and pictures........
      don't you want to have a Round Robin sketchbook too?  Oh and one more thing- it's going to be international- two of the artists are from the UK and Australia- how COOL is that?
      So if you're interested, pop over to this post at Jaime's blog to sign up- but hurry, there are only 5 slots left!
      Altered Journal by Vintage Snaps and Scraps

      Tuesday, March 1, 2011

      Atlanta Flower Show Always So inspiring

      My Mom and I went the Southeastern Flower show this weekend and it SO much fun!  There were 7 mini gardens designed by landscape professionals- Home Depot always manages to do one and usually it's fun just to make fun of; but this year, theirs was my favorite because it has so many great ideas!  There were also lots of other themed displays like outdoors table settings, window boxes, entry ways to doors and so much more!  The theme was "In Tune With Nature" and there were so many neat interpretations.....
       Lot's fun puns in titles...

      This was my favorite entryway design- I reminded me of when we lived in St. Croix and had Papaya Trees in the back yard.....
      I love flowers and edibles combined