Saturday, February 27, 2010

Upcycled Art....otherwise known as FREE!

I'm so proud of myself. It rarely happens. Not just that I'm satified with a project but that I can make a piece of art without agonizing over every little thing for days, weeks, months on end. To start and finish a project in one day....ahhhhh, this is the life.

I was helping my mom redo her bathroom the last couple of weekends. It needed a little fixing and a fresh coat of paint. She already had a new shower curtain and bath towels in a lilac and dark purpley blue color. Of course my mind goes immediately to what wall art would update the bathroom and stay with this color scheme? I was thinking flowers and butterflies. I remembered that I saved a gorgeous calendar from 3 years ago of exotic butterflies. I flipped through looking for inspiration and then it hit me.

I took a page out of the calendar that matched well with the color scheme. Took a nice shadow box that I've had (I think a friend gave it to me....thanks Aimee!),

took about an hour or so to carefully cut around the butterflies, pop them up a little and voila!!!!

Upcycled, calendar art! For FREE! I love it! Now, I'm not endorsing packrat behavior but it's fun to see what we can do with some saved things....calendars are great for making envelopes, magnets and a bunch of other neat, useful things.

For the other piece I'm thinking some big flowers (first I was thinking lilacs but now...) with a butterfly resting on one....but should I use paint or pencil....oh here we go....

Thursday, February 25, 2010

IF: Propogate

Just a quick sketch with a little bit of Photoshop tweaking for this week's Illustration Friday. I wasn't a huge fan of the topic....but I've been missing a lot of the latest IF challenges because of that excuse! The truth is I've been's hard to sit and be creative when there a bunch of other things engaging your heart and your world.

I'm noticing as I look around my little world that hope is under attack. So many people I love are dealing with financial strain, tragic loss, horrific health problems, relationship conflict and the depressing thought that the cycle might never end. It creates in me a shocked sadness...a profound questioning of my Creator who sees all and knows all. So I retreat. I cry. I become Eeyore for a little while. And then I get defiant.

I was listening to a discussion recently about foster care and kids in custody of the state. The social worker in charge was discussing one scenario with an angry teenage boy. She said with finality "This teen will never be whole. He will never be able to have a normal life." It was as if the air was sucked out of the room. There was just silence where there used to be warm hearts that had hope for change. Until finally, one man spoke up and said, "I refuse to believe you." I have been thinking a lot lately about what it takes to do hard things in this life. One thing comes to mind. Defiant love. I understand that sugarcoating doesn't help anyone, that we live in reality not fantasy...that life is hard. But let's not deaden our souls to the very thing that makes us human...the HOPE of change. The quest for healing. The joy of sacrificial love.

I am usually nice and acommodating in my everyday life. But I've decided, try to take away my hope....and you'll be met with stubborn defiance.

Let's propagate hope.

"Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in our lifetime; therefore we must be saved by hope; Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we must be saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love." Reinhold Niebuhr

Sunday, February 14, 2010

And the winner is....

Thanks everyone for playing...I loved all of your comments and quotes about love. Happy Valentine's Day! Stay tuned for more fun giveaways...I'll be sending Mary her little box of treasures soon. Hugs to all of you!

Monday, February 8, 2010

February Giveaway!

I've never done a giveaway before. Well, I mean, a bloggy giveaway....I give away things all the time. To friends, to Goodwill, to my poor unsuspecting neighbors who can't seem to avoid me....but an honest to goodness, bloggy giveaway...that sounds like fun too!

So this February, the month of cupids and hearts and chocolates and flowers and panic for men everywhere....I'm going to give away a one of a kind surprise box from Elena's Easel. It IS better to give then to receive. But hopefully one of you will want to receive this little box of goodies. Hand painted by moi and with one of my prints on the top (that would be the Love Turtle, also available here). I'm not telling you what's inside, you'll just have to wait and see when you win it! But there will be some wonderful artsy things from my store and maybe some sweet treats too! All you have to do is leave me a comment with your email address and tell me your definition of true love...

If you're friends with me on Facebook, leave me a message on my wall and that will count too! The winner will be randomly picked and announced on Valentine's Day (February 14th) and I will send your little box of goodies right out to you! Happy February everyone....make sure you tell the people you love that you love them...not just on Valentine's Day but every day.