Wednesday, June 29, 2011

More items Up in the Etsy Store!

Not even a year ago I got to 9 listings in my shop and stopped because so much was going on.  Now, I have twice as many, and even though that's not a lot compared to most Etsy shops, I'm definitely doing the happy dance. :)  Here are all my current listings if you'd like to take a look, and I hope you do! :D

More Fairy Children and Inspirational quotes:
(all images copyright 2011 Narah Kimberly Minardi. All rights reserved.)

And Green Tara journals to inspire you.  It was wonderful spending some time with this wonderful Goddess. :)

With luck, I'll get some hand collaged cards listed. :)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Antique Fairy Toddler Journal 1

Whee!!! I'm so excited!! Officially, my first piece of original art (except for my altered digital images) is listed on Etsy!!

copyright 2011 Narah Kimberly A. Minardi All rights reserved.

It was so good for me to focus on making a volume of work with a deadline.  Not only does working with my hands keep me sane, now I have a respectable amount of items to put in my long neglected Etsy shop.

This little one is just so adorable, I had to save the image for just the right time.  Another exciting thing about making these journals (more to come), is that I got to use my new Eco friendly paint.  Having a little guy around means that I eliminated a lot of paint because it did not specifically say "non-toxic".  These Eco-green acrylic paints have to be shaken well and are a little less viscose than I expected, but are so nice to work with.  The colors are a bit different than expected, but with the whole differences in computer screens and there only being a "drawing" of the paint pictured, that's ok with me.  And just because they are different than expected doesn't mean I didn't really love working with them.  This persimmon and copper combo was just wonderful to experience.  The fairy wings are made with a computer print out from a digitally altered scanned piece of wax paper I sprayed with ink.

Anyway, thanks for looking!  I'll be back soon.  That first listing took a long time, but hopefully the rest will go more quickly. :)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Art Selling Experience

Not a suburb picture, but I wanted to share my table with you from the Spirit Fair at Sterling Yoga.  Lots of thinking and planning went into this little table.  A couple of Angels even came by the night before and helped me finish up the trimming, tagging, sleeving and set up run-through.  Really, if my new friends (I'll explain in a minute) Michael and *Michaela had not come to my rescue, I would have been selling my art for the first time on only a few hours of sleep... and me on a few hours of sleep can mean seriously bad things.

A friend of ours came to visit on Saturday- Bill. Bill has many friends and went to see some at an SCA event on Saturday.  Michael and Michaela, who are book binders, joined us back at the house.  Yes, that's right; two people who had never been to our house, one of whom I'd never met, and who know paper and truly understand the artistic process (including selling said art), paid a visit the night I was working every possible minute to get my wares ready for my first art vending experience.  They generously helped me finish so I could go to bed hours earlier than I would have been able to doing it all by myself.  Plus, we got to talk about art!! I have to give a big THANK YOU to the Universe for that!!

BTW, I just love what *Michaela does with her photography- specializing in celebrating and honoring the beauty in all people, regardless of whether they fit the "standard" model of beauty. 

My collage sheets are re-listed in my Etsy shop. Once I get the rest of the cards, journals and jewelry scanned/photoed, they will be up there too. There are some fairies (both elegant and adorable), beautiful mermaids and inspiring Deities just waiting for you.  Only a few of our belly dance instructional DVD's are left, but several of the performance DVD's are still in stock.  Does anyone know if I would be allowed to list those on Etsy since I did all the pre-production work, some of the filming and assisted in editing?  My husband did the rest of the technical work and he's not listed on my store... not sure if I can add him now.  My sister is also featured in two videos and my students in the other.

Also, you may have noticed that the blog has a new name: Vinegar and Glitter!!  I'm super excited about the personalization, and have a new website, which is far from finished, that will help people find me on my major websites.

Happy Monday!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Spirit Fair This Sunday!!!

So looking forward to this!! I'll be vending hand made original mixed media art cards and journals, jewelry and belly dance DVD's.  Come see me!! Get a reading, some Reiki and some Inspirational Goodies to take with you!!  See you Sunday!!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Be Back Soon!

I need to take a little blog break.  The Spirit Faire at Sterling Yoga is this Sunday and I'm working very hard to get everything done in time. :)  Come see me in Dormont!!

Also, the laptop has been cranky and sluggish, so is off to 'ospital.  Hopefully she'll be back soon.  I'll definitely post again by Monday, June 27th.  See you then! :)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

North African Beauty

This picture was taken in August of 2010 in our Pennsic tent. It was for my friend Asim's birthday, and I was hoping to give it to him there, but either we missed each other (I left early because of the intense heat) or he was not there. Then there was the beach vacation, house-selling, art retreat and moving chaos. The card finally re-surfaced and made it into the mail. Hopefully, he has already opened it and doesn't happen to look here first. ;)

I just love the image of this beautiful lady and find her so inspiring. Stamped hand made collage paper and other decorative paper, ink, stamped image from Stampfrancisco, small dictionary definitions: beautiful, beauty, etc; fabric scrap, fiber, metal beads, and sanded edges on a pre-made card all went into this piece.

Hope you are having a lovely weekend!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

This Bird Has a Song

copyright Narah Kimberly A. Minardi 2011 All rights reserved.

This little canvas was originally for an Art Chix challenge, but I chose to enter other pieces instead. Then, it was going to be a present for my Mom, but she already has so many things I've given her to hang or sit around, I went with something practical for her- altered clothespins. Then, it persuaded me to stay here and now it lives on our shelf in the kitchen. :)

Acrylic paint, gold pigment ink, laser printed transparancy, collage image by Alpha Stamps, copper ribbon, re-used bottle cap, circle inchie by Digital Collage Sheets, Distress ink, computer generated text outlined in long vine charcoal and antique lace make up this piece's materials.

Somewhere, I read that birds symbolize the soul; nests, the home and security; and eggs fertility and nurturance. My husband wondered "what's with all the birds"? When he saw the many birds showing up in a particular series of my work. At first, all I could think was, "it's just calling to me." Then, I remembered that thing I read. Feels right. :)

What is your song? What is calling you? I would love to hear from you- comment below or drop me a line on Face Book.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Make Your Own Laundry Soap

After running out of our last bottle of 7th Generation laundry detergent and using our Citrus Magic Fine Wash for a couple of loads, I decided to finally try making my own laundry soap. "Make Your Place" and Soule Mama both use the same ingredients, but I used Soule Mama's proportions since she had 4 children at the time of the post (5 now) and the MYP proportions suggested it would wash 3 loads. The Kirk's soap acts a bit differently than Dr. Bronner's, so I'm hoping that it will still wash well. Though all that grating made my hand a bit tired, it was exciting to make this "on my own". Angelo is always available to stir and pour, as long as he's awake, of course. It took a bit of convincing to keep Salty and Thomas the trains out of the mix, though. ;) A load is spinning now, and probably for the first time ever, I'm wishing I had more laundry to test this out on. That alone worth making my own laundry soap!

Where I got what:
Washing Soda/Soda Ash- Dharma Trading Company (left over from some dying projects... I believe Amazon also sells it if you can't find it locally)
Borax- Rose Mountain Herbs (Angry Chicken, who is awesome about sharing all kinds of information has a link here. If you buy something, go through the link and pass on the love. :)
Castile Soap ihealthtree (haven't found any local non fish children's DHA, so went ahead and ordered this for efficiency, but most health food stores will carry castile bar soap...)

BTW, SM mentions using 1/8 cup per load. That's about 2 TBS. I have an extra TBS measuring spoon, and it seemed to be useful in getting the powder out of the jar. Also, before mixing all this up, I looked up whether it was safe for high efficiency machines and because it is low-sudsing, it is safe.

If you have already made your own laundry soap/powder or try this out on your own, please let me know what your results are. I'll keep you posted on our results here.

Happy laundry day!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Six Mermaids

These are for the latest Art Chix ATC swap. Oil pencil, water colors and Twinkling H2O's make up the background. Art Chix's Classic Nudes are the subjects with my own drawn in/cut out mermaid tails. Shells are from a vintage educational book. Netting is mica sprayed cheese cloth. Other supplies: Stickles, pigment ink, computer generated text, colored pencil.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

New Art Contest

So, this looks fun! Found their site via Gerri Herbst's blog, It's all Treasure. I'm very excited to get my accessories and get started!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Assemblage Art

Here she is! This is the shrine mentioned in this post. Collage and Assemblage Art go hand-in-hand when I picture pieces that I'll make, though that is not the case with everyone. Almost all forms of Mixed Media Art and Altered Art appeal to me, however they go together. Because I got to use these "smalls" (term I picked up from "American Pickers"; LOVE that show!!) and their quantity outweighed the collage elements, I am categorizing this as Assemblage Art. In truth, these forms all flow together for me. Over at Craftcast, I listened to a great podcast featuring assemblage artist Keith Lo Bue. He got to see an installation by Joseph Cornell, a pioneer in the form. I really related to how inspired he got by found objects, antiques, etc.

My apologies for the craptacular framing of these pictures. When I got a chance to take some pictures in good light, it was also during my afternoon fog and after a while, I lost patience. I've been trying to get to know my camera better so I can take better pictures, but I can't help longing for an uber digital camera ... a gal can dream. ;)

Quick run down of how this went together: started with a cigar box and removed the lid and inside paper. Added a layer of white gesso on the outside, thicker in some places than others, letting some of the paper show through. Glued a torn piece of sheet music to the inside of the box. Painted the inside with heavy bodied acrylic and the outside with water soluble oil pastels (blended with a damp brush). The inner frame, I cut foam board to size and coated with matte medium, and let it dry (helps prevent warping) then covered with rice paper, painted with the same blue water soluble oil pastels and damp brush, sponged/streaked dye based ink (Ranger Rainbow ink) over that because the effect just wasn't as nice on the rice paper; then glued together with tacky glue. Used an antique gold Shiva paint stik around the edges of the box and the frame. Glued most objects in with E6000, but used tacky glue on the magic wand (stick and wooden star ["Distress" inked and added a layer of Shiva antique gold] ... I knew that tiny stick would come in handy). Blocks were sanded and inked. Paper behind the dolly is from a 1910? pharmacy booklet. For the bunting at the top, I drew triangles on sheet music and cut out, poked holes with a needle tool and threaded a string from a tea bag.

Making the inner frame was a new technique for me. So, a few days went by between the familiar painting and gluing stage and the final stage of the frame. I was most intimidated by covering the foam board with rice paper because I imaged it a more precise process than it actually was. It was also incredibly satisfying ... how can I describe the feeling of tacky glue grabbing the rice paper and becoming one? Hmmm... you'll just have to try it yourself. I'm sure you'll be glad you did. :)

Let me know what you think of the shrine- I'd love some feedback!!

Also, if you aren't already officially following the blog, please click the "Follow" button to the right. If you don't already have a Google account, you'll need to create one, but it is quick and painless. Any (valid) email address will do.

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

In the Backyard

There have been some bright beautiful days outside lately. Someone else planted the flowers, but the I'm responsible for the tomato? plants and the boy. :)

Hope you are enjoying your surroundings as well! Happy Wednesday!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Mermaid in Blue

copyright Kimberly A. Minardi, all rights reserved

I entered this work in progress in the Art Chix Blue challenge. It usually lives in my kitchen, even though I still want to add to it and frame it out somehow. Maybe I'll glue it to a painted canvas or block of wood... I'll let you know. :)

Currently working on items for the Spirit Faire at Sterling Yoga and an "Alter to Healing" inspired by the card I picked from the "Intention Deck" Sherri Gaynor's Book. My muse kept telling me to make a shrine anyway. Surely, she helped me pick that card as well. :)

In the Craftcast episode I mentioned last time, this TED talk was mentioned. Having already watched/listened to this a few months ago, and already read the book, I was particularly excited hearing about it again. Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love talks about nurturing creativity, the creative process and how everyone has a "genius" rather than people being geniuses. It is incredibly inspiring and I hope you'll take a look/listen. Totally worth the time and then some!! Please let me know what you think of it, also! I appreciate comments here on the blog so much!

Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Art With Intention

Craftcast with Allison Lee has a plethora of interesting podcasts that I have enjoyed lately. Many of them accompanied me in the long hours of organizing my attic studio and I have found them very inspiring. Today, I listened to episode #111 with Sherri Gaynor. Sherri's book, "Creative Awakenings Envisioning the Life of Your Dreams through Art", is a wonderful journey full of reminders, inspiring stories and techniques. When I read this book, having just finished Kelly Rae Roberts's "Taking Flight" and done all the "home work" in there, I did not go through the entire process outlined in "Creative Awakenings", but found it incredibly well named. We were in the middle of preparing our house for sale, so the section with Suzanne Simanaitis (Addition by Subtraction, An Artist Finds Herself Amidst the Clutter). Nothing like addressing everything you own right after moving almost all of your supplies up two floors. I had just decided that the sewing room could not house my mixed media supplies, organized for maximum function in our guest room and then we decided we needed to put the house on the market to fit our family's future plans. It was an overwhelming task, indeed. The book was enjoyable throughout and I'm sure the idea of setting an intention through your art was planted or re-planted by reading it. Since I chose the podcast randomly, (I couldn't see the full title since I was listening through iTunes on my iPhone... it is free, btw) I found it especially interesting that I would be reminded of this book today.

You see, a few days ago, I had a great need to process some heavy emotions. There was already a background painted that came to mind when I knew I had to work with my supplies. First, I started writing out what I was feeling in oil pencil; nothing elaborate, just a literal list of what I could identify. Using the yogic method of staying with each feeling, I focused on the physical sensations that occurred with the emotion. By the time I was a 1/4 way through the canvas, I wondered what else I could write, but that opened the door to move on to processing more and setting my intention to heal. With my canvas full of words, paint, ink, cheesecloth and vintage buttons followed. Taking a cue from art journaling, I didn't need all the words to show and because my purpose was processing, I didn't worry about the outcome or final product. The process, working with the supplies, and taking the time for myself were truly the most important parts of this piece.

Many belly dance performances have served as platforms for me to process as well and a few other art pieces I've made with intentions for the future. Perhaps you'll see them here soon... :)

How about you? Have you set an intention through art? I would love to hear about your experiences! Please comment below or drop me a message on FaceBook.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

More Sprouts and Planting

I followed the suggestion in Make Your Place to start pepper and tomato seeds in an egg carton. It worked really nicely and it's super exciting that it was so cheap and easy. Any time Angelo gets a chance to play in dirt is bonus too. (There is green glass in our overhead light here. We haven't punked his hair- yet. ;) Though I couldn't remember whether the book said to remove the starters from the carton or not, I did. Some of the roots had started growing into the paper, but for the most part, they removed easily when I cut the cups apart and tore down the sides to release the dirt. The transplants are doing well. Some tomato stakes are in order later, of course, but for now they are fine.

Really looking forward to the Mixed Media Collage Workshop I'm teaching over at Sterling Yoga! It is wonderful and fulfilling working in my studio, but sharing art with others is just so exciting and fun!

Speaking of sharing art with others, I'm working on some new Artist Trading Cards for the latest Art Chix swap. For a while, I've played with the idea of organizing a swap myself, even though I just played in my first one a few months ago. There are quite a few belly dancer visual artists out there and I've talked to a few about having a small belly dance themed swap. There's no reason non-bellydancers couldn't participate also! What do you think? Would you be interested? Let me know in the comments below! :)

Also, welcome and thank you to the new blog followers here! So glad you're joining us! :)