Monday, July 16, 2012

Monday Musings - I Had a Great Idea

Once upon a time, a long time ago, I had a job. A great job, with a great salary, full benefits, four weeks paid vacation, 12 paid holidays, 10 paid sick days, 2 paid personal days, 401k . . .the whole nine yards.

And then, one day I woke up and decided that I wanted to open my own business. (okay, so it didn't really happen quite like that . . .I spent a good six months thinking and planning.)

As my business picked up, it was time to leave my "safe" job.  I remember on my last day at Corporate America, my boss said, "I want you to know that if this doesn't work out, you can always come back here."

For a half of a nanosecond, I actually questioned my sanity decision to open my own business.  I hadn't thought about "what if it didn't work out?"  I just knew that it would work out.  But, alas, her words scared me a little bit.

You know what? It did work. Perfectly for seven years. And I've never, ever, not once regretted that decision.

My point is . . . just a few words from somebody else can make you question yourself and your decisions. Do.Not.Allow.It.  Only YOU know what's best for you . . .and sometimes, you just have to follow your instincts.

If I had given in to my fear(s) and stayed at that corporate job, I wouldn't have met so many interesting artsy people. I wouldn't have gained all that knowledge that comes with owning a business. I wouldn't be where I am today . . . totally happy.

What about you? Have you followed a passion of yours and had it work out just right? Have you been thinking about it? What's stopping you from doing it?

Thanks for visiting today!

Monday, July 02, 2012

Monday Musings - The Music of Summer

We listen to the radio a lot since we shut off the cable.  While I was listening the other day, "I Want Candy" by Bow Wow Wow came on and it got me thinking.  I love summer. It's most definitely my favorite season and it seems that there is just some music that I expect to hear during the hot months.

This page is still in progress, but I thought I'd share it anyway.  I love the citrus-y colors . . .
I'll post it again with what I used when it's all done.

Here's my Top Ten List of Summer Music (in no particular order):

1. Three Little Birds by Bob Marley
2. I Want Candy by Bow Wow Wow
3. Hotel California by The Eagles
4. Come On Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners
5. Amber by 311
6. Do You Remember by Jack Johnson
7. The Remedy by Jason Mraz
8. Volcano Girls by Veruca Salt
9. Waiting on the World to Change by John Mayer
10. Joga by Bjork

Some of the songs go way back, some are more recent, and I definitely have eclectic taste in music. By the way, it's really hard to find "original" videos for some of the songs . . .sheesh. But, I was able to find a link for each song.

What about you? Do you have any favorite "Summer Songs?"

Thanks for visiting today!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

No Such Place

My husband and I had an interesting conversation during dinner last night.  He was telling me that while listening to the radio, the host of the show stated that people today seem to be less inclined to take a risk because "it might not work."

And then he reminded me of the scene from Eat, Love, Pray when Liz (Julia Roberts) was telling her friend that she was going to take off for a year and her friend replied, "What if it doesn't work?"

He said to me, "I think you're the only person I know who doesn't think that way."

Huh? I wasn't sure what he meant, so I asked him if he meant that I don't say that to other people or I don't think that way when it comes to my own decisions.

He said, "Your own decisions. It's like you're not afraid to fail."

Oh. I see.  Well, I'm not. . . and that's because I don't think anyone ever really "fails."  If you decide to do something, whether it's completely change careers, or open your own business, or even take off for a year, one of two things will happen.

1. It'll work, or
2. It won't work out quite how you had thought it would.

Either way, you have succeeded simply by gaining knowledge, experience, and sometimes even learning a hard lesson.  I told my husband that. And then further went on to say that it's the pre-conceived expectations that f*ck people up.

He smiled and shook his head.

"What?" I asked, "It's true. People come up with these ideas and "expect" things to go a certain way and when they don't, it seems that's all they focus on. . .the bad.  Instead, they should focus on all that was learned."

"I agree with you . . .but your delivery . . ."

Well . . . sometimes my delivery is a bit blunt . . . okay fine, it's very blunt most of the time. . . . but why sugar coat anything?  Just get to the point.

Hm. . . I think I have made my point.

How about you? Have you done something that worked out just right? Or didn't work out just right? What lessons did you learn?

Thanks for stopping by today!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Vibrant Hearts

I never really know what direction a page in my art journal is going to go.  I usually just start by spraying ink or smearing paint . . .and then it begins to evolve.

Sometimes, I finish a page in an hour. . . sometimes I have to walk away and come back to it. . . which is why I almost always have three pages in progress at one time.

This particular page was one that I had to walk away from.  It started out just how I was hoping, but then it started to get muddy.  More gesso, more layers, more stencils . . . walk away . . . more paint, more ink, a few stamps . . . and finally I felt that the page was "done."  And I'm quite pleased how it turned out.

Items used: SEI Tumble Die Spray Ink, Golden Fluid Acrylics, Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paint, Crafter's Workshop Stencils, Dylusions Stencil, Punchinella, Stabilo Pencil, Sharpie Poster Paint Pen, various stamps 

It's a process . . .and one "lesson" I'm beginning to learn is that I can't really "hope" for a page to turn out the way I want it to.  I just have to let page turn out the way it's going to turn out.  I'm always much happier with the results when I do that. . .

How about you? Do you keep an art journal? Or any type of journal? Do you find you're most pleased with the art/words when you don't overthink it?

Thanks for stopping by today!

Friday, June 08, 2012

Star Light, Star Bright . . .

Well . . . I was going to do some really long elaborate post about something super fancy, but the words just aren't coming to me.  So, instead, here's a journal page for you. . .

What I used:
Sunburst Stencil by Crafter's Workshop
Star Stencil made with my Cricut; cut from cereal box
Golden Fluid Acrylic Paints
Sei Tumble Dye Spray Ink
Old Book Pages

Thanks for stopping by today!  I'm gonna go paint now . . .

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tuesday is Cleaning Day, But. . .

I think I feel a case of Spring Fever coming on.  The weather is just too nice outside to stay inside and run a vacuum!  I might just do what really, really needs to be done (such as finish this blog post) and then go find a nice shady tree to sit under.

On to the page . . . This page depicts exactly how I feel today. . . energized and a happy heart.  I took both dogs out for a nice long walk early this morning (although, they both were a little obnoxious today for some reason . .. maybe they have Spring Fever, too?).

I made a mental list of the "must get done today" stuff and then let my thoughts wander to wherever they might go.

I thought about those new houses that are being built in the middle of an established neighborhood. Do we really need to build on every little piece of available land?

I thought about how happy we are that Sheila (our Cattle Dog) doesn't seem to be having seizures anymore since we've stopped giving her Proin and switched to a holistic medication.

I thought about how Morgan (our Shiba Inu mix) has come so far with the training.  She's still a little bit neurotic, but at least she doesn't jump out of her fur every time I try to pet her.

I thought about how nice it was to go to Carlsbad with my husband and just enjoy time together.

I thought about the next journal page.

I thought up a few more ideas for blog posts.

I thought about what I'm going to do for the next Stamp Club meeting.

I thought about how very blessed I am.

What about you?  How are you feeling today?

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a Sunshiny Day!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Bubbles with a Splash of Coral

I try to take the dogs out on a walk at least four times a week.  While I'm on these walks, I do a lot of thinking.   I think about what I can post on the blog and always seems to come up with something really good, but of course, when I sit down to do it, my mind is blank.

Funny how that happens.

So then I thought, why not do warm-ups for writing like I do right before working in my journal? And ya know what? The same thing happens.  I stare at the blank notebook pages and just doodle along the margins.  ***sigh***
Supplies used: Crafter's Workshop stencils: Balzer Designs Pomegranate and Triangle Plaid, Gathered Flowers, Dylusions Letter Jumble, Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paint, Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint, Gesso,  Tumble Dye Spray Inks, Mr. Huey's White Spray Ink, Stabilo Pencil
But then I thought . . . I'm a pretty structured person.  Not only do I need it, I crave it.  I have a weekly schedule . . .I do certain things on certain days . . .and perhaps I need to include "free writing" time into my schedule.  Just fifteen minutes a day. So that will begin next week. . . 15 minutes a day of free writing . . .about something . . .or nothing . . . or everything. Just to get myself back into the habit of writing.  I'm excited to see where it leads . . .

What about you? Do you have any tips you'd like to share? I'd love to hear them!

Thanks for stopping by today!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Not My Usual Colors

I treated myself to few new goodies . . . Dylusions Stencils and Mr. Huey's Opaque White spray.  (Both are available here.)

I have to say, that I love the white spray! (Another page using it coming soon). It really stays white. . .although, I did apply a light coat of Matte Clear spray just to be on the safe side since I hadn't used it before.

For this page, I wanted to do something a little bit different than I usually do . . .and even though the colors are dark and not what I would normally do, I'm quite happy with it . . .especially the "brick wall" stamp . . . it just kinda worked.

What about you?  Have you treated yourself to any new goodies lately? Have you tried them out yet?

Thanks for stopping by today!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Monday Musings - We Shut Off the Cable

Two years ago, our cable bill went up $5.00 a month. Eh, no big deal. Last year, it went up $10.00 a month. Grrrrr . . . fine, I'll deal with it.  I noticed on this month's bill, it went up another $10.00 a month. Nope. I'm done.

There are only about eight (of the 62) channels we actually watch . . .so by my math, we're paying almost $8.00 per channel.  So, we decided to shut it off.

I've never really been much of a TV watcher, anyway.  There are a few shows that I particularly enjoy, but I'm not one to set my clock by what day/time a show is on.
I know . . .the journal page has nothing to do with this post, but I love this page and wanted to share it.

I actually remember wwwwaaaayyyy back when, the girls at work would always come in the day after Seinfeld was on and talk about how funny the episode was.  I had no idea what they were talking about . . I'd never seen the show. When I told them that, they all looked at me like I was from another planet.  To this day, I've seen maybe three episodes.

Anyway, since we have shut off the cable, I've noticed a few things around here.

1. My husband and I got into the really bad habit of watching TV while eating dinner in the studio.  Now, we actually sit at the dining room table again and have a conversation.

2. I read the news now. I think it's better for me because I get all the important information without being bombarded with graphic images.

3. Finally, I've noticed a much lower bill. . . . $62.00 lower.  (Hey . . .that's at least one new pair of shoes!)

How about you? Have you made any changes lately that have had a positive impact on you?

Thanks for visiting today!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Warm Ups

Oh my . . . I have been working in my art journal so much lately!  My muse has a tendency to take off and go on vacation without telling me. . . .but not lately.  And it's because I've been doing Warm Ups!  I'm convinced of it.

I found out about these warm-ups from a dear friend of mine who literally said, "Stop what you're doing and go watch this video."

And I did . . .right after an episode of Criminal Minds ended. . . .

It's done by Dina Wakley and it's a great video. . .stop what you're doing and go watch it.

Thank you, dear Friend for telling me about it and thank you Ms. Wakley for sharing!

Thanks for visiting today!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Blue Hearts

A friend of mine asked why there weren't any words on any of my journal pages.  After all, one is supposed to write in a journal, right?

Oh . . .I'm not so sure about that. . . sometimes, just the colors I use are enough to convey what's been on my mind, in my heart, or my overall mood.  But sometimes, they have nothing to do with anything at all.

And, I admit that I have some reservations about writing in plain word form.  It is something that I'm working on . . .finding the guts to write, not only on my journal pages, but more freely here on my blog.

I guess I kinda found myself in a rut with my "other" blog because it was so focused on my store.  All that was ever on there were class schedules, what new goodies had arrived, and project samples.  After doing that for six years, it almost seems like that's all I know how to do.

But, like I said, I'm working on that and trying really hard to step out of my comfort zone. . . in so many more ways than just journaling. . . thank you for joining me on this journey . . . and thanks for stopping by today!

What I used:
Tumble Tye Die Spray Ink
Oil Pastels
Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint
Sharpie Paint Pen
Tile Texture and Mini Cursive Alphabet stencils
Heart stencil by Maya Road

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Three Pink Circles

Happy Saturday! Just a quick little post today. . .

What I used:

Tumble Tie Dye Ink
Oil Pastels
Mini Fence Stencil
Stamps by Stamper's Anonymous
Old Sheet Music
Tuxedo Black Memento ink

Thanks for visiting today!

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Progression of a Purple Heart

Sometimes I'm so surprised with how one of my journal pages progresses through the whole process.  This page in particular!  I'm so glad that I took pictures while creating it . . . the end result is so far off from how it started.

Here's how it began:

I kept adding more and more layers and soon found that it was dark.  Way too dark.  So then I added some gesso to lighten it up and it turned into this:

More and more layers added, but it still needed something . . .the "punch" just wasn't there yet.  And finally, while digging through my box o' paint, I decided to add magenta and purple.  And that was all she wrote.  My page was complete.

And here it is:

Thanks for visiting today!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Two Hearts

At first, I didn't think this page was completed. . . but the more I looked at it, the more I realized that it is complete. I think. For now, anyway. . .
Thanks for visiting today!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Orange & Teal

This page. I kept working it and working it and working it. This is how it started out. . .

Then it went this way . . .

Finally, it ended up like this. . .

The process of adding more and more layers . . .more and more color . . . more and more texture.  That is what I've been enjoying the most while working in my journal lately.

Thanks for visiting today!

Friday, March 09, 2012

Sun, Stars, & Music

Three of my favorite things. I love the warmth of the sun. I love to stare at the stars on a clear night. And I almost always have music playing.

Thanks for visiting today!

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Lots 'O Layers

This page started out with an orange-yellow background. And then . . . I forgot to heat set the Color Wash . . . and it turned into a muddy mess. *sigh*

So, I just kept adding layer after layer after layer. And I love the end result. But honestly, it was the whole process of adding the layers that made me super happy.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Monday, March 05, 2012

Blue Flowers

I've still been working in my Journal. And it has been so wonderful to make a mess and just have the paint land where it does and the inky sprays splatter everywhere.

Supplies used:
Crafter's Workshop Stencils
Tumble Dye Spray Inks
Color Wash
Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paint
White Sharpie

Most of the supplies are available HERE.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Saturday, March 03, 2012


I admit it . . .I've been a bit out of sorts, lately. Kinda feeling a little anxious, or disconnected, or . . . well, just off-kilter. Maybe because of the cold, gray, and rainy days.
When this happens, I pull out my journal, paints, sprays, and stencils. It helps. A lot.

If I need some inspiration, I go here, watch a few "In Process" videos and I'm ready to roll. When I'm done, I always feel much better.

What makes you feel better?

Supplies used:
Canson Blank Journal
SEI Tumble Tie Dye Spray
Oil Pastels

Golden Fluid Acrylic Paint
Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paint
White Sharpie

Thanks for stopping by today!