Monday, April 30, 2007

Spirit Drawings

At Cynthia Mooney's "Journal Keeping Workshop" yesterday, we made spirit drawings. We studied the object and traced it on the paper with our fingers. The idea is to draw the essence of the object and work from memory. It's an exercise to loosen up as well as decide how to fit the object on the paper. The first drawing, we drew without looking in 30 seconds. The second drawing, we drew from memory in 60 seconds . The third drawing, we could look at the object and finish it in one minute and then color it with watercolors. What a fun way to draw this salt shaker in less than five minutes and feel the spirit of the little girl reading.

Friday, April 27, 2007

More Mail- a package this time

Holly, who I met at ArtFest and works for an LAX entertainment company, sent me a package full of anime and manga stuff. Thank you, Holly, and check out her blog, Holly Loves Art. Oh boy, I'll enjoy going through all of these in more detail. So far my exposure to anime included two 1988 films- Miyazaki's "My Neighbor Totoro" and Takahata's "Grave of the Fireflies".
I discovered these films after reading Peter Carey's book "Wrong about Japan" and highly recommend them both. The post WWII generation, Japanese "baby boomers", love Manga comics and continue to read them today. It's also very popular in the US. I'm hoping to explore and understand this pop culture phenomenon. Ten more days and I'm off for Tokyo.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Mail Art

Look what came in the mail yesterday from Nikki Blackwood. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Nik! I love receiving mail art and handwritten correspondence from family and friends. With email and cell phones, communication through snail mail is becoming a lost art. When mini-works of art find their way through USPS to my mailbox, I treasure and display them on my desk for inspiration and reminders of friendship. I learned to write letters from my mother. She faithfully wrote weekly letters all the years I lived away from home.

For another take on postcards, check out Frank Warren's books "Post Secret" and "My Secret" where teens, collage students and adults sent him their secrets written, photographed and illustrated on postcards.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Art Journaling

Art journals challenge me to write and observe what's happening around me. A couple of weeks ago I took Randi's two-day workshop. The first day we took photos and the second day we painted backgrounds using her "inspiration and techniques for art journaling on the edge". Check out her new book "Wide Open".

Attached are three art journal pages that I made. The first is from the photo class. New to digital photography, I love the 2x3 wallet-size photos to use in journaling. Who knew that you can go to store kiosks and have prints made in an hour from your camera disc. Some store even take orders online and you pay when you pick up the prints. Welcome to the 21st Century, Paula.

The second journal page includes a variety of techiniques- stencils, spray paint, fabric, transfers, tape and the mini-photos. Layers intrigue me and add an element of mystery. How did she do that? The thrid page is from LK Ludwig's class at ArtFest 2007 in Port Townsend. We doodled, added torn images, silhouettes, lines and writing.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

New Beginnings- Welcome!

Artist friends encouraged me to start a blog to share my ventures in art and travel. Recently retired from my day job, I can devote my energies to creating and exploring my dreams. The photos below show my wonderful new studio. Just being able to work in the studio full time is exciting and energizing. With the help of my handy hubby and Jennifer Campbell, The Art of Organizing, this former bedroom became a studio. I highly recommend two books by Jo Packham- "Where Women Create" and "Organizing Your Craft Space".