Thursday, May 28, 2009

Great Day for a Giveaway.

To celebrate the last day of high school of my youngest child I thought it would be a fun thing to share the love and have my first giveaway on my new blog. So, just click on any of my 3 shops on etsy (for Vintage wares) (for Artwork) (for Handmade items) check them out and add a comment back here on my blog about anything you liked, it is that simple! :)
Next I will enter you into a draw to win this cute piece of artwork "Pink Sherbet Clouds". Value $25.00. Enter as many times as you wish but remember you have to comment on a different item each time; keep entering until Friday June 5th which is Graduation Day and I will have my Grad. pull the winning name out of the hat.
I will announce the winner on Saturday June 6th, so stay tuned.
Here is a little about the art piece. "Pink Sherbet Clouds" is created in many different types and colours of water based inks on heavy duty watercolour paper. The iridescent inks add a depth with their reflective capacity. I think the title speaks for itself; this piece evokes images of Pink Sherbet in frothy clouds. There is depth, texture and movement created with the placement of the inks in an abstract form. "Pink Sherbet Clouds" comes in a deep blue matt measuring 10" x 8" and is Ready to Frame. "Pink Sherbet Clouds" is an original work of art, it is signed on the front and back, this piece has not been copied or reproduced in any way for re-sale.
Even as a serious artist creating artwork is play time for me and I hope the joy I experience creating art comes across in my work.
Have fun participating and Happy Painting!

My Artist's Heart.

The sun is shining! The garden is planted and weeded (well nearly!). The roses are blooming, the lilac scent fills the air, the butterflies are afloat, there is a calmness to the air, the sky is expansive and my Artist's Heart is so excited to be creating in this beautiful environment. This is when I feel most inspired, the new growth and the hope of long summer days ahead, complete bliss.

Happy Painting!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Happy Accidents!

My philosophy, on teaching art to kids, is pretty simple. KEEP IT SIMPLE.

There are a few fundamentals to the process and enjoyment of teaching kids to enjoy art. Keep it fun, (don't take yourself too seriously). Keep it age appropriate, (you would be surprised by the expectations of some teachers). Always treat them with respect. Give them permission to think outside the box, (so they will feel free to look beyond). There are no mistakes just “Happy Accidents.”

For example, as Artists we know that working with watercolours can, sometimes, be unforgiving and so we plan our work accordingly but initially children try to work with watercolours in the same manner as they would colour pencils or paint by numbers in a more logical and systematic way. So, for me as a Teacher, when I introduce them to watercolours it is essential to give them permission to screw up and allow the paint to flow. Painting from light to dark is hard enough but not being able to paint one thing then another without it bleeding into the next is harder still. I wholeheartedly encourage them to have fun with this process. I usually start with a kaleidoscopic approach; using a few colours, dropping them on to wet paper and watching them flow where they will. Kids love this, they love to see what happens, it is almost magical. Then they feel more secure to go on to more realistic pieces. I always say, if it doesn’t quite work out how you want it to be, we’ll call it a "Happy Accidents". Once they have this in their heads, again, they can accept this as part of the creative process and turn what they didn't want to necessarily happen into a joyful new part of their artwork.

Kids are usually taught, early on, to colour inside the lines. Once accomplished in this skill I love to guide them to do the thing they are told not to do, and that is, to colour outside the lines. At first they look quizzical, a little worried, like they are breaking some cardinal rule but once you show them that it is ok, they become freer with their expression and start to think for themselves and believe in possibilities.

Kids are so teachable, so open to possibilities, so they make faster progress with lots of enthusiasm and positive joy at their accomplishments, so giving encouragement is easy and genuine.

With this simple philosophy I have taught numerous children and have seen them flourish. The joy at seeing their joy is the reward.

Happy Painting!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Columbine Remembered.

It is 10 years since the tragedy at Columbine. Lives were changed that day forever.

This piece evolved soon after the Columbine massacre. The emotions were overwhelming for me as a mother of teenagers when I heard about this tragedy and out of my need to make sense of the sadness I created this piece. I have never published this artwork before but feel it is timely 10 years on to still remember and hope change has come.

The 3 pieces of paper represent the Father, Son and Holy Spirit forming one body. The paper is rough and uneven representing the ups and downs, trials and tribulations we encounter on our journey through life. The red apple/heart shape has several meanings, the apple reference is for the teacher who died and the heart is for the love and caring he received from those students around him in his last hours. The apple/heart has a band uniform collar which represents the good that can come from team work. The Littleton bow tie represents the community coming together. The 13 teardrops represent the 13 people who were slaughtered. The pool of tears and the drops represent the “Veil of Tears” from the prayer in reference to all the sorrow felt. On the lower edge of the apple/heart is a pool of the blood spilled. On the apple/heart the words Revenge and Violence represent the 2 gunmen. The apple/heart is surrounded by the names of all the victims.

We truly need to raise our children to be caring, tolerant and respectful of others.

Bullying should not be tolerated, neither should revenge. It is our responsibility as adults and parents to treat our children with respect and not to ignore them or treat them as property. What these young men did cannot be condoned and I am a little tired of the epidemic of victimstance, but we all have a responsibility to make everyone feel they are a valued member of society and I see all too often a rash of self absorbed one-upmanship. I live in a community not dissimilar to Littleton and I hear from my children about the general atmosphere in the middle and high school, it is almost encouraged as a writ of passage that the stereotypical behaviours are pursued. I have heard first hand how some of the faculty and support staff speak to these teenagers, it would make me resentful. Teenagers need respect; I cannot emphasize that enough.