Friday, February 25, 2011

Some Art from the Retreat

All of these are on canvas board, use acrylic paint, gel medium, inks and various papers (vintage and utilitarian). The image on the top one is a vintage photo I altered in Photo Shop. The bottom two use transparancies from ArtChix and the bottom one also uses a stamped image from Stampfrancisco.

Please comment below and tell me what you think! :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sewing Project Revealed

This is a wheel chair bag I made for my Dad. I thought the red stitching made it look like a feed sack, which is fun since my parents live on a farm. I used this from as a guide.

He is currently in the hospital due to Bullous Pemphigoid. I won't add a link lest you be tempted to look at the pictures. :( It is an autoimmune condition characterized by severe itching, blisters and nerve irritation. He is being treated with strong steroids, antibiotics and pain killers to address the condition. Finally, he is showing some improvement and once he is released from the hospital, he will go to a medical rehab hospital. He'll be able to use the bag there as he goes from his room to different therapies and hopefully the cafeteria. It went out in the mail today! Yay!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I Really Do Sew

But, first I have to share with you the largest mixed media painting I've done so far. It's 20" x 24", and I got to use lots of ephemera: book pages, a receipt, old military letters, vintage sewing patterns, and bottle caps. I also used acrylic paint, gel medium, gesso, water soluble oil pastels, dimensional paint, and floral collage images. I have to give Angelo credit for helping me with the design. I was only going to do about 3 large "flowers", but he started putting the bottle caps inside the white circles and I really liked it. Eric says it is the first of many collaborative efforts. :)

I may have to put some of these pieces that are on canvas in my Etsy shop, which is sadly empty and neglected right now. My non-canvas pieces I have plans for before they go up.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

An Almost 4 year old Boy

We have decided to home school. I had hoped that my visit to the school would blow me away one way or another, but no such luck. So, it was up to the good ol' pros/cons list. The Montessori school, though it has the potential to be wonderful, also has the potential to be a huge financial strain, a source of extra stress (especially with getting out the door by a certain time), and a host of unknown problems because I couldn't guarantee they would educate my son the same way I would. I got _no_ reviews on this particular school, though I asked a list of very active and vocal Pittsburgh Mamas (who have been around a while and appreciate home schooling, alternative schooling, attachment parenting, natural health, etc.). I also have at best only heard mixed reviews for Montessori schools in general (lots of "my kid loves it, but I have problem with x, y and z.", "they think my 3 year old has ADHD" [though no one would/ at least should _ever_ diagnose it that early, and I know this because of my experience in the medical field; young children just don't have long attention spans, even the "advanced" ones! This clearly speaks of teacher ignorance and an absence of Montessori principles.] I don't know if people who are 100% satisfied with the experience simply don't report that or if mixed reviews or worse are what you get (or if I just haven't found the 100% positive reviews). I love the Montessori philosophy, but I can only guarantee it as far as I can guarantee the way it is filtered through modern individuals... and it's a big financial investment and other physical and mental strains that I can't justify for our family. Besides, I have all these skills, many of which I'm still paying for (OT student loans) and have already bought all these museum memberships (which would not get used as often if he were in school). So, if we sent him to school, not only would we be straining to pay tuition, we would be wasting money on top of it.

I read somewhere (I believe in "Raising a Son") that around 4 boys have a rush of testosterone making them even "crazier" than before. (I wish I could think of a better word, but right now I can't.) I believe it...

He also astounds me on a daily basis with his new-found skills and affectionate sweet-boy demonstrations. He will be 4 in about a month. It never fails that I am surprised and amazed when this time of year comes around.

He took this pic of our beautiful pup, Dana. :)
He wanted to put the 4 pieces of styrofoam the insulation guy gave him "in a hole" because said guy explained that's how they insulated Daddy's office, so I made him a game from a cup, cardboard from the recycling bin and tape (one side taped with packing tape to hold more permanently and one held with freezer tape so he could pull it up and get all the stuff out and start over.) I'm not excited about him playing with styrofoam, but those 4 pieces gave us a new game and work on spatial relations, hand-eye coordination, fine motor coordination and more.

You know the pom poms had to get involved. We don't clear the table off that much and it works so very well...

Every child should be allowed to play in the mud. He's ready to go...
and the ice/melted snow...

This education decision,other not-necessarily household family issues and my father being in and out of the hospital frequently have had me pretty "full to the brim"; thus all the art lately. It has been a truly soothing balm.

Thanks for reading and allowing me to share!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Nest Egg

Happy Love Day!!

I've been working on some more mixed media projects... hopefully the sewing projects will get back on track soon, but I just can't help myself.

My attic is insulated now!! After building the false wall for mirrors, patching/dry walling to fix damage from insulation installation (necessary) and painting, I can unpack everything!! Then I'll be able to spread out and access all my supplies. Oh, bliss! I've not had a fully functioning studio in far too long. Though there are advantages to setting up in the kitchen, I'm really looking forward to having my creative space.

Here is something I finished today for the Art Chix Bird Challenge. The lovely lady at the window is an Art Chix image. Please click on the picture to see it big enough to find the bird. :)

Please comment below to let me know what you think! :)

I really do have a lot of other things to catch you all up on (including the Valentines we made 'round here), I just have been doing a lot of mixed media art to keep me sane. ;)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Last Entry for Heart Art Challenge

Found this image in a vintage book and thought it was perfect for a piece of "Heart Art". :) This one is on canvas board.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Finally and newly scanned art

More heart art for the Art Chix Celebrate Hearts challenge. Images are from the Art Chix ATC backgrounds collage sheet. These bottle cap inchies are Fun!!!

I made this one before my workshop in Charleston this summer. The images are from Art E-Zine. Also used pigment ink, crocheted trim, permanent sepia ink, carbon pencil.

This one is from a while ago. Cardboard substrate, rice paper, artists papers, mica sprays, wine foil, button, iridescent ribbon, glitter cardstock (from kids' section- fantastic stuff) punches and some lovely Art Chix images. Really love the combination of the text on the post card and the expression on the beauty's face. It was random, but it made it seem like she's playing hard to get. ;) Funny how these stories form.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Never Underestimate the Power of Mindlessly Serging Adorable Fabric

Last week after Angelo was asleep for his nap and right before I had to leave for class, I had just enough time to serge the edges of this pile of fabric (for washing). The fabric is so cute, it made me instantly happy just doing that one little step. I can see the world needing a lot less talk therapy once everyone realizes the incredible effect adorable fabric has on the psyche. :)

This fabric is for Dana, my beautiful pup. I am thinking a bone shaped pillow for her birthday (May 25th). She loves a good pillow. :)

I am planning a back pack out of this Thomas fabric for Angelo's birthday. I have looked at several free online patterns, but I think I'm just going to make it up. Winging it is more fun and when it's all rectangles, it often works out. I'm wondering if I'll have enough left over to add to a puppet theater whose completion date goal is??? We'll see...

These next 3 fabrics will be a lap quilt for Angelo. I'd like to finish it for his birthday, but that's in less than a month and a half, so I don't know if that's possible. Especially since my current sewing space is in the kitchen... a challenge, for sure.

I did complete 2 sewing projects on Sunday, but I haven't photographed them yet. So, you will hear about them later. I also have some new art projects, dance experiences and a fun Angelo art experience to share. :)

Until next time! :)