Friday, April 30, 2010

This, That, and the Other

A few days ago, I received mail from the talented Anne Huskey-Lockard of El Milagro Studio. When I opened it, out fell this ATC (Artist Trading Card) she had made for me.
I love it, especially my new set of wings... She painted it on both sides and I wish you could see some of the detail work that is actually embossed on it. And the message more than meaningful for me! Just wonderful!! Thank you, Anne!!

Now, guess what I had sent to her to warrant such a return gift?! Dead leaves. Yep, a box filled with dead oak leaves to use in her art. I'd say that was a good trade for me. Anne, you are the best!!
And as we are on the subject of ATCs, here's my latest from today. I was playing with some Golden airbrush paints that are fluid like ink. Very fun and very different in what you can do with them. They are also highly staining, so wherever they drip, there they are. She was a fun little (very little!) experiment. I still can't get used to how tiny ATCs are. What you can't see is some of the Golden micaceous iron oxide that adds just the right amount of sparkle.
Ok, complete change of subject! I was sitting out on the back porch this afternoon and suddenly heard something big whooshing past me. When I looked up, it was a big pileated woodpecker. They are just the oddest looking birds - they look prehistoric to me. We don't see them often, so this was a treat!
A few minutes later, the wren family came to feast. One baby preening,
another checking out what's going on,
and the third enjoying a bite to eat. I wonder how much longer until they are off on their own...
St. Francis thought that this was all as it should be,
Winslow was feeling sleepy,
and the oak leaf hydrangea just concentrated on opening it's beautiful blossoms.
Another day at the Powers house... And now begins a new one! I hope it will be a good day for all of us!!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gaga about Pottery...

I was going to do a post introducing you to the latest issue of my favorite German magazine "Landlust" (and it's another beautiful issue!), but my dad sent me some photos that I thought I'd share with you first. He is quickly becoming my foreign blog correspondent!

Last weekend, my dad met up with
his long-time friend from college and together
they explored a couple of gorgeous little towns along the river Lahn, a place where my dad vacationed with his parents when he was a young boy.
Isn't it just beautiful? (I think I'm feeling a visit coming on...)
Apparently, Goethe got off the boat and had lunch at this gorgeous old building in 1774!
Now...the pottery! Do you remember this beautiful pitcher that my dad brought for us from Germany when he visited in November?

Last weekend, he went back to the same pottery studio, Töpferei Giertz, and took pictures for all of us!
Even of the master potter himself...
and his workspace (so tidy!).
There are two potters working at the studio and they still fire all their pieces the traditional way in an open fire.

I made a loaf of wonderfully seedy and grainy German bread yesterday and would have loved that large bread crock ("Brottopf") to keep it fresh. Ok, I admit it, I just want it because it's pretty!

Isn't this blue just gorgeous?

I'd like one of everything, please! How about you?!

Tomorrow: Landlust and a few garden photos!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pathways - A Painting

Molding paste and acrylic paint on 8 x 10 gallery wrapped canvas.

Yesterday, I put together a set of all my women portraits on flickr (click here if you want to see them) and when I looked at them all in one place, I realized that that is what I am to paint at the moment.

I don't know who they are or what they symbolize, except that I cannot get enough of painting them. For now. I also think that's why their faces flow so easily from my brush - they are waiting to be expressed. I don't sketch, I don't plan, I simply go with the inspiration and suddenly there they are, looking out at me.

So, I hope you aren't tired of my women yet as there are more to come...

Tomorrow, I've got some other fun things to show you, so stay tuned! And, as always, thank you so much for your always encouraging comments - I appreciate you all more than you know!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Illustration Friday - Ahead

Go ahead! Spread your wings and fly!

Tag (5.25" x 2.625") - front & back
Collage, image transfer, stamps, stencils, & acrylic paint.

I hope you all had a great weekend. Ours was rainy both Saturday and Sunday with visions of the summer's humidity awaiting us...

Because of the rain, I did get to work on my art a good bit, and am almost done with another women's portrait. It just needs some background work. I hope I can show it to you tomorrow!

In the meantime, I wish you a great start to your week!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Interference Colors - a Postcard!

Interference colors - I am fascinated by them - how they shimmer and shine in a surprise color when you paint them on black and how they mix with other colors. I wish the scan could really show how magical they look...

I'm also working on some women and almost finished the next tag. Can't wait to show you!!

For all of you who live in areas that experienced severe weather yesterday, I hope you and your families are alright!

Sending you all lots of love...

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Island Living

Daniel and I live on an island. You wouldn't really know it if you didn't notice how many bridges you have to drive over to get from Savannah to our house, but Wilmington Island is one of several barrier islands between the mainland and the Atlantic ocean. If we want to get to the beach, we have to drive just a few minutes to the next island over.

Tybee Island is a true vacation destination and whenever we spend time there, we feel instant relaxation.
So, too, a couple of nights ago when we had dinner at one of our favorite spots, AJ's, situated on the beautiful Tybee Creek where it flows into the ocean.
Dining is casual and if you are lucky, like we were that night, you get to sit on the dock and stare out at the water while enjoying your food.
Does Daniel look relaxed or what?!
Some time ago, we had dinner at another favorite spot, Cafe Loco, situated right on Lazaretto Creek,
where shrimp boats dock and dolphin tours leave from.
We have lived here for four years now and still can't believe that we live so close to where others come to get away from it all.
This is the life!!

P.S. Please remind me of this in a couple of months when it's hot, the humidity stays well above 70% and the mosquitoes are trying to eat me alive...

Friday, April 23, 2010

ATC - Time to Recharge

I decided to try another collage since they are a bit tricky for me. I remembered this little yawning girl I had printed out a long time ago - she just makes me laugh (and want to take a nap!). I had fun with this ATC and it came together very nicely. I find that if I go with my instincts rather than overthink it, I do much better!

Speaking of overthinking... I played a little more with this tag and I think I'm going to call it done. I didn't change a whole lot, just added a little contrast around the edge and actually took off some of the color on the newspaper collage element. It's not my favorite, but it's alright.
I'm working on a new tag as well, which is looking really nice! I like to paint both sides of my tags, so I still need to finish the back before I can show you. It sure felt great getting into my studio again.

And, yes, I have carpeting in my studio (I had a couple of questions about this), but I put down a thick drop cloth so I can sling paint around to my heart's content...

Wishing you an excellent Friday. I'm hoping to have time to visit you all this weekend!!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

What's A Girl to Do?

Yesterday we had our carpets cleaned, which means I was banned from our living room, bed room and my studio (!!!) for the day. So what's a girl to do but spend some serious time in the kitchen...
and bake some delicious cornmeal/rye/whole wheat bread and...
eat quite a bit of it! Most of you already know my love affair with bread. This wasn't as crusty as I like my breads to be, but it still tasted great! And the smell while it was baking...double yum!

Thank you all for your generous and encouraging comments. Today, being allowed back in my studio, I'm going to try a couple of your suggestions on the back of this tag and show you all the result. I think it's great how art is so truly subjective. All I know is that sometimes a piece just doesn't feel finished to me and this is one of those examples. I'm glad most of you liked it anyway!!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Tag That Just Wouldn't...

Sometimes, an art project comes together easily, and sometimes it just refuses to. That's how it was with this tag. The side with the woman I painted quickly - her little face was done in a few minutes and I like how much it looks like a sketch. This side I love.
Then, there is the other side. Yikes! Can you say busy? Can you say cluttered? Can you say just not working? I started with some molding paste and stamped into it. So far so good. Then I thought I'd add a collage element ... and another ... and one more for good measure. Then, a stamp, another stamp, paint, more paint, and because it just wasn't working, I slapped on some more paint. AND outlined the big leaf stamp with a gold pen. I just couldn't help myself at that point!

Even now, as I look at the scan of it, I'm sort of stunned by what I did there... I almost didn't include it in this post, but when I first started this blog, I made the promise to show you the good, the bad AND the ugly, so here it is...
Sometimes I think it's funny that the portraits are so easy for me, but with collages or abstract forms, it can really take me a long time to have it all balanced and look cohesive. And sometimes it just doesn't happen at all.

I think I might just paint over that side and start again. If I do, I'll show you the results...

And now a great big thank you for all the good information on ATCs and ACEOs. Finally I know what they are all about!! And I know what goes on the backside. Not lovely thoughts, but information. Makes sense if you are collecting them! I'll have to check into the trading part of those cards. Do any of you do that?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Another ATC

I enjoyed creating this little trading card. At the very beginning, I colored some molding paste with a dark yellow and slathered it on part of the ATC. I then stamped an ivy foam stamp into the wet molding past and couldn't be more pleased with the result. Can you see all the little raised veins in the leaves? After it dried, I painted, stamped and stenciled some more.

And then, for good measure, I painted the back side as well and added a little saying.
Here's a question for you (as I am confused about this). What is the difference between an ATC and an ACEO?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Long Overdue...

Ok, so I know that this long list of awards looks like I am just the most popular person, but actually the list is so long because I have been so remiss in honoring these *bows her head in shame*. I keep thinking that I'll do it when I have more time, but that doesn't seem to happen these days.

So, let me just take a few minutes and introduce you to these generous bloggers, because it is really is about them, not the awards:

This pretty Sunshine award I received from the uber-talented calligrapher and artist, Lisa Holtzman. If you haven't yet visited her blog, you must do so immediately. Check out her latest post on a hand-lettered genealogy book she created - AMAZING!! Click here and then return... Not only is she talented though, but also the sweetest person - her comments always are like sunshine to my soul! Thank you, Lisa!!
Rachel of the beautiful blog, Mozart's Girl bestowed the coveted Kreativ Blogger award on me. I so appreciate it! As Rachel's blog name says, she loves all things Mozart and although she lives in the UK, her spiritual home, of course, is beautiful Salzburg. Click here and head on over to her blog (but make sure to come back) - she could really use some blog love right now!
Well, doesn't this look like the coolest award ever?! And I received it from a just the coolest blogger, Zlatica of Pupa Art. Thank you!! Zlatica lives in Slovakia and is one of those super creative people - she paints the sweetest paintings and makes beautiful little folk art dolls. Make sure to go and admire her work before reading on. Click here!
My blog is over the top - can you believe it?! I couldn't, but the most talented Jamie of Dancing Down Serendipity Street thought so! Jamie is an author and an artist and simply a lover of all things creative! Recently, she has ignited once again the writing of her book - what an inspiration. Thank you, Jamie!! Visit her here (but come back)!
Now, here's something a little different. The super talented bead artist and all around wonderful woman, Bobbi of The Bead Goes On, tagged me a while ago. I guess the rules were to go into my first picture folder, pick the 10th photo and tell you about it. Well, needless to say, I was nervous. That photo could have been quite embarrassing.

However, it turned out to be alright. This was taken in October of 2006, the year we moved to Savannah. My cousin, Britta, was visiting us with a friend and we all went on our first kayaking trip. Here we are on Little Tybee Island, exploring the beach. It was an incredible day!! Thank you, Bobbi, for reminding me of that!!

Be certain to go visit her blog by clicking here. She makes the most exquisite beaded creations.
Then, today (and this is when I finally got my act together to post these), the talented, hilarious, inspiring and lovely Anne of El Milagro Studio: Little Miracles of Art, honored me with the Beautiful Blogger award. Thank you so much, Anne! If you haven't yet been to Anne's blog, make sure you visit. She is an incredible textile and mixed media artist. And her blog posts will always make you smile and often laugh out loud!
And, finally, a different kind of award both Daniel and I received today! We passed our boating exam!!
What a relief and how exciting!!

And whom do I pass these awards on to? Well, of course, ALL OF YOU!! You all deserve every award in the book, so pick the one (or two or three) you like best and share the love!