Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Christmas!

I hope you all are having an extraordinary holiday, and are spending today with someone you love. This is a gift I made for my Mom, who always makes Christmas such a warm and rich time for me. I used a vintage ledger and rebound it with papers she would love; festive and traditional patterns, bits of flocked papers, vintagy ephemera, and then finished it off with velvet backed ribbon. There is nothing I love more than making gifts for people. Searching out just the right this or that which reminds me of them. I truly love watching someone open a gift that was made special for them and getting to experience their reaction. It is a priceless moment. Cheers to all my family and friends who support me and my creative dreams. Many thanks!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Monday, December 19, 2011

Saturday, December 17, 2011

NME August/Sept pages

These are some pages from Aug/Sept of my No More Excuses Journal. This is an online class offered by Gina Armfield, and if you are thinking about it, wondering about it, just take it. Gina creates a great program to get you working daily, in little ways. Then the calendar becomes the journal for it, which is a fantastic way to keep you on track. The structure is built in. Before you know it you are doing your own thing, creating your own assignments and projects for yourself. I heard a great metaphor the other day that is so applicable to this project. A bead is small and tiny, but when you string one next to another and another something magical happens. The next thing you know, you have created a necklace. I never feel like what I have done in a day is very much, but over time, the book becomes rich and potent with your details, emotions, and memories.

Pirate Satchel

I needed a bag for my Pirate circle journal and this is what I came up with. An old bone meal sack, a bit of leather, and a felt patch all sewn up to house my journal. I am inspired by the story of Fanny Campbell, who became a pirate to rescue her sailor husband who was forced into piracy and then arrested for it. Fanny took board as a man, organized a mutiny, became captain and eventually rescued her man. This bag stems from her story. It's as if Fanny grabbed her husband's gear and took to the sea with it, creating this container for her story, my story. A pirate for love.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Missing Gem & a Brethren Reunion

A little pirate love on Halloween.

Glimpses of the Journey

Delayed Reaction

I'm a little delayed in sharing the pieces I created in Flora Bowley's 2 day painting workshop in Malibu, CA at Artinfusio, hosted by Gina Armfield. I spent two weeks away, visiting friends at Journalfest in Port Townsend, WA for a week, and then another in Calabasas, CA with family. It was a trip full of so much fun and richness. Needless to say, I was spent by the time I got home, hence my delayed reaction.

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Murmuration from Sophie Windsor Clive on Vimeo.

This is just extraordinary. Magical, beautiful, powerful. The greatness of many, the power of unity, it's hard to believe something so small is really so much larger...

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Fall Paintings

Getting ready for Journalfest in 1 week! I have a slew of handmade journals to sell as well as these new mixed media pieces. I am working to bring the stories that I typically tell en masse, in journal form, to the canvas. Personal, nostalgic, whimsical and layered. The deer have been making their way in and out of my backyard this fall, and they too, become a part of my story.

Friday, October 7, 2011

New Journals

Here is a brand new stash of journals recently made for vending at Journalfest. I am headed to Port Townsend, WA in a few weeks to take classes and sell some of my handmade books and mixed media pieces. The covers of these books are made of various papers, stitched together and filled with a signature of watercolor paper. Perfect for sketching or visual journaling.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Finding My Way

Here is a piece of mine published in the Sep/Oct 2011 issue of Somerset Studio. This is a piece that I created during Misty Mawn's online class, which was included in an article about the shared experience of her class. This started as a contour drawing that I then decided to finish off as a loose painting. Misty's classes, in person or online, are an opportunity not to be missed. As always, she creates an environment full of beauty, inspiration, great music and endless ideas.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

No More Excuses...

Looky everyone! The talented Gina Armfield featured my daily journal on her blog. Gina is an inspiring artist, teacher, and creator of the No More Excuses Journal. NME is a daily journal/calendar class filled with prompts for daily art making. It's the book I go to where anything goes, and I just let my mind wander. Where all those bits of daily life go that want to be pinned down, captured, and where each day is faintly remembered. I tend to think in big chunks of time for art making, very all or nothing, and this journal allows for a more mellow, yet consistent way of seeing the pages fill up. It grows, it flexes and 5 months in weighs over 2 lbs. How good is that?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Keepin on...

The journaling continues. I have a mixed relationship with this book, very love hate. I took a vintage book that I loved with sections on ancient civilizations (Romans, Greeks...), filled with fantastic illustrations and turned it into a journal. I painstakingly made the cuts, removing pages out of necessity. The process of working the pages and letting go of the imagery has been a difficult one. The work I have done in this book confounds me as well. I created it to be an anything goes kinda book, without feeling pressured to use my own photography, drawing or painting. Yet I struggle with the things I put into this book, and I see the struggle. When I take a break from working in it and come back, I can literally see the struggles, changes, and growing pains I am experiencing. It is an uncomfortable kind of feeling. Some days, I want to put this book away and start with a new journal, filled with blank white watercolor pages. Then the other part of me wants to see this thing through, and work in it from start to end of 2011, and see where it leads me...

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A series of pages

These are two recent journal spreads that I wanted to share with you. They are personal and even painful pages for me. The top spread was created after dealing with months of neck pain due to some seemingly unrelated health issues. After feeling better for a little while, I relapsed and the pain began to get worse. After months of feeling physically limited and emotionally worn out from it all, this page was created. It holds my pain and grief, and is a necessary part of my journal work. All of this was present during my Artfest preparations. The next page was created shortly after the first, when the cloud of pain finally started to lift. New supplements got me back on track, I was as ready as I could be to vend at Artfest, and eager to spend time with my artist friends there. Thank you to Chad, my Mom, my Brethren and all those who supported me during a very physically and spiritually taxing time. I'm still working on the root issue and doing my best to become healthier and strong.

Roots and Shoots

I took two fantastic classes with Orly Avineri at Artfest this year. I found her classes to be relaxing and energizing at the same time. Her style of teaching suited my mood so well, the assignment were guided, yet every person created something unique. I enjoyed the element of randomness, lack of control, or even knowing what comes next. I felt freer to just make and disconnect from the outcome. Sure enough, the end result was satisfying as well. My eyes were opened to the direction in which I can take my work. I am always used to seeing my work in journal format, page after page, personal and potent. But there was something about liberating my work from the book form that made me look at it differently. No longer just personal and sometimes private pieces, I could see it more objectively, as art. Where my journals should be my playground, they are actually more precious to me, and on the canvas, my work felt freer and relaxed. I'm looking forward to a whole series of journal inspired mixed media pieces that break out of the book form, allow themselves to be seen and be open to others.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

I did it!

I have been back from Artfest for at least a couple or more weeks, but am finally making time to post about it. It was a fantastic experience, spent with great friends from all over the place. I look forward to these times to reunite with Artfest friends and also members of my Pirate Brethren (you know who you are)! It always goes by so fast, and I was still prepping to vend at Artfest for the first time, so I missed out on some activities, and hanging out with people as much as I would have liked. This was my first time selling my wares and it was just fantastic. Thank you all for the support before and during the show, buying my goods, and all the encouraging words. It was great to have people ask if I was teaching, and if they could buy my stuff online. All in due time! Many of you asked if I have an ETSY site, which I do plan on getting up and running, so please check back. It will have the same types of items, handmade artist journals, repurposed books, hand printed goodies, mixed media art, and reproductions of my journal pages. In other good news, I will be vending again at Journalfest this fall, so if you are going, please check out what I have to offer! I have a passion for visual journaling, and a lot of what I do and make reflects that. More to come... eye opening classes that I took at Artfest!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Still Here

I'm still here. Working away on handmade books, hand carved stamps and prints, and new business cards and various postcards. This is a tiny glimpse into what I've been up to. I will be back soon with a preview of the finished goods...

Monday, March 21, 2011

Playing with Paint

These are some paintings I did earlier this year. The top one is a watercolor of my trusty Diana+ camera. I love everything about this camera, down to the color, so of course it made a great subject to practice with watercolor. The bottom piece was painted with acrylic, and she is wanting to be worked on a bit more. I think I may add text to both pieces, surrounding the camera and figure.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Checking In

Hello all! I may have been MIA from this blog, but I have been busy working away. Plenty of journal pages in progress, some sketches, and many, many books have been made. I am getting ready to vend at Artfest in April for the first time, so that's what I have been up to. I am tremendously excited to be able to share my love of handmade and repurposed journals as well as my journal art with others. I'll do my best to get some more pics up soon! For now, enjoy these prelim sketch ideas.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Call em out!

Hello all! I have been missing from my blog lately, but busy in the studio. I have been doing a lot of sketching, painting, and working in my journals. Next on the list is a slew of handmade and repurposed books. I am getting ready to attend and be a vendor at Artfest, so it's busy, busy, busy over here! This is a journal page I did recently about calling out all those who have done me wrong. It's in my Pirate journal, so it is appropriate for me to call em out and fight em till the end. I ended up loving this piece even though it started out so far from here. It was a lot of fun, and really ends up being less about the injustices of my world than the way I deal with it. What I will allow and what I deem unacceptable. It's easy to go for pretty over truth, style over substance, but we all have to decide what and who we want to be. How do we choose to present ourselves to this world? As a shell, fragile and superficial, or something deeper, full of grit and truth. It may not be easy, and we may not always sit fully with ourselves, but it's worth striving for. Dig deeper.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Black Swan

When I saw the movie Black Swan I knew virtually next to nothing about it and went in with a completely open mind. After I saw it I was blown away, and the idea of duality really stuck with me. The film was one thing, but as my Back Swan Brethren sisters know, there is a deeper meaning in the black swan, or black swan moment. The first pages are more of an ode to the film. I loved the illustrated movie posters and printed one for my journal, but I wanted to incorporate it somehow. So I added other images as well as text from the film, and by the end it felt a little like how I imagined the inside of Nina's mind. The second spread holds it's place in my pirate journal. This one loosely represents the contradictions and dualities within all of us. It was fun working on opposites in it's simplest forms.

Holiday Loot

Here are a few of the wonderful things that I got for Christmas. My favorite gift was such a thoughtful surprise from my hubby, that I just stared in wonder at it most of the day. He had a leather moleskine cover custom engraved with one of MY illustrations. A very personal one at that, which represents my mantra, "Be Seen, Be Heard". Importance placed on what I do and on my creativity is also embedded in this gift, which was touching. I also got a ton of great Fossil goodies from my Mama which is so up my alley. And another piece to add to my pirate collection, this awesome skully necklace. I have been eyeing it for ages, and finally got it. The rest of the day was spent, just the two of us, with our sweet sleepy kitties in the sunlight and wrappings, and topped off with a nice meal.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Here's a little photo recap of the last 12 months and where they've taken me. I started the year out right in CA, with family, near the ocean for a good long visit. Feb took us to FL to visit more family. Spring and summer were spent mostly close to home with trips into Denver and time at the Boulder Outdoor Cinema and the Rocky Mt Folks Festival. My work was published in the summer issue of Art Journaling Magazine as well as in Real Life Journals: Designing & Using Handmade Books. Next came the biggest journey of the year, a trip to Greece with my Mom and Chad! Some good time with girl friends and our journals at Journalfest and a full blown family Thanksgiving in CT. December was thankfully spent at home, quiet and peaceful.

This new year promises to bring more change, some travel, and greater appreciation of it all. Too much time was spent away from home which made it challenging to fully appreciate all of it, and even harder to feel rooted at home. This year means making more art, selling my art for the first time, spontaneity, and letting things come as the come. Not planning to much, or over thinking, or anticipating everyone else's needs over my own. To just let it happen, and be fully in it. Happy New Year to you all!