I’m ready for a New Year to begin. I like to set intentions for my personal and business life. They give me something to strive towards and as a goal setter, I really need the direction at times. The past year, hand-in-hand with my word Trust. has given me great rewards and unexpected results. I took the year to search deep inside to what I really love to do and to where I see myself going. Two things stuck out instantly. I love to paint and I love to teach. Now these are both things I have been doing for the past 22 years so they really didn’t come as a surprise. But what did surprise me was that I actually missed just putting paint and brush to wood. Seems simple right. However, I have made my living for the past 12+ years doing colored pencils. Art, yes, just with a different medium and different results. Oh, I like colored pencil and the fact that it, as a very controlled medium, showed me the way to realism and exactness that my architectural rendering muse inside loves very much. But after a while I just wasn’t satisfied with its limitations and not-so-quick finish. So the return of a paintbrush in my hand is something I am almost giddy about. The ideas swirling in my head are amazing, challenging and will take me out of my comfort zone once again. I am ready to see the endless possibilities of what the New Year will offer me. Are you ready?
I decided in October last year that I was going to take risks, learn new things and tackle the art forms I wanted to learn more about. You know, those “I will get to it ONE DAY,” but does that one day ever come? Well, this year it is here, that one day. I have set out to learn all I can about assemblage, collage art, watercolor, abstract art, encaustic and so much more. It is a year about experimenting without feeling bad if it doesn’t turn out. It is a year of playing and being a student again. Jumping in to the online classes that are challenging me out of my comfort zone but letting me explore who I am inside. It is a year of revitalizing my love of art, in all its forms.
The Dome, the art above, is my third abstract art piece. It is not the best but I learned so much in doing it. I like the process of thinking about it, letting it rest for a day or two consuming my thoughts and dreams. It started with the double butterfly collage, the city line and the water reflection. When I came into the studio the next day it was begging for a dome. Who knew this sci-fi artist was inside? I sure didn’t but I just let her have control and create. I love this piece because it isn’t perfect, I didn’t have control and it threw me out of my comfort zone in size (20″x12″), colors (interior house paint) and the biggest brushes I have ever seen (size 40 and 50).
So I am asking you, what is on your ONE DAY list? And, what are you waiting for? Unless you make the time, you will never have the time. You are so worth it!
Last year made me think about these three things, a lot. What I was doing? Who I was doing it for? Did the outcome make me happy? My answers. Managing, not creating. Everyone else but me. If stress, frustration and counting the days until the New Year only made me happy it would have been perfect, um no! A big change was needed. Do you ever feel that way? Like you are mindlessly going through the motions, surviving but not really living. Well, that is exactly what my life felt like. Constantly doing but doing all the wrong things. I knew it would take drastic measures, huge gumption, courage and a different mindset but I vowed 2017 was going to be a year of simple pleasures. My goals: get off the road, create more just because, monthly challenges to make me step out of the box and take classes that really took me out of my comfort zone. I approach each day walking into my studio with an open mind, excited to be inspired by what today will bring and simply put, enjoy having a paintbrush in my hand again. Last year I created 23 new pieces in 365 days. It is so sad to see that little number, my heart breaks knowing it, having written it for the world to see. But, that was last year, a new year is upon us. I am so grateful to have put that in the past and to only look forward from here on out. I will do better. I will do art. I will find my simple pleasures. I will find myself again. I will, I must! I am so glad that ideas have not left me after being neglected for a full year, they still present themselves in a whisper and percolate until I am ready. I have already created 15 pieces of art in the last 28 days, I have been uncovered…
This hand painted nativity is one of the first things that goes up when decorating for the holidays. It reminds me so much of the past, present and future. I discovered Juliet Martin (the designer of this beautiful jewel) when I was learning how to decorative paint and fell in love with her unique perspective of creating a story with your art. This lead me to selling my painted stuff at local craft shows and consignment shops, putting me in touch with my customer. It also made me want more. To changing colors to fit my decor. Changing lines to rearrange designs to make it more unique. To finally believing that I could start designing, creating and painting to make a living with. Who knew it would lead me down this path for 20 years as an artist? Something I am so grateful for each and every day!
While, you may see a beautiful little nativity scene, I see my artistic life. The past, that my painting needed improving but I was willing to learn, challenge and grow with each stroke. The present, the sun shining its brightness on my gift, being an artist and living an artful life full of inspiration. The future, the hidden treasures carried by the Wisemen. In reality, only limited by your imagination and the courage to go after them. It is a season of birth, celebration and the wonderment of miracles. Believe in yourself – who you are, where you want to go and what you want to achieve. You hold the key, believe in its power!
From me to you, have the happiest of Holidays and Merry Christmas!
My artistic path started as a young girl exploring cloud shapes, crayola crayons and a neighborhood of games that let your imagination run wild. It developed through middle and high school and eventually lead me to art school in Chicago. I worked steadily in Advertising firms and found myself doing craft shows on the weekends just to keep painting. This lead me to the world of decorative painting, designing, exhibiting, and teaching locally and throughout the United States. It has been 20 years in this industry and change is in the air. The pull of online teaching, reaching students worldwide and creating courses that allow the student to find their own voice is what 2017 has in store for me. And, it is with nervous energy that I leave the comfort of the art world that I have grown up in. It is a wonderful thing to pursue growth, challenge yourself and push the limits on everything you do. It has become my “norm” if you will. The idea that boundaries are made to be broken, stepped into and forseen as what is next. It is scary but I am so looking forward to what creative delight the next decade will bring forth. Finding courage, taking a leap of faith and hoping a new audience as well as my present one will once again join me on this inspired journey into the next phase of my artful life. I can promise you this, it will be anything but normal. After all, I am at the helm and you never know what is going on in my ever thinking, no limitations, endless possibilities, creative brain. Are you ready for the journey into 2017? I know I am – onward!