Monday, February 28, 2011

Oooh Another One of My OWOH Beauties Has Arrived......

Lorraine of Creative Daily made this incredibly, gorgeously beautiful folder for one of her OWOH giveaways and I was lucky enough to WIN it!  There is so much attention to details and color and each separate element flows so beautifully to the next- really, it's too nice to be called a folder- I have not decided what I'll be using it for, but you can BET that I'll have it placed somewhere that I can enjoy looking at it each day!
She also packed it so nicely in a handmade envelope illustrating the words One World, One Heart- I haven't taken a picture of it yet, but I'll share it soon....
For now, hugs to you- my bloggety friends!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Breathe"

Here's my entry for this week's challenge at Inspiration Avenue- the theme was "Breathe" and I wanted to do something a bit free-er than my usual stuff- sometimes I get too caught up in the details and I need to let my hair down.  This lady was many things before she got to this point.  At first I wanted her to be Ophelia, BUT, too much dictating from me, or so my muse said.  SO I gave her a tail- uh uh, no good, then somehow her hair turned into stylized water and she ended up wearing a wedding kind of gown and here she is......her face is a bit sweeter than I want it, and I probably (foolishly) will play around with it a bit more, but for now (for better or worse?) she is ready for Inspiration Avenue.
Here is "Remembering to Breathe"
So there you have it- for once, I'm not flying in under the wire with my entry for the challenge.  Make sure to check out what everyone else has done for the week, or better yet; submit your own interpretation for "Breathe" it's always fun and you just may win something!

Just like Christmas morning......

I was lucky enough to win four prizes at One World One Heart this year and the first one arrived in the mail yesterday.  Ya'll might have caught on by now that I love flowers, especially roses- and I won this gorgeous mixed media ATC called, "Lady Rose" how perfect is that?  It has layer upon layer of all the things that make a garden a beutiful place to be, roses (of course) butterflies, bees, garden jewelry and of course, a queen to reside over her miniature kingdom!
I knew it would be wonderful, but the picture just doesn't do it justice- I LOVE it!  She is now holding court in the window over my desk until my studio is ready for a more permenant placement.
Stop by and check out Laura's other beauties at Artfully Musing- she has an incredible eye for layers of color, texture and detail with just a touch of sparkle- absolutely beautiful work!
I'll be back later to post my Inspiration Avenue entry- I know, I can't believe I'm early either ;)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Faded"

I really didn't think I was going to have anything to submit this week at Inspiration Avenue, not because I didn't have any ideas but because my kids were on holiday this week and I find it very difficult to concentrate on painting when they're home.  Oh hurry up studio!  I love them dearly and I love how affectionate our family is, but they have been known to give huge hugs from behind while I'm applying paintbrush to canvas and the results are usually not good!
So I just worked on journals this week and didn't worry about getting very much accomplished. 
Enter the bluebirds.......I LOVE bluebirds and with our Spring-like weather this week, they've been going through all the motions of preparing for the season.  We've been lucky enough to be able to watch them nest and raise babies two to three times a year for the last two years and this year I noticed that there were two couples fighting over the rights to our one I added a new one in hopes of having 2 families to watch.  But nobody seemed interested until yesterday!  So:
Unfortunately, the bird house is placed on the "unfinished" area of my garden so you get to see all the yuck that I haven't started working on!  I never noticed that you could see the trash cans.....and there they are!  Isn't it funny what you train yourself to not see?  At least that's what *I* do....
Anyway, here is my entry for "Faded" with a little airbrushing and filters to remove or at least disguise the trashcans....;)
I wish the bluebird weren't so faded too, but my photo editing skills just aren't to that level yet.....
This is one of my favorite bluebird snaps from a couple of years ago......
Be sure to pop over to Inspiration Avenue to see what everyone else has put together for "Faded" it's sure to be an amazing collection!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

And the OWOH Winners are.....

I'm SO excited- it's time to announce my OWOH winners!  I ran the random number generator with 188 comments (I ommited one comment as it was a duplicate)  and here are the names and numbers it spat out:
I'm assigning the prizes according to each winner's preference- first come, first serve...... 
#168 "Metamorphosis" Digital Misfit of My Hiding Place in Cyberspace
#70 Set of Cards- Sherry of Got Art?
#72 "Parrots en Masse" Cheryl of Healing Woman
#59 Sigrid of Welt der ATC's
#88 Altered Journal Always Inspired
I've sent each of the ladies emails and they have 48 hours to respond- if I haven't heard from them by that time, I'll draw more numbers!
BTW, if you haven't already, pop over to Lisa's announcement- OneWorld One Heart may be over, but Our World Our Art will be taking it's place this time next year.  I'm sohappy, because I always meet so many wonderful people that I might never run across otherwise.
And speaking of all you lovley new friends, I am SO glad I met you- I'll be seeing you soon on Blogland!
Happy OWOH!

New Journals.....

I've probably mentioned a time or two how much I enjoy incorporating words into my work.  That's probably one reason why I love making my art journals so much.  This past week, my kids have been out of school for a winter break and tho' I love them dearly; I just can't concentrate on painting when they're around!  So, it was a perfect week for journal making!
  plus, I needed to finish my journal for my OWOH giveaway....
So, here they are:
This is the one I did for OWOH and I used a "new to me" quote for her:
"The soul should always stand ajar; ready to welcome the ecstatic experience." Emily Dickinson

These other two are now in my Etsy shop:

I actually did one more but haven't gotten photos of it yet......and it does have words in it too- (I try to vary ones with and without words to accommodate different people's tastes.....)
Anyway, when I was looking for quotes, I hit upon a whole series from "The Little Prince" which I haven't read in 30 years....I'd forgotten how wonderful it is!  Here's the quote I used (I'll post pictures later assuming my computer will stay up long enough to upload....:))
"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye" Antoine de Saint Exupery
And of course, I've had to rename the painting I used for the journal:
Which to be truthful, I didn't think FIT quite, what was called"Invoking the Glory of Spring" is now; "Seeing with the Heart" which I like MUCH better!
That's all for now, I'll be back in a couple of hours to announce my OWOH winners!

It's Time For One World, One Heart!!!

I'm so excited- it's finally time for OWOH again!  Last year was the first year I participated and I met so many wonderful people, folks that are now part of my daily life in Blogland.
 Let me start by sending a heartfelt thank you to Lisa Swifka who dreamed of the event and made it happen five years ago- what an enormous undertaking!
Lisa asks us to introduce ourselves and so, here I go;

My name is Stephanie and I am a visual artist who likes to dabble in mixed media.  I have three children and one husband  ;) and along the way, I put my art on hold to be a stay at home mom- a choice I have never regretted!

We moved to the Caribbean when the kids were 5, 3, and 1 and stayed for seven they got older and needed me less, I started doing a little art again but when I realized their school had no art program, I started a mission to create one for them. Next thing I knew I was teaching 80+ students from pre-K to 8th grade- even though I'd never taught before!  I loved it- the students were so inspiring to work with and the more I worked with them, the more I knew I wanted to be a full time artist again......

We moved back to the states in 2007 and since then, I find myself painting, painting and painting some more!  It nice to work from home and arrange my schedule around the kids'!  I enjoy playing with altered books and collage, so I do that too!
My first painting inspiration is my garden- I love flowers and color and the way light affects first, the majority of my work featured flowers.  But I studied to be an illustrator and I found myself wanting to paint people women started appearing in my work, and I now have a nice collection of both!
For my prizes, I wanted to offer a collection that represents me and the friendship I am offering to you.  Working from home can be lonely at times, and my bloggy friends are a HUGE part of my life!  It's so nice to have other artists to talk to on a regular basis.
I like to hope that my friendship brings color and light to my blog friends; new and old- so I'm choosing a series of pieces that reflect on that....
Thank You Gift 1 
is a print of my painting, "Parrot Tulips en Masse"
The print measures 15" x 20" will high quality color and detail and will be shipped rolled up in a protective cardboard container

Thank You Gift 2
is one of my journals with a collaged cover based on my painting; "Infinite Spring"
This is the front cover
 and the back signed, dated and commemorating OWOH!
 To get an idea of what my journals look like, check out this blog post.

Thank You Gift 3
is a 5" x 7" canvas with a collaged print of my painting; "Metamorphosis 1- Beyond the Veil"
 I have painted the edges of the canvas to extend the details and give the impression of an original painting.

Thank You Gifts 4 & 5:
For my final two gifts, I am offering 2 sets of cards.  
The winners may choose any 5 cards they like from my Etsy shop (the link is in my sidebar) the images I have shown are are only examples!
Now on a final note- let me go over the rules and regs:
1. Although you do not have to participate in the event, you MUST have a blog to be eligible for the giveaway- otherwise this event is open to anyone, anywhere in the world.

2.My giveaways are "door prizes" as a thank you for stopping by- All you need do is leave a comment and a way for me to get back to you should you win- please don't forget to include your email in your comment if it is not on your blogger profile!

3.Comments will close at 10 am on February 17-I will be using Random Number Generator to determine the 5 winners.

4. I will notify the winners via e-mail- important: if your profile page doesn't contain your e-mail address, or you are not an active blogger, please include your e-mail address in your comment.

5. Since we must mail these gifts out within three days after the event, once I have notified you, you will have 48 hours to respond with your mailing address. That means I must hear from you no later than February 19.
Thank you for visiting and good luck! 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Weekly Challenge at Inspiration Avenue: "Fur"

The prompt at Inspiration Avenue this week was "FUR" set by the amazingly talented Lisa of Priti Studios.....I feel so lucky to be this team with her- she is an incredible lady!
For the challenge, I knew I had to to feature one of our four cats and I remembered a picture of Lily at the birdbath.  Lily is our 10 year old Tuxedo cat and she is starting to act a little old- one of our friends has nicknamed her "Prozac" because you never know if you're gonna be encountering the sweet gal who likes to be petted
or the spitting and hissing hag who has been known to trap people in the bathroom.....
Don't  believe for a second that she is half as innocent as she looks.....:)
And don't forget to stop by Inspiration Avenue to see what everyone else has done for the challenge- it's sure to fun, varied and FULL of talented ideas!
Have a great Sunday,
As you might have noticed, Lily is convinced that ALL birdbaths are for her!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

New Painting, OWOH travels and Still having Computer Woes.......

Yes I'm still here I just haven't been very vocal lately ;)
My husband has been kind enough to let me use his computer but since it doesn't have my image software on it, it's a real challenge to post pictures!  I have to download them onto my computer, and cross my fingers that it not crash in the time it takes to download, crop, flip and any other editing I might want to do.  THEN, I have to go to Picasa and download again so I can access said images from here......argh, it's a real pain in the you-know-what!  At least I have a 'puter I can use tho'.......
Anyway, the reason I popped my head in today was to let you guys know I'm still around- I have been spending some time at OWOH and WOW(!) I've made so many new friends that I can't wait to get to know better!
So, onto my new painting- I sold one of my old paintings a couple of weeks ago
to the nicest lady- she loved the painting so much she wanted to design a wall around it and commissioned me to do two more :D
As it happened, I had another painting I had meant to be paired with this one, but it was at the gallery, so she didn't know it was available.  I showed her the image and she bought that one too!  I was VERY happy because it had been a couple of months since I sold a painting and while you try not to take it personally, it's hard not to.....
Then she commissioned me to do a third painting to complete the set.  I chose to do a Camellia which I've been wanting to for a while.  I had so much fun- I always forget how much I enjoy working with a palette of whites....
Anyway, here is my "Camellia by Moonlight" I apologise for how blue it is, in real life the colors are in the same palette as the iris and tulip.
So that's about enough from me.  I've been doing some journals and an entry for Inspiration Avenue- I'll try to blog about them later after coaxing my computer to let me upload the images.
For now, have a great day!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

New Painting, "Invoking the Glory of Spring"

I suppose I have Spring on the mind- we had the most amazing weekend last week and I have been yearning for warm weather ever since!  Anyway, my last painting was based on Spring and this one is too......I had a lot of fun painting her- since my computer isn't working properly, I turned to a book of vintage photos for inspiration and there I found my lady with the mask....... I decided that I wanted her to be surrounded with all the glory of spring; and so, here she is!  I didn't mean for her to suggest Marie Antoinette, but in my mind she does......ah well, I like her whoever she looks like!

I also seem to have developed a thing for hummingbirds- I keep feeling the need to include them in my art!
That's all for now- I'm back to the OWOH tours......