Friday, September 28, 2007

We're Having a Little Party...

...over at WetCanvas! and you're all invited! Just bring chips or something.

Once a week someone takes charge and shares around 16 pictures from which the folks pick one or two or 16 to draw. This weekend...I'm in charge!! woo hoo!!!!!!

Here's the invite...

Click here to read about the Weekly Drawing Challenge and to see the pictures - and then come join in - it really is a lot of fun, you can try something new and different and maybe spark a creative idea or two!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wreck this Slump...

I've been playing in this book for the last couple of weeks. I first saw it in Artist's Magazine as a write up about the author, Keri Smith. I finally got one after I ordered one for Mo and had to try it out for myself. (Mo has a new masthead, designed by yours should go check it out and then read her's FAB)
After looking at the book with great skepticism, I finally decided to treat it as if it were an activity book for know - like the giant activity books you used to get as a kid, with crossword puzzles and word searches, jumbles and dot-to-dots.

It's been strangely zen.
Keri has placed suggestions in the book for how to wreck it, because let's face it - it's hard to intentionally mess up a perfectly good book. I revere books - printed or otherwise. Mess it up on purpose? YES. Okay. Here goes...
I started with the cover and kind of pretended I was in middle school...
One page called for tearing into strips, which I did, but not before writing some fabulous prose on the other side and coloring the page behind it and then stapling it all into ribbons. (I've never been able to follow directions terribly well...)
Here are some other examples of my activities...
But it was this one that I really got all meditative with, which then sparked a couple more in my Moleskine...
Note the France Belleville inspired background...
I feel like this hand thing is going somewhere, but I'm not sure where just yet. I'm going to ask my friend Dari if she can help. It just has her written all over it...
To see more from my Journal Wrecking, click over to my Flickr account.

Thanks to Lucy and Crackskull Bob...

I have yet another widget to play with...

Saturday, September 15, 2007


Look! I'm a great-aunt!! My nephew, Jesse, and his wife, Samantha, have just had their first child! A bouncing baby boy - Brian Paul Johnson. Born September 11, 2007 and weighing in at a whopping 5 pounds, 11 ounces. He's named for both of his grandfathers - Brian was my brother, Paul is Samantha's dad. Grandma-nana-momo, Melinda, is gushing with pride! She wrote a little something about being a grandmother at her very young age...if you have a chance, go read it!
Many happy blessings to this new little family - I'm so looking forward to watching a new Brian run around :-)

Friday, September 14, 2007

A Long Awaited WDE

I haven't participated in a Weekly Drawing Event over at WetCanvas! for a very long time - at least all Summer, I am guessing - before my last computer died. But I suddenly realized that I could jump in today, so I decided to just do a couple of drawings in my Moleskine sketchbook.

I just used a standard mechanical pencil and my travel box of watercolors.

The two pages together...

and individually...



Thursday, September 13, 2007

Rare, indeed. Goofy? Okay - I guess so.

Your Personality is Very Rare (INTP)

Your personality type is goofy, imaginative, relaxed, and brilliant.

Only about 4% of all people have your personality, including 2% of all women and 6% of all men

You are Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Perceiving.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

On Tour

Well, virtually, at least. I actually had a little studio time this morning, for the first time in a great long time, and while I don't have anything to post yet (lots of prepping and thinking and sketching and planning), I sat down for a little studio tour while I ate my leftover pizza.
Here's what I did. I started at Linda's blog, 'cause she has a nice collection of links. I randomly selected one of her links and ended up in the Netherlands at Eefje's blog. From her links, I made another random selection and went to North Carolina to see Suzanne. Then it was on to Quebec to study Paula's work, and from there I headed down to New York to see Heidi's designs, and finally ended up in Sacramento to tour Terry's studio.
Wow. So much wonderful stuff out there. It really is amazing. Take some time to wander through and enjoy it. Branch out from your usual list of favorites and find someone new.
Happy Blogging...

Gee Whiz, Linda!

Thanks so much!

Linda, of Quotidian Curiosities, has honored me with a "Creative Blogger" award. And she said such nice things, too, on a day when I really needed some serious affirmation. Linda is a wonderful friend and inspiration to me. I always feel creatively recharged after a meeting with her, so this award means an extra lot to me.

Now I am supposed to pass the award on to 5 bloggers who inspire me creatively, and then they in turn should nominate 5 more. How's that for spreading the love? Great idea - so nice to do nice things in this not-so-nice world. For more info about the Creative Blogger award, click here, but not before you read my picks...

1. Melinda of Lunar Epilogues. Melinda is a writer extraordinaire. She writes about truth and life and love and angst and does so in a beautiful and tender way. She doesn't post as often as I would like, but maybe understanding that she is a creative genius will inspire her to write. She often inspires me to paint. And to quit whining.

2. Ronell of African Tapestry. Ronell does amazing, colorful watercolors of her travels, of her home and even of kudzu. She has such a wonderful outlook on the places and things that she captures in her art - she's always refreshing to read.

3. Casey of Rue Manuel Bis. Casey is one of those bloggers that leaves such encouraging, thoughtful comments - I always love to see her name on my comments box. Her ink and watercolor paintings are always so fresh and pleasing, but I have to confess I love what she does with her figures and portraits - beautiful line, lovely shading...

4. Karen of kbladosdesign. Karen has the most remarkable journal. She weaves pictures with text in a way that is completely unique and always beautiful.

and last, but in no way least,

5. Marta of mARTa's Art. Marta is such a lovely person. She balances an intense job with a love of life and art and she does so beautifully. She's one of those bloggers that I would just like to hang out with at the beach for a few days. I think we'd have a blast.

Well, that's my list today. It was very hard to pick just 5 from all the wonderful blogs out there, but I promise if you go visit any of these, you'll be happy you did.

Thanks to Linda again, and to everyone who comes by here to say hello.

Happy Blogging...

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Historical Hullabaloo

We spent the afternoon Saturday at the Fort Loudon Great Island Festival. It was fun to see all the folks dressed in 18th century garb. The boys especially enjoyed the demonstrations of the cannon and muskets. Gunpowder and loud noises...what else could a kid ask for?
Baseball 142
The boys had a little trouble...
Baseball 125
But for me, this guy stole the show...
Baseball 080
Check out some more photos of our living history day (and what other things the guy above did) by clicking here to see my Flickr photos!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

More Campy Fun

I did have a chance to sketch a little on our camping trip. Never as much as I would like, but at least I snuck in couple.
I made the first sketch while sitting in front of the fire. The light was fading, so I just sketched what was in front of me, which turned out to be a camp chair and the corner of our pop-up camper. It's all pencil in my Moleskine sketchbook.
This one is also in the Moleskine sketchbook. Pencil and super-cheap gouache. It's one of those that when I finished, I just loved. Don't know why - it just felt good. The line going around the book is where I traced the path of a little green inch worm as it made it's way across my page. Oh, the simple pleasures of camping...

Campy Fun

All my boys and I went camping over the Labor Day weekend. August has been brutally hot here, and heading to the mountains seemed like it might bring a little relief to our parched souls. It's so frustrating to spend the day trapped in the house by 95+ degree heat and high humidity. It is made worse by memories of childhood spent playing outside regardless of the heat and humidity, but we also didn't have air-conditioning and so the heat outside wasn't so different from the heat inside, and a little shade and lemonade was all one needed to keep going through the hottest part of the day. My children are wimps.
BUT, that's another story. THIS is the story of camping over the Labor Day weekend.
We are always on the lookout for interesting wildlife, and this trip gave us lots of friends - katydids,
and dinosaurs.
The coolest animals we saw, however, were the elk. About 5 years ago, elk were reintroduced into the Cataloochee Valley of the Great Smoky Mountains. The herd is up to about 87 animals, and when we visited we saw 9, including 2 bull elk - one old and one young. Unfortunately my zoom is not long enough to capture them like I would have wanted, but this gives you an idea of what it was like:
We even got hear their bugle. September is when the rut starts, so big daddy elk in my pics didn't take to kindly to little up and coming wanna-be daddy elk invading his territory. Someone bugled (I'm guessing Junior), and big daddy chased him off into the woods to have a little talk about respecting elders.
For more campy fun, visit my Flickr page and take a virtual tour!