Saturday, 28 February 2015

#1FaceADay - February is a wrap!

I really loved February a lot.
I am really getting into it.
I tried new techniques.
Used pencil crayons with gesso.  Tried pen and graphite with gesso.
Managed to do 4 TeaBagGirls and 4 BathingCapGirls.
Finished some big paintings and paintings with a message.

All in all - it's the second month in and I'm feeling more comfortable with the process, the idea and showing up everyday (well almost).  I felt more connect to it and I am loving the result of each new face and each new day.  I am loving how some of these smaller pieces can and will inspire potential paintings and larger pieces of work.

I love that we are tracking our days with #CollectAPhoto because we will see growth and that's pretty exciting.

I had to venture to the art shop this week because I had no canvas' left to work on and I'm rather loving the smaller stretch canvas and canvas boards for this project.  I got some in between to bigger stretch canvas' too.  I think the art shop might see a lot more of me - but for now, together with tags, tea bags and other bits and bobs - I have enough to work with for March.  No excuses.

2 months down - 10 to go!

#InMyStudio - finishing pieces...

I so badly want to get back into my classrooms.
I feel like I've been a bit paralysed for the past while and I think I'm beginning to understand why.  I know my previous space wasn't right for me and it did prevent me from working in there.  And of course, there is the proverbial "busyness".  But I do believe the other reason has been having unfinished work.

I thought I would put all my unfinished pieces on my easel and start working through them.  I thought I had about 3 unfinished pieces, which I figured was pretty manageable.  Well actually, I had 6.  Not only did I have 6 but I had 6 really big pieces unfinished, 2 or 3 a little bit bigger than big.... the weight of that has been heavy on my shoulders and I think it's been blocking me from moving forward.
"... and I will embrace you with my whole heart" 40" x 30" Stretch Canvas

I started this piece 7 months ago - when we were learning about textured backgrounds on FullCirlceWorkshop... I started with great gusto, then Italy came and went, I did some work on it when I got back from Italy but finishing it was rather overwhelming because of the size...  It's the furthest I've got with this piece.  I am not sure if we are completely done with each other yet - but I am quite liking where we are so far. 

For now, she's up #InMyStudio for me to contemplate and study for the next while.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

#InMyStudio.... finished at last.

Well I'm happy to say she's finally finished!!!
This is my biggest painting to date and it lines the whole wall of my sweet little studio.
I can't tell you how many times I've tried to finish this piece but it's just never felt right or it just felt so completely overwhelming.  I'm thrilled to say that I'm finally at peace with her and I am completely in love with this piece.  Up until now there was always something wrong with or something I didn't like... that being said the layers did help this final stage go much quicker and easier.    I love clean lines and unclutteredness of it.

As I started adding the blue and some browns - I realized I didn't want the wings there and the more I worked, the more I realize that I didn't want the busy sunflowrs either.... and the more I worked that away and the more I loved this piece.  Once I knew how I was going to more forward - the rest just flowed right out of my brush... like we we both finally ready for each other.

I'm feeling so stoked tonight...

I'm feeling so stoked tonight - for two reasons...
Firstly, I haven't done a proper piece of art since November, last year.  I have just been so out of sorts, in my old studio space.  With a really heavy work load.  And completely no time.  All I have been managing to do is show up for #1FaceaDay - thank goodness for that cos it's kept me present.

But today I had the whole day to myself #InMyStudio - and this piece has been calling me for weeks, it was perfect timing and I had a beautiful time.

And the second reason I am feeling so stoked is because today I did 4 faces and I've used these 4 to catch up on my #1FaceaDay.  I'm back up to date.

First attempt
Second Attempt
Final attempt - I know which one I'm loving much more!
I love how each stage shows the different stages of my growth and development as an artist.  I love being able to see it in my works.  It's a great reward to me.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

#InMyStudio - #1FacetoDay

This was first a graphite drawing and I decided to paint her... 

I am so glad I did - I ended up loving these colors.
She gave me such a hard time but I eventually found my way.
Sometimes the ones that fight with me the most, the ones I journey with
they end up being some of my favorite pieces.

She's on a small stretched canvas and she was the inspiration on how I was going to finish my SunFlowrAngels - the one I started almost 1 year go.  The one I thought I was finished with but wasn't.  The one I restarted and then got stage fright and left it unfinished.

Yip that one... it's time - I think I know how i'm going to finish it.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Such a lucky gal...

Gifts from afar...
Feeling the love... - I received a mystery parcel this week.
I wasn't expecting this.  The best way to receive parcels... unexpectedly.
I love my stone (which is now sitting on my studio desk)
and my card - lovely message!

Thank you so much Tina!

Monday, 23 February 2015

Joining the swimming team - #BathingCapSeries

 I'm just sooooo enjoying this little series... #BathingCapSeries
Started by my beautiful friend Renee Plains.  What a brilliant idea!
Just so sweet and old fashioned!

I think she might my favorite so far

Sunday, 22 February 2015

#InMyStudio .... Rose

This is one of my #1FaceaDay faces.

I did her quickly for my project but I knew I wanted to come back to her and finish her... 

And I'm so glad I did - I love where she ended!

It's the first bride I've done - again I wish I could say I planned that but I didn't.  This is on textured wallpaper and I wanted to keep some of the patterns coming through.  

I love the outcome.  What a joy!

Saturday, 21 February 2015

"Come stay with me, kind little darling and I will keep you safe..."

This weekend Misty and her daughter shared what was going on in their hometown with regard to the culling of these incredible creatures.

The inhuman way they are to be culled is complete cruelty to these gentle beings.  It's heart-wrenching stuff.  Lots of us have been promoting the signing of the petition on behalf of Misty and her daughter.  I'm just hoping it will make a difference.

I don't know why it has upset me so much - but I thought about them all weekend.  It just sounds like senseless killings and human callousness, at it's worst and that's never okay!

This beautiful picture inspired my painting... 

"Come stay with me, kind little darling and I will keep you safe..."

It's the first time I've painted an animal or an animal face and I have to say I loved it.
I love the tenderness of this piece - it pretty much summed up how I was feeling about it.
I wanted to include this theme into my #1FaceaDay.

Her sweet hand was inspired by Sharon Tomilson's hands - I love the kind of whimsical, dreamy way she does her hands.  I didn't want to be bound too much by a perfect hand but rather about the emotion around it.  And I love the way the finger is resting on Deer's temple.  It's so tender - I wish I could say I planned that - but it just happened.

It was lovely to do a bigger piece and something completely different. 

Friday, 20 February 2015

#InMyStudio - my sweet new space....

So my new studio space is set up... 

And I'm pretty stoked!!!  It's nothing fancy but it's sweet and perfect for me!
I have a few things to still get - but everything will come together.


My week in pictures... 1FaceaDay, life and everything else...

Considering my week was soooo full - I was really so productive and I got through and accomplished so much.  I claimed time back and stole other bits of time and said no to a few things.  

Feeling really great to have gotten through this week... in one piece.  It was a big week for all of us - it was assessment week at school and it was full on.

I had a 2am working shift early in the week - which I can still pull off from time to time - but it catches me through the week.  So the day after I was shattered - so I climbed into bed with my stabilo color pencils and gesso and played until my eyelids shut... I'm really loving my pencils and painting this way - esp for quick and easy sessions.  

We had a school function this week so only left me with a bit of time to play!  So I just used my graphite on canvas board with gesso.

Just some gentle therapeutic play.

I just love this piece... I love her eyes.  I start most of my faces off with the eyes and I just love her eyes!  She had me the minute I drew them.  I used my inktense pencils with Gesso.  #SuchFun

We had a heatwave this week... but how amazing is this view.
This is my view everyday.

Anne had reached her 50th piece this week and I'm close behind her.
But she shared a pile of her pieces - all 50 together.
And it encouraged me to share mine too.

I'm more shocked that 50 days of this year have passed already.

Still sneaking in BathingCapGirls
Such a sweet little series.

I received this picture today - it's one of my #TeaBagGirl commissions from last year.
I love getting to see my pieces framed up and finished and in their homes.
This little piece has brought about 2 more requests.
So stoked!

Monday, 16 February 2015

7 more sleeps...

Four more sleeps until our class starts and I'm so looking forward to doing homework and working through amazing generous lessons and learning and practicing.... deep practicing.

I guess I'm just needing it.

If you haven't signed up... I can highly recommend that you do.  Not only because MistyMawn is an incredible teacher and does wonderful classes but it's also for the classroom with fellow artists.  It's such a special place and I've met such incredible people that have become my friends through the years.  It's a wonderful supportive community.

And we grow together... it's really such a special time.

Ignition + master coaching + deep practice = TALENT
Greatness isn't born, it's grown!
Daniel Coyle, The Talent Code

Another birthday week and jammed packed schedules...

January and February can be as manic as December in our household because of all the birthdays and celebrations.  And just when December festivities are behind us - February brings a new onslaught of celebrations...  So this week saw two more birthdays.  And in our household birthdays are very special and we make them count.  We would sooner miss Christmas but Birthdays are deeply special.  We want to celebrate each person and remember the day they were born.  And this week was Kitty's birthday!  What a lot of people don't know about this precious girl was that she was due on my birthday but came a week late and when she was born, she was born fast asleep.  She was my 28th birthday gift.  And she was a gift that has kept on giving.  She's truly a remarkable person and we are so blessed by her.  But as much as the weeks are busy with personal stuff - the school and work schedule has been full on.  We have had things on almost every week.  And this coming week is no different.  I'm feeling a tad bit overwhelmed because it's ONLY February.  But now that most of the "have to's" for February are done - we are slamming on the brakes and I'm calling for a few quiet weekends at home.  No questions asked.

So #1FaceaDay has been tough this week with my full schedule so I didn't do too well with showing up every single day.  But I'm busy catching up - still keeping them quick and light and kind of as a form of creative play, painting on recycled material, scraps and this and that and I'm so enjoying it. 

Still doing TeaBagGirls in between.

This sweet girl with the old fashioned hat is actually a painting I did directly over a photograph.  And what makes it quite interesting and a story on it's own is that it was a photograph of my beautiful mom in her twenties with a beehive hairstyle.  I love how different she turned out and I love knowing it's her face under there.

Painted on one of my birthday cards
A mixed media - I love her.
Some journal play and another BathingCapGirl
Our sweet online swimming team is growing - it's so fun!

So the braiding story continues too - this week Kitty 
had a lesson to learn how do different braids.
However, when she got there they chose her to be the hair model.
Oh no - no learning that way!
But still so beautiful!

This week I'm going on my daily travels with my art kid ready so that when I get stuck in the car, parking lots etc - I'm ready to do my daily face.  Whether it's a graphite drawing, watercolor or pen work - either way... I don't want to be idle in and waste precious time.

So today we had an hour and a half wait - I did my daily drawing with my coffee treat and I'm doing some blogging - feeling really chuffed that I got to have a bit of victory over time today!

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Sunday Celebrations...

We woke up slowly and latish on Sunday morning and had coffee and pressies in bed.  I love these gentle, private birthday family traditions that we have always shared.  It seriously is the best part of birthdays for me.

My lovely people totally spoiled me with all my favorite things.... I just love that they get me.  I received the most beautiful love letter from my beautiful Corks - I can't tell you what that meant to me.  Deep beautiful words, that totally touched my heart.

We headed out for breakfast and bumped into my beautiful friend which was such a treat.  After that we headed home so the girls could finish their homework cos we had a big Sunday night date.  Months ago we had booked to go see The Script.
And the day was finally here.

I love this family portrait
They brought the date earlier and made it on a Sunday night - which was a challenge on any given Sunday. But the crowd was so amped and the atmosphere was already off the charts.  We were already tired and quite frankly ready for bed.  I know right... feeling every bit our age... being in the general standing area is getting more challenging #justsaying.  But as soon as the boys were on stage - their energy was contagious.  It was a jam packed brilliant performance.  They are true entertainers and they totally blew our hair back.  We have been to many concerts through the years but wow - that was the most rocking crowd we have ever been part of.

How beautiful are these two girls.
It's the first time concert for Kitty and a first time concert for all 4 of us together.
It was such an awesome thing to do together and definitely won't be the last.
But maybe in seated area next time.

Beautiful scenes from The Script
What an incredible weekend.
Definitely going down in our books, as one of our best weekends ever.
We all feel that beautiful memories were made this weekend.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Someone wants to go swimming with her buddies...

Someone wants to go swimming with her buddies...
My lovely friend Renee did the sweetest painting of a lady with a swimming cap.  A day or so later - Anne did one too saying she was hoping that they could go swimming together.

I couldn't resist but join in and do a "swimming cap" girl so she could go swimming with her buddies too.
A day later Caro also did one too.

Oh I do love this community and our connection.
Just so precious.

(painted with Stabilo colored pencils and gesso)

Birthday day...

Ahhhh it's my birthday and we had no plans.
I know that sounds a bit dismal for birthday celebrations
- but honestly that's my favorite kind of day... 
No rushing out the door.  No agenda. And no pressure and with complete quiet.
Just chilling with this girl and my beautiful peeps.

 Digz and Corks had a cycle race so I woke early to see them off and then I got up to do my Morning Pages when Kitty joined me for cuddles.  She didn't leave my side all day - she was totally adorable.  We popped out at lunch time for a special coffee.

But the best part of this day is that I got to paint for most of the day.
I just haven't had a day like that for ages and it was long overdue.
I've been playing so much with my Stabilo Pencil (black) and gesso and last week my friend Constanza said I should try color stabilo's - I forgot I actually had some.
So I got to do these 3 paintings with Color stabilos and gesso
- it was so lovely to play in this new way.

even used them on this #TeaBagGirl

I received messages and calls all day and I had such a beautifully gentle day.
It was exactly what I had in mind.
Thank you to everyone who made it so special!

Friday, 6 February 2015

This week at a glance...

I spent the whole weekend last, rearranging our house.
And my Studio.  I was upset in my last space because of the sun and heat.
It was an exhausting weekend.  It was like moving in all over again.
It took me a further whole week to get all the bits and bobs packed away and in place.
And my new little Studio is almost sorted... and I'm loving my new space.
This is the start of what it looks like!
No more overheating or freezing to death.
It's a quaint sweet room and I'm so grateful that I get to have my own studio room in my own house.  I've put a chair in there because I always get special visitors.

Soooo #1FaceaDay for February is a go.
I'm on target still just playing as I go.... I downloaded this phone app.
Stainglass your images - just a fun way to continue play.

Ahhhhhh I'm so blown away...
My precious friend Renee - send me my first birthday wish this week.
And painted this beautiful picture in honor of my birthday!
I love that and what a beautiful way to send a birthday message - I'm soooo touched by this gesture!  I love her pocketbook!  Thank you my friend!
That seriously touched my heart!

A #TeaBagGirl - Stainglassed

Seriously - this is how the girls went to school today.
I'm braiding all week through.  But 4 in one day!
Oh they are funny girls - they both went in like this with their bags on their back.
They totally looked like twins going into school today!
Made me laugh out loud!

In my sorting out - I found this image of my big girl!
Oh my word - it feels like the other day and now she's all woman.
She has always been a sweet little darling!
She's been a little under the weather with really low blood pressure and it's been making this momma stressed all week.  Trusting for improvement soon!