Thursday, December 31, 2009

Art Journal January

My dear friend Milliande is going to be taking us on a Journal Journey again this year.
I am going to try to play along, if you want to join us, please click the picture below, and we can all create a fun art journal for January!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Happy Feet

One last Christmas present.
My sister asked me awhile back if I would be willing to crochet and bead some socks for her daughter, like the ones I made when my girls were little. I said - SURE! I would love too. I didn't realize that I wouldn't be able to find thread, needles, and beads in all my recent moving in. So here I was with a project and Christmas approaching quickly.
I didn't make it in time for the big day, but I have spent the last couple of days finding all the stuff I needed, crocheting the edgings, and adding beads.
I took them over to their house today all wrapped in a package. My little niece was so excited to be able to open another present, and when she saw what they were she was so happy! The joy of a four year old is so precious. She ran around and showed everyone what she had received, then she decided today was a good day to try them on. Fancy feet we call them. :)
She even picked the pair that matched her clothes with no help from anyone! The girl is going to be a diva, I can just picture it now.

Here is a couple of picts of her new Fancy Feet.

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Little Festive

My girls REALLY wanted to decorate gingerbread houses this year, and now that they are teenagers, I feel like I can let them loose, with the warning that If You Make the Mess- You Clean It Up!
They were so good! I gave them each their frosting packets, a ton of candy, and they went nuts.
(They even cleaned up when we were done.)
I am surprised that there wasn't more on the floor, but they did remarkably well.
Here are the houses...
The left one is Abby's, the middle- mine, and the right one is Quincy's

Here is Quincy standing on her chair trying to press the last of the very thick pink frosting out of the tube, to make flowers. She must have needed a little more push than she could get sitting down. lol

This is Quincy's finished house.

This is Abby's finished house.

And mine, as you can see it is rather simple. I think it is too hard to stay focused.
So instead I was looking at the lights and ornaments on the tree, when...

A little visitor came by and landed in the tree outside my window. This birdie was so cute filling up on berries. I wish we had more birds come visit, as the trees are just chock-full of berries... plenty to share.
I can't wait til Spring when the new birds come and partake from the feeders. I think we moved in just a little too late in the year for them to recognize the feeders before it got cold. I will keep them stocked with seed just in case some stop by, maybe they will tell their friends. :)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Spiders

The Legend of the Christmas Spider

If you’ve ever gazed at the beautiful tinsel sparkling on your Christmas Tree and wondered who came up with idea of decorating the tree in this way, wonder no longer.

According to German legend, it signifies a Christmas miracle from many years ago. The day before Christmas, as the small house in Germany underwent its Christmas Eve cleaning, the resident spiders, not wanting to be swept up with the broom, hid in the attic. When nightfall came and all were settled into bed, the spiders crept downstairs. To their amazement, in the middle of the living room was a beautifully decorated Christmas Tree. They were so excited that they ran all over the tree. They scurried up the trunk and leapt from branch to branch. Unfortunately they had left their mark. A gray spider web now covered the whole tree.

When Weihnachtsmann, also known as Father Christmas, arrived he was amused to see the tree covered in spider webs. Now he faced a dilemma. The family would be disappointed to see their beautiful tree all wrapped in the webs, but the spiders were so pleased with their handiwork that he did not have the heart to take it down. What could he do?He thought and thought and came up with a wonderful solution. He turned all the webs into beautiful shimmering silver strands. When the family awoke on Christmas Morning they ran to the living room and saw their tree sparking and glittering in the morning sun. Their delight was unsurpassed. They had never seen such a beautiful tree. Only the mother knew that a true Christmas miracle had occurred overnight.

From that day on tinsel became a treasured ornament for trees all over the world. Those who know the legend make sure that they give thanks to the industrious spiders by hanging a beautiful silver or gold spider ornament in a prominent location on their tree.

* * * * * * * * * *

I made a bunch of beaded spiders this year for all my fellow Fireflies on Milliande Ning site, it was a ton of fun putting them all together and making each one unique.

This is the collection of spidies that I finished.

Close-up of one of the spiders.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas gifts

Lisa Vollrath from Ten Two Studios and Go Make Something is giving a free download every day til Christmas!
Check out her link to the Christmas downloads HERE! (or the link on the right side of my page)
Merry Christmas from Lisa! Gotta love her!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Christmas Wish giveaway!

Milliande is making a Christmas wish come true.
Check out the details at

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Another Journal Page

Here is another journal page I made this fall, but somehow missed it when I was uploading photos.
This spread was for Susan, and her topic was dragons, princesses and other magical things.
I just love the dragon, and his glittery fire :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

November - Already?

Wow! Time flies when you are having fun, or not.
I have been one busy beaver lately.
We are moved into our new home, but slowly getting unpacked. I just want everything in it's place. My husband packed the silverware, and he doesn't remember what box he packed it in, so we are still using what happened to be in the dishwasher on the day of the move. ARG.
I know it will show up soon, as we are running out of places to look.

I have managed to squeeze in a couple of art journal pages, the first topic was Water. I chose the frozen variety. LOL
It is done with only fabrics, and a few snowflake gems.

The second topic was Heart Garden, and it is done with light weight Spackle that you get at the hardware store. I lightly brushed it through the holes of a couple of stencils to get the dimensional flowers, and then I colored them with chalks.
The arch is out of a shimmery handmade paper. I just love the expression on the little flower girls face.

Monday, September 28, 2009

2 more Art Journal Pages

I know, I should be packing boxes for the move, but I am still lagging behind schedule, and just can't bring myself to not create.
One of these pages I did a week or so ago, but just haven't made the time to put it up. The other one I just finished, and am waiting to send it to make sure it is completely dry.

First is a page for Marion, her topic was School. I went a bit of a different way by going with Education and Knowledge. It is a little quirky, but that is a style that I know Marion loves, so I hope that she likes them.

Second is for Sharron, her topic was Italian Affair. When I think of Italy, I think of stone buildings, and dreamy fields of grapes. I cut out the window of the right page, and added a picture of a castle like building, and then added groups of grapes, which I then covered in Crystal Lacquer to give them that shiny plumpness.
The quote: "A hundred years can not repair a moment lost" is an old Italian Proverb, which to me tied in the dreamy aspect of the piece.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Tribute to Jackson Pollock

Getting some more art journals done, I was able to incorporate the same subject into two different books.
(remember to click on images to see them larger)
The first book is Karen's and it is on Freedom.
I chose to do Jackson Pollock, because his outlook on art is that of expression, not necessarily completion.
He created his works out of feeling, not a predetermined idea of what it would end up like.
To me I feel that is 'Freedom in art'. I created these pages without any idea of what they would look like when they were finished, and it was an amazing experience.

The second journal belonging to Abby was titled 'American Idol', and we were to incorporate someone we look up to into the pages, so I was able to stay with the Jackson Pollock theme.
Even though he grew up in New York, he was born here in my home town of Cody, WY.

Both journal entries were done with acrylic paint. Some thinned with water, and painted on with a straw, a stick, and a paintbrush. Something that Jackson often did was use unusual items as 'brushes'.

The fist pages for Karen were done with pastel colors on a black background. (directly in the book) Then the paint was let to dry for 2 days. (it's thick in places) Then I printed actual works from Jackson Pollock onto Canvas paper, and then heat set and sealed them so they would not smear, then adhered them around the quote from him.
The quote reads:
'I like to express my feelings rather than illustrate them. There is no accident just as there is no beginning and no end...The painting has a life of it's own.'
Jackson Pollock, New York, 1951.
The second pages for Abby were done with earth tones, on a metallic brown linen texture cardstock. Let to dry, and then I added a transparency where I put Jackson's photo, name and life dates on as an overlay to my painting. On the right side, I added a print of his painting 'The Key' done on canvas paper and sealed, matted with the same metallic brown cardstock.
I was really happy with the way they turned out, and how different they look, when still using some of the basic drip technique.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Getting in some art.

I have squeezed in a little art amongst the chaos, here and there, when I can. I am still WAY behind schedule, but I am trying to catch up.
Here are just some of the things I have accomplished over the last several months.

(remember you can click on the images to see them larger~enjoy)

This is my art journal Lighthouse page. I made a very simple how-to YouTube video if you want to check it out the address is : Lighthouse Art Journal Page

Here are some art journal pages I made just for personal growth:

(a new woman~made with parts and pieces from different magazine clippings of women)

Kindred Spirits~ Letters are found from items in nature.

Growth~ Altered Photo

The following are Round Robin Art Journal book pages and Tip-In pages that I made, that are traveling the world.

Love Letter~for Jenene

Wings~for Barbara

Earth Specimen~for Keron

Birds~for Hermine
(second picture shows left page with bird houses open)

"Out with the Old" Doors & Windows~for Diana

"Jeweled Mandala" India~ for Lorna

Whew~ I guess I have done more than I thought, I have been trying to do some 5-15 minute sketch prompts also. The key is to just sketch. Don't think about it. Just look at the image and try to repeat it. Don't erase.... just keep going. When the timer goes off~ STOP. Accept the results, and move on.
I think the 'accept the results' part is the hardest part, but it is taking my art to all new places and I LIKE IT!!!!!

Hopefully it won't be Christmas before I pop in again, but if it is, remember I blog without obligation. ;)
~ Letha

I can't believe I haven't blogged all summer!

I have truly been one busy lady! I intended to take the summer off from most of the hustle and bustle and get lots of art done, instead of all the usually running from here and there. I also wanted to get the studio/classroom set up so that we would be ready for fall... still not done. UGH!
We planned to go to South Dakota over the 4th of July, but plans were canceled because my mom got ill, and had to have surgery. So we have been taking care of her all summer. Back and forth every day. We planted flowers for her to look at, and cleaned off her porch so she could spend a few minutes outside each day~ Doctors orders!
Quincy turned 14~ that was a blast! We had a bowling party, and then went for pizza. It was Harry Potter themed OF COURSE :)

Both Quincy and Abby spent most of the summer doing art classes through the Cody Country Art League and Quincy did Tennis.
Beckie came to visit, which was nice, because she took care of mom while I took care of Bethany's kids while she had her baby. A big bouncing baby boy. Nathaniel River 8 lbs 5.7 oz. Nate is the cutest little plump thing! I was not so secretly hoping for a girl, but now that he is here, I don't think we will send him back- he is way too cute :)
Well, now we are getting ready for Mark's mom and sister to come and visit. Usually the girls fly out there and visit for a week, but this year they are coming to see us. The girls are excited to see them, and they are only going to be here a few short days, so we have a lot to squeeze in.
School starts in just a couple short weeks, and we need to do school shopping, so my plans for not participating in the usual hustle and bustle of the summer fuss went right out the window! HA-HA! Oh Well, maybe next year.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

March journals on...

I have been working on some art projects, and some journal pages.
Here are the pages I have done and have photos of so far.
I have included the instructions on how I did them, in case you are interested :0)

March week 4 Yellow & Blue. These have to be some of the funnest prompts. Even though Blue is not one of my favorite colors, I didn't have to "think" about it, because it is a color- you just look for the color, and it comes together.
I painted the journal page yellow. While it was drying, I went through our magazine box, and started pulling out pictures of blue items. I did not really care what it was that was blue, just ripped out the item. Totally random. When I thought I had enough, then I cut around them all. When the yellow paint was completely dry, I put down a thick layer of gel medium, and started to randomly set down the images. I did not pay any attention as to where or what they were, so that is why some are grouped tightly and some not, because I didn't plan. It might be wise to plan next time.
When all the images were stuck, then I put another thick layer of gel medium on top of all the images. I let this dry for several hours. (best overnight, but I am an instant gratification person, so I hurried it with a heat tool, and then waited a few hours)
I then added some yellow dots, the word "blue" with yellow paint, and the word "yellow" with blue paint, then when the paint was dry I outlined the words with black sharpie.

March week 3 stitches. I started with pasting down a piece of pink cardstock to the white journal pages. Then I squirted red, white, and pink paint onto the pages, smeared it around with my fingers. That was messy but FUN!
The paint is really thick, so it took a full day to dry. Then when it was dry, I took some fibers, and threaded it into a tapestry needle, and sewed the edge of the cardstock. If I had to do this over, I would have just painted the cardstock first, then sewed it, and then glued it into the book- it would have been SO MUCH easier.
Once the blood stopped ;0)
I then started changing my mind about what I was going to be doing on my page.
I remembered I had all these bright colored stitched flowers, and I have been longing for Spring, so I started gluing them down. I then added stems out of this awesome ribbon I have been hoarding. I added a little embroidered dradonfly, the words made with fibers, and a little silver dragonfly for the dot on the i of Spring.
The coolest part is that everything but the background and the charm, is stitched or fibers!

March week 2 Who is she? I printed both of the images and sprayed with Fixative.
Coated both of my pages with gesso. Then tore the images out of the paper and set them down with gel medium, both under and on top. Then did another layer of gesso, heavy around the edges, lighter as I went in, and a very light brushing over the faces.
When COMPLETELY dry, and no longer cold. Take a fine line sharpie and outline the outside of images- one in a rectangle one in a circle. Then add the add the square spiral and the circle spiral over the "brain" area. Trace over small parts of the face to change the expressions with the fine line sharpie. With a heavier sharpie add the words.

March week 1 Postage stamp-I started the page by painting it with a sage green, light blue, and white, all marbled together, but not thoroughly mixed. Let dry. Then I added the words of mail I am not thrilled to receive. Then I painted a coat of pearl paint down on top of that- which kind of covered the sharpie words, but they still show. Adhered the letter, and wings. Stamped images with Saddle brown StazOn ink pad, and then wrote the final words with sharpie. Done!
(sounds fast, but it takes awhile for all those layers of paint to dry)

Monday, March 16, 2009

My Big Day

I have had some requests for "details" about my big day, so I shall share with you my day of pampering!
Since it was Friday, my husband had to work overnight, so he left for work Thursday night at 10:30pm, (I was still on my computer) which is often the case. ;o)
So at 11:59 and 53 seconds the phone rang- it was him, he called to wish me a happy birthday.
I told him he was a bit early, and just as I did the clock turned, so he really wasn't. LOL!
He is such a sweet guy.

I had actually planned to sleep in, but because he was at work, I did have to make sure my girls were up and getting ready for school. When their alarms went off at 6 am, they both got up and came in and wished me a Happy Birthday, and told me I could stay in bed!
(I didn't go back to sleep, since we often have some rough mornings, but it was nice to just lay in bed)
The girls were so good. They didn't fight about clothes and hair, and shoes, and all the other things that middle school girls fight about on a daily basis :0) it was a nice reprieve.
Mark got home just after 7 AM and took the girls into the school. They help out in the library before school starts.
I slept in til almost 10 AM can you believe it? Doesn't that ROCK?
I slept til my body woke up. I am such an insomniac, so it was rather refreshing.
I decided that since I needed to let Mark sleep since he worked all night, that I was going to treat myself to a bit of a spa.
So I filled the tub with a nice hot bath, and a sat there til every finger and toe was as wrinkly as a raisin. Then I got out and gave myself a mini-pedicure and manicure. (I used to be a cosmetologist way back in the day, so it isn't too hard)

I then got dressed had some lunch and checked my email- lots of birthday messages ~ YEAH!!!
My girls came home from school, so I spent some time with them, getting their school week stuff wrapped up, and their bags packed for grandma's house....
Then we finished up all our chores.
Off to grandma's house we went. The girls are going to spend the night, play art, lounge and get spoiled!
Mark and I headed off to dinner at the steak house. We had such a great dinner. It was delicious! I had a steak and baked potato, and Mark had baby back ribs, and garlic fries, we even got an appetizer- yummy mozzarella sticks. We were SO full we couldn't think about eating desert, but because it was my birthday, my desert was on the house, so the waitress sent a slice of New York cheesecake home with me for later, with a sparkler candle!
Off to the movie we went!

Because we live in such a small area, there is not a lot of variety, and most of what was playing was horror flicks- I don't like them- I am not scared by them, I just think they are dumb, and a waste of time. I know- not a popular opinion, but it's my birthday, and I can't say what I want!
So- we could see either, Mall Cop, or Confessions of a Shopaholic. I chose Shopaholic.
It was definitely a chic flick, but it was funny, and cute. I enjoyed the movie.
When we came home, we happened to check the TV for the current temp, and noticed that the movie Penelope was just about to start in about 10 minutes. This is a movie we both have wanted to see, and never had a chance. So we snuggled down together and watched yet another great movie! It was so good. I didn't realized what a great movie Penelope is. It is a perfect family movie. I highly recommend it.
By the time the movie was over, it was awfully late, so sleepy time it was!
My birthday did not end on Friday though- No sir-re!!!
The kids are still at Grandma's!!!!
So Mark let me spend the whole day Saturday playing with Art stuff!
I painted a little, I drew a little, I did some journaling, stamping, beading, sewing, and I even did some photo editting and checked my email.
I played on facebook, and Ning.
I even took a little nap! It was glorious!
Ah! I love my birthday :0)

Friday, March 13, 2009

My Birthday/Blogaversary!

Today is my 35th Birthday and my 1 yr blog anniversary!
In celebration of my two big events. I am giving away a massive Priority box full of Mixed Media goodies!!!!
This will be a prize to be had. I can tell you that each day there will be items added to the box, and this box will be sent to anyone no matter where in the world they are from, whether they are a blogger or not! So sign up! To do so, just leave your name, and some way for me to contact you in a comment to this post only, and one month from today I will draw a winner from the list of names, and that person will get the enormous box of mixed media goodies!
Now- just to sweeten the "pot" so to speak randomly throughout the month whenever I am feeling giddy I will be picking a name haphazardly and sending that person a goody or two- you will receive a message in your email asking for your snail mail address, and you will be surprised as to what comes your way. So sign up early, your chances of getting picked throughout the month will be that much greater!
So help me celebrate my special milestones! Share this post with all your friends! Post a link on your blog, and enter your name in twice :0)
(to add a post just click on the word "comments" at the end of all the tag words at the very end of this post, and it will take you to a pop-up window to leave your comment. It is in green.)
If you post as "anonymous" you must leave me your name AND your email address, or I will have no way to contact you :( If you are not comfortable leaving the email online- you can email it to me- my email link button is listed in the left column if you click on "view my complete profile" Thanks!

Feast or Famine

I know I don't blog out of obligation, but I feel like I have left you all hanging for quite awhile. I just haven't been doing much with my blog, yet I have been creating. I have just felt rather overwhelmed, and just didn't feel like I could catch my breath much less take the time to post regularly. So here is going to be a huge long post with tons of pictures of what I have been doing. Down at the bottom will be some sketches in progress, and ones that I have done just for fun, that I have been doing to practice my face structure and placement. I WELCOME any critique or suggestion, as I have only been sketching for a few months, and am picking this up on my own, and am by no means a seasoned artist. Many of these are in progress, and I feel I am "stuck" as to where to go next. I think you will see what I mean as you view them.

Here at the top is my first comfort doll- created for a Paper Traders swap, it is going to a special lady, who has been through many trials this past year, and was completely done by hand. Not one machine stitch! I purchase hand-dyed batiks for the materials, and hand-beaded the body of the doll. Then stamped the face, and beaded around it with two different tones of purple beads. (hard to see the different colors in the picture) Once I got all that done, I was able to sew the body shape together and stuff her. I then beaded her arms, and added a teapot for her to hold. I sewed some cream and gold ribbon around the seam where the front and back meet, to give it a sparkly edge, and to cover the stitching, and then gave her some keys for legs. Added a filigree heart for a pocket, and a special little poem inside.
It sounds quite simple, but I worked on it for 2 weeks straight. (I know I am kind of slow)
The next project is a Tip-In Round Robin page that I did for a friend (also a Paper Traders swap) the topic was the Romance of Train Travel. I have to say this was not an easy topic for me and the first couple of cracks at it Did Not turn out well at all, so I was way behind at getting this done! I am lucky that she was patient, and kind enough to wait for me to get my act together. I decided to go a totally different route, and I was so glad I followed my muse, because I am so happy with the results. I ended up using a really mucky painted background, but I think it really added to the aged look of the pages.
The sign in was to be a train ticket, so there is a picture of that as well. It ended up being a fun project once I got my head around it.

Here are my sketchings. (click on the pictures to see the details) If you have any comments please feel free to express them. I welcome any help, as I am learning, and need so much guidance right now, so that I can progress and grow. Thanks so much!!!