Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Calm in the eye of the storm....

I have to work at my other job today..the graphic design one. Somehow, it the midst of the hurricane, well tornado here in the Mid-South, today and is proving to be a calming point. I have to have almost everything finished for CHA and be packed by Friday morning, so I'm eliminating some of my larger pieces that didn't get finished to my standards and just getting on with my life. There will be time when I return for that stuff.

On a happy note, it's pouring down rain here, but the temperatures are not low enough for the stuff to freeze, praise God! You gotta find the good stuff in everything and warm temps in January when it's raining are a very good thing.

I got to thinking about how my Saturday went so good as far as completing projects, and then Sunday was a diaster. I had serious issues with a product I have been in love with in the past that shall remain nameless. I tried every glue I had to make this stuff stick and finally ripped it off and threw it in the trash...although I did go back and fish it out this morning. I used the base I had been working on and turned the glue-covered mess into a thing of beauty with craft paint and collage. That's what I love about what I do. You can always salvage something if you try hard enough. I never would have thought of using a rough surface for this piece..I was looking at the beautiful smooth wood base and imagining a stain finish paint in a soft blue. Not what I wound up with, but there's nothing wrong with something a little different. Maybe one day I'll write a book and call it Turning Screw-ups into Big Bucks.

One of my coworkers told me that she had a crafting attack this weekend, went to the Michael's and bought a ton of stuff, then went home and created a lot of garbage. Nothing worked. She was sooooo frustrated. I got to thinking about how my Sunday had been so bad as opposed to my Saturday and how I could have given up on that piece, so I gave her a little tip about canvas (If you gesso and sand it lightly before you begin, you'll never see the weave of the fabric when you apply the paint). Which brings up another point: She expected this piece to be perfect in every way. Those who have taken my classes know my mantra: If it's perfect, it's not handmade!!!!!!!! Machines are designed to spit out cookie-cutter items. I don't EVER want to be considered a machine. Those who know me well will tell you that there's no danger in that analogy :)

Lunch is over. I have to get back to work. Hope I didn't get broccoli juice on the keyboard.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Bling Bling here...Bling Bling there.Here a bling, there a Bling, everywhere a Bling Bling...

Got my Swarovski (try saying THAT three times!)Crystals yesterday and have covered everything in the studio with them. Even Larry and the pups were afraid to stand still for very long.I finished most of my Fashion display last night and have almost completed my two pieces for the Terra Bella challenge.
I'm feeling much, much better about my CHA displays and made my (hopefully) last trips to Michael's, Hobby Lobby, Eclectica, etc. last night.
Larry had a gig at Gridley's barbecue last night, so I went in to Memphis with him and did my shopping, then went back to Gridleys for some of the finest ribs I've ever had...meaty and smokey and dripping with sauce, just the way I like 'em. Those of you in the Memphis area need to check out this place on Hwy. 64 at Summer Ave. Doug, the owner, is a good Christian man, a transplant from Greenwood, Mississippi, who makes the most awesome yeast rolls...about the size of a ladies' seven shoe. And the sweet beans and sweet tea are to die for. Can you tell I enjoyed it? The band will be playing there pretty regularly, starting in March, so check out the ribs and hear a little bluegrass. Doug is alo opening a larger location on Kirby Whitten road soon.
It's a vey foggy morning here in Tennessee. Fog is like snow in a way: everything is so quiet outside.It's very peaceful when all I can hear is the ticking of the clock and the last few drips signaling that my coffee is ready. I love early mornings when I'm the only person awake. It's nice to just sit and sip my coffee and think about my day ahead...or decide whether it's too early to call Roxi Phillips and run ideas by her that popped into my punkin' head overnight.
The coffee is ready and I need to prepare for church. My baby boy is coming for a visit this afternoon, so I am going to have a very great day. You do the same.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Deep sleep, great dreams, magazines

Does anyone out there ever get way-cool ideas in your dreams? When the pressure is on, I come up with some really great design ideas. I don't normally work at my graphic design job on Fridays and get to sleep a little late, but I got up at 5:45 this morning with all these great ideas buzzing around in my head. Happily, they were dragonflys and not killer bees creating the buzz.

On magazines... I have to confess: I'm a magaholic. I love 'em. Let me clarify that: I love beautiful art mags, Nat'l Geographic and Smithsonian, old Life, Saturday Evening Post, Look (now I'm really showing my age) and anything to do with altered arts, sewing, crafting and fine art. I allow Bass and American Hunter in my home for Larry and occassionally use one of those for reference when I need to know how a deer or a fish looks for realistic painting. I do not, however, read sports mags geared to a specific sport, although I do love baseball and football. So why did my new subscription to Skiing Magazine arrive in the mail yesterday? We don't do a lot of snow skiing here in the MidSouth, especially here on Mt. Windham. We did have snow yesterday, although you could barely see the flakes and it stopped in about five minutes. How do you think the people at Skiing ever found my name? It's a mystery. I sent them an e-mail this a.m. Inquiring minds want to know.

Today I will be slinging paint all over my studio in beginning of the last mad rush before CHA. For those who will be there, come visit the Girls from Tennessee and Mississppi at the Mom & Me fashion display, which will be up through the entire convention. We have a fun display with a wonderful retro look. Or EPMs can visit our three Designer Showcases at booths #35, #37 and #38 on Monday.

Have a fun-filled day! It's Friday!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Ready to go to CHA...

Well, not really. I'm ready to go, but my projects aren't all finished, so I guess I'll wait another week and a half.

One thing I have learned in the last 24 hours: Spray paint and cold weather do not mix. Trust me on this one.

I'm about to clean up my clutter from the last wave of projects so I can complete the next round.

Am I the only one who gets creativity blockage with a cluttered work area? I don't mean a cluttered studio. I think there's something a little strange about having a perfectly neat work area. I'm talking about the kind of clutter that covers the 20 feet of tabletop area where I create, with stacks of dangerously piled acrylic stamps pushed against boxes of wood-mounted stamps with Glimmer Mist and acrylic paint and Distress powders and inks and heat tools and scissors and every Krylon pen I've ever owned spread all over creation. Right now, the 12" square I usually work in is covered in 3/4" circles that I glued on to the roof of a papier mache house. They are stuck together where I trimmed, on the floor where they landed when I punched them and I was too tired to bend over and pick them up, hanging like chad from my scissors and stuck to the bottom of my Scrappy Glue bottle. I would take a photo and post, but if I get up from this computer and go to snap the photo, I'll probably get stuck to the floor and never get away.
Maybe tomorrow I'll post some photos.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

I finally finished the velvet purse I've been wrestling with for two days. Then I started digging through the crappage in my studio and discovered two more projects that I can include in my designer showcase at CHA.
Unfortunately I have to work today at my part-time job that makes it possible for me to play. At least it's still creating. It's just in graphic design. You don't get to use a lot of Glimmer Mist and Grungboard in graphic design, although I do manage to squeeze the fun stuff in occasionally.
Be sure to check out the Paper Creations website for a RockCandy Designs project using Artistic Outpost stamps. (And check out the AO website for Robyn's new stamps. Way Cool!) Roxi Phillips and I had a fun day creating this frame for the hero in your life.

Speaking of heroes, I had a flat on the way home Tuesday night. It was dark and on a two-lane road (Austin Peay for those in the Memphis area). With all my mega-problems with my back, I knew there was no way I could change the tire...so I called my hubby who was at home in a warm, dry house, surfing ebay. He promptly got up and came to my rescue. No complaints. No questions. No nothing. (I found out later that he did call my brother in law who lives not far from where I was stranded ...he has pneumonia. Please pray for him.) Anyway, Roxi stayed on the cell phone with me while I waited for Larry. I'm sure if a serial killer had approached my car, she could have reached through the phone and jerked a knot in his tail for me. Anyway, when I told Larry he was my knight in shining armor, he said, "More like your Nemesis in a tree."...whatever that means. Anyway, I'm thankful to have him. That is the first flat I have had since 1968, when I was a student at MSU and way before I met Larry.
It's cold and rainy today, so I'm glad to be inside, even if it is in an office.
Please excuse typos. I'm an artist, not a typist.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Where are they?

I have published 2 additonal posts to this blog and apparently, they have gone the way of the unicorn...nowhere to be seen.
If you have seen any of my other posts, let me know where they are hiding.

Counting down...

The CHA deadline is upon me and I'm starting to panic. I have lists, I have deadlines...I can't find die-cut swirl grungeboard, which is an integral part of two projects, anywhere. I'm taking off work to purchase new tires this afternoon and plan to spend the downtime on the phone tracking this stuff down.

On a lighter note, I have finished 4 HUGE projects that were blocking my creative muse, all graphic design projects that have been hanging over my head like the Sword of Damocles.

Saturday is our dry-run for our CHA Fasion Display. I know that afterwards I will feel more confident and more inspired to get my hiney in gear.

I don't mean to sound so negative. Those who know me know that I'm not usually like this. I thrive on tight deadlines and come up with my best work in time crunches.

Now if I could only figure out how to add a photo gallery to this blog.....

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Enough is Enough

I have been shamed into creating this blog since I started my other one more than a year ago and can't seem to remember the address, how to add photos, delete them or just remember to take time to post in general. This is not to say that I'm a stupid woman, just a very busy one. I know, I know: We're all busy. I just feel the need to start fresh.

I have resolved to simplify things for 2008. My teaching schedule has been pared down, I am trying my best to not work at my graphic design work more than 3 days a week, and I am trying to devote more time to doing what I love best: spending time with my hubby and friends and just making art.

In the coming weeks and months, I'll be posting new art. Keep in mind that I'll be gone to CHA and away for a little R & R for most of February, but will hit the ground running in March.

So there, Roxi. Are you happy?