Monday, October 29, 2012

bigger is NOT better. So there.

hi everyone.

First of all, i hope all of you who live on the east coast of the US stay safe these next few days... hurricane Sandy looks like it's packing a mean punch.

Here's to hoping things get back to normal quickly for all of you.
In the meantime, stay safe and warm and inside

a few little faces in my journal
and a wonderful Emerson quote.

and this little doodle... inspired by a Neil Young song i was listening to,
A man needs a maid. ;-)

I've always loved miniature things. Including paintings.
Bigger is not always better. ;-)

So this afternoon, i thought i'd do a mini painting,
and since i didn't have any small canvases on hand,
i did them on canvas paper.
3 x 3 inches. 

aren't they cute?
They were a lot of fun to do.

You'll find them for sale in my ETSY shop soon.

I have a few more ideas, so i'll be doing more tonight.

I hate that I've had so little time to visit your blogs lately...
I love being inspired by all the wonderful work out there,
so i look forward to a bit more down time.
I trust you're all still following your own hearts.

I've been working on my illustrated book.

I heard an author say the other day that her book took her 7 years to write
and it made me feel hopeful and less of a procrastinator. ;-)

I also heard this wonderful quote, and it reminded me of how important it is
to continue on our chosen paths, regardless of who approves or not.

It reminded me of the importance of surrounding ourselves
with people who believe in our dreams... 

Don't let anyone turn your sky into a ceiling.

Here's to always seeing sky.
Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

What happens when you don't bully art

hello friends.
Welcome to my imaginary world.
And in case you're wondering, no, i haven't even had any wine. ;-)

Just a few little fun doodles to get me in the mood.

...lines and watercolour

another good quote...

I haven't felt much like making art these days,
but i decided to play a bit with collage tonight.

The best decision i've made all week. :-)

It's funny how quickly i can go from a crappy mood
to a pretty good place, with nothing but art.

I began with a few pieces of collage from a magazine,
and as soon as i started adding the turquoise and white paint,
i could almost feel my mood lighten... soften... 
like burdens were being lifted.

Sometimes, we need space away from the art table.

I agree that art can help us through difficult times,
but I also believe that sometimes,
art must take a back seat to other things,
and patience is so important.

Trusting in the flow of things.

Art should not be forced.

Sometimes, what's needed is a walk in the woods,
or a good movie
or coffee with a friend
or a hot fudge chocolate sundae (yes, with peanuts, of course)
or a night on the couch with a good book,
or a good man,
depending on how lucky you are. ;-)

 Whenever i go through less creative periods,

i never feel like the well has run dry.

I always trust that when my heart is ready again,
i'll find my way to the drawing table,
and it'll happen,

It always does.

And with each brush stroke, or line, or piece of paper glued...
i breathe a little easier
and know that i am home again.

 As i was cleaning up the scraps of paper i had used for the collage,
i found this one
on the opposite side of the turquoise colour i had cut up.
It struck me very strange that the letters were cut up exactly as they are here.
(When i was cutting, i was looking only at the turquoise side!)

I don't paint flowers very often,
so these few words made me smile.
A reminder perhaps that I have stories to share.

That we all have stories to share.

Yes. We do.


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

All you need is love, and ginger carrot soup.

I'm a few days later than promised,
but I'm here.

Bring out the balloons. ;-)

I've spent the past few days doing what i can for my mother
who is living with cancer.

There's been a lot of feeling helpless around here lately,
and i'm learning that sometimes in life,
the only thing one can really do is love.

So i show my love with homemade carrot and ginger soup for mom... 

Mom and i have been talking about a lot of things lately...

I was born in the USA, along with my 2 brothers.
We moved with my parents to Canada when i was about 6 years old.
My parents are both Acadians and french Canadians.

When i was younger, i was confused about who I was.

When we lived in the US, we spoke french in the house,
but english as soon as we stepped out the door.
Was I American?

My parents and grandparents and their parents were Acadians...
Because my ancestors were Acadian,
was i Acadian?

We moved to Canada when i was young
and I quickly identified with Canada as my home.
Was i Canadian?

I may have been all of these things, but more than anything,
I was a human being.
That was enough for me.

I now realize that these things are so unimportant in life...

I was raised with love.

Nothing else matters, really.
At least not to me.

I often wish the world would stop bickering
about land
and race
and culture
and money
and politics
and differences...

So unimportant, in the grand scheme of things...

The painting in progress...

You know there's gonna be dots and swirls...
and fragile hearts.

Wishing you all a peaceful, healthy, happy week...

Monday, October 22, 2012

The sky and Lhasa de Sela

Illustration Friday: SKY

Being surrounded by seagulls here
makes it hard not to include them
in an illustration with a sky theme. :-)

I'll say more tomorrow, but for tonight,
i'll leave you with this beautiful song by the lovely Lhasa de Sela...
La Marée Haute (High Tide)

Friday, October 19, 2012

how nature always helps keep me in line

hi everyone! 
It's Friday here, a beautiful, sunny fall day. 

There's a lot of heaviness in the air for me during this time,
but i'm posting anyway.

I wanted to post earlier, but my heart just wasn't in it.
It still isn't, but i'm posting at least a little something
so you won't think i've run off with a circus freak or something.

Not that there's anything wrong with that...(wink wink)

Sometimes I want to paint or draw what i feel,
and other times (like here) i want to paint or draw someone else
who looks like they're feeling what i'm feeling.

A safer distance for me sometimes. :-)

This is pastel on paper.

There's just no way to feel good about seeing a loved one suffer.

It's important during difficult times to remind ourselves
of the good stuff.

So this morning, I went for a nice long walk in the cool morning air,
then I sat outside for a half hour with my coffee,
and listened to the chirping birds
and watched the leaves dance in the wind
and the squirrels chase each other around the yard.

My mind wanted to race to the bad stuff-
the worry
the illness
the why's and 
the what if's...

But i gently moved those dirty little thoughts over,
and focused on the squirrels and the birds,
and reminded myself that whatever happens,
i'll handle it, and that despite everything,
life is still good.

Sometimes, we need to look a little deeper for the good stuff,
but it's still there.

I hesitated to show you pics of my studio in my last blog post
because i always find it a bit chi chi poo poo (yes, it's a made up word) 
whenever i hear an artist talk about his or her studio.

Here's a little secret folks.

you don't need a studio to be an artist,
and having a studio doesn't MAKE you an artist. :-)

Making art makes you an artist,
not the space you do it in.

Not just TALKING about art, but making art.

For years, i painted on the kitchen table. I still do sometimes.
That's where i did this pastel. 

For years, i was without a space,
and it was totally ok.
For me, it really doesn't matter where i create,
as long as i have a little space somewhere
and i hope it doesn't matter to you either.

The cavemen had cave walls, and they still found a way to make art! ;-)

Here are a few pics i took yesterday, near my home.

Enjoy the view, and have a wonderful weekend!

this lone red tree just made me smile...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

big space, small space and burnt offerings

Here is my secret:
It's very simple.
It's only with the heart that one can see rightly.
What is essential is invisible to the eye.
-Antoine de Saint Exupéry - Le Petit Prince

I made no art last night,
so instead of sharing art,
i will share my space with you. :-)

Welcome to my studio/work space/thinking ground...

This is where i do a lot of my work.
(by the way, it's usually not this clean... i just cleaned it!)

It's where i read and write early in the morning,
and design and doodle during the day.

The evenings usually find me in my little blue room,
in a different part of the house, downstairs.

It's funny how this space just feels too big for me
at night.
Too big to paint.
Too big to feel cozy.

There's crap all over the floor,
but the thing i love most about this room
is the window. The sunlight.

I read somewhere that we are biologically wired
to go towards the light.

Isn't that interesting? It is to me.

Naturally, i think most of us would gravitate 
towards the window.

I surround myself with things that inspire me...
Do you?

artwork from others that i love.
I'm not great with getting things framed,
and i often end up with the art and messages
stuck on the wall with scotch tape. ;-)

But that's ok, as long as i can see them, they inspire me.

My chinese balls with the sound chimes,
for stress relief when i need it,
and these Chinese papers that I was going to use in my journal,
but then i learned that they are normally used as "burnt offerings"...

Whenever i think of burnt offerings,
i think of all those people who were burned to death as sacrifices to the gods.

They're GODS!! Surely, they already have everything they need, right? ;-)

You all must know by now that i refuse to be normal,
and that if i offer anything,
it won't be given in the form of fire...
so i'll be using them in my journal anyway. ;-)

More inspiration.

My Picasso print... (a bit fuzzy)
I just love the tenderness and melancholy in this...

And one of my own paintings, that i look at now and then,
as a reminder.

Remember to surround yourself with inspiration.
And don't let others define inspiration for you (including me!)
Define it your own way.
Inspiration is whatever moves YOU.

Thanks for hanging out with me here.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Illustration Friday and Robert Plant

hi everyone...

I'm linking this to Illustration Friday.

The word this week is WATER.

For me, water means ocean.

I love watching the waves... just like my little mismatched girl here.

She doesn't care whether her clothes match or not.
She's at the ocean - and when you're surrounded with such beauty
nothing else matters. 

And then, an attempt at a Robert Plant illustration
with Sharpie markers on glossy paper.

I sort of skipped a few pics for the steps in between.
Got too excited with the scribbling... ;-)

Whenever i use Sharpies on glossy paper
i get the urge to scribble. 

the marker just glides so easily on the page,
it feels like the drawing draws itself.

It's a very liberating way to draw now and then.
Very few set or defined lines... it's more about layers of color
and of course, scribbles

For those of you who live on another planet (giggle) -
Robert Plant was the lead singer in Led Zeppelin,
another fabulous band from the 60's and 70's.

I love Robert Plant as much today as i did back then.

Can you feel the love? ;-)

Have a great week folks.
Don't forget to feed the black dog.

Friday, October 12, 2012

when the whispers call... listen.

hi everyone.
I've missed you all. 

Despite difficult days - the sun still rises. 
And what a beauty it is... wouldn't you agree?

No adjustments made to the photo...
it was actually this yellow.

First of all, thank you.
From the deepest of my heart - thank you all,
for showing me
that you are there.

That you understand.

Mom comes out of the hospital today.

We never know for how long,
but none of us really know
whether we'll be here tomorrow or not, do we?

The more reason to take everything in while we can,
to taste everything
to touch everything
to see everything
to be grateful for what we have,
for who we have
for who we are...

and for sunrises and sunsets. 

When i went to the mail today,
i found this in my box
and it made me smile...

A wonderful gift of speciality papers...(chinese papers?)
from the lovely Angelia 
all in a beautiful hand painted envelope.

How precious is that?

I can't wait to use them in my journal
THANK YOU Angelia... xox

During the past few weeks,
I spent very little time in my studio.

My heart just wasn't in it.

And then a few days ago,
I began to feel that stirring inside...

the one that calls for me to make art,
to write,
to create something.

The one that gets more persistent
as every day passes...

The one that reminds me,
that despite what happens around me,
there is still something inside me
that that needs to be given
a voice
a color
a form...

and within 30 minutes - a new beginning...

only after i had it all on canvas did i notice
the hearts...

At least i see two hearts.

It's only the beginning and i'll keep you posted
as it progresses.

It was good to have the brushes in my hand again. :-)

Kurt is watching on the sidelines. ;-)

I'll leave you with a video from someone that i love,
Loreena McKennitt - one of my favorite Canadians. :-)

The words in this song hold a particular meaning.

Back in 1998, she tragically lost her fiancé, his brother,
and their best friend in a boating accident.

She said she would never perform or record again after this.

But I'm guessing she felt the same stirring inside,
calling her to make music,
to give her feelings a voice,
to create something...

I'm so grateful that she listened to the whispers...

Wishing you all a happy, healthy weekend.