My Day Job: the Studio at Living Opportunities

My Day Job. Our Latest Event at the Studio at Living Opportunities.

If you follow my blog closely, you have
heard about my “day job.”

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Local artist: Susan Derosa, I love her.

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Local Artist: Kim Novak

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Studio Artist from the Studio at Living Opportunities. This young lady, with a hearing disability, paints beautiful artwork.

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Art by Dan Mish, Studio Creative Director with Local Artist Dana Faegin.

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Local artists sharing their work at the Studio at Living Opportunities. Thank you friends of the Studio, Gabriel Lipper and Peggi Smith. Peggi, you are super fun.

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Artist Yang Yu and interested buyer, Fran Batzer.

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“Celebration” by Yang Yu, probably my favorite of the whole exhibition!

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Some inquiring folks admiring and talking with me about my current project “100 faces.”

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DSCF1487Randall Grealish, local artist, brought a Smart Car from Mercedes Benz for our artists to draw on and express themselves during the show. Art is awesome, art is cool, art is fun. Thanks Randall.

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Food and drink is good…

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Studio Supplies and selling artwork from my humble, donated desk. Randall’s copper piece is on the wall at the left of the above photo.

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DSCF1467Studio workshop table clothes are a work of art in their own right

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This Studio artist paints about 52 paintings a year, one painting a week, within one hour.

Thank you to all the local artists: Susan Derosa, Dana Feagin, Elaine Frenett, Randall Grealish, Holly Herick, Keith Johnson, Gabriel Lipper, Dan Mish, Jana Parkes, Pegi Smith, Yang Yu, Kevin Christman, Stephanie Gentry, and Kim Novak. this event “in light of out vision…” helped to create awareness for the Studio. Come by and see us at the Studio at Living Opportunities, 32 South Central, Medford Oregon, USA. 2-4 M-F.

Finally got the art up on the wall.

It is the little things in life that create success.

I finally got my art up on on the wall, Here are a few photos.

Close ups

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Were you creative today?

Creative Adventures is all about challenging yourself each and every day to create something new. Today instead of painting, making jewelry, designing a logo,  or teaching kids, I helped a friend. We reconnected and talked about the current market. e commerce has changed things and we are forging ahead. There is so much joy in helping others. Here is a sample of  Karen’s work.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Bridget-Jewelry/278692656567?v=wall&story_fbid=387285981567#!/pages/Little-Bridget-Jewelry/278692656567?v=wall

Check it out at “Little Bridget Jewelry” on facebook or ETSY. I would totally wear her designs, how about you?

April Showers, bring May Flowers, and Prom



Old gardens are extra special.

Today I went with a friend to her mother’s garden which was abundant with Lilacs and Snowballs. It is not the fact that her mother is older than us that made the garden glorious, but the fact that the garden is mature. What a treat to have to climb a ladder to fetch these beautiful Lilacs. We have a special project in mind for these flowers, soon they will become a wrist corsage for his Prom date.


This week Dillon and I went to the store to purchase crystals for Kayla’s corsage. We used elastic cord and made a three strand bracelet—two of the stands were tight so they would hold the flowers to her wrist. Above is the bracelet we designed. It has one large teardrop crystal at the bottom.


Dillon wrapping the flower stems with florist tape. Lilacs and Snowballs.



The flowers were attached to the crystals with florist tape.


Kayla wearing the corsage. For me, part of having a creative home is sharing with my children. The time I spent with Dillon working on this bracelet corsage will be forever in my mind.

Flowers are my favorite inspiration throughout the year. I loose track of time when I am in the garden. Every flower, to me, is like a intricate painting from God—a glorious creation, right in front of me. What a wonderful way to enjoy flowers, by sharing them with Kayla. How can I NOT get excited? Happy May Day!


Mimi paints Dogwood


Ever wonder how much a rainy day effects you mood? Mimi gets tired of the rain most days, but today she welcomed it because it kept her indoors to paint. The frogs are croaking, and last night the air smelled of blossoms. It is no wonder Mimi would paint flowers again. Somehow her painting—as well as her mood—has been influenced by the rain. The lack of sunshine in the sky has shown up in her painting. Still only three colors have been used on her palette, red, blue and yellow. It is helping somewhat with color harmony and she is getting better at mixing colors. Mimi is still working on focal point and foreground vs. background. If you have any helpful information, leave Holly a comment and she will pass it along to Mimi.


Poppies for Sandy


What inspires you? For me it is people, my kids, family, friends, special occasions like birthdays and holidays. It always comes back to who’s on my mind. Today I had coffee with a new friend, who seems like an old friend. She continually inspires me to be the best I can be. So today I paint for Sandy. “Poppies for Sandy” Thanks for the inspiration wise friend, and the laughter. Check out Sandy’s blog and you’ll know why I like her so much.

Learn something new everyday

As you may have noticed I have been trying to learn to paint in watercolors. I believe the more I sketch and paint the better graphic designer I will be. Now, you may know that I studied graphic design in college. I had many illustration classes, but they never really taught us how to use the different mediums. It was more like, “Draw a vegetable with Prismacolor pencil” or “Illustrate an emotion with watercolor paints.” Now I try to dedicate three hours, three times a week toward sketching or painting. As I improve, I get more done in those three hours—and make less of a mess doing it. The idea of dedicated studio space is becoming more and more of a need instead of a want. Every time I paint, my kitchen shuts down—which is not good considering how much my family eats. I have joined a group on FB called Virtual Paintout which uses Google Street View for inspiration to illustrate from. Google Street View is copyright free as long as you are creating art from it. It truly is a wonderful way to virtually travel the world. Every Month a new location is chosen. Here is my first attempt: location, Stavanger, Norway.


I think the only thing I like about it is the trees, maybe the sky, but no worries, I am learning and it is much more important to like where you end up, than like where you start. I had some very good critiqing from one of my favorite children’s book artist. His name is Lee White check out this blog about him http://amy-baskin.blogspot.com/2010/03/crazy-day-with-lee-white.html I need to work on focal point, and color harmony—just about everything. I can’t wait to use the information He gave me on my next painting. Another excellent site—for learning watercolor technique— http://www.johnlovett.com/class.htm I have been reading all day on watercolor techniques and viewing all I can find. If you are interested in taking this journey with me check out creativetechs.com and sign up for Molly Murrah’s watercolor 101 starting soon. It is free if you watch it live—what a bargain.

As my age inevitably increases, I find myself surprised at how much I am turning back to the fine arts as opposed to computer arts—fine arts are constant and the computer arts are changing faster than my hair is turning gray—there is some security in that. I encourage all of my friends to challenge their brains with something new every day. It doesn’t have to be art. Try a new recipe, start a journal, try a new sport, rearrange your furniture, for goodness sakes, I don’t know—just turn off the TV and do it.

Update: A new challenge from a blog called the International Fake Journal Blog can be reached by clicking the “dog icon” on my side margin. I plan to take this challenge.
artist friends, please join me.

Pass It On: trying to teach my daughter

It is Spring break here in Oregon and what better way to celebrate than to paint flowers. With extra time on her hands (Courtney, not me), I wanted to inspire her to paint. She loves art. Our quick sketch idea turned into quite an ordeal—five hours. First we looked for inspiration at morgue.com—a great site of royalty free photos by creatives for creatives. We picked a flower we both liked and sent it to the printer. Easy, right?… No. The printer was not going to cooperate. An hour later, with printer “woman handled” (ugh), we had our inspiration printed out.


Inspiration Photo from morgue.com

Now, to transfer it onto the paper. I like to use the grid method in order to enlarge (see earlier post of “June Foxglove”) the picture. In this case we decided to paint it at actual size, so we used graphite paper which allows you to trace right over the printout, thereby transferring the image to the water color paper. Place the graphite paper under the print-out and over the paper, trace the drawing.

Sketch

Because we were using my old college art supplies that are over 20 years (yes, I attended college when is was 5 years old) we thought it would be great to do some test painting. This is always helpful to get a feel for your supplies. Simple enough for Courtney, my ten year old. Supplies include Dr. Ph. Matins liquid water colors and Dick Blick liquid water color magic, graphite paper, pencils, vinyl eraser, inexpensive practice watercolor paper, water, brushes, paper towels. As we improve, we plan to purchase better quality supplies. The Dr. Martins Dyes are actually very good quality, but mine are old and have separated from sitting.

Supplies

Test colors

Next, we started on our background. Courtney and I have different plans on what to do. I love that about creative people. We all have our own ideas. I find that this is when most creatives get stuck. Either they are afraid to put the brush to paper, or they don’t like how it looks at first and get frustrated. Artists CAN NOT be fearful or they will never improve.


All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”—Pablo Picasso.


I noticed CJ (Courtney) getting very frustrated as I looked on thinking what an amazing job she was doing. She had an idea, and I couldn’t help her create her vision—she was frustrated. I encouraged her to walk away and come back to it later. She is a perfectionist for sure. Here are our backgrounds that are drying completly before we move on to the next step of painting the flowers.

Holly’s background

Courtney’s background

So why write all this and call it “Pass It On”? Because as parents, adults, teachers. aunts, uncles sisters, brothers, friends—whatever we call ourselves, we owe it to the future generation to pass on our skills. I encourage all of you who read this to pass on the talents the Lord has given you—to not only your own children, but also, to other people’s kids. Whether you teach sunday school, art, horse back riding, chess club, cooking or gardening classes, I encourage you to volunteer in your community. Pass It On!

P.S. Jacksonville Elementary will have their Annual Art Exhibition in the gym on April 6, 2010. Hope to see you there.


Starting the flowers.



What we ended up with today. I celebrate young artists. CJ did a great job overcoming her fears. Pass it on.






Foxglove Watercolor


Keeping my brain exercised while I’m waiting for work is always good. I get bored and want to try something new, this time it is a five week watercolor class. So I finally picked out one of my photos to paint. I used a grid to transfer in onto watercolor paper, and it sat for a whole week. Finally, tonight the background is started. Hopefully, it will inspire you to try something new. Take a peek.