Sunday Art Therapy #17

A couple of weeks ago, my best friend from college invited me to a ladies' Christmas brunch. She had planned to play dirty Santa with small gifts. So, I scouted out Etsy and found this coffee coozie from one of my favorite sellers, PoshPaisley:

Isn't it adorable?  I had to make sure that the wrapping for this little gem was just as lovely as the treasure inside.  I thought that I would create a little envelope out of my paper stash, or maybe use one of my recycled boxes and wrap it in paper.  As I looked around my studio, I found the perfect piece.

This little bag once held two chocolate chip cookies from a hotel in Cleveland, OH.  I couldn't just throw it away.  (To be honest, I kept the little cookie wrappers, too!)  But, it didn't scream Christmas, so I dressed it up. 


The little carriage in this scene was part of the print on the paper.  I loved it and incorporated it into my painted scene.  I scrubbed white gesso over part of the paper, and used watercolor crayon to paint in the house and the trees.  I added in some cute little stickers and finished it off with a decorative tape.

Although it was the smallest gift on the table, it was the first present chosen and loved by its final owner.

Don't skimp out on the wrapping.  It's the details that make even the simplest gift very special.

If you haven't already done so, check out last week's Sunday Art Therapy submissions.  Claire from Saraccino has really been busy with some awesome projects!  Love all the pink!

Now, it's your turn.  Link away! 

NOTE:  There will be no Sunday Art Therapy link party for the next two weeks as we celebrate the holidays with family and friends.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

This linky list is now closed.


Sunday Art Therapy #15

UPDATE: Due to some technical problems, this linky party will be open through Wednesday!!! Keep linking!

Everyday is a great day for crafting, but it gets even better at Christmas.  Christmas is all about family and going home around my household.  So, I wanted to share my "Home" collage.


I created the background from leftover paint from other art journal pages, then I raided my Better Homes and Gardens collection for some photos.  A tree cut from an old dictionary page, some oil pastel, and a picture of me (second from the left) and my neighborhood girl friends and we have Home: Where Life Happens.

So this is my first major collage that I've ever constructed.  Please critique!  I'm desparate to get better at this because I think it is an important skill for me to incorporate into my mixed-media art.

Now, it's your turn to show us what you've been up to this week or any other time.  Older projects are welcome as well as your latest endeavors.  Remember, that you can link up below as well as add to our Flickr group by clicking on the link inside the slide show.

This linky list is now closed.


JunkDog Design Seed Beed Bottles

Have you all started decorating for the Christmas season?  It is on my to-do list this weekend along with a lovely ladies brunch to ring in the holiday season (yay, Allison!).  Another thing on my to-do list is this project from Denise at JunkDog Design.  Aren't these bottles to die for?! 

Denise used old empty bottles she had laying around.  The middle one is an old Log Cabin Syrup bottle.  Add some dismantled seed beed bracelets, aged printed numbers, drawer pulls and earrings from the eighties and you've got yourself some very cool decor.  I could see these all year round on a bookcase or mantle or even in a bathroom.

Denise is working through her "Craft A-Day while Colt's Away" series.  Be sure to check out her blog so that you don't miss a single one!

Later this week, I'll be sharing some of my collage attempts that I've been working on.  So, stay tuned and have a creative day.


Sunday Art Therapy #14

I hope all of those who celebrated Thanksgiving this week have had a blessed time with friends and family, managed to travel safely, stuffed yourself with holiday fare, and hopefully was able to be a blessing to someone else.

I also hope you were able to get some crafty creativeness in this week.  I am excited to be featuring Michelle from Mich L. in L.A.  Michelle creates the most amazing jewelry out of the oddest things.  For example, wouldn't you love to have a pair of these?

Courtesy of Mich L. in L.A.
I am a sucker for anything that is (or even looks) vintage.  These chandies are right up my alley.  Who would know that Michelle paired the lovely ornate findings with the plastic centers from........Q-Tips???!!!  I'm not kidding!  Michelle has made gorgeous jewelry from plastic fly swatters, badminton birdies, broken hoses from her car engine, and breath strip packets. 

Michelle is an artist, a visionary, and an engineer.  Oh, to play in that brain of hers. 

Michelle, darlin', you are truly one of my favorite artists and greatest creative inspirations.  Thank you.

So, let's see what your amazing creative minds have been up to.  This week, feel free to post anything your kids or guests may have created during this holiday weekend.  I can't wait to see what you've been up to.

Remember, you can post to both the Flickr group (by clicking the link in the slideshow) and the linky party below.  Please check out each other's projects and leave some comment love.

This linky list is now closed.


Enamered with Collage

Lately, I am completely enamered by collage. I have been a scrapbooker for what seems like for-ev-er. But, I just can't seem to get the hang of collage. I mean, I know the basics...gather various "found" objects, cut out pictures, and glue to something, ie., paper, canvas, an altered book, or any other surface for that matter. I get all hung up on what I can and can't use (copyright issues), what's a good composition, what story do I want to tell. UGH!

So, I'm on a journey. I want to be a mixed media artist that is really good at collage. To reach this goal, I've started with a little inspiration. Take a look at this slideshow.

Have you ever tried collage? Got any tips?

BGC: Just Keep Diggin'

Here's an inspirational thought straight from the Brave Girls' Club:
"See……my compost…the scraps and waste of my life has been put deep into the soil and now it’s rich and fertile….just like a field or a garden that has been filled with fertilizer and compost that was made from things that we thought were nasty and stinky trash….it is going to be used to make the seeds grow…whatever we plant there, it will be ready to grow."
I've never thought of it quite that way.  God uses the scraps and trash in our lives to make our soil more fertile so that He can grow in us a great harvest. 

courtesy of the Brave Girls Club

Right now, I feel like God is turning my compost, getting it ready for the Spring planting.  I have great expectations of what He is going to do.  The Bible says that He is made stronger in our weakness.  Physically, I have never been weaker.  Sometimes, I feel the same way about my emotional state.  But I know that I when I completely depend on Him, He can reap a great harvest in my life; a harvest that is nurtured by the compost of my shortcomings, my weaknesses, my pain and anxiety, and even my tears. 

courtesy of the Brave Girls Club
 Time to plant your dreams and let God transform them into beautiful Spring blooms.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!  No matter what your situation, we all have so much to be thankful for.  Take time to write down your blessings, you'll be amazed at them all!


Sunday Art Therapy #13

Good Sunday, everyone.  I trust you all have been blessed with a fabulous week full of creative adventures.  I have been snuggled up with my pups during our cool days and am finally all healed up from my little surgery. 

I hope you all checked out last week's Sunday Art Therapy feature provided by Saraccino

I am in love with all of her tentacle pieces!!  I hope you all stopped by her blog and left her some comment love.

Since I totally dropped the ball last week and didn't host a Sunday Art Therapy, our feature this week comes from our Flickr group.  Flickr is a great way join an art community and be inspired.  Remember, our Flickr group is always open for your submissions.

Anita Davies is our most prolific group contributor.  I am always in awe of the quality and quantity of her sketches.  Anita hails from the UK and is a self-taught artist that works in a variety of media.  However, as you will see in our Flickr group, she uses mostly pen and watercolor in her sketches.  According to Anita, "her inspiration drawn from a passion of light and vision; seeing the "hidden treasures" in everyday life and each subjects beauty, seeking to capture character and emotion in her work."

copyright by Anita Davies

 I marvel at her ability to capture the beauty of architecture in her scketches, but more than that, her abilty to capture expression an mood in her portraits is exceptional.

copyright by Anita Davies

Anita is addicted to shoes and coffee and is my kind of woman!

I hope you have lots of goodies to link up this week.  You can add your projects to both the link party and the Flickr group for even more exposure!!

This linky list is now closed.


Feature: Saraccino Tentacles

I have a motto:  I don't eat anything that can reach out and grab me back!!  So, no calamari for me.  However, I fell in love with Saraccino's Tentacle Cup and Saucer

I would love to have a whole set of these!  The vibrant colors are amazing and the texture and movement she is able to achieve gives these tentacles a life of their own!  One commenter on her blog mentioned that she loves the way we never see the rest of the octopus, but we know that he is lurking just around the corner.  I couldn't agree more.  Saraccino also has jelly fish that she lovingly creates as well.

Be sure to leave some comment love for Saraccino and let her know that you saw her featured here.


Sunday Art Therapy


Ok, pain medication obviously gives you brain fog.  I'm sorry that there was no Art Therapy Sunday!!  I hope you all will link up more than one project next week.  And, I will have the feature project from last week for you on Tuesday.  Promise!


Seed of Inspiration: Brave Girls Club

I recently joined Sarah Whitmore's Soul Journaling Yahoo group. One of the things that she has there is a Daily Truth published by Melody Ross and her sister Kathy Wilkins.  Melody and Kathy have started an online community called the Brave Girls Club.  It is truly an inspiration.  Their workshops use art to bring women to an awareness of the lies that we are bombarded with daily as well as the truth that will set us free from those lies and false expectations.  While their message is awesome, I was concerned that perhaps it was born from a New Age philosophy and not truth from the bible.  So, I emailed and asked them.  Here was their response:
Hi, Jenn -
We don't generally bring scripture directly into our workshops as we include women from a wide variety of beliefs and backgrounds, but they always end up being very Christ-centered in a natural way. We talk a lot about our Truth Teller, and we teach that for us our Truth Teller is God (as for most of the women who attend our workshops).
Thanks for being involved with us in Brave Girls Club! We’re so glad you're here.

So, I suggest that you check them out.  I believe they offer a positive message that many women, young and old, need to hear.  Also, I have been especially touched by their bold move to try to make a difference in the world.

My own journey to find God's purpose for my life has been working itself out in fasting, prayer, and through my art.  I have started a visual prayer journal, and the results have been a closer, more personal walk with my saviour.  Here are a few of my pages:




If you are interested in learning how to create your own visual journal, I suggest that you start with the 21 Secrets online workshop.  It will only be on sale through November, but the community stays open through January 2011.  You can learn more about it by clicking on the 21 Secrets button on my sidebar.

I hope you all are having a very creative and productive week!


Sunday Art Therapy #12

Good morning, all of my lovely creative readers!  I am so excited about this week's feature artist, Denise from Junk Dog Design.  I recently stumbled across Denise's wonderful blog and have quickly become an avid follower.  She specializes in repurposing items into beautiful pieces of art.  Don't you just admire that kind of creativity?!

Last week, she linked up this gorgeous mixed media piece made of polymer clay tiles, metal, and recycled canvas, all displayed in a repurposed frame.  Everytime I look at it, I see something I hadn't noticed before.  The depth and texture are tremendous.

by Denise @ Junk Dog Design

by Denise @ Junk Dog Design
Be sure and check out Denise's blog, Junk Dog Design, and leave her some comment love.

Now, a little update on my own creative adventures.  I am still working through the 21 Secrets Art Journaling Playground online workshop.  I've hit a bit of a creative wall, but I think that is what art journaling is all about, working through those creative blocks until the dam breaks, and then watch out!  I got a little present in the mail the other day that came just in the nick of time-- my first moleskine journal.  {***sQuEaL*** with excitement!!}  I'm having a little out-patient procedure this week and I can't wait to take this baby along with my Travel Bag of Fabulousness and do some art journaling while waiting and recovering.

So, it's your turn to show what you've created this week (or any other ol' time).  Be sure to view the Flickr slideshow for more amazing inspiration.  The Flickr group is always open and ready for you to add your lovelies.  Just click the link inside the slideshow to join.  And, as always, the linky party is open through Tuesday, so link often!

This linky list is now closed.


Learn to Draw by Drawing Upside Down

Upside down?! Worried that you can't draw a stick figure right side up?  So was I.  I actually learned this technique in my high school art class, but had forgotten about it until a few months ago.  I went out and bought the book my teacher had taught us from, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

The trick is to turn your drawing subject upside down and draw what you see.  This tricks your eye into drawing lines and shapes and not recognizable objects.  For example, here is my latest upside down drawing.  I turned it right side up in the photo so it would be recognizable to you.


Pretty fancy, huh?  I added the shading after the line drawing was finished.  The left side of your brain tries to dominate everything you do.  It deals in memorized facts and known values, while your right brain deals in perspective and shapes.  Your left brain would never let you foreshorten the knight's hands or the horse's body.  However, your right brain knows that this is necessary in order to properly convey perspective. 
Drawing skills enhance all of our arts and crafts.  It improves our compositions, allows us to create different moods in our work, and enhances our creative experiences.  So, take the time to engage your right brain by looking at things differently.  Turn things upside down!   


Sunday Art Therapy #11

I love Sundays!!

You guys really get my creative juices going.  I love seeing what you've been up to each week. 

I am still working through the 21 Secrets Art Journaling Playground, and enjoying it every second!  I have a couple of more pages to post next week.  A little show and tell to show you what I've been learning and what you are missing if you're not involved.  21 Secrets is open through January 2011, so you still have plenty of time to join in the fun.  Just click on the 21 Secrets link in my sidebar.

This week's Sunday Art Therapy feature is from Just Jingle.  Meet George.

George is a beautiful mixed media pendant.  Doesn't he just make you smile?  I love the name, too.  When I was a kid, every tree frog, bull frog, lizard, baby rabbit, or squirrel that I caught was named George.

Great job, Jingle!!

Be sure to stop by Just Jingle and show her some comment love. 

Now it's your turn to show us what you've been up to this week.  Link up to the party and join the Flickr group.  Be sure to click each other's links and comment on other's projects.

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