Monday, December 31, 2012

A final Post for 2012

I can't believe it's New Year's Eve! This year went by so quickly. As I sit here and write this post I think back to what progress I have made with my art and it brings a little smile to my face.
I had big plans for 2012 and my art, the problem was life gets in the darn way! So many things I wanted to do but didn't get done. If only if!  I am going to be nice to myself and not focus on what I didn't do but what I did do.

This was an amazing year long class with amazing teachers and a great group of people to share your art and life with.  I have signed up for 2013 and I highly recommend it to anyone who would like to learn from some great teachers and have some fun.

  • Entered into my first juried art show @ Evergreen State Fair
So this was a scary one for me but I did it. I entered three pieces and all three received first place! I was even asked to do a demo at the fair.  That was so much fun, people walking up watching me paint and asking me questions. I loved it.

  • Said goodbye to heading up the Art Docent program for my Son's elementary school.
After chairing the Art Docent position for over 4 years it was time to let it go and focus on making art myself and working towards my goals that I set.  I am still an art docent in Jackson's class and I am getting ready to work with the kiddo's on their projects for Gallery Night and the school auction.  I will be posting pictures of the art pieces we will be working on and how we did it. They are a second grade class but the project can be done by any age. Say tuned for the lesson and plan.

  • Started my Blog
This is new to me and not as easy as I thought it would be to keep posting. Again life gets in the way and I didn't post as much as I wanted to but I did post some. Goal for 2013 a weekly post.

  • Finished the dining room remodel
Started in August and are almost finished at the end of December!  Mike and I put in new floors, painted it a sunny yellow, added new window treatments and a new chandelier.  I am putting the finishing touches up and putting away the china. Oh, and the new dining room remodel is all because Mike's Grandma gave me her china. It's amazing! It didn't go well with what I had before so I had to change everything to make them work! ha.

  • I worked very hard on giving up "Perfection"
My Perfectionist rears her ugly head in almost everything I do.  This year I worked so hard on letting go of everything has to be perfect.  The thing that got me was watching my boys with their homework, art, music, sports and most everything they were doing they would be struggling with not being perfect!  It broke my heart to see the boys stress so hard with making things just right that it honestly freaked me out! I knew I had to make a change or my boys were going to end up as an Adult like me never happy with what she gets or does because she is always striving for perfection. 
Have you ever read any books by Dr. Kevin Leman?  http://www.drleman.com/store/The Birth Order book was the first one I read.  It was such an enlighting book on how our birth order in our family can effect how we act and view life.  Being a first born, from an unhealthy family has caused me to be a perfectionist and many other little quirks in life.
Watching my boys and older daughters struggle with perfection and other things really made me want to set a good example for them and the first thing I needed to get over was having to be PERFECT!
I will say just letting that go has been amazing! Now it's not like the perfectionist wakes up but when she does I can recognize it and I put her right back to sleep.
Jackson's teacher has a great saying that we use in our house and that is, " Practice makes Permanent"  Another one by Tony Horton, " Do your best and forget the rest" These are words that my family and I are doing our best to live by.

  • Taught my first after school art class at Maywood Elementary. I had over 60 kids in two classes and boy I learned what worked and what didn't.  I am looking forward to doing this again this year and I am hoping to do a mini summer workshop out back in my studio. 

These are just some highlights of 2012.  After putting together tons of goals for 2012 I realized thanks to my Husband that I am a baby step kind of girl. I can't and won't jump in head first into anything in life and that is OK as long as I am progressed towards my goals. 

So what am I putting on my bucket list for 2013?  MORE BABY STEPS!

  • Continue making art
  • teach a few art classes for kids
  • write in my blog every Friday night
  • open up an Esty shop.
  • working on my skills by taking online classes like Life Book.
  • Exercising! That has been something I have been lacking in and I really need to take care of myself.  3 days a week to start. Not too hard to do right?
  • Writing up and posting the art lessons I do in the classroom.
  • Continue working on not being a perfectionist.
  • Enter another juried art show
  • send in some art to Somerset Studio in hopes to be published! Even a little spot would make my year!
  • spending more quality time with my family.  Less working on the house and more time spent hiking, exploring and creating with my family.
So with baby steps I will strive to do my best to accomplish some if not all of my goals for 2013.
What are you goals? I would love to hear from you about what you wish to accomplish this coming new year!

Take care and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Cotton Candy Girl

Something I was working on in LB 2012.  Cotton Candy Girl was created with Ady Alamanza's lesson The Little Witch.  She isn't a witch but she does look like she has a little attitude!
I am also working on a piece from Ady's class, "Dreaming of Klimt" http://dolldreams.ning.com/
Have the drawing done now I have to work on the color. If I can ever find time to clean my studio I might be able to work on it again. I am such a messy artist!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

In Time......

I have been spending some time working steam punk/whimsy themes.  I used many different media's to make these, acrylic, pencil, ink, water color crayons and wax.  I also used some steam punk stickers that I found from Jolie.  Oh and a few drops of glitter (got to have the glitter!)

It is finally looking like fall here in the Pacific NW and that makes me feel like putting my sweats and big sweater on, grabbing a cup of tea and heading to my studio to create.  I am hoping to spend some more time creating, lately life hasn't let free any of my time. I have a few things I have started and I am hoping to get to work on them some more this coming weekend.

Thanks for stopping in to check out my blog! Have a creative happy fall day!
xo


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Oh really!

Waiting patiently at the Dr.s office. So I snapped this shot of Matt.

I love to take pictures of cute things!


I really love to take pictures especially of cute things and there is nothing cuter than Jackson ready to play football!

Lifebook lesson. Week 35

I just finished this whimsy little Angel from week 35 lesson in Life Book.  Kylie Fowler was the teacher for this lesson. The envelope has a little secret note written by me to me reminding myself about the good qualities in me and in my art.  So the days my Lil Demon decides to raise her head I will grab this little note and read it, in hopes to put her back to sleep!

Looking at her, she kind of looks like me as a kid. Well a cartoon kid maybe. I had stringy brown hair that loved to fly around and never stay in place no matter how many times a day my Grandma would brush it. My lips were big (still are). Here eyes are green and mine are brown but they are big like hers.  I think the little girl in me brought her pencils and crayons out to play!

I drew another one and it reminds me of my Sister. I named this one Lucy but maybe it should be Lesa and the other Dawn! I'm sure my Grandma would have agreed that we were her Lil Angels!

Finished... Timeless


I just love the new Louis Vuitton ads. Vintage style with big hats! Fun!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

What I am working on today

I have started a new piece. Here is the substrate all prepped with papers and paint. I started my sketch of a fashion model. I am really loving the Louis Vuitton ads with the vintage scenes and big hats. If you ever need some inspiration for your art pick up Harpers Bazaar!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What I am working on right now......

Today I spent the whole day sitting in a court room for jury duty!  With lots of time on my hands I did some drawings. Here is the start of two new pieces. I am excited to see what journey they take me on.
I think I am going to give her some bright red hair and have this color scheme in fall colors.

Here is a new butterfly. Not sure what I will be doing with this one.  I think I will work on it some more tomorrow when I sit again for jury duty.

Cute pics

I have been playing around with my camera again. Haven't do that in a while. Gotta love when you have cute models to work with! Matthew and Jackson

Journey to the Fair an UpDate

This past Sunday I did my art demonstration at the fair.  I was scheduled for Sunday from 2-6pm. I have never done anything like this before and had some butterflies the morning of.  I think the butterflies were for the unknown and the "Oh no!,what supplies do I bring?"  Being a mixed media artist means I like to use all kinds of supplies when I create. So how the heck was I going to bring my whole studio with me?

When I create a piece, I start out with an idea and then I let my supplies direct me, with the demo I needed to be more planned out but I didn't know how I was going to do that.  I woke up that morning, yes I waited till the day of to get everything ready. With work, kids, camping and just my life in general I really didn't have much time to plan.  I grabbed a cup of Joe and off to my studio I went. I spent oh, like two hours trying to figure out what I would bring. When I finally figured out what I HAD to bring with me I set it all up outside my studio door and called my husband Mike to load it up into the car for me. Oh, my sweet sweet Husband! He took one look at all I wanted to bring and I could tell he wanted to say that it was way too much but he just smiled and started to grab the stuff. I could see the look on his face and told him to be honest with me if it was too much, and in a ever so sweet voice (trying oh so hard not to freak me out, cause he knows that I was right on the edge of freaking!) he said, "yes, Honey it's a lot of stuff".  So I took some stuff out reduced it to now 4 bags (ha) and off we went.

We arrived at the fair and it was jammed packed. I had no clue where to go so we ended up parking in the red parking lot and that one just happened to be very far away!  I opened the trunk and decided that I still had way too much stuff and took what I thought I would need forsure this time and loaded up my husband and two boys with bags of supplies and off we went.

While we were waiting in line to get into the fair my 12 year old son Matthew (aka. Mr. Touchy Pants) decided that the latch on the container that was housing  my stamps would be fun to lift up.   When he flipped the latch up the lid came off and down went all my stamps and ink pads!  The crowd went "ooooh, oh no" and Matthew hurried to pick them up saying sorry over and over! Luckily I love him.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We picked up the stamps and threw them back into the box and I gave it to Mike to carry. We made it to the exhibition hall without dropping anymore stuff.  We had to wait to set up so Jo Jo another demonstrator could finish up.  The boys were being so helpful so we decided to go get them a shaved ice.  At this point my Inner Demon decided to speak up.  She ranted about how this was a bad idea and what person that was coming to the fair would even care to look at my work let alone want to watch me make it! They want rides, food and fun!   She wanted us to leave that instant but luckily my Inner Conscience piped up and told me how rude it would be to just leave and not work the time I said I would do.  So guilt overrode fear and I headed back to set up.

I am so glad that my Inner Conscience piped up because it was such a pleasant experience! I settled in and got out some of my supplies and started working on a piece that I had started a couple of nights ago.
 
As I started to paint my girls people would walk by and smile at me, looking at my finished work on the table next to me and the piece I was working on.  Then came along Mackenzie. She was a 9 year old girl holding a red blow up ball.  Mackenzie and I painted and talked. We talked about her kitty, her family and art.  I think it was a least an hour Mackenzie hung out with me easing my fears.  (I really love painting with kids!) Mike and the boys went out to ride some rides and I continued to paint. 
I had great feedback from the crowd.  I even had someone ask if my steampunk butterfly was for sale. ( I have to get the Etsy shop up and running!)
 
I  met a really sweet young poet. She loved my art and I look forward to reading hers some day. I hope she sends me a poem that she has written! 
 
All in all my art and myself were very well received and there were way more people that came through the hall to look at all the great art than I thought there would be. 
 
My Journey to the Artland, is moving again nice at a steady pace with enough detours and stops to allow me to learn and experience the fun of it all. 
 
I was thinking after each journey post I will finish it off with lessons learned so that maybe if someone is reading my blog and is new to the art world like me they might read and get a little something that I learend and it might will help them with there experience of just starting out.  Here are my lessons learned from the road to the fair.
 
  1.  If doing a demo or traveling with art supplies have a idea of what you want to work on! Don't feel the need to take your whole studio with you even if it is sooooo tempting to do so.  Your Husband might not want the workout lugging your stuff to and from your car! Thanks Honey!
  2.  
  3. Invest in a wagon, or folding cart. Something to load up your stuff but compact enough to keep in your car.
  4.  
  5. Even the smallest venue (Saturday Market, Fair, local art show etc.) can be such a great start to getting you and your art out in front of the world.  It feels scary putting yourself out there but believe in yourself and what you do cause if you don't no one else will.
  6.  
  7.  Give yourself a goal even if it's just a little one. Each time you meet your goal it allows you to move a little further down the road. 
  8.  
  9. Most importantly tell that Inner Demon inside your head to SHUT UP!  Be brave and head onto that rode with your eyes wide open. You can learn from every moment even the not so great ones.


Now I know what the animals at the fair feel like, I look like a caged animal! Ha
I made this for my dining room. I am doing a french country kind of style in there.

 

My Steampunk Butterfly was very popular with the fair crowd.
 
P.S. I forgot to mention that the art pieces I entered into the fair won two first place and one second! I I was very excited.



Sunday, August 12, 2012

A few new pieces that I have made for Life Book

Steampunk Butterfly

Bad Kitty

Owl? or Penguin?
Jackson says it's a owl and Matthew say's it's a Penquin.

Off to the Fair

I did it! I was brave enough to enter some of my art into a contest.

Wow was that kind of scary. I love so much to create but that nasty Inner Demon lets me know all of the time that what I make is not good enough! Thanks to my sweet friend Cindy who pushes me to be brave I did it! Three pieces. Two into the mixed media and one into the special contest. This years theme for the Fair is, "Get your Squeal on.. Race to the Fair" So I made a cute pig in a race car for the contest. When it's over the pig will find it's new home at my Sister's house.

I have made the pig for my future niece or nephew whomever it will be. They are adopting and I couldn't be more excited for them. They live on a ranch with pigs, cows, chickens and a bunch of other rescued animals that have somehow lucked out to find my Sister. ( I am sure she would say it's the other way around).  Eric and Dawn love to watch Nascar so what would be better than a pig in a race car!

So here is some pictures of my most precious Master Pieces, three of my four children holding my art that went to the fair.

Oh and the Superintendent for Fine Arts at the fair liked my art and asked me if I would do a demonstration at the fair! I am excited and nervous at the same time.  My Journey into the Artland is picking up speed and I am loving it!

What else I am loving is Tam's Life book!  I have learned some great new techniques and I am part of a amazing art community!  I will for sure sign up for Life Book 2013. You can click on the link to her website on my page.

Off to enjoy the summer sun in Seattle ( enjoy it while we can) with some great friends!



Friday, April 13, 2012

What has been happening

OK, so blogging isn't an easy task when you work full time and have a family!  I have managed to make some time to make some art which makes me happy but the blogging thing hasn't seemed to make it's way into my schedule .  Here are some of my pieces that I have made with willowing's Life Book class.  I just love this class! It's so much fun and I love how I get to learn from some of my favorite artist/teachers!  This week I am going to be working on a mini lesson from Jane Davenport (LOVE her work!)  It's working with prisma color pencils and blender solution.  Fun!

Tomorrow I am moving my art studio back to the little house out back and Devon (my Daughter) is coming back in the house and taking over the room that was my studio. I can't believe how much stuff I collect!  I am truly addicted to art supplies!  My Husband just loves that about me ;)

At the end of the month I will be teaching my first after school art class to my son's elementary school.  I am excited to do so.  We had 52 kids sign up! Way more than we thought would so we created two class times.  We are going to be making insoluble art!  Liquid water color and oil sealed in a laminate type of stuff. Hopefully not too messy but a lot of fun. I will take pictures and post them.

For now, I will attempt to blog more about what I have been doing in my journey to the Art land. 

Here are some of my recent pieces I have created.

Thanks for stopping by.
xoxo
Lesa



Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The beginning....

I always loved to be creative/crafty.  I could almost always come up with a crafty idea on how to make this or that.  It wasn't until my son Matthew started kindergarten that I discovered I had a passion for art. 

I remember it was open house at the school and I wanted to volunteer for his class and they had a sign up sheet with all the things you could do and I saw art docent.  Art Docent? I thought, that can't be too hard. Just give the kids some art supplies and make some cute crafts.  Was I wrong! What an art docent does is bring a little art history to the classroom and teach the kids different techniques and uses of different mediums.  Needless to say I freaked out!  After my panic attack I calmed down ( I think with a glass or two of wine) and I thought to myself, it can't be that hard they are just kindergartners.  They don't know that I don't know a thing about art history!  The great thing about the Art Docent program in our school district is that you have everything you need to teach the lesson.  They provide the prints, with a brief history about the artist and the art and they give you a art lesson to go with the project.  They even provide the supplies.  So really anyone can do it regardless of their artistic abilities.   Here's the link to the Art Docent Program website. It's an amazing program that is headed up by the school district but volunteers teach the art lessons.

http://www.nsd.org/education/components/scrapbook/default.php?sectiondetailid=60413&sc_id=1170354171%2520 

That first year was a blast! I learned about so many amazing artists and their work along with the kids.  It was so much fun.  I do remember thinking to myself that I could keep doing this with Matt's classes until 3rd grade cause my abilities could carry me about that far.  One of the coolest things about being a Art Docent is the kids think you are a total ROCK STAR!  They get so excited when they see you come into the class, they know it means a fun time playing with paints and what not.

So for the next few years I focused on learning about artist and their work.  I played around with supplies too.  One time I was scheduled to teach a lesson about the artist Fredrick Remington and his piece called, "Touch Down, Harvard vs Yale" and I had to teach the kids quick gesture sketching and the lil monster in me came out in full force making it clear that I had no idea how to draw let alone sketch!  Looking back at the lesson now I laugh cause it was a easy lesson but of course my lil monster put in all the self doubt he could muster up and threw me into a panic attack!  For the entire week before I practiced and practiced and tried my best to draw a man's profile running with all the details and really all I need to do was a quick sketch, no details, but the perfectionist in me wasn't going to let that happen. My son Matt could see how nervous I was to teach this and in his sweet boy way he tried to comfort me and tell me how great it looked.  I told myself that I didn't have to be prefect and it would be nice for the kids to see that an adult isn't always perfect too.  I showed up with my drawings in hand and taught the lesson about the artist and the print. Then it was time to put my drawing under the document camera for the class to see. To my surprise I heard lot's of "wows" and "ahhs" from the kids. One kid said to me, " You can really draw!"  I looked over at Matthew and he had the biggest smile on his face and so did I!  That day a few things clicked in my head, the first was I was really going to try had not to be so critical with myself and my art I make.  I was going to BURY that lil monster for sure!  The second was I wanted to learn how to draw!

my first work




I made these in Traci's class


With in no time, I kicked my husband out of his office (he never used it anyway)  that I had created for him. It's a little mini house in our backyard and I turned it into my art studio (Second from the Sun Studio).  I had always admired water color and ink drawings so I bought some water color, pens and other supplies and set up my space.  I can remember the first time sitting at my table with the music playing and just staring at all my yummy supplies ( yes, I am addicted to art supplies, but that is another blog posting) and having no clue where to start!  So I just started to play.  My first stuff was not very happy stuff, a lot of negative things from my past seem to come out in my work and it didn't make me happy.  Looking back I know I needed to get that stuff out and for whatever reason I'm sure it helped, but I didn't want to spend my time making sad art.  I wanted to make happy art! Stuff that made me smile.  I started scanning YouTube for artist and their how to videos. I couldn't believe how many amazing artists were out there sharing their talents. You could get a little lesson on almost anything your heart desired.  That is were I came across my first Favorite artist/teacher Traci Batutista and her workshops http://creativityunleashed.ning.com  The first class I took from her was creative doodling. It was so much fun and I learned a lot about layering and making backgrounds and of course doodling in my art.  I loved her Glam Girl Faces they are sketchy, colorful and fun.  I realized then that I loved to draw faces especially girly doll faces!

One day my son Matthew and I were goofing around on YouTube looking for more artist when we came across this pink haired girl with her dog that had a matching pink wig! Matt and I watched her silly video and laughed a lot at this intriguingly funny but crazy (in a good way) girl.  She definitely made me want to check out her art.  If you don't know who she is yet let me give it away. Her name is Suzi Blu http://suziblu.ing.com. Boy did she open up my world to mix media! Suzi can draw the cutest lil doll faces but then she can throw out an amazing more realistic deeper/darker girl face and much more.  I was hooked! Her teaching style was stress free and fun. My online classmates were and still are so kind and supportive, what an amazing community.  I have met some really amazing artists online and have had the privilege to see their work.

not so good! UGH the eyes!

I liked this one!
I started with Suzi's Mermaids class and then went on to portrait drawing class.  Looking back at some of my first painting all I can say is I needed a lot more practice! There are a few that I am still proud of. Those first three years I can say were fun and frustrating at the same time.

Tam artist and creater of http://willowing.ning.com interviewed one of my favorite artist Jane Davenport http://janedavenport.com  and she had said in the interview something like," we all don't start out like Picasso.  WE go through good and bad, up and down. Through practice we get better."  She is so right, when it comes to getting better at anything in life PRACTICE, PRACTICE!

Flash forward to today. Matthew is a 6th grader and YES I am his class Art Docent.  I also docent for my lil guy Jackson's 1st grade class too.  For the past three years I have co-chaired the Art Docent program at the school as well!  Today I am working on pursuing my passion for creating and getting ready to open a etsy.com site as well as have a booth at my very first street fair this August!
Here is some of my newest stuff:











Thanks for taking the time to read my first posting of my Journey into the ArtLand.  This is the beginning and I hope you follow with me along the way to new discoveries that I am excited to share with you. 
Artfully yours,
Lesa