Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Had a wonderful time this past weekend at Bellevue Festival of Arts-AMAZING!

This past Sunday Mike and I snuck away from the house for a little time to ourselves. (Thanks Devon for watching Grandma and the boys)   We headed for the Bellevue Festival of Arts.  It's a huge art festival that is held every year in Bellevue Washington, it takes up many streets around the mall and the Art Museum. It's one of my favorite places to go in the summer. Usually we take the boys but they start to get bored about an hour into it( kids can only look for so long).  This year Mike and I decided to go on our own so we could take it all in.  We spent over 3 hours walking around looking at all the booths. Let me tell you, there was colorful, beauty, inspiring, whimsy and even a little creepy everywhere you looked.  So many artist, so many booths!  There were, jewelry makers, oil painters, collage, metal works and the list goes on. Something for everyone.

It was so much fun looking at all the art with Mike. When we take the boys Mike is focused on trying to entertain them and rarely gets to looks at anything. This time he was along side of me walking through the crowds of people, entering into other worlds every time we stepped into an artists booth.
I even discovered a little something new about Mike and his taste in art. While I go for whimsy and maybe a little creepy, he usually goes for the more traditional type of art like landscapes etc's but this time he seemed to love the geometric shapes and bright pops of color.  I think it that 80's boy in him he loves pretty much everything about the 80's.   It was fun to have him show me something he liked, it's usually the other way around.  I especially loved having 100 percent of my husbands attention!
Talking about art, looking at art and just spending time with each other was just what I needed. I feel very blessed that I was lucky enough to marry someone who can enjoy something that I love even if he isn't into like I am and really engage in it.  I am lucky to have married my best friend!

Every year we go to the fair we let the boys pick out a new print to buy.   The boys made sure to remind us to bring them home a new print even if they were not going to be there to pick it out. Matthew has found a new interest in Hippo's (why? he say's they are funny looking and he likes their name) so when we saw the print called, "Hippopopulous" a water color creation by Enid Groves of Seattle we had to get it.  For Jackson, we found one of our favorite artist from the fair Noelle Dass.  www.noelledas.com  Noelle's art is whimsical, vibrant and fun.  A few years back we bought the boys tee-shirts from Noelle.  Jackson loves her piece called, "Must...Get..Ball!" He wears that tee-shirt all of the time.  So this year we decided to buy him the print.

In our journey around the fair I found an amazing and very friendly jewelry artist Lauri from spinglassbeads.com.  Her work was so beautiful that I had to have a necklace.  I love it and I am excited to wear an original piece from her. Lauri makes her art by spinning glass canes by hand over an oxygen-infused torch. Anything made with a torch is so cool I had to have one! Here is a picture of my necklace.

After buying the necklace we continued exploring the festival.  This year I also purchased a print from one of my favorite artist Juli Adams.   www.juliadams.com   Juli's art is whimsical colorful and intriguing.  I love her characters and how she brings them to life. Her medium is oil paint.  I really want to try it someday, I just love how vibrant the colors are.

While a lot of the artists are quiet and don't say a lot there were a few artist that their personalities stood out just as amazing as their art work.  Brian McGuffey was so nice to talk to. He told me all about his process with his art, how he gets it to look that way it does etc. It was amazing to listen to him describe how he creates such beautiful pieces. Someday I am going to buy something of his!  Check out his work at www.brianmcguffey.com.  It's amazing, so many layers! I couldn't stop looking at it.
Another stand out artist that we met was Paul Nzalamba. nzalamba-artworks.com. Paul is such a great story teller not only with words but in his art too.  Paul told us the stories behind some of his works and Mike and I were entranced.  Paul is one of East Africa's most respected batik masters. His work is amazing.  Someday I will own one of his prints too!
Both Brian and Paul were such a pleasure to talk to and their passion and amazing spirits shine so bright you can't help to want to take home something they have created.

Lisa Telling Kattenbraker another batik artist was there too. I didn't get to meet her but every year I love to go by her booth and look at her amazing art.  www.lisauntitled.com

A couple other artists that I want to mention is Justin Hillgrove of Imps and Monsters.  www.impsandmonsters.com.  Love, love, love his creatures! Another artists work that I love is Lee White.  www.leewhiteillustration.com Love Lee's whimisical illustrations.  Oh! and one more, these guys are a duo and their work was amazing. Stephen Stum and Jason Hallman of Stallman.  They use paint and canvas as sculpture. You have to check them out amazing stuff.  stallmanstudio.com.

So there you have a little taste of what I found and loved at this years festival.  It's such an amazing (yes, I used the word amazing again!I can't help it, it was truly amazing) experience to be able to walk around for hours looking at different artist, their passion and their creations.  I can't wait till next year.  Maybe instead of looking I will be selling? Hmm you never know.

Happy Creating!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Love Seattle Summer Nights!

What a beautiful sunny day it has been today. It was in the upper 80's yet again! I'm telling you there is no better place to be on a sunny day then the Pacific North West.  The sky is so blue.

Right now I am outside on my back deck doing what I love, sitting by the fire drawing with a glass of wine while listening to music. My sweet faithful dog Milo is right by my side.

Right now this girls journey is a pleasant one.  Life is good!!!  Happy Creating!

Monday, July 22, 2013

I have been having fun creating.

Lucky me! I got to spend over 6hrs straight in my studio creating last week. Time really does fly when you are doing what you love. I will say it didn't start out that way, I think I put aside and or through away at least 3 or 4 pieces until I got into my grove. A glass of wine and some Florence and the Machine always seems to help me enter my creative zone.

I have been really liking more simplified pieces lately. Pencil and a pop of color!  I have been inspired by an artist that I found on Etsy Joanna Haber http://www.etsy.com/shop/ABitofWhimsyArt. I just love her art!   I think I might explore pencil and a pop of color.  Knowing me next week I will be back to tons of layers!

The first piece is pencil only. The next I added a pop of red water color. The last one I call, "Kiss Kiss". This is my rendition of a picture I found in a fashion magazine. I used ink and water color.  I will be adding them to my Etsy shop for purchase. I think I will make some necklaces with these too!

Hope you like what you see!

Happy Creating!

Pencil and water color
 Pencil, water color and ink

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Summer fun project....Kid friendly Batik.

I wanted to share with you a fun project that is very kid friendly.

Kid friendly Batik, uses clear Elmer's glue instead of hot wax.  This sample I used is a canvas bag that I picked up at Michaels for under $5 but this can be done on tee-shirts, aprons, muslin,or any white or off white fabric. 

What is Batik?
Traditional Batik, a decorative art form from the island of Java, uses wax as a dye resist. The artisan draws a pattern directly on fabric with melted wax. The wax creates resist patterns where dye is not absorbed.

Items needed:

  1. Some type of white canvas, bag, tee-shirt etc.
  2. Clear Elmer's washable glue.
  3. Fabric paint or you can use watered down acrylic paints.
  4. Stencils or you can free hand draw with the glue.
  5. Sink with running water to wash out the glue when finished.

1. Lay your canvas on a flat surface. (Note: If you are making a tee-shirt or something that you don't want the back side to get glue on it, put a piece of wax paper inside to protect the back side but will be easy to remover once the glue is dried.)  Once the glue is dried on the front turn it over and continue to make your design on the back.

The glue will be used as a resistance where ever you put the glue the paint will not show. 

Here I used the glue with peace stencils. I also drew flowers and dots free hand. You can make any design you like, just remember that where ever the glue is will be white or the color of the canvas when you have finished this project. 

You don't need to use a lot of glue, just enough to cover. If your child put globs of glue on it that's ok it will just take a little longer to dry and a little more washing/rubbing to get the glue off.

2. Once the glue is dried you can spray paint like I did with fabric paints. If you don't have fabric paints you can use watered down acrylic paints in a spray bottle or just paint straight on the canvas with a paint brush.

Cover your canvas with the paints and let dry. This is were you can get very detailed if you like. With most batik fabrics there are many colored used.  For kids a keeping it simple with only a few works.

3. When the paint is dry take the canvas to the sink and rinse. Use your fingers to rub off the glue. You will be able to see and feel the glue. I will be shiny and tacky.

4. Let dry and TA DA! You have a Batik style canvas that was simple, safe and fun for the kids.

If you try this, please post pictures I would love to see them. Enjoy your summer!

Happy Creating!