Friday, August 30, 2013

The Sketchbook Challenge

I'm up over at The Sketchbook Challenge. You can read my post about my travel journals HERE.
And while you are over there, mosey around and check out some other posts. Not that I am picking faves (they are all good) but I really enjoyed the gorgeous project by Gina Kim which you can see HERE.  And the very interesting post by Frances Holliday Alford about attending the Festival of Quilts. Such eye candy, you can read it HERE. 
Something for everyone over at TSC! You are going to want to make it a regular stop on your Blog Journey.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

If Fishes were WIshes

I have had a lot on my mind lately. More than usual. To the point where I have had trouble managing it all and I am not behaving properly in some instances. For instance, a couple weeks ago, some friends were helping me at Art Unraveled (you know who you are, Deb & Marilyn) and I yelled at them. Yes, I yelled at my friends. No excuse for this, I mean seriously....
Because I am strung out with a variety of business and personal things. My business is growing like crazy (ok, that's a good thing, not a problem) and my husband has cancer (yes, it was caught early and it's a curable kind, also a good thing).
And I don't get enough time to make art. There I said it. The truth is out. Managing a busy art career reduces that actual time you spend making art.
Go figure, huh?
Anyway, I was asked to participate in a show called Inspirations, sponsored by Chesterfield Arts. The gallery gathers amazing artworks created by kids in the special needs program, Kalaidescope. The professional artists (me & others) select a work and respond by making another piece of work. All the pieces are sold to raise monies for the program. The opening was this past Friday night.
Flash back a few weeks.
I got the painting, a lovely piece by a girl named Samantha.

I liked it a lot, it reminded me of a Georgia O'Keefe and I was attracted to the fluidity and movement in the piece. I later found out that Samantha had learned about O'Keefe and that the painting was about her!
So I started to paint.
Ugly stuff, it was like I had never held a brush before. Geez. The deadline was looming and I had not a thing to deliver. Called the gallery, begged for more time, yes I have apparently turned into "one of those' artists. Ahem. 
Finally, I started to play. Yes, just play, messing around with Scribbles and pretty origami papers. Cutting out pieces here and there, pulling random text I had collect. Somehow the text started to look like FISH to me.
close up of text
close up of texture
I kept working, I mean I like fish. Sure I had been going for flowers, but fish are good, right? I worked wet in wet, allowing the Scribbles to provide linear interest. The colors layered up in intriguing ways and I started to like the piece, it wasn't like anything I had ever done before, but I really liked it. Of course it was soooooo wet that it had to dry for about 12 hours before I could do more work on it. Ha!!
And finally it was done. I varnished it and celebrated that I had something I liked. I mentally thanked Samantha for her inspiration.
As I wrote up the statement for the piece, I realized that it had taken me on a journey. Truly, one of those things I never could have planned. I examined the piece one last time and that is when I saw the message, something evidently meant for my husband in light of his upcoming surgery. I didn't even realize it was there.
I think the painting wrote it really.
 "dear heart, grow well. expect hope. delight, soul spirit"

Friday, August 09, 2013

Twinkle twinkle little starfish stencil


We have a winner!! Congratulations:   Kathy Gayhart Carter

As a Moon Child (a person born under the sign of Cancer), you gotta know that I love the moon and the stars. But Cancer is also a water sign (The Crab) so I love me some water. 
Especially starfish. 

Until earlier this year, I had never seen a starfish out in the wild. February is always a cold and yucky month in the Midwest and that is when we like to escape for a vacation. This past February we went to Roatan, an island off the coast of Honduras. If you grab this month's Somerset Studio, you can read my article about journaling during the trip.
Starfish collage, Mary Beth Shaw
But I digress.
I saw starfish all over in Roatan! In fact, I could see them right off of our dock, red ones. I didn't even know starfish came in red.
During that trip, when I was working on my journal, I so wished I had sea stencils with me. StencilGirl didn't have any at the time. But NOW we do and woo hoo are they ever great! June Pfaff Daley has designed some awesome stencils that include some of my very favorite things related to the sea. I want to talk her in to doing Sea Urchins next, don't you think that would be special? celebrate the introduction of the Starfish stencil and to (of course) honor my love of starfish in general, I am going to give away a Starfish stencil. 
Right here on this blog. 

For me, I love the sea because it restores me and washes my soul clean. 
Why do you love the sea? 
All you have to do is leave me a comment about why you love the Sea. I will do my drawing on 8/11 at midnite, same as the Big drawing over at StencilGirl Talk. Entering here will get you into both drawings. But don't forget to hop all over to see the other Blogs and comment on them too, that was way you will have more chances at winning.
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