Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Painting Like a Five Year Old

What a day I had! I've been sick. A retched cold that is kicking my ass! I decided that I wasn't going to paint. I was just too tired to stand there and move my arm.

But then, I got some disappointing news. There was this thing I had my heart set on doing and I thought it was perfect and was definitely going to happen and then I found out that, nope, not going to happen! I was so upset I cried and cried. I was sad but I was also really angry.

I went upstairs and decided I was going to paint. I figured it was a good time to paint like a 5 year old since I was having a little temper tantrum like one. I put only chose 3 colors, white, black, and red and I started slapping paint on.

It's not pretty but it definitely expresses how I felt. I ended up adding a bit of yellow in the end. I will say that I felt a sense of release after furiously painting this girl but one of the things I do with my work in emotional release is to flip the energy so I decided to paint another little girl that could do anything and was joyous.

This one took me longer and I relished every moment I spent painting it. It seemed that I was channeling the little girl in me that knew she was amazing and was just happy to be happy. I even gave her a red glitter dress because of course she should have some glitter, no, she DESERVED some glitter. The colors were bright and cheery and the whole thing was, well, just yummy!

When I finished this painting I felt clear, calm, strong, empowered, and just darn perfect! What an amazing experience this was for me. It was like therapy on a paintbrush.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Becoming Fearless

So it occurred to me after writing yesterday's post that part of my inability to take actions stems from fear...fear of not getting it right, looking stupid...failing. Without addressing the core issue, action will be difficult to take.

That brought me to create this journal page. I created it as fearlessly as I could. I began smearing gesso all over the page and then added straight watercolor from the tube. I was using the gesso as my water and my fingers as my brush. I wish you could see the intricacies of the background. It really is beautiful!

I cut the letters out of magazine pages. I love the juicy colors and textures that I can find in magazines. Then I fearlessly took my black pen and started drawing the flowers. Normally I would have been so worried I would "mess" it up but I was being fearless!

I went in search of more quotes that spoke to my heart and motivated me to face my fear. Here they are:

Fear: Thief of Dreams

Fear is just excitement without breath

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience you face...you must do the thing which you think you cannot do.
-Eleanor Roosevelt

Fearless minds climb soonest into crowns.
-William Shakespeare

To live in fear is the worst insult to ourselves
-Arianna Huffington

Fate loves the fearless.
-James Russell Lowell

and my favorite...

I must not fear. Fear is a mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn my inner eye to its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
-Frank Herbert Dune

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Taking Action

Here is my action orientated journal page. I took my own advice from the page to make the page. I just did it. I didn't mess around, I didn't try to make it perfect. I embraced the mistakes and kept moving.

I did the background with watercolor and then painted the words in gesso. I used my white paint pen and my new sharpie pen that I love. It doesn't bleed! Yay!

I found some great action quotes and added them to the page. I think this is going to be a great reminder and motivation for me to take action. You see, I am a thinker, a dreamer, a planner...not a do-er. Problem is, all this thinking and dreaming is getting me nowhere closer to reaching those dreams. I have to begin to take action!!!

Some of the quotes that really spoke to me are:

You cannot change anything in life with intention alone, which can become watered down, occasional hope that you'll get to tomorrow. Intention without action is useless.
-Caroline Myss

A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.
- Kahill Gibran

The self is not something ready made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action.
- John Dewey

Start where you are, used what you have, Do what you can.
-Arthur Ashe

Bite of more than you can chew then chew it.
-Ella Williams

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Exploring My Soul

While browsing the Internet and spending way too much time online I found Soulcollage. It seemed so interesting and last night I decided to give it a try.

The idea is that you flip through magazines and pull out images that speak to you and then you combine them to make up a card. Then you sit with the card and let it speak to you and answer some questions about it.

I like how it combines the visual with my intuition and my inner soul. There is so much more to the actual Soulcollage process where you make a deck with different suits and you can do a reading. I don't know about all of that just yet but I did have fun making my cards. There is a good tutorial here if you want to check it out.

The card above is my Sexy Kitty Card.

She is the one who is flirty, sexy and likes to have fun. She is alive with color and enjoys her sensuality and sexuality. She is beautiful.

This cards wants me to embrace my sexuality, my feminine qualities and to relish in the fun and freedom of being sexy.

The energy this card gives me is flirty sexy, sensuous, and living life in full color.

This card is my Worthy of the Best card

She is the one who enjoys the good things in life, knows how to receive goodness and is worthy of the best.

This card wants me to own my own worth, to take care of myself and pamper myself and to surround myself with the best thing the world has to offer.

The energy this card gives me is confidence and self worth, knowing I deserve!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Been Busy But...

Still had time for making some fun in my journal!

I went to watch my son and hubby play a softball game on Friday and then I hit an art fair during the day on Saturday before I headed off to see the Counting Crows in concert at Ravinia. We brought the kids with us and have now decided that unless we are seeing a band they love, we will leave them home next time. They were good but I don't think they loved it...my 12 year old fell asleep on the blanket. :o)

Sunday I had brunch with 3 other ladies I met while going to school in NYC. It was great to catch up with them after not seeing each other for a year. We ended up sitting there for 3 hours! Later that night we headed out for a nice bike ride with the kids. It was a good weekend!

I did manage to play around in my new moleskin journal. I just bought it and hadn't done anything in it yet. This page was an attempt to play around a bit. I glued some petals down that I had cut out from magazine pages for another project I started and never finished. Then I took my new Sharpie pen and started doodling. I brought it with me to the concert and worked on it there. I like it. I want to play around with the background and maybe try it with a white gel pen to see how that looks.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Tree Love

I fell in love with the trees! I wanted to have a love affair with them. I was hiking through the woods and everywhere I turned there was an amazing tree with these beautiful roots that were speckled with moss. I couldn't stop taking pictures.

There were times when I wished I were alone in the woods. Alone with the trees. Just me and the trees. I knew I could spend hours in there if I were left to my own devices. The smell of the forest is so intoxicating and the sound of my feet hitting the forest floor even thrilled me. There is something about being in the woods that does it for me.

There was one day where I found myself alone in the woods for a few minutes. I walked up to one of my tree friends and put my feet on the roots that were poking out of the ground and I just sat there wondering what it was that was drawing me in. What was it about these trees and their roots?

Then it hit me. Whenever I have gotten energy healing in the past I've been told that my root chakra is weak and that I need to ground myself. One of the exercises for the root chakra is to imagine roots coming out of your feet and going deep into the ground pulling up the energy of the earth.

There I was standing on the roots pulling up energy and healing myself and I didn't even know why. I didn't need a why, I just felt it. I knew it was right.

It became crystal clear that some day when I move to a new location that I NEED to be around trees. I love the beach and I love the water but I NEED the trees.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Easy Peasy Flower

This was an interesting journal page. I decided to open it up and just start painting. I had no idea what I wanted to do, what colors I was going to use or what was going to happen. I started out just covering the page with paint and then going over it and over it and over it until I got something that I liked.

I ended up adding glitter which in person looks so fun but doesn't show up in the photo. I had fun with some lettering and just let the thing emerge.

It is rough and it is simple but it was the process that was so great.

Vacation Journal

I've been on a lot of vacations. I've been to Florida too many times to count. I've been to New York, California, Texas, Colorado, DC, Tennessee, Alabama, New Orleans, Nevada, Arizona, Washington, Hawaii, and all over the Midwest. I've been to Italy and Australia twice. One thing I have never done on all of those vacations is keep a journal.

Oh how I wish I would have taken the time to write down the things I did and the way I was feeling at the time. I like to write but I've never been good at keeping a journal.

It seems to me that art journaling is so completely different. I find that when I am combining art with my writing I become more reflective and I go just a bit deeper.

On my vacation I kept it simple. Each day I did a quick sketch of something from the day and I quickly painted it with my watercolors. Once dry I would just free write the things we did and the fun we had. Every once in a while I was inspired to reflect on something but it was mainly just a record of my vacation.

The first photo is of one of the trees I saw while hiking. I am going to do a whole post just on the trees...the roots...I fell in love with them! Stay tuned for that.

The second one is some wildflowers I picked along the road while we walked back from a waterfall down the road from the house we rented. I put them in water on the kitchen table and I preserved them in my journal for a lifetime.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Rock Art

The beaches we went to were loaded with the most beautiful river rocks and I had a ball playing with them. I started with this heart on the first day. When I went back it a few days later it was still there and next to it someone had written their name in rocks. It was neat to think that someone was inspired by me.

This swirly tree was fun. I have to tell you that it is so meditative playing with the rocks. It brought me back to my mosaic days...yes I was a mosaic artist once upon a time.

The swirls on this big stone were made by scratching other rocks in different color onto the surface. My son Liam found some charred wood from a bon fire that made excellent charcoal to finish it off.

Simple and fun flowers.

OK, this is one crazy looking face but fun nonetheless.

Stacking rocks while watching the kids play. Ahhh, that's vacation!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Jealous of My Vacation Life

If you're anything like me you love your vacations. I feel like my life is a series of events that we have to rush to. I know, I know, having 5 children you would think I would have guessed that. It just seems that we never have much down time.

So this year when we went to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan for our family vacation we just wanted to keep it low key. We rented a house and went up there with almost no knowledge of what we were doing. We decided to figure it out when we got there.

Most days we didn't leave the house before 11:00. We got up whenever we got up. We had a leisurely breakfast of eggs and/or pancakes with fresh fruit. There was no rushing, there was no, "we're going to be late...hurry!" It was just relaxed. The funny thing is we still managed to do a lot of different things. It was just the attitude, the pace of life that was so different.

Have you ever blurted something out and then wondered where that came from? Well about 2/3rds of the way through the week I turned to my husband and said, "I'm jealous of our vacation life." He gave me a funny look and said, "What the heck are you talking about?" I went on to explain how much I wanted to live on vacation forever! He chuckled and agreed.

Later I was sitting on the beach and I pulled out my journal and I started to write. Of course this jealousy concept came up again and I wrote, "I don't want to be jealous of my vacation life. I want to bring the attribute of my vacation life home with me and incorporate them into my lifestyle. I want to create moments of the vacation life at home, the beauty, the relaxation, the togetherness, the slower pace, the nature and inspiration that surrounds me here I will bring home with me."

Now that I am home I have been able to keep the slower pace going. That being said, the kids have not gone back to school yet and our hectic sports schedule has yet to swing into full gear. So how do I make sure to remember to bring those vacation moments into my daily life?

I have found that the best way to make change is to be specific so I am specifically going to schedule family time in the way of blackout nights (lights out) and game nights. I am going to schedule time in nature and put it in my calendar. I am going to continue to work in my journal and surround myself with beauty and I am going to commit to attending more art events. In fact I am going to an art fair this weekend! Yay!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Birthday Reflections

Today is my birthday. I turned 41. For forty years I've been trying to figure out who I am, what I am here for (besides having babies...I'm know I am good at that. :o). I have been living a full life, a good life. I've learned so much, did so much, and lived enough for 2 lives. Still, something seemed to be missing.

I tried finding it in so many different areas and while it always seemed to be close, there was just no cigar. But recently something shifted...something changed. It all started with an opened email where I was introduced to expressive painting. I hadn't even done it yet, just reading about it was enough to change my life.

Then I started cruising the web looking for more and more art, then I actually started creating my own and whoa! life hasn't been the same. It seems like the missing piece has been found and I have come full circle, back to the person I only dreamed I could be when I was a child.

Nothing I've done was without merit...everything I have done to this day has been amazing and has healed me and nourished me in just the way I needed to become this dream person I've been looking for. It's all been perfect. Now I am able to combine all of my life experience, all of the things I have learned and to help people creatively heal.

It is so exciting and I feel so darn blessed that I can't even believe it. Have you ever had the feeling that something was just so right and you didn't know how it was going to work out but you knew that it would? Well that is the feeling I am having right now about my future in the creative art world. Who could ask for a better birthday gift?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Art To Go

I am leaving for a family vacation tomorrow and I didn't want to go a whole week without doing anything in my journal. What fun would that be? I decided to put together a little to go art kit.

I bought everything I needed at Walmart. Ha, isn't that funny. I got this small pink backpack in the little girl's section. It is small enough to easily carry but big enough to fit plenty of stuff. I got these cute pencil bags and a large one for all my pens and pencils and I have this cheap watercolor set that fits right in the bag. I am ready to go!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

My Goddess

I don't know about you but I always love the way I look after an evening in the bedroom with my hubby. When I go into the bathroom and catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror and I am surprised how much I like what I see.

Usually I have this glow about me, my hair is a mess, I have a smile on my face and a deeper, inner smile. This is what this page represents for me.

I didn't mean for it to happen like this. I just started creating and in the end I knew who this turned out to be. I started off with an image from a magazine and painted over it. By the way, I love the fluid acrylics from Golden! Oh my goodness, I am in love!!!!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Doodle, Doodle, and More Doodles

I am taking an online doodle class from Traci Bautista. It's been lots of fun to just let loose and doodle de doodle. That is actually why I decided to take the class. I want to loosen up, to have fun, not to worry about making it perfect or making anything for that matter.

I have always loved to doodle. I do it constantly. I just never took it to the next level and added paint, markers, and colored pencils. So fun!