Man I Miss This

It’s 12:45am and I just got off my usual Friday night bartending shift.  Bill is asleep next to me so I sit in the dark to unwind.    I’m drinking a tequila, eating pita & humus, and looking at some of my favorite blogs. Man, this internet space, as exhausting as it can be, sure is inspiring.  This week has been one of those very long types….computer crashes, stomach flu  (luckily not me, but poor Bill), end of the semester projects piling up, injury flare up in my shoulder, messy house,  yada yada yada.   But, after it all, I am fortunate, happy, and grateful.    I have yoga to thank for calming my mind, and inspiring bloggers and artist who find the courage to share everything they are and believe in with the rest of the world.  Sometimes a really bad day can be turned around by a simple reminder to love yourself, it’s all that counts in the end, or a reminder that creativity is so very necessary and powerful, I cling to that now.  I miss blogging so much.  Tonight as I look at photographs, and  just sit and write, I realize how much I miss it.   School has brought so much growth into my life, and I’ve really pushed myself, but I miss the freedom to create with out requirements.  But, it is through this process, I for the first time  feel confident in myself as an artist and a creator.    Though this week left me feeling depleted at moments, it has also reminded me to be patient, and to appreciate every moment, even the ones that can really suck.  I’ve also begun to realize how much more honest I want to be in this space, because creativity and beauty comes from honesty and courage… and finding beauty in the less beautiful moments. I’ll be back here soon ( no more school project in 3 weeks!)  but till than here’s a few things I’ve been working on.

*each of these illustrations was completed using Adobe Illustrator by me. Each illustration was given as a school assignment with thematic direction and technical requirements.  

{a creepy dream illustrated}

{a creepy dream illustrated}

{self portrait with text}

{self-portrait with text}

{Day}

{Day}

{night}

{Night}

{abstract ocopus's garden}

{abstract octopus’ garden}

 

 

 

Namaste!

 

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No Matter the Weather

no.matterblogYesterday we expierienced a very impressive afternoon thunderstorm, which brought a downpour of rain.  Here it seems like such a treat to get a good storm that brings lots of rain.  We don’t get them enough, and I love summer storms, so I really appreciate them while they last.  I love that you can listen to them with the windows open, and smell them as rain wets warm concrete and earth.  Yesterday I got to enjoy the storm from my art desk with the big window in front of me open.  It was a very relaxing way to spend the hours before going into work for the evening.  Bill, however, was caught out in sheets of rain on the golf course, and came home soaked.  Weather in Colorado is such an adventure.  The forecast today calls for more afternoon thunderstorms.  I have my fingers crossed that we will, so I am headed out to take advantage of some sunshine.

(this simple illustration was inspired by the recent afternoon rain and by our boy, whom I miss so much everyday it still hurts a little. I miss having him loyally by my side, though it often feels like he’s still right by me…mixed medium project: watercolor, Photoshop, and Illustrator)

Summer Evening Stroll

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{gifted vintage dress, Seychelles shoes, thrifted earrings, I purchased the purse in Seattle :: brand unknown, Target sunglasses}

Summer evenings are beautiful in Colorado.  After a hot day, it is so pleasant to go for evening walks as the sun is setting and the day is cooling off.  Wrapping up a busy day, Bill and I took a stroll through Colorado State University’s Center of the Arts’ grounds, and the University’s Annual Flower Trails.   It was relaxing, quiet, and the perfect place to snap a few photos and soak in the last rays of the day.  Later that evening I traded my dress and heels for comfy pajamas and flip-flops, and we packed up for an evening at the Drive-In with a picnic dinner.  It’s one of my favorite ways to spend a summer evening.

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WaterColored Roses

flowertiles2I have always wanted to be able to paint beautiful flowers.  So, I’ve been practicing.  I painted these using my grandfather’s water colors that my mom recently sent me.  Water color is one of my favorite mediums.  I love the way color bleeds and and fades.  I love how delicately the paint layers.  It often reminds me of stained glass, and beautiful light.    After playing with the paints on paper, I transferred the images to my computer and messed around with them in Photoshop, making patterns and experimenting with layers.  I get so excited every time I discover new ways to play with mixed media/mediums. My mind is already swimming with ideas, and more visions of water colored flowers. flowerstile3organic2

BE HAPPY

vibrant.blooms.vinesIt feels like summer is trying to push its way onto the front range! (what!? it was snowing two weeks ago!)  The past three days have been wonderfully sunny and warm.   The perfect kind of days for taking advantage by dusting off the ol’ bike and stretchin’ her legs, we are gonna spend a lot of time together this summer.   Summer months on the Front Range are pretty awesome, and if you find your self bored here, after the sun comes out to stay, it’s never for a lack of entertainment or adventure.  Soon every weekend will host a new festival, or a new concert series.  Kayaks, Paddle Boards, Fishing poles, tents, longboards, slack lines, etc, all are taken from their winter hibernation and put into daily action.  Patios will become the hotspot for any happy hour, and table spots in the sun will become coveted.    Steetmosphere  also kicks off in Old Town this Friday, so art will be back on the streets downtown once again.     Many students leave for vacation, but the rest of us stay and relish everything our city offers us by getting outside.  I love when the color comes back into this town, when it’s vibrancy really gets kicked up a notch.  It simply allows you to find happiness all around.  Hope you enjoy this little illustration that I made to bring a little more color into everyones day.

 

Cinco de Mayo!

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Life has gotten stressful lately. I felt a little distant from this space last month for a multitude of reasons.  One being that I have been spending most of my computer time focusing on practicing in Illustrator and  Photoshop.  I am excited by what I have been learning, and I feel inspired as I see my work being transformed and polished through these new programs.  The past month I have realized whole new possibilities in design and creativity.  So while life has been more on the hectic side (this year has just been full of new challenges) I relish in having passion for art and creativity.  I am grateful for new ways to explore design.  Today will be spent trying to relax, photo editing, and making tacos at home.  Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Working with Illustrator

I took my first Illustrator class this week and I have discovered that I love it!  I just needed to know what all the tools did! Oh Pen tool how initially perplexing you are, but how useful you have become. We got 20 inches of snow the past three days, which meant lots of time to spend working on getting familiar with the program.  Here are some of the designs I came up with. Lots more to come later!
Jan.celebratecarried.awaybirthdaybottle.color

Joie de Vivre

FlowersBW.jpegI’ve been working more and more in Photoshop and Illustrator to edit my illustrations and designs…and I am loving it more and more.  This past week I was asked to design and print 50 cards, by my friend Rose. She wanted cards to send out on special occasions, Birthdays, and just to say hello.  We came up with three designs that she really loved.   All three share the message “joie de vivre”, which expresses the joy of living.  I like that message, so it was a pleasure designing cards to express that.  I created one design that could be sent out to a wide range of people in Rose’s life, keeping it vibrant, yet simple, and with hopes it’s a joy to look at (above design).   The other two below, were more specifically designed for her.  She requested a bulldog card, which was fun because I’ve been known for doodling dogs (I have a few wiener dog designs up my sleeve right now for my sisters wedding). The final card was a collaboration between Bill and I.  Rose had given me a wonderful photo of her and her pup kayaking together, a loved past time, and asked me to incorporate it because the photo had so much happiness in it.  I immediately thought how special it would be if Bill could draw the portrait of the two of them.  I am so thrilled with the final result.  I really love working with him, and it’s exciting explore what we can do together as artists.

This is also the first time I’ve had cards printed professionally (we went through kinkos and did the cutting and the fold ourselves), and I was pleased with how they turned out!

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Mini Glittered Canvases

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This might not be the most in depth DIY tutorial  1. because when I started this project I didn’t know what the plan was, or that I’d be blogging about it  2. because it’s really simple!

I do not have much patience when it comes to letting paint dry between coats, and too often find myself painting on surfaces that are still wet, which leads to tacky, clumpy, and messy work.  My solution…multiple painting projects.  While working on another painting project, I remembered these mini canvases stashed in our art room and decided it was time to give them some color.  The crushed glass glitter I recently purchased (because I NEED more glitter) has such a great texture, on top of awesome sparkle, so why not experiment with it!

1. I began by prepping the canvases with a layer of gesso (quite honestly I believe you could skip this step but using gives the canvas a much smoother finish).

glittercanvasSidebySideFor the first canvas I traced a very light outline for a heart, then, using the red Lumiere paint and a small, flat acrylic brush, filled it in.  I painted 3 layers (with time to dry in between of course!)

Fort the second canvas I used washi tape to mark off 2 triangles and painted 2 of the 4 quarters with purple acrylic paint. Another 3 coats did the trick.

Once painted with simple designs, they needed a little pop…Ta Da! glitter time.

Using the sponge brush I applied a hefty (but no glue pools!) amount of Mod Podge to each edge of the first canvas, then coated the sides with the glitter. *

Similarly, with the second canvas I painted the Mod Podge onto triangles left white, keeping the lines as clean as possible, then glitter away.**

*just a tip: make sure to catch extra glitter that falls using paper under the canvas, there will be a bit

**another tip: just re-glue and re-glitter areas that may be missed. Plus a toothpick can be used to clean up lines and remove unwanted glitter.

While these little guys have found a spot on our kitchen bulletin board (for now) I can see more glittered canvases in my future.

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