Thursday, December 15, 2011

Better than Blank

I've been making a series of blank books- I call them Better Than Blank Books. I used beautiful old drawing paper for the pages and made a quick machine sewn seam to put them together. The pages are decorated with paper scraps, fabric strips, ribbon, old ATCs and remnants of unsuccessful projects- anything that was laying around my studio. It is like a giant collage with each page adding to the whole. On the first stage of the project I created the coordinated page spreads. Now I am going back and adding doodles, quotes and finishing details to act as prompts. The final stage will be actually using the book as a journal. Each page will be a visual delight and there are no dreaded white pages in sight!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Share your ART!

My yoga studio - MindBodyFitness Yoga ( is celebrating the Winter Solstice with a Mala. This beautiful, peaceful practice gives us all a chance to relinquish the burdens we no longer need and embrace our good intentions for the coming year. We all bring food for the local food bank and this year we will celebrate with live music and snacks too. For the past 2 Winter malas I have made ATCs ( Artist Trading Cards) to share with everyone. Each one has an inspirational quote on the back. It gives me great joy to share these little pieces of art with my yoga community. Where can you share art in your life? With friends, family- maybe even strangers if you like the idea of guerilla art. The world can always use more beauty so think about sharing your art this year.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Belated Halloween Treat

If you are a cat owner you know how much "help" they are in the studio. Sammy takes his duties very seriously and he's so darn CUTE I can never resist his charm!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Power of Complementary Colors

Color is the most powerful tool at your disposal to evoke mood, emotions and the WOW factor in your work. I naturally gravitate towards complements- colors opposite each other on the color wheel. The best known pairs are red/green, blue/orange and violet/yellow. These combos, in their purest intense forms, are really active and sometimes garish. However, tweaking and toning them down doesn't diminish their power. In the detail of my mixed media piece above, the indigo dyed fabric and orange accents give this piece energy and a playful mood. Without the orange, the blue and pink would have been pretty, but predictable. Even pastels and muted colors have complements. Study a detailed color wheel and you will see the possibilities for adding a pop of color magic to your next piece.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Sigh- working out of a slump

We all get them, we all suffer with them- the inevitable creative slump. The ideas dry up, the energy ebbs and your studio makes you feel guilty every time you walk through the door. Why can't you just sit down and work- where's the joy and energy that are as natural as breathing? I have projects all over my studio- all in the beginning stages and they have just been sitting there for over a month. I feel like I've run out of gas. So, to ride out the down time, I've been working on TINY little faux postage. I use a full sheet( and they can be separated so it's easy to trash the rejects. This is very freeing and feels like play. I leave all my supplies out and just take a few minutes here and there to work on them. Above is a sheet in several stages of completion. They all start with little doodles, then Derwent watercolour pencils then a touch of acrylic medium on the higlights and a sprinkle of Martha Stewart glitter (LOVE her colors and it's super fine). It's not much but it's fun and I know I can use them on ATCs and collages in the future. And funny thing, this morning I picked out beads for one of those projects gathering dust and I think I'm ready to start!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

LOVE Mingle Magazine from Stampington & Co.!!!

Stampington & famous for their original paper arts publication Somerset Studio and now they have added another fantastic magazine to their 30+ titles. MINGLE is a visual treat with amazing ideas for unique gatherings. If you love making life special for your loved ones, this magazine will be a catalyst for so many festive occasions. As always with a Stampington publication, the magazine is so beautiful you return to its pages again and again for inspiration. To get your copy and start planning some magic for your next get together, visit

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Autumn Equinox

Welcome Autumn with all the glorious warm colors of the changing leaves. I have a real affinity for these burnished reds, golds and olives especially with a touch of deep plum. This piece incorporates fabric collage, crazy quilt techniques and tons of fun supplies. Use photos of leaves from your yard or press a few in a heavy book. Let their beautiful colors and textures be a starting point for your own leaf art.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

I'm hosting a MINGLE giveaway!

Stampington & Company is launching another great magazine- Mingle. It's a magazine devoted to exploring creative ways to bring friends and loved ones together for entertaining, inspiration and good times. As a published Stampington artist I will be receiving 2 issues of the new magazine in early October and one issue is reserved for a lucky blog reader! If you are interested in receiving the premier issue, send me details of one of your favorite ways to treat friends and family!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Details, details, details

I love the slick photos of clean, white interiors or beautiful, simple, solid colored clothing but I'm just not that kind of girl! Though I admire the restraint of simplicity, I revel in the intricacies of details. Complex layers of color, texture and meaning delight the senses and pull the viewer in for a closer look. Above are detail shots from 2 of my recent collages. Each centers around a flower portrait done in pastel (protected under Dura-Lar) but the backgrounds and supporting cast of trims, stitching and faux postage make the piece complete for me.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Changing Seasons/Changing Color Schemes

Just noticed the dogwood leaves are starting to turn red...autumn is showing her colors! My garden is looking very golden and russet- quite a change from the soft yellow, pink and lavender of just a few weeks ago. I love to draw the flowers from my garden and the three examples above show how my color palette changes from the fresh vibrant pastels of spring to summer's fantastic pinks to the deeper reds of fall. These pastels were done on hand dyed fabric. I use Golden Acrylic Pastel Ground on the fabric to create a toothy surface for the pastels. I cover them with Dura-Lar film so they can be used in my mixed media work.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Doodle like you mean it!

On a recent trip to New Orleans, complete with that long layover in Atlanta, I decided to put a tiny Moleskine journal in my purse for doodling. I admire art journalers who carry a kit with colors, glue stick, etc. but I carry a small purse wanted something more practical. The journal is 3.5" by 5.5" and very thin with exquisite smooth creamy paper. I love Artline black markers in .1mm. The tip is tiny for great detail work and it never gets mushy. Doodles like the ones shown here can take up to an hour to complete. Start with a basic outline of your subject then fill it in with more and more pattern. This is a great way to develop your repertoire of personal symbols and let them unfold in an organic way. You will find you return to the same shapes over and over again in your work. I scan the doodles then put them thru art filters and use them in my collage work. Doodling like this is a great way to keep your hands and mind busy and save yourself from thumbing thru outdated magazines when life makes you wait.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Published in 3 Somerset Publications

Can't believe it's been months since I posted here but the time has been well spent in my studio. I have articles in ART QUILTING STUDIO(Summer 2011),SOMERSET APPRENTICE (Autumn 2011) and an entry in ART JOURNALING (Summer 2011). These are all Stampington publications( ). As always, the magazines are a visual treat will get your creative ideas swirling. Their magazines can be ordered online (some digital) and at Barnes & Noble.