Thursday, October 6, 2011

Photography Learning Curve

At the end of the summer I bought a Canon Rebel T3. Love it. But other than auto I didn't know how to do much else with it. I have shot film with my old reliable Pentax K1000 but that is a different animal. So I got myself over to the local community college and have learned so much about this camera.

Macro mode. 
I thought Georgia O'Keefe would like this.

In this photo we learned how to use a faster shutter speed to create a silhouette. I know, it's not all that stupendous when you are a real photographer but I was quite pleased with myself.

And then I learned how to slow down that was to use a longer shutter speed. Anyway I thought this was way cool. Can't wait to find a waterfall somewhere and try it again.

Hopefully I'll be able to photograph some artwork and show you before long. I've been taking Katie Kendrick's class "Layered Impressions". It has been such a wonderful class even though I am WAY behind. A lot of wonderful information and she is such a generous teacher.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Texture Tuesday Textures

I think I have a new addiction. I love, love, love creating images with all these textures, layers and cool photoshop brushes. Kim Klassen is so generous sharing her textures. In fact she is about to have another class on creating textures. Check it out if you think you would like to experiment a bit.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Finding Grace and Joy

this has been a week of mixed blessings. my great aunt passed away at the age of 90. she lived life to the fullest and was still going strong when she celebrated her birthday a few weeks ago. she was who i want to be. a gracious, southern lady whose wish for everyone was to be kind to one another. while there is sadness among family here, i know there is such rejoicing in heaven among the family waiting there.

on the other hand my husband and i made a quick trip to the outer banks for a blessing of peace and rest before going back to teaching next week. I have many photos to share but the words i saw on the back of a truck today are what i will intend to make my mantra for years to come. a simple bumper sticker with
powerful words.

i'd also add don't postpone love, laughter, hugs, kindness or graciousness
life is too short to postpone anything.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Nothing Says Summer Like...

Fresh tomatoes and cucumbers. 
Slice these up with some sweet onions, douse with a bit of olive oil and a bigger dash of red wine vinegar,salt and pepper. Heavenly. 
Or that doesn't suit your Southern soul spread a layer of mayo on white bread then add a thick slice or two of tomato, salt and pepper. This particular feast got me through many a painting classes in grad school. 
We've been trying to grow some tomatoes this year and we have some fine looking vines...but no 'maters.
These delicious specimens came from the farmer's market. I just might need to make another trip back there this week. Besides it's time to pick up some peaches 'cause I'm thinking homemade peach ice cream in the near future.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Comment Posting Problems

I've heard from a few people that they are not able to post any comments on my blog. If you don't mind, please post just a word or two for me to see if I have fixed the problem. Thanks so much.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Photoshop Love

This month I began an online class, Photoshop Essentials, with Kim Klassen. She makes everything so clear. Great videos. I have played around with my PSE software for over a year not realizing all the potential. I would definitely recommend taking a class with Kim. In fact she is beginning a new "Skinny Mini" free class soon so check it out. While you are there also sign up for her Texture Tuesdays. Each week she creates a texture to share which you can  download. Just one example of why I love the mixed media art community... so willing to share. Here's one photo I've been working on from the class.

The other is the same photo from the post "Two Tents" that I took in Ocracoke, NC. It has had a bit of manipulation plus a texture added. I am loving the idea of playing with images digitally and then using them in paintings and mixed media. Does anyone else do this?

Friday, June 24, 2011

A Paper Fashionista

Ok, I know this has nothing to do with art or art making. Well I might be able to segue from the paper dress fad of the 60's( sort of artsy) to the paper dress of June 23rd. I'll bet some of you can relate.

When school is over for the summer I usually begin my vacation making the rounds of various doctor offices. It is usually easier to get appointments at times other than after three o'clock. So my exam for a physical was on the date book for yesterday.

First I felt like I was taking a standardized test when I get there. They hand me three pages of information to fill out which is exactly the same as the information they already have but this time I get to BUBBLE IN the answers. So all that training in test administration was very valuable after all.

Next I'm sent to have the weight and height check. I have been trying to lose weight so that was down, blood pressure was down too, but I have also shrunk a half inch which I was not as happy about. Maybe she measured wrong. Then the nurse hands me the CUP. Wouldn't you know though that while trying to open that little handy wipe thingy, I drop it. In the toilet. So to heck with it. I did what I had to do and moved on.

This is where I become a fashionista. There on the examining table is a lovely, white, just for me....paper top and big paper towel. I know now how the tube inside the roll of paper towels feels. After wrapping myself up in all of this paper loveliness I looked like a giant roll of Bounty. Who the heck designs these things???  Can't we at least have a snap in the front of the "blouse"? Why not put elastic along the top of the giant towel? If it were designed to be open in the back at least one could get up for another magazine without having to readjust once you're back on the table. Perhaps this is where the new health care plan should begin. One more was freezing in there so I don't think this was any luxurious double ply outfit. At least there was a good outcome...seems I'm quite healthy.

Happy Weekend!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Two Tents

I was listening to someone talk about contentment. There are two kinds of tents, they say, contentment and discontent. Discontent is not necessarily bad. There are some things we should be discontent with such as injustice or racial prejudice for example. So this got me thinking. What is contentment for me? I truly do not believe it is about things. Although I am as guilty as anyone that has way more art supplies than I need. For me it is being out in nature, being with family and friends and creating my art. 

What makes you content?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Spring Fades and Summer Beckons

What happened to a week of spring break? Time is flying. I think I often get so busy with the general busyness of life I don't slow down to enjoy it like I should. I did spend some time at the beach with my parents over Easter which was nice since we had not been together for a while. As much as I want to see them more often, the more difficult it is to be really with them. Every little thing becomes a big thing. I am impatient. They are impatient. When did things change? They are so different from the way I have always known them. They have always been active and on the go. They are in their eighties now and slowing down a lot. I think I have just finally slammed into a wall called "Age and the Passage of Time". Will I need to parent them? How? So many questions. I am so thankful though to have my brothers, husband and other family for support. I know that even when life can be trying I am blessed.

 My husband has been taking lots of nature photos lately. I think he has a real eye for photography. Spring has been beautiful, my favorite time of year. We have had some nasty weather in my part of NC. One school in our county was destroyed in a tornado. However it has been awesome to see the community come together and help out where there is a need.

I did get to spend a couple of days at Art and Soul in Hampton, Va. Two of my classes were with Susan Lenart Kazmer who is wildly creative and has enough energy to get anyone inspired. I really enjoyed working on jewelry pieces that were outside of my usual design realm. My friend, Donna, and I go every  few years or so. It's a good venue and always fun to see and be around other artful souls.

Okay Murphy, say goodnight. 

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Post Artfest

Ahh...what a way to vacation. Several days to just create art, be with like minded people, and not to have any laundry or dust bunnies calling your name. I returned from artfest last week all excited to share what I did and ready to spend every spare minute painting or creating jewelry. It did not take long to be back into the ebb and flow of everyday life here. BUT, I have done some, actually more art work within the week than I usually do. All of my classes were wonderful. I thought each time I learned something I would think "just this is worth coming all the way here." Misty Mawn taught us to make some funky paintings but I think I learned mostly to loosen up and play with the lines and paint. Just to let it flow naturally.

I took a second class with Nina Bagley. What a sweet soul. It was wonderful to be in another class with her. She is so patient and willing to explain techniques over and over until you understand. The class was called the Necklace of Affirmations. How wonderful to know that when I need it I have only to read through these affirmations each day to remind myself of who I am and what I am about.

I have also admired Lynne Perella's work for a long time so I signed up for her "Foreign Intrigue" class as my third class. I have a few of the stamps she has designed and have always liked the way she uses bold colors and unique collage compositions. She is a great teacher that inspired a lot of confidence in what I am doing and affirmed that maybe continuing with my painting and mixed media art work is the way to go for me. Thanks to all of those that were there to teach and so graciously share their knowledge. I'll put up some photos of artfest soon.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Hurry Scurry

I have almost....yes almost finished my trades for ArtFest. I am getting awfully excited and I have been thinking about being there for months. Now to help host a baby shower, finish Bible study, make lesson plans for the sub next week, and pack! Packing should be no problem as packing my art supplies takes priority. I figure a pair of jeans and a couple sweaters...what else could I really need to wear? We'll see. I always over pack. If any sees me in the Seattle airport, I'll be the one with paint oozing out of my suitcase and bits of fluttering ephemera will be in a scattered in a trail where ever I go. I'm sure I'll have lots to tell when I return and loads of pictures.

Friday, March 4, 2011

So Much Art...So Little Time

This weekend will be dedicated to creating trade items for Art Fest. It's amazing how quickly it is coming up. I hope to get several ATC's made and maybe some charms to swap while I am there. I also have been working on designing business cards. I'm thinking of either going with Vista or Moo. The option of Moo Minis is great, but Vista is more affordable. Anyone have their favorites?
I'm struggling to come up with an idea that is not trite for this month's Sketchbook Challenge, "spilling over". I'll share when I decide on a few sketches. Given the stress of work lately I am finding I more and more want to draw, paint... just make art! So much so that I am dreaming of the day I leave full time work to focus on creating.  If you haven't seen it, there is a great article in the new Somerset Studio on Kelly Rae Roberts. Happy weekend!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Six More Weeks

I cannot believe in six weeks I'll be in Seattle. Being able to go to Art Fest this year has been the carrot I've chased to get me through the past few months. I was in Kelly Rae Roberts' Flying Lessons online class last summer. She told how Art Fest was what really got her to decide to become an artist and to take a leap of faith. ( I am paraphrasing of course) When I saw registration was open I decided I needed to take the leap and go...just go. Do you ever get an instinctual feeling that something wonderful is going to happen? That's the way I've felt lately. Like this is the beginning of what I've always wanted to do. Make art.
I had forgotten how much I really enjoy drawing and painting. I've been sketching for the Sketchbook Challenge and I find myself lost in it. Here is one sketch I did for the February theme of opposites.

Apples and Oranges
I'm working now on ATC's and other trades. I'll share later as I don't want to give away any surprises. I suppose I should also work on how to pack one suitcase with art supplies and a little bit of clothing.

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