Monday, 29 April 2013

2 more days to the Etsy-promotion ....

I'm getting really annoyed with Google+. I haven't been able to leave a comment on several blogs because now all of a sudden you need to have a Google+-profile to be able to comment. How crazy is that! After hearing all the negative experiences with Google+ I decided to stay as far away as possible from it, but now they're really pushing it into everone's face. And I refuse to sign up for it. I want to make up my own mind and not be forced into signing up for something I don't like. I wonder how much longer the "normal" bloggers will be able to do things ....

Anyway, today I've been having a look at the profiles of all the people that signed up for the Etsy-promotion. For a lot of you I can't find any email-addresses, so I'll have to send the list of shops you'll promote to your Etsyshop. Of the last person that signed up "Morning Prayer" I can't even find the Etsyshop... Went to her blog, but there's no email or way of contacting, except for leaving a comment. And, well, you guessed it .... I need to have a Google+-profile for that .... Aaarrgghhh!

So "Morning Prayer", if you read this, please send me an email or leave a comment on this blog with the link to your Etsyshop, otherwise I will have to remove you from the list .....

I'll close the linkylist on the first of May Australian time. So for some people it will still be the 30th of April. If you are thinking about signing up but haven't already, better do so now.

I haven't been doing much art in the weekend, except for the nightly art journaling with my daughter.

Here's another page in my Rod McKuen art journal:

I felt like doing really wild crazy hair. So much fun ....

And I finally finished another doodle while working in the art gallery:

And lastly: another oneliner:

I'm making these oneliners into postcards. Hopefully by Wednesday I'll have some listed in my Etsyshop.

That's it for now. In the month of May, I'll replace my inspiring artist posts on Wednesday with the promotion posts for the Etsy-shops. So do come back here and have a look, there are some wonderful Etsyshops to promote ....

Thanks so much for stopping by and for sharing your lovely thoughts in the comments. See you on Wednesday! ♥ ♥ ♥

Friday, 26 April 2013

A bit of everything ....

It's been a bit of a chaotic week. The kitchentable is full with all kinds of work in progress, I'm multitasking like a maniac and slowly but surely driving myself mad .... And I'm reading everywhere that multitasking is a very baaad idea. I should just concentrate on one thing and get it over with, and then start the next one. But all the time these ideas and things I need to do pop into my head and I'm off again writing it down or trying it out.... My time-management is still not the way it should be ... ;-)

looks like something exploded on my work kitchentable ....

This week is also the week that I needed to make something for Paula's blog. Paula is doing a project on her blog where she takes a picture a day, and then makes a cover page for each week. She also invites other artists to make a page for the week's number. My week was the 17th. So I needed to make something that had either the number 17 on it, or something that people can count.

I chose this week in January, for no particular reason other than that the Easterholidays were over and I expected to have more time (ha! what a joke ...). So the number 17 had no special meaning for me. My mind drew a blank. What to do?? I started thinking about what was special about this week. And yesterday was Anzac Day (ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps). That day we commemorate all the Australians that have died in wars all over the world. It was originally a remembrance of the battle of Gallipoli in WW1. And an idea popped into my head. I decided to draw 17 young men surrounding a beautiful poem (well, part of it) by Laurence Binyon.

I felt it was a fitting tribute to this week, and also a reminder of the lunacy of war, which has taken so many young lives, and still does ....

At the same time I'm working on a few wooden boxes:

some mosaic mirrors:

journalpages in my Rod McKuen-journal while I'm sitting with my daughter on her bed every night:

and a new painting with a technique I used a few times years ago and felt like doing again (every now & then I need to do something different, and this is a way of painting that doesn't ask to much of me, it's just colouring in really ....). Nice to do in between cooking the potatoes and helping the kids with homework ;-)

It's difficult to make pictures because it's a very long small canvas. When I've done some more (hopefully next week) I'll explain the method. This is a painting I did with that technique a few years ago as a commission for someone's wedding:

And that's it for this week! I'm linking, as always, to Paint Party Friday. So many wonderful artists play every week, do have a look over there!

Meanwhile, there's only a few more days left to sign up for the Etsypromotion in May. 27 people have signed up already, you can join them here.

And, oh yes, I really need to give you a great tip from Donna, a fellow Brisstyler (a group of creative entrepeneurs here in Brisbane). If you have a Facebookpage, and you have an online shop on Etsy, Amazon, Ebay, ... there's an app that you can install that automatically copies all of your listings to your Facebookpage in a matter of seconds, so that people who visit your Facebookpage can easily shop there. This is the link, you can set it up from there in less than 5 minutes. You can see it on my page here if you want an example, it's the button with "shop" on it. One drawback (but it's a minor one i.m.o.) is that it can only be seen when you're using a computer, it's not supported on mobile devices.

Okay, that's it for now. Thanks so much for visiting and for leaving those wonderful comments that fill my heart with joy. Hope your Friday is happy, and your weekend filled with sunshine and laughter. ♥ ♥ ♥.

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Artists that inspire me: Ruth Shively

Today's artist is from Portland in the United States. She got her bachelor of fine arts degree at the University of Nebraska.

Her favorite materials are oil paint, pencils and charcoal.

I LOVE this picture! The expression on the girl's face, her posture, .... So well done!

She is fascinated with people and the story from their faces ....

Therefore her work focuses on portraiture and figures in landscapes.

I like how part of her paintings always seem a bit blurry and vague

There's not so much information I can find about her on the net. She has a blog, but her last post is from 2012.

She does have a Facebookpage, and is on Pinterest, Etsy and Flickr.

If you want to see more of her work, have a look at her website. Lots more pictures there! Hope you enjoy her art as much as I do.

Thanks so much for visiting! And don't forget: it's only a few more days that you can sign up for the Etsy-promotion (where did April go!?). Go ahead, just do it! Here! There are 26 people on there already!

I'll be back on Friday for the Paint Party. Hope to see you then! ♥

Monday, 22 April 2013

being busy ....

I have decided that I need to focus on my time-management. I was at a workshop this weekend for creative entrepeneurs, and one of the topics that came up was how you spend your time. When you want to make a business out of making art (or anything else handmade for that matter), you need to find a balance between time IN your business and time ON your business. Time IN your business is the time spent creating stuff; time ON your business is the time you spend networking, blogging, facebooking, researching, administration, listing, photographing etc.... Mostly time spent on the computer basically. Ideally the balance should be about 50/50.

Well, since I lately spend almost all my time in front of the computer, and only a few hours a week creating,  there seems to be a problem. So I took out pen and paper and made an overview of where I spend most of my time and how I can get a better balance. And I set some fixed days and times for creating.

It still needs some work though. But I'll get there. Eventually ... ;-)

Meanwhile, I have been working in my art journal:

This is from my "Rod McKuen-journal, where I want to use (parts of) the poems of Rod McKuen in combination with my drawings.

 In order to get into the habit of art journaling every day, I started a little ritual last week, together with my daughter. Half an hour before she needs to go to sleep we sit together on her bed, me with my art journal and she reading or also drawing. It's really fun and we both look forward to it every day. The half hour is over before we know it, actually, she hasn't gone to sleep in time yet since we started this ☺. We might have to start an hour before bedtime ....

This is another journalpage. Not sure whether it's finished. It's a little experiment with bodyshapes for women.

And I'm also working on 3 mosaic mirrors and 6 boxes! I finished one of the mirrors today:

It's a long time ago that I did some mosaic, and I had so much fun making this. I've sold all my mosaics that I had in the gallery, so I urgently need some new ones. Only have 3 boxes left also, so that's what I'll be doing the next weeks....

Well, getting to bed in time is not really working out yet. Almost midnight again ...

So I'm off, I'll be back on Wednesday with another inspiring artist post. Thanks so much for visiting, I appreciate it so much, and I love reading your comments! ♥ ♥ ♥

Friday, 19 April 2013

May you walk gently through the world

My painting's finished! It may not seem as if much changed since last week, but those last finishing touches often take as much time as making some bigger changes.

When I first started working on bringing out the images, and I found that head near the bottom which reminded me of an old Indian, all the time I was painting I had that saying in my head from Jim Morrisson : "Indian, Indian, what did you die for? Indian says, nothing at all". I'm still not sure whether it's from a song, or even whether it refers to native Americans at all, but I read it somewhere ages ago and it has always stayed with me.

We all know that all over the world terrible crimes have been committed to indigenous people by European settlers, and I'm certainly not going to launch into a political sermon here, but for some reason the native Americans have always fascinated me, because of the way they saw the world and the way their land was taken from them. I once saw a movie about the massacre at Wounded Knee, and boy did I regret that! For years to come those images haunted me and I was horrified by the senseless brutality of it all. Now I simply don't watch movies or documentaries like that anymore. I have a very visual memory, and I don't want my days and nights tantalized by the horrible things humans can do to eachother.

But anyway, since this painting was about Indians for me, I went in search of a title in old sayings and quotes from Indians, and decided to call it "May you walk gently through the world". For me this sums up the spirit of the old native Americans, their connection with the land and the animals, their goals of harmony and balance. Values that the world today is in such need of.

As always when I finish a painting, I'll show you the steps from the very beginning:

I must've had a lot of leftover pinks and reds, because that's all this first layer is. Probably put on there with a foambrush, can't remember ... (I always do several backgronds at the same time)

second layer: cool colours on top (although I seem to have been spraying some yellow too ...)

My favorite part: dripping and dribbling

I felt it was too dark and needed brightening up, so out comes the white, and some black for contrast

another favorite part of the painting process for me: layering transparant colours on top

starting to make random marks and doodles

painting around the marks, keep on turning the canvas

Finding figures in the background. I decided to keep two of the random doodles I made: the bird and the fish
Felt like they belonged there ....

starting to bring out the figures

Finding another fish, and making the Indian's head a bit smaller

Too dark, needed brightening up: dripping again, blue and orange

another tree, because the head was still too domineering

Working on the woman's face

Again brightening up by adding some dots. These are the pictures you saw last week

And this is where I stopped last week. I decided to add some more dots on the left, to bring more balance in the painting

brightening up the colours and finishing the bird inside the other bird

working on the birds, and dripping some more on the left tree, because the colour was too saturated for my liking ...

Almost there ....

the finished painting: "May you walk gently through the world"
40x40cm - 15,7x15,7"

Phew, maybe I take too many pictures, my posts seem to get longer each time I finish a painting ;-)

I'm linking this to Paint Party Friday. I hope you go and take a look there, as there are so many artists linking up every week and showing their beautiful work. 

And don't forget: there's still time to sign up for the Etsy-promotion month in May. 20 people have signed up already, and there's room for many more! Go here to read all about it! You can also sign up if you don't have a blog, but are active on Facebook or Pinterest, any social media where you can post pictures of the shops you promote. I'm not on twitter so I don't know whether you can post pics there. If it is, twitter is okay too!

And today I got a nice surprise: I was featured on a recently started blog about migraine. Here's the link. I'm so happy when people connect with my art and when my art is able to touch people emotionally.

That's it for now! Thanks so much for visiting! I'm overwhelmed by the response I got on last week's post. I really appreciate you sharing your ideas and thoughts with me! Big hugs to all, wishing you a wonderful end of the week, and a lovely weekend walking gently through the world .... ♥ ♥ ♥

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Artists that inspire me: Fred Babb

Fred Babb is someone I'd never heard of until a few weeks ago. Someone posted art that was inspired by him, and all the colours attracted me, so I went in search of him on the web.

It seems his primary goal was to give a specific message about the importance of art to the world and to children.

There's a really interesting story about how he started as an artist on his website here.
Here's a short summary: he came from a family of 8 children and used his lunch money to buy art supplies ....

In highschool, he had a teacher who recognized his creative talent and who encouraged him to use his imagination and create art outside the boundaries of skill (don't you love teachers like that!?).

He took a couple of art classes, but found his direction as an artist coming from within himself, so he left the school system and began to make a way of his own, experimenting with a variety of styles and techniques, all of them self-discovered.

In 1981 he took the decision to live solely on his art. His initial products were limited to images, but after experimenting with a pair of earrings, he began his venture into the world of words.

From then on he used words as a means to encourage people to think for and believe in themselves.

Isn't that great? I love people like that, who go against the mainstream to follow their dream and encourage other people to do the same. Sadly, he died in 2006.

If you want to read more about this interesting artist, here's his official website.

Well, that's it for now. I'll be back on Friday for the Paint Party.

Here's another oneliner to end this post. Thanks for visiting, see you on Friday! ♥ ♥ ♥