Sunday, November 30, 2008

AEDM and Where Has the Time Gone

It is the last day of November. Where has it gone? I wish there was some way I could make it slow down - not really slow -but about 1/2 as fast as it is going now.

I have been working on a 33 1/3 rpm vinyl record for a couple of days now. It has layers of gesso, dictionary pages, bits of this and that, acrylic paint, stamps, and monocolor. I bought several of these at a thrift shop in St. Ignace when I was home for Mom's birthday last month and have looked at them thoughtfully several times, but this is the first time I have actually begun to do something with one of them. I just put a layer of white gesso over the whole thing and wiped it away a bit, especially over the figure of a pretty dress and girly figure with the dog's head and the dictionary page that describes vinyl records. I don't have a theme in mind yet, but when I do I will get to work on the final few layers and then show it to you.

Meanwhile I made an ATC for Dianne, who sent me her card for a swap and I am quite pleased with it. I will get it in the mail tomorrow and hope she will like it.

DD informed me yesterday that for the month of December she would be working six (6) days a week. That means this was/is my last weekend off until the new year. I was thinking this would make December a long, long month, but looking back at my first paragraph, I think it will fly.

She works from 2 until close today, which means I will have 2 girls most of today. That means that if I am to get any "art" time today, it has to be this morning. So I'd better get busy.

Until next time, don't forget to live in the moment.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Inspire Me Thursday Theme - Table

It is getting late and I checked my Google Reader for any new posts to the blogs to which I subscribe and I ran across the theme of table at Inspire Me Thursday. I was feeling playful so I made a digital ATC that is kind of free association type of exercise.

You should understand that I have 8 sisters and we are all very competitive, so the word play is very common in our conversations. We all like to do crossword puzzles, the harder the better. This ATC is somewhat like the path our conversations sometimes take. I guess you would call it convoluted. Did I mention that I have 5 brothers, too.

At any rate, here is my masterpiece. I hope I don't offend the people who chose this theme with my levity. I really had fun with this and think making digital art may be addictive.

Goodies in the Mail

The hubster just brought in the mail and I had three (3) packages - boy, do I feel special!! *-)

The first one I opened was a "People are People" swap I participated in through ATCs For All. They are very nice additions to my collection.

The second package was from a new friend, Dianne, whose blog I subscribe to. Now that I have her address and these treasures, I need to make her something special and reciprocate. Not only did she send a lovely ATC to trade, but the card she sent them in was exquisite and also

The third package was from Carla Sonheim and it was something I had completely forgotten about. Some time ago I won some flower beaded coasters from India. They are even nicer in person.

The baby is sleeping, the hubster is out in his workshop varnishing, and I think it is time for me to do a bit of art while I can.

See you next time; for now don't forget to live in the moment.

AEDM and Blog Award

We had a lovely Thanksgiving Day with our nuclear family and an uncle and a nephew. We all ate too much; the food was delicious. It was so nice to have the 2nd of our three grandgirls for the day. She was a joy. She has a unique sense of humor and kept us all in smiles.

I didn't get a chance to do any art of the traditional kind, but I think orchestrating a large meal and entertaining even a small gathering is an art in itself, so I am considering this my AEDM daily post.

Brenda, my wonderful, talented, Aussie friend has awarded me my first blog award. This award states that: This blog invests and believes the PROXIMITY- nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends, they are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers.

I sincerely appreciate this award and I am supposed to pass it on to 8 more bloggers who meet the criteria as outlined in the preceding paragraph. I am giving this award to

1. Karin 2. Elise 3. Leah 4. Carol 5. Serena 6. Tammy 7. Linda 8. Steve

Check these people out. They are bloggers with big hearts and lots of talent.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving and AEDM

While I don't have any new art for today, I found a favorite digital scrapbook page of mine from almost 6 years when my first grandgirl was born. It seemed like an appropriate bit of art to share since "thankful" is a part of it.

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving day and that you have loved ones with which to share it. I have so many things to be thankful for and I try to remember them more often than this one day set aside for just that.

For now, don't forget to live in the moment!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

AEDM and a New Canvas

I finished my four altered CDs yesterday and have a good feeling about them. The themes are music, art, beauty and Gold Rush. I wrote over the Gold Rush text in the upper right with a Zig marker because it kind of got lost in the Mica D'Lights. I've never worked with these little flakes and really like them, but I think a little less would have been better. I added the musical note to the music themed CD and am pleased with how it looks. Now all I have to do is decide what kind of paper I am going to adhere to the back so that it is decorative, but not too busy to put my info onto.

Later last evening (I seem to get creative late at night), I started an 11 x 14 canvas panel. I didn't have a plan, I just started playing with color and collage and I think this one is asking to be called Play. It is not done yet. I think it probably wants more layers and maybe the players not quite so isolated.

However, today I am babysitting both girls most of the day. I have promised the 5 year old that we will work on an art project (I think I will give her a small, blank canvas and some water soluble oil pastels) so I won't be working on mine until later or Friday. We are doing Thanksgiving at our house so there is also some cleaning to do.

I'm not sure I will be getting any art done in the next day or two, but you never know. These little girls have to sleep sometime. *-)

Until I see you again, don't forget to live in the moment.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

AEDM and CDs and My Little Artist

Late last evening I started the 4th CD. So far I have covered it with a variety of tissue paper, some as is and some embossed. I tried to wrinkle it a bit as I pressed it into place and then realized that when doing the embossed one, this flattened out the emboss. I didn't flatten too much of it, so I am using it as is. I think the flat area adds a little interest. How's that for a little rationalization!?

I'm also working slowly on a mandala. I am doing mine in pencil. I think you are supposed to do it in ink, but when I tried on the reverse side to do ink, it smeared awfully. Maybe I don't have the right kind of pen. I would appreciate some ideas of what pens to use in artwork that do not smear, if such a thing exists.

At any rate, my little artist in residence, my 5 year old grandgirl, saw what I was doing, and she needed to make one also. I used a CD to draw the circle and then used a protractor to mark it off in 30 degree increments and then used a straight edge to connect some lines between the marks. What I especially like about hers is that she is not afraid to use any symbols she wants. I'm just loving the lips, butterfly, carrots, houses, suns, 4s, snowmen, smilies. Sure wish I had that much courage to try anything that occurs to me. As a matter of fact when she chose carrots and only made 2 big ones and I asked her if she wouldn't rather fill up the space with a bunch of smaller ones, she replied, "Nana, I am the artist and I decide what to do when I am drawing. There isn't a wrong way, you know." I must be saying all the right things to her when she is complaining that she isn't a good artist. For that, I am really pleased to hear her parrot me. I hope she internalizes that and doesn't lose it like so many do somewhere in the growing up process.

Don't know for sure what is on the agenda for today, but I will take it as it comes. It is a blowing, snowing day so I will be glad to hunker down indoors whether it is to work in my art room or babysit.

I'll say bye for now and don't forget to live in the moment.

Monday, November 24, 2008

AEDM and Life

I am really getting a late start today. I had a bit of a medical scare and had to take care of that first. I had my annual checkup about a month ago with associated testing. I got a call from my doctor's office about a week later that they thought they had found something of concern when reading my mammogram. I didn't worry too much because I have had a calcification removed before, but still.....My retest was early this afternoon. They took me in and did the compression and then asked me to wait. After about 3 minutes the nurse returned and told me the doctor had ordered an ultrasound. Now I am getting a bit more worried. After about 15 minutes they took me in for the ultrasound and asked me to wait while the radiologist looked at it. After a few minutes the ultrasound technician came back and told me that they would send a report to my doctor and that I could go. I have been told that means they didn't find anything this time and that the ultrasound was just to make sure the other test hadn't missed anything.

After running a few more errands, I am back home and in the mood to do art. I have added a bit of patterned tissue paper to the CD and the word Art that I cut on my Wizard and then embossed with same. I think it is done, but would appreciate constructive criticism.

I may start the 4th CD later today. This swap has a deadline of February 1, so I have lots of time. I am starting to look at packaging of products to try to choose a few for my Wacky Packages swap.

Until next time, don't forget to live in the moment.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

AEDM and More CDs

It is much too cold here already. We seemed to go from unseasonably warm weather (70s in October - wonderful!), to unseasonably cold weather and snow in mid-November. It feels like January or February. There is really no point in complaining - it is what it is.

I have been reading many nice comments some with good suggestions when I am unsure of how to move on in my altered CD project. Leah suggested using some ink to bring out the sun in one of them, which led me to pull out my Permapaque markers (no they are not ink, but still her idea led me to that) and I really like the result. I think this one is done.

I was really stuck as to what direction I wanted to go on the third one. So I randomly reached out for a product and my hand landed on some stucco I purchased on sale at JoAnn's a couple of weeks ago. Just so you know, it is not unusual for me to make a decision randomly. About 30 years ago, I was living in the UP and my life was not as it should be, so I spun the globe and reached out. My finger landed in Arizona - so I moved to Phoenix. But I digress.......

I am not sure I like where this is going, but I am going to add some color over the stucco and maybe add some fiber----I don't really know. I am so pleased with how Leah's suggestion turned out, I would welcome any thoughts or comments on this one, too.

That's it for now, until the next time don't forget to live in the moment.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

AEDM and Kernel Panic

My computer has gone into kernel panic 4 or 5 times over the course of the last couple of days. I have tried disconnecting the peripherals and have checked the status of my hard drive (which is a S.M.A.R.T drive) and it says it is okay. Still my computer is panicking. Needless to say, this makes the user a little panicked. I am planning to spend the day burning CDs and DVDs of my collage folder, my scrapbooking folder, my pictures, etc. I have ordered a new computer which should arrive in the next week or so, and hope to have the important things on this one burned to disk and removed by then.

Meanwhile, I am trying to make art. Here is a picture of another of the altered CDs that I am working on. I have not yet adhered them to the CD, but this is the placement that I am planning to use. I think all this one needs besides the words is maybe a little fiber or some kind of edge treatment. If you click on the picture, you will get a larger one and be able to read the words.

Until next time, don't forget to live in the moment.

Friday, November 21, 2008

AEDM and Altered CDs

I didn't have much art time yesterday, but I did spend a bit of time on one of the altered CDs I am currently working on. And I have been doing a lot of planning for art in my head (the world looks so different when I am in my "art" mode.).

Tweetie Peetie has no school today, so I will probably not get any art done during the day - I will spend some time getting her started with art. She is interested in altering a CD, too. I'll have to see how that goes. Her Mom gets home around 4:30 PM today, so I should be able to get some art time later this evening.

For now, I have a bit of progress to show on one of the CDs. I am totally unhappy with the sun. I will either have to cut one out of card stock or maybe use some gouache to get a better differentiated one. This one just looks like a small spill of light yellow paint. I am happy with the picture of the girl and the words.

That's all I have today. Don't forget to live in the moment.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

AEDM and Altered CDs

I am trying something new. It is something I have been thinking about doing for some time now. Of course, when I was thinking about doing this I was thinking along the lines of Christmas tree decorations. And as much as I am enjoying this process, I think I may have to try some when I am done with these.

These are for a swap through ATCs for All. I stayed up WAY too late last night (this morning) working on these because I didn't want to stop. The due date is February 1, so I certainly have time and needn't stay up into the wee hours, but I really am a night owl at heart. Unfortunately, I am also a morning person. In my youth that combination worked because I didn't need much sleep and I like to think I can still do this. However, burning the candles at both ends is no longer a realistic option for me.

The one on the left began with a piece of scrapbook paper with a blue background with concentric circles. I next applied a thin layer of gesso. When that dried I stamped it with a paisley stamp using a purple stamp pad. The one in the middle began with a layer of purple paint. When that dried I added a bit of teal paint and while it was wet I used a round plastic item that I found at a recycling center through it to create interest. I then collaged a torn piece of paper out of a German novel to it and lastly stamped in black with a script stamp. The one on the right began with an old baby wipe that I used to make some backgrounds this past summer. I kept it knowing that someday I would want to use it. I then collaged a piece of music to it and then stamped with a music stamp in black. As a last step I applied a wash of iridescent pearl fluid acrylic. These are not finished, but I am loving them so far. I will continue to add pix as I make changes to them.

I've also signed up for a Wacky Packages swap that is not due until the 16th of February. I am anticipating that I will love making those. I like to think of myself as something of an accomplished punster and this will give me a chance to try that persona on.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I've Been Tagged


I've been tagged by Carin at caliopeseye

Here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
3. At the end of your blog post, you need to tag eight people and list their names.
4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’ve been tagged and to read your blog.

Here goes:

The Eight Random Facts/Habits

1. I am addicted to crisp, juicy apples sliced and served with a healthy dollop of Jif Creamy peanut butter.

2. One of my biggest pet peeves is people who don't use their blinkers.

3. I crave aloneness (I am seldom lonely.).

4. I love early mornings, especially when the weather is temperate. I like to sit out on the screened porch with coffee and listen to the world wake up.

5. I once drove alone from the UP of Michigan to Phoenix without a map.

6. I wish humans needed the necessary skills/instincts before nature would allow them to become pregnant.

7. If I lived alone, I definitely would not own a TV.

8. I love playing games and am learning not to be so competitive when playing.

Here are the eight people I am tagging:

1. Suzanne at an open (sketch)book
2. Elizabeth at Be, Dream, Play
3. Diane at Duda Daze
4. KellyRae at Taking Flight
5. Michi at Michi Rhymes with Peachy
6. Nancy at Never Enough ATCs
7. Zom at pinch me to see if you're dreaming
8. Ruth at synch-ro-ni-zing

Happy Tagging!!

AEDM and Giraffes

I found a swap through ATCs for All for giraffes and as they are one of my favorite animals, I decided to go for it. I made two and used both the hubster and the daughter as sounding boards. They both chose the same one, so that is the one I will be trading.

The one on the right is a very textured background that I made long ago on 11 x 14 artist board and then cut into ATC sized pieces. The image transfer didn't work real well. The one on the left is painted, weathered and then stamped with a foam stamp. The other giraffe in the lower corner is hand drawn on watercolor paper and then cut out and colored with pencils.

On another note, a friend and I went into Jackson yesterday and I actually found some Sizzix dies and some Cuttlebug embossing folders ON SALE at JoAnn's. We also went to a second hand store, where I scored on books - found a novel written in German, several sheet music books, a travel scrabble set with wood letter squares that are quite a bit smaller than the regular size ones and some stencil books.

All in all a very productive shopping excursion.

The hubster and I are babysitting the little girls for the next 5 days, so my art time will have to be stolen in small chunks. That's it for now.

Have a great day, and don't forget to live in the moment.

A Day of Sharing Words


There must be a way
for me to say
all the things I feel.
If only this paper could slip
inside my mind
and Xerox all that's there.
Maybe even I would understand
what I'm trying to say.

Pauline J. Boyd

The Poetic Eye is hosting A Day of Sharing Words and even though I didn't know about it until this morning, I wanted to participate.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

AEDM and Elephants

My friend wasn't able to go shopping with me yesterday, but I felt the need to get out of the house, so after posting my swaps I went to Hobby Lobby by myself. What fun! I was able to find some of the Cuttlebug embossing folders for $4.99 each and got 40% a Spellbinder die set. I also found a deckle-edged watercolor journal at 30% off, a water brush, and a stamp set of Encouraging Words for 50% off.

The three embossing folders were paisley, flowers, and music. I think the music one will look much better on larger paper.

Once I returned home I finished the elephant swap. A couple of them I had to start from scratch because after rearranging my work room, I couldn't find the two that were in progress. I am sure they will turn up sometime, but I needed to get these in the mail, so had to begin again. I took advantage of this little setback to do some image transfers using the Wizard. I have never been as pleased with transfers as I am with this amazing machine. Each of the elephant ATCs has an image transfer on it.

I also tried an image transfer on an embossed cardboard card that I had using a picture that I really liked. It turned out great. I don't know how this card is going to be finished, but so far I really like it.

Today I am going to stop at the post office to send off the elephants and go shopping with a non-artist friend. It is my turn to drive and her turn to buy lunch. I am going to stop in a couple of second hand shops and who knows - I just might find some arty stuff.

Bye for now, and don't forget to live in the moment.

Monday, November 17, 2008

AEDM and the Wizard

We got about 1/2" of snow yesterday - it's pretty, but I am really not ready for it yet. I am used to seeing snow this time of year, but it is seldom in evidence the next morning. I'm pretty sure I can no longer put off getting out my winter jacket and hat and gloves.

I am ready to get back to the elephant ATCs I was working on, but in my complete overhaul of my art room, somehow I have misplaced them. I really wanted to try using the Wizard for image transfers, so I took advantage of this setback to try it.

The one in the upper right is a scrapbook paper with a silvery stamp of an elephant and then an image transfer of the youngster. The one at the bottom is a textured painted background with a bit of cheesecloth adhered near the top and an image transfer of a young elephant. The vertical one is another scrapbook paper as background with an image transfer of a young elephant in water spouting through his trunk. He almost looks like he is laughing. These are not finished yet, but I am quite pleased with the transfers using the Wizard.

This is an embossed and painted piece of cardboard with an image transfer of some people behind a fence. I really liked this picture the first time I saw it. I haven't decided where I am going with this one (it is not for the elephant swap &-) obviously), but I am thrilled with how the transfer turned out.

This morning I am going to the post office to send off the previous two swaps and then driving to Holly Lobby with my 40% coupon to see if I can find some Cuttlebug embossing folders and a water brush and who knows what else. I can't wait to just wander around and see what I can see.

Right now I am going to take my coffee out in the living room and sit with my Tweetie Peetie and her little sister and chill. As for you, don't forget to live in the moment.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

AEDM and 2 ATC swaps ready

It's Sunday morning and my paper has not been delivered yet. I have gotten used to going out when I arise and the paper is there, but we have a new carrier and the Sunday paper is usually later than I want it to be. And it is snowing out. It is pretty, but I am really not ready for it.

Last evening after the baby went to bed for the night, I finished the 2 ATC swaps I have been working on. All I have to do today is attach the backs and get the padded envelopes ready. I will take them to the post office on the way to Hobby Lobby tomorrow. An art friend is coming over in the morning and we are going up to East Lansing to do some shopping and out to lunch. I am looking forward to going and hope to find some dies and embossing folders for my new Wizard.

Here are the finished cards for the swaps:

This one is for a swap for the group ATCs For All called People Are People.

And this one is for the Yahoo! group arttechniquesatcs and is for a Show Me swap.

Going to be a busy day of babysitting and then I have tomorrow and Tuesday off. I have plans to really enjoy those two days as this time of year is really busy at my daughter's job and days off get to be fewer and farther between.

Until I see you again, don't forget to live in the moment.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

AEDM and ATC progress

Yesterday while the baby napped, Tweetie Peetie and I did some painting. Actually she did some painting and I supervised. She likes to be watched and complimented - don't we all *-)

She used a combination of my Neocolor II crayons and watercolor pencils. I have to be careful not to lead her while she makes art. I am always tempted to give color advice and must bite my tongue. She does not necessarily want to use "real" colors and prefers lots of color when she paints.

Last evening I spent a little time adding to the ATCs I have in progress. I think some of them are done, but am not sure yet. The few that I put a golden wash on are a little hard to see, especially the "In the Garden" one, so I took a picture (a little blurry) of it separately so that it shows better. I really love to use the Golden Fluid Acrylics Iridescent paints with a bit of water to make a wash over a finished ATC. The look is much nicer than I can show in a photo.

It is Saturday morning. DD soon has to go to work and I have her two little girls plus my son's 5 year old for the day. I don't think I am going to get much art time, but I will surely be creative as I play and interact with these precious girls. I will be totally pooped this evening, but will have tomorrow morning to finish some of these so that I can post them on Monday.

Until I see you again, don't forget to live in the moment.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Yesterday the hubster and I drove into town and did some errands before DD had to go to work. We stopped at a farm store for rabbit food and birdseed. Then we went to Meijer's for fresh fruit. Our last stop was Sam's for odds and ends. At Sam's the frozen salmon fillets have gotten so pricey, we have stopped buying them. I am missing fish, so I bought some flounder fillets. I am not sure how I am going to prepare them, but this gives me a chance to try some new recipes as well as getting fish back into my diet.

DD worked from early afternoon until 10 pm, so art time was severely limited. I did, however, get a chance while the baby napped to do step 2 on my in progress ATCs. I am pretty happy with them so far, except the model face that I gessoed over. I don't think I have enough on her face. I want her features to show just enough for me to redraw them to my liking. The gesso is uneven and doesn't cover the face as I would like. I will add another layer today.

My work day today ends around 4:30, so I hope to get some of these done so that I can run to the post office in the morning before DD has to go to work. I have promised some art time to the 5 year old today. She doesn't have school today and I purchased some little gingerbread men and gingerbread houses in plain wood that I think we will paint today. Maybe during that time I can work on my ATCs, but there is a good chance I won't get to them until this evening.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Real 3D ATC

I was reading the blogs that I subscribe to today when I came across a wonderful ATC made on a block of wood 2.5" x 3/5" x 3/4".

You've gotta go see this here. I, too, have a hubster who has a gazillion power tools and lots of wood scraps laying about. I wonder if I could get a few of these made so I could play with this idea??

That's all for now, don't forget to live in the moment.

AEDM and Catching Up

I spent most of yesterday's free time rearranging my art room. I am trying to get it to where I am able to reach most of what I want without actually getting up and searching for it. It is getting better, but it is not done yet. At the end of the day after the girls were asleep, I began to get backgrounds started.

When I got up this morning I added a layer to them. Once they dry, I can begin the fun part. I have two swaps that I have to get made - one is faces (I love working with faces) and the other is whatever I want. I am thinking those are either going to be difficult because of the freedom of choice or going to be extremely easy and happening because of the freedom of choice - know what I mean??

I am going to try to take advantage of this morning's freedom (my daughter doesn't go to work until 12:30) to get a lot of art started and maybe even some of it completed because tomorrow there is no kindergarten for the 5 year old and the hubster is going up to the cabin with his brothers and my daughter works Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I am hoping to do a bit of painting with the 5 year old while the baby is napping on Friday.

On Monday I am planning a trip to Hobby Lobby with my artist friend who lives in the area and on Tuesday I have an outing arranged with a retired teacher friend. Two days in a row of adult fun - YEAH!

I hope to add some pix of finished projects tomorrow. Until then, don't forget to live in the moment.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

AEDM And Back Home

I have returned home after a day of art and meeting other artists and then a trip to my sister's house for several days of sister time.

The art date at Kelly's house in Olivet was a wonderful experience. Artist's are such interesting and friendly people. At first it seemed to be a small gathering and then more came. I think I can name them all. There was the hostess, Kelly, and her daughter, Bailey; there was Tina and Puff; there was Lynn and Susan; there was Shauna and Nancy; and me.

Tina brought The Wizard with her. It is a die cut and embossing machine. I tried it on one of my recycled cardboard 2.5 x 3.5s that I use for ATCs and it did a really wonderful job. I just had to have one. I checked at Michael's and JoAnn's and they didn't have one, so I went online and found one at Ritz Camera at 35% off. I ordered it and can't wait for it to arrive. I will have to talk a bit to Tina to find out where to find the best, least expensive accessories.

What a talented group of women. There was work on ATCs with metal, sewing handmade purses, sewing a group doll book, embossing and die cutting, book making, and clay bead making. There was a large table overflowing with ephemera. I was able to get a couple of Stampington magazines.

There was also food. Because I am severely lactose intolerant, I had to stay away from most of them, and I can't even name them. I brought a salmon pasta salad and also had some of Kelly's dump cake.

I didn't do any art while I was at my sister's house, but I was creative. We played numerous games of Scrabble (one must be creative to come up with words when getting really awful letters), cribbage and yahtzee. We shopped at some of my favorite stores to find unusual art items - Big Lots, Michael's, JoAnn's, Pier One and the Dollar Store. I found lots of wonderful things - containers with small drawers on sale at Pier One; some copper mesh scrubbers at Big Lots that I am going to take apart and use; some metal charms and stucco on sale at JoAnn's; colored craft sticks and baby wipes at the dollar store.

Something is wacky with my computer since I've been gone. My first indication that things weren't "normal" was when I opened iTunes to listen to music and it said it could not find the iTunes library???? Then every time I tried to open Firefox, my computer froze??? Then when I uploaded the pictures from Saturday's art day in Olivet I got a window telling me that I had 4 more days to reactivate the software before it quit working???? So sorry, no pictures today. I will work on it and see what I can do.

For now, don't forget to live in the moment!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

AEDM6 and the Fat (Obese) Book


I had the most wonderful delivery by the postal service today. It was the fat book that I participated in with 119 other artists. Each of us made 120 4 x 4 pages with an example of a technique on one side and the instructions on the other. Can you imagine what a book with 120 techniques with examples and instructions would cost???
I am in awe and can't wait to try some of them. There were too many to try to bind them, so I borrowed an idea from another member of the swap and put them in an 8 x 8 scrapbook with 8 in each page protector - 4 on each side back to back.

I also did a little bit of drawing today. I tried my hand at making a picture ala Brenda of The Crafty Chook. I am not totally happy with it, but I think it is not bad. I think I will try coloring it with my new Neocolor IIs and see how I like them. I have been thinking about a technique I read about online somewhere (sorry it was a long time ago) in which you cut a picture out of a magazine and gesso lightly over it so the features still show a bit through and then use pens or colored pencils or acrylics or watercolors to do your own rendering of the photo. I may have to try that sometime as a change of pace.

We had another beautiful day in the low 70s today. The weatherman predicts that this is the last one for a very long time. We are expecting 50s tomorrow and then 40s and rain for a couple of days after that. I knew it couldn't last forever.

I have blood work, a mammogram and a dexascan (bone density) in the morning, so need to get settled for the night.

I'll say tata for now and don't forget to live in the moment.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

AEDM5 and Dick Blick

I have been thinking for weeks about trying putting a face on the other canvas that I created in Paulette Insall's Backgrounds class. About a week ago, I drew a face on the canvas. I tried to use some stencil paper I bought, but it had no directions on it anywhere. I thought that I would just put it white side down on the canvas and draw over the face I had sketched on paper and it would be transferred to the canvas. That didn't work so I just drew the face freehand with a Zig pen that was labeled among other things as waterproof and non-bleeding. You know, of course, that when I tried to apply paint the next day the black ink bled all over the place.

My first attempt at painting this woman's face was way too pink and her eyes were way too black around the edges, the whites of her eyes are jaggy (I think I made up that word) and too white and the pupil color was zombie-like. I put her away for awhile and went on with my other projects, namely ATCs and forgot her. Today I picked up my art room - it was a mess - and happened upon this poor woman.

I repainted her face and painted in some hair. She is far from acceptable, but is WAY better than she was when I found her. I took the picture from some distance because she still looks awful from up close. And her hair looks greenish in this picture. It is more of a light chocolate. I know I have to add some highlights in her hair, add a bit of color shading to her face, and figure out a way to keep the black from the pen from either bleeding or showing through. Both of those possibilities are not good.

Meanwhile, there was a real high point in my day - besides the fact that my candidate for President won by a landslide. I haven't been able to wipe the smile off my face or quit humming all day. But the other thing is I got a delivery from Dick Blick. Talk about a wonderful interruption.

We had another 70 degree day today and I spent a fair amount out of doors with the 1 year old. Man, is she ever a lot of work. I had to chase her every few minutes to keep her from playing on the steps to the deck, to keep her from going down the hill to the creek, and to keep her from going out in the front yard near a very busy road. There is a reason we usually have children in our late twenties or early thirties. You need to be that young to keep up with them.

I have two more very busy child care days left in the week and then am going to a one day art retreat (MichiganAB) in Olivet and from there I am driving over to my sister's house and spending a few days with her. It will be big fun - walks, games, good food, good coffee, great conversation. Ah, freedom from responsibility.....

I'm not sure I will be posting while I am at her house, but I will put up each day's creative piece when I return. I am determined to keep up with AEDM and I will have my paints with me from the art meeting.

Until tomorrow, don't forget to live in the moment!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

AEDM4 and More ATCs

It is finally November 4th and I voted first thing this morning. I will be so happy to see an end to the political ads and the phone calls. Hopefully we will vote in the change this country so desperately needs. I am quite hopeful, yet afraid of being disappointed for the third time in a row. I am staying away from the media coverage because it just makes me anxious. I will wait for the official word tomorrow, which may mean a sleepless night.

I spent quite a bit of time on art today. I drew some new faces - more like doll faces than the realistic ones I've been trying lately. I'm not sure I am pleased with them, but the practice is always good. I think the one on the right looks something like Loretta Swit (Hot Lips on MASH). I think it is the lips.

I've also made a few more ATCs today - at least I've made some progress on them. I am not sure any of them are done.

I know the elephants need more work. I think maybe "Art Doll" is done, but may need to put something in the bottom right corner. But then again, maybe not. I am not at all afraid of "white" space. The "Art Doll" was just for fun.

The elephants are part of a 3/3 swap I am participating in. They are not due for a couple of weeks, so I have time to fine tune them before I am satisfied.

The hubster and I actually got a walk in this evening after DD got home from work. It felt quite good. We are just going to have to make time for this necessary pleasure. We might have to walk in the morning some days, but that would suit me just fine.

That's all I have for now, so I'll say goodbye and don't forget to live in the moment.

Monday, November 3, 2008

AEDM3 and Another Face

So far, so good. I am keeping up with the "art every day" plan for November.

It was particularly difficult today because we had a warm front come through early this morning and had a truly lovely day. The out of doors was calling. I spent most of the morning labeling and preparing a couple of mailings - one an ATC of mine and one of another person's that I had contributed to in a round robin - and my October MAT challenge, the pictures that I showed in a previous post.

I now use the post office in Leslie. The women there are so friendly and knowledgeable. My previous experiences with the Pleasant Lake post office were anything but positive. I don't think the drive is very much longer, maybe a mile or so, but the experience is so much more upbeat and pleasant that I have come to think of it as "my" post office. I think I will soon make either an ATC or a post card sized work of art with some kind of post office theme to give to them for their office.

After the post office visit, I went to the local Welcome Pharmacy to look over their scrapbooking supplies. I got some good deals on sale items including a couple of Zig Writer pens, some mica particles and some mica flakes. I haven't ever used them so I have to do some research to see what kinds of projects they lend themselves to.

I spent some time out of doors this afternoon, first drinking some flavored coffee with the hubster and then pulling the 1 year old granddaughter around the yard in her wagon. She loves to go down the hill and wend around the yard along the creek watching the leaves make their way downstream. Today was officially a day off, but the baby was sleeping when my daughter had to leave to pick up the kindergartner for her ballet class, so I said I would take care of her.

Once my daughter and the 5 year old granddaughter returned home, I escaped to my art room and drew a face. I really like it after I applied a gradient map to it in Photoshop. I have been neglecting my sketchbook. I was intending to do a face a day, but sometimes there are just not enough hours available.

The hubster made some Emeril's Chili using stew meat instead of hamburger - it is one of my favorite dinners - I ran to the party store for some "scoops" and we had a lovely meal with the sliding door to the screened porch open. That is an unusual position for that door for this time of year.

I am now in my art room with the iPod set to songs and am being serenaded by a wide variety of artists - Neil Young, Indigo Girls, Cathy Davey, Imogene Heap, Joni Mitchell, Enya...... I find it so nice that the songs play in random order as I have over 3,000 songs on it and find that if I choose an artist or album, I tend to select the same handful. This is much more interesting. By the time I got the memory card out of the reader and formatted it to take a pic of the iPod, a new song had started - an all time favorite.

It's late. I need to post this and then think about a cup of herbal tea before turning in. So, ta ta for now, and don't forget to live in the moment.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

ATCs and AEDM2

It is November 2nd and so far I am doing art every day this month - hey, I have to give myself pep talks sometimes. Today my daughter worked so I had her 2 youngsters all day. It is difficult to get anything done (let alone art) with two very busy little girls running around.

I made this ATC in answer to a challenge with a theme of "time" in one of the Yahoo! groups I belong to and really had fun with it. I also made dinner today. My husband is usually the cook, but I decided I wanted to do this one. I made homemade meatloaf with baked potatoes and frozen whole kernel corn. The 5-year-old declared it to be the best meal ever and that I was the best "cooker" ever. I think maybe really enjoying cooking for one's family counts as creating and would meet the criteria for AEDM. I did, after all, set the table artfully and present the dishes well. ROFL!

Also had some visitors to our yard today. I didn't have the long lens on the camera and they were moving so quickly I didn't want to take a chance of missing them altogether to go get it. My husband told me that about a week ago they were even closer - right behind the deck - and that the 1-year-old walked right behind them up the hill and across the yard.

I have the next two days off and so hope to get lots of art started and/or finished. I have a couple of swaps/round robins to get in the mail and then need to clean up my space and begin on more. I should work on another face, too. I think I am going to try to do a transfer of one of my sketches onto canvas and then paint it with acrylics.

Until next time, don't forget to live in the moment.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween and AEDM

These are two of my grandgirls (I know that is not technically a word, but it is part of my vocabulary) getting ready to go out for Halloween candy. They met up with my son and his daughter (my other grandgirl), but I didn't get a picture. They had a great time together and got WAY too much candy. When my children were young and I was teaching, I started a tradition at our house. When they were sleeping after going trick or treat, the Halloween witch would come to our house and take most of the candy. I would take the candy to school and use it as incentives for most of the rest of the year.

For this first day of AEDM (art every day month), I finished up a swap I am participating in - double saran wrap stamped watercolor paper. This background is really beautiful and you can get some really different effects depending on colors used, how much you scrunch the saran wrap, and the final stamp you use. It was my messiest project yet. My art table is covered in fine colored drops - rather pretty actually. Amazingly I didn't get any on my clothes.

Today is my favorite day for the crossword in the newspaper. Saturday's puzzle tends to be the most difficult and so is much more fun than earlier in the week. Wouldn't you know it, the newspaper isn't here yet. It is usually delivered much earlier than this. My daughter works today so I am in charge of two little ones. I have already showered and am on my second cup of coffee. Maybe the 5 year old and I will do some artwork together when (if) the baby takes a nap. Here is a face she made for Halloween. She is quite the little artist, don't you think?

Have a great day and don't forget to live in the moment!