Monday, March 26, 2012

a change of plans

There was supposed to be a method to my madness this weekend- a list of items I wanted needed to accomplish. On Sunday I was supposed to go up in the floorless attic with a flashlight, where I would balance in the rafters while on a search for a filter that needed to be changed. I know- it's a really sophisticated life I lead. I was also supposed to do a 'week in review' sketch for the blog. These things were part of the plan. But I kept daydreaming about the 2 half-finished paintings I've been working on. You see where this is headed, don't you?
I still had good intentions when I got up on Sunday. Then I let Maisy out & felt the sun on my face. And I looked around the deck at all of the green leaves that had appeared since the rain last week. I could literally hear baby birds chirping. I'm not making that up. Baby birds, for heaven sakes. All I wanted to do was schlep all my art supplies out onto the deck, listen to Maroon 5 & paint. So I did.
No the paintings aren't finished yet, but they are much closer to completion that that trip to the attic or to-do list for the blog. What can I say? Life is short. Sometimes you just need to paint.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

More Flora Bowley Love

Just a few 'in progress' photos of my latest work using the techniques I learned in Flora Bowley's e-course, 'Bloom True'.
I love the way she paints with wild abandon. I am embracing the 'wild abandon' for the first several layers but then I get very focused on whatever I want it to actually 'be'. This is different than her process, but as she says in the course, "take what works for you & leave the rest."
 I'm curious to see how this turns out. Right now I am leaning towards sea turtles. Or maybe trees. I know... don't even say it.
This is the painting that I finished using what I learned in Flora's course.

Monday, March 19, 2012

An introduction

Everyone, I’d like you to meet my don’t-take-me-seriously shoes.
Shoes, meet everyone.

You might want to get yourself a pair of these… they have more power than you might think at first glance. They don’t have to look just like these, but they must very clearly shout,


They are impractical. They hardly match anything. They don’t even have laces, for heaven sakes- they have elastic. How’s that for commitment issues? They look like something to be worn by someone who has not a care in the world.

Wear them when you don’t feel like being responsible. Think about it… if you saw someone in THESE shoes, would you really consider them to be some sort of intellectual powerhouse? Would you even ask them for directions? No… because these shoes smile & say “I will be lucky if I find my own way home.”

It’s a fantastic feeling for someone who is feeling overwhelmed with responsibility. Try it, I dare you. Wear some crazy & I mean CRAZY shoes to your next meeting & when people start signing up for committees, they will take one quick look at your shoes & assume you are incapable of even telling time, more or less functioning as the new treasurer of the PTA. And that, my friend, is when you will know what an intellectual powerhouse you truly are.

Wondering why I'm telling you about my shoes? I'm part of a blog-hop today, go check it out!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The drive thru

 There is a bird feeder on the window at my office. At first, the bird who showed up seemed very appreciative, but recently it seemed as if they are getting a little spoiled.
 Some mornings I arrive to find an empty bird feeder with a line of birds waiting impatiently on the nearby shrub... as if they are in a backed up drive-thru. Maybe I'm just being over-sensitive but they seem a little indignant.
Mama Birdies & Baby Birdies available here.

Monday, March 12, 2012

A trek in the rain & some friendly advice

It's really the only possible explanation. What else could have caused my umbrella to suddenly break while I was slogging along across a college campus carrying 120 handouts? Oh wait... maybe it was the fact that is was raining so hard & it was so windy that it was raining sideways.

A couple of points to consider with regard to "sideways rain":

there really isn't anything this side of blindingly excessive optimism that would inspire someone to bother opening an umbrella... 

120 handouts behave as a giant sponge in this type of rain... 

this number of soaked handouts seem to weigh approximately a ton... 

some mascara companies put "waterproof" on their makeup packaging as some sort of cruel joke... 

and most importantly, you should ALWAYS take a look in a mirror just before addressing this number of strangers after a jaunt through sideways rain.  

Just in case you ever find yourself in this situation.

Happy Monday... the sun is shining here today!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Feature Art Friday: TC the Beachbum

This is the fifth beach bum I have done for one family... the others can be seen here, here, here & here. Number six will be up next Friday. I hear the coast calling me...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Lessons from Jimmy Buffett

Last Thursday night, I found myself in the middle of 14,000 adoring Jimmy Buffett fans at his concert in Little Rock, Arkansas. Miles from the nearest coast- although you couldn't guess that based on the sheer number of grass skirts, leis and coconut bras.  Here's the funny thing- even with such a large crowd, it felt like he was playing to a small group in a bar by a beach somewhere. It took a while to figure out how he was managing that & then it hit me. It felt so real because even alllllll the way at the other end of the arena, I could feel how much he loved what he was doing. I honestly think he might have been having just as much fun if he had been in a little bar by the beach & I couldn't help but wonder if he is one of those people who wakes up & laughs every day at the luck of getting to make a living all these years doing what he loves. It was the best concert I think I have ever attended- in part because I could feel it, not just hear it & see it.
I can't wait to have that feeling myself. (not sing, trust me- it is a public service that no one ever have to hear me sing.) I can't wait to make a living doing what I love. I don't know how & I don't know when but it's going to happen. Someday I'm going to look back at this & smile... when I'm making art & rescuing homeless dogs & cats... when I have a therapy dog I can take to nursing homes to make people smile. So thanks for the reminder, Jimmy Buffett... oh & the great concert too. 

As I was typing this blog post, Jimmy's song 'Here We Are' came on the radio... check out the lyrics...

Here we are 

Who would have thought this game, this flame would still be burning 
Who would have guessed that all these blenders would still be churning 
Not even we on our bended knees could have ever blessed it 
Not even I with my head in the sky could have ever guessed it 

But here we are, for a family reunion, costume barbeque 
All the black sheep, family outcasts, and a freak or two 

No the hat tricks and the gold bricks still don't have us down 
Still a party, we are the hearty when we come to town 
You're still grinning and we're still winning, nothing left to say 
I'm still gliding as I go flying down this endless wave 

And here we are, we're the offbeat Uncle Freds who spill their wine on you 
And the in-your-face Aunt Rachels with an attitude 
All the ones that use your bathroom then eat all your food 
We're the dreamy Deadheads who just like us and Dave Matthews 

Here we are, maybe it's because in spite of all the work we do 
It's the child in us we really value 
Here we are, with our fins up and our feathers flashing 
Here we are, with our coconut shell brassieres chanting 

Here we are 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Feature Art Friday: first effort at being free-spirited

Remember this? Here is one from start to finish. SO MUCH FUN.

This painting was donated to Pulaski Heights Picassos, a fundraiser benefiting Pulaski Heights Elementary School in Little Rock, Arkansas. The fundraiser is Saturday evening & you can see details here.