Friday, July 29, 2011

Newest additions to the portrait collection!

A few new pieces, just finished. Which rounds out my new portrait collection to four total pieces. (with more to come soon!)

This has definitely been a fun and exciting new direction for me. I love it.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

As I Am...

So, who am I? This crazy mosaic chick who posts here...well, I'll tell ya.

I'm a wife a mother, a woman who worries too much, who loves very deeply, who feels VERY strongly, who forgives easily, who obsesses over cleaning and saving money, who would rather be happy and will find any excuse to be so, who feels a connection to every human being on earth, who loves bold colors, who can be very serious when called for and extremely goofy and childlike the rest of the time.
I sing in the car (at the top of my lungs), I dance in the kitchen (to the soundtracks of old musicals), I enjoy a good dirty joke, I love watching television shows from the fifties and sixties, I am a chronic klutz, I have the thickest hair you've ever seen (I'm glad my mom is a hairdresser, because it would cost a small fortune to actually pay someone to cut/color/style my hair), I enjoy swinging on swings, I'm a sucker for chocolate.

I practice yoga, I walk as much as I can, I'm a health food nut (stemming from the fact that I can't tolerate any wheat or dairy), I love people watching, I love to hug, I meditate, I love the smell of lavender.

I'm a closet nerd, I love watching movies, thanks to my husband I'm a budding car enthusiast, I'm a photo nut (with over 27,000 photos on my computer alone), I have tattoos, I hate makeup (wear it as little as I can) but love jewelry (the stranger and more unique the better).

I'm a whole mashed up mix up of things...I'm a crazy colorful mosaic of me. And that is why I created my newest piece, "As I Am". It is a self portrait, inspired by an old photograph of me (in heavy makeup...oddly enough). It's hard to put into words, why this piece is so much of who I am, but it really is. The stark seriousness of the face, contrasted against the swirly, pink and purple vibrancy of the background is pretty much me in a nutshell...

I have the mind and wisdom of a fifty year old, the body of a twenty something and the spirit of a five year old. I take life very seriously, but there is always an opportunity to sing, dance or just lie in the grass and look for bugs.

So, who are you?

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Favorite (Etsy) Things

Today's favorite is one of my dearest and closest friends and the most fantabulous! (yes, I'm making up words today) artists I've ever known. She can do anything...but what she does these days is not only beautiful, but mind bendingly tedious and time consuming. (or, as she likes to call it...lots and lots of hours of "meditation")

I've bought several pieces from Meredith in the past as gifts, but last week decided it was time to buy myself a little something from her collection. So, I helped myself to this darling little Heart ornament I've had my eye on since she first made it.

Heart Ornament By Meredith Dada

Meredith creates beautiful three dimensional artworks out of various mediums (most often air dry clay) then paints them, and finally covers the entire thing with teeny tiny little itty bitty (get the idea) seed beads, rhinestones, charms and other decor.
Not only does her artwork end up looking exquisite when it is finished, but often times people just don't realized how many painstaking hours and how much hard work is poured into each and every piece.
But the moment you lay eyes on one, you can tell just how amazingly intricate and beautiful they are. One thing you might not realize is how durable and well made they are too.

For Christmas, I purchased this beautiful Bee Charmer Bowl for my mother.
Bee Charmer Bowl by Meredith Dada

My mom was ecstatic. She delicately placed it on a tiny display on the top of her piano, along with her favorite pictures so she could enjoy seeing it every day. Now, it just so happened, a few months later, she was having "one of those days" where she had broken a flower vase, dropped and spilled a trashbag, broke a dish etc etc etc, when she decided to dust the stuff on top of the piano. In true "clumsy day" form she bumped into the bowl's display and send it flying off the piano and bouncing along her wood and stone floors. And, wouldn't you know it...not one single bead fell off! (*Disclaimer* I am in no way advocating throwing her artwork around here people...that's just bad form) But, both my mom and I were amazed at the incredible quality and durability of something that appeared so delicate.

Meredith is a wonderful, kind, and fun artist. She puts her heart into everything she does, and it really shows. If you want something beautiful, unique, and wow inducing, definitely check out her Etsy shop HERE.
She's also a pretty fabulous person to know, so I highly recommend also checking out her blog (Lots of great updates on her works in progress and the occasional bit about cats catching fire...curious? Then go check it out) ;)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

People painting...

I'm on a roll...and it feels fantastic! I was up half the night last night, sketching out new ideas for these portraits I've been playing around with, scrolling through photographs and playing around with different ideas.
Today I have now started painting two new pieces. One is a self portrait of sorts (it is inspired by a photograph of me, from several years ago, in heavy "artsy" makeup) and the other is because, well it was just recently the Fourth of July and I'm still feeling patriotic.

I've got about five more sketches in the works and I'm itching to paint the rest of them. (...just never enough hours in the day!)

I feel like someone lit a fire under my butt and it's time to get busy!

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Sooooo....I am trying something new!
I've always loved the harsh, contrasted look of stamped portraits. And, I am obviously in love with bright bold color.
I occasionally dabble in photography, and a few years ago I started playing around with digital paintings, rendered from photographs. It was just a random hobby of mine, used to hone my Photoshop skills and let loose a little creativity when I didn't feel like hauling out paints and pencils:

I never actually considered physically painting something in the style of these fun, pop art inspired portraits until recently. I started my latest piece, "Artspeak" (inspired by a dear friend of mine) and realized that I was in love with the bold, colorful, quirky look of these pieces. So, I'm on a paint a whole bunch of fabulously colorful, fun, and interesting portraits!

Anybody want to be a guinea pig? ;)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Say What?

The hubby and I were watching Ocean's Eleven last night (the George Clooney/Brad Pitt one) and I realized why I love it so much. The dialog between Danny Ocean and Rusty Ryan. It's snappy, quick, they cover an expanse of meaning with a short sentence, and somehow, no one ever needs a lengthier explanation.
It's like Brad Pitt's character Rusty says, "Don't use seven words when four will do."

Which brings me to the point of this post. I've realized that my husband and I, after a decade together, have started talking in these clipped little sentences that sound simple and straightforward, but mean so much more. And somehow, even though most people would be left scratching their head, we implicitly know, in entirety, what every little blurb means.

Actual Conversation...

Him: What movie do you want to watch?
Me: Nothing too heavy.
(Leaves to pick a movie and comes back with three comedies)

Me: So, we're going with comedy?
Him: You said nothing heavy...(points to movies) No dead bodies.
Me: Dead Bodies aren't always heavy...what if they're skinny?
Him: Dead weight is dead weight.

Actual Meaning...

Him: What movie do you want to watch? I'm letting you pick, because I have no idea, or I don't really care that much.
Me: Nothing too heavy. I'm in a bad mood and anything sad or emotional will probably make me cry.
(Leaves to pick a movie and comes back with three comedies)

Me: So, we're going with comedy? I meant no Schindler's List; you didn't have to go straight to the Dukes of Hazzard. What about something in the middle. I can handle a little emotion.
Him: You said nothing heavy...(points to movies) No dead bodies. I wasn't sure how sad you were, so I went for uber goofy. Besides, if I brought back something less funny, it probably wouldn't be right either.
Me: Dead Bodies aren't always heavy...what if they're skinny? We do have movies that aren't emotional, but aren't giant gobs of goofiness either. But, I guess a comedy will be fine.
Him: Dead weight is dead weight. Just pick a're going to fall asleep anyways.

I like to think I'm more the Danny Ocean of our relationship, you know, the leader, charismatic and funny, but then again...I'm probably more like Rusty; covered in tattoos and always eating.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Inspiration Lightning!

It has struck! I'm finally out of my fear driven creativity rut. This afternoon, after perusing through some of my old photography work (yup, I've dabbled in that too) I came across some pictures of one of my dearest friends and best photo models. She is one of the most beautiful women I know, and I was inspired to try my hand at something a little bit different, inspired by this lovely lady.

Obviously, this is just the paint up. There is still some fun-tastic and colorful mosaic work to be done, but already I am in love with it. I think I'm going to try some more "people" stuff. I love the human face. The ability to convey so much meaning in a facial expression never ceases to amaze me.

That's about it for now...much love to all and hope your week is turning out to be a beautiful one!

Monday, July 11, 2011

So, this is what art FEELS like...

She Trusts by Chrissy Foreman Cranitch

Today, I just had to share with you one of my favorite artists and a most loving and beautiful person, Chrissy Foreman Cranitch. Chrissy and I "met" through Etsy, sharing our passion for art, our love of one another's artwork, and our general zeal for the good and beautiful things in life.
This morning, as I ran into the post office to grab my mail, I was excited to see that I'd received my print of "She Trusts". An artwork Chrissy specifically chose for me as a visual representation of many of the emotional things I've been dealing with in my life lately.
Chrissy describes this piece as such:

'She Trusts' is an artwork about a beautiful, open and loving woman who has decided to let go of worry about the future and begin a new life - Coming from an inner sanctuary where she trusts herself and she trusts her life to unfold in kind and nurturing ways.

It spoke to me the moment I saw it online and I could only imagine what it would be like to hold the actual print in my hand.
But, nothing could have prepared me for the exquisitely beautiful creation I laid my eyes on the moment I opened that envelope. It literally took my breath away as the tears welled up in my eyes. I have always been a person who "feels" VERY strongly. Whether it is happiness or sadness, I feel it to the greatest extreme; and today, my heart burst with joy at the very sight of this artwork.

Chrissy's artwork is vibrant and soulful. It is packed with emotion and spirit. The colors, the movement, and the presentation of it just burst with what I imagine our emotions to look like on canvas. She pours herself into every piece and you can just sense "who" she is from every individual line and shape.

I am often moved by artwork, but this was the first time I'd felt so completely encompassed and engulfed by the feelings that were evoked in me. It has been an incredible blessing in my life and I can't wait to hang it up on my wall.

I highly recommend all of Chrissy's work and encourage everyone to take a peek at her Etsy shop here. She is an amazing woman and an incredible artist.

Much love to all. xo

Thursday, July 7, 2011

My Favorite (Etsy) Things

I was recently included on a friend's blog as a featured Etsy seller and it got me to thinking; I love shopping on Etsy, I love the many wonderful people I've met there, and I really LOVE to talk about how amazing it all is to me!

And since my husband and my family may duct tape my mouth shut the next time I go on a talking spree about my latest Etsy purchase, I thought it might be kind of fun to feature some of my favorite people and things here!

So here it goes...

One of my first Etsy purchases was from a fabulously fun, geeky, and all around fantastic shop called CLONEHARDWARE.

I purchased these awesome purple and green computer circuit board earrings. And, I'll be honest, I had no idea what to expect; I mean...jewelery? From Computer parts? The geek in me said, yes! The chic in me was a little skeptical.

That was, until I received them!

These darling little earrings were SOOOO (yes, I need the extra O's for emphasis) CUTE! The colors were as vibrant and fun as the picture, the packaging was just as neat, and Alisa is one of the nicest shop owners I've had the privilege to buy from!

One of my favorite things about this shop is her fabulous sense of humor. I mean, just read the Disclaimer:

"Everyday we are reminded by the many silly things people do so....Please do NOT insert your earrings, necklaces or bracelets into ANY orifice. Do NOT chew, lick, bite, suck on or otherwise ingest any of CLONE HARDWARE creations. That goes for your kids too. CLONE HARDWARE is for adults.

RESPONSIBLE non jewelry eating ADULTS."

Not only can she whip you up a fabulous, funky statement necklace for a night on the town; but she can bring a smile to your face to wear with it!

If you love geeky, fun, funky, unique jewelry and accessories (she even has bookmarks and key chains!) then CLONEHARDWARE is the shop to see!