Tis the season for color, flowers, long days, car trips, garage sales, camping, grilling, fruit stands, and nice weather! Well in the beautiful Pacific Northwest the sunshine shows up after July 4th...so it feels as if we just have gotten started!
As I was contemplating the summertime it occurred to me that color was a huge part of the season. Gardens are filled with color, some mixed others monochromatic, yet they are beautiful. Each combination evoking a different feel. Like all art the color palette is what creates the tone and in this industry there are many styles....primitive, country chic, realistic, strokework, floral. Those styles communticate through color. So it is critical that the colors we choose convey the message we seek to deliver.
Taking chances with color can be risky, but it can also reap huge rewards! Who first dared to introduce purple into Halloween color schemes? But it works well and sparks up a tired tradition. Challenge yourself to take chances with new combinations, and you may find something you like better than the original!
In a few days I will make my first trip to the HOOT Convention, it is a trip I have looked forward to making for years! The six of us from Washington State that are travelling together painted aprons with my design. We named ourselves "The Puget Sound Paint Flingers"! Each of the aprons are different...all wonderful! That is what happens when artists share ideas and spend time together...magical things happen. Conventions create an incubator for creativity and the classes teach the communication skills to transfer ideas into art. With the loss of private shops and studios we have found that the community of painters has become faceless on the internet. Conventions serve as our perfect environment to grow and flourish in this industry...like a greenhouse of sorts!
So take risks with color, seek a community of artists that feeds your creativity, and enjoy what you do. A perfect palette is held by an artist that is willing to grow, stretch, and learn.
Happy Painting My Friends!
As I prepare to celebrate my 47th Mother's Day and the first one without my Mom, I am reflecting on all of the women I have celebrated on this day; past, present, and future. They represent my team of support. The people in my life who love me most, and my world becomes tighter and more comforting just enjoying the thoughts of them!
My Mom and I usually celebrated this day sharing a meal, either breakfast or dinner, and shopped for bedding plants at favorite nurserys. She was a tomboy in some ways and loved a good hardware store and could easily spend hours there. So finding plants, birdhouses, and gizmos for outside was fitting. She loved the time together shopping.
Women in my family have always been a huge support as well. They taught me to appreciate the arts of the home, and to build skills to pass along. Knitting, crochet, embroidery, cooking, gardening, antiquing, camping, painting, and appreciation for where I come from; heritage and history. These gifted, strong women gave me gifts I am grateful that I embraced...not knowing how important they were at the time.
My friends...the family I chose to surround myself with is also among who I celebrate on Mother's Day. The dear friend, and gifted mom to her kids, who invites me to celebrate with her this first holiday without my Mom. My friends who adopted me when I struggled with the realization that I am without my own parents now. These women are there for me through it all and I KNOW they will remain at the ready! My teaching comrads...loving, caring, and thoughtful women who give all they have each day and have some left for friends at the end of the day.
All of these women I celebrate. Mother's Day is more than a celebration for the one Mother in your life, it is a time to appreciate all of the women who have shaped and guided you into the person you have become. So celebrate them and the woman you have become because of them.
I love how Facebook has brought me together and in better touch with people from my past. Many may argue that it is a lazy excuse for communication, insulting even. However, in today's busy world a quick check in is time well spent to see a friend's grandchild and how they are growing, see that another's child was victorious in a sport, or, in the painting world, see a new idea shared by an artist. I could never be able to keep current on so many lives, as that format allows. Today I read posts from two childhood friends and it prompted me to blog.
One had lost his father today, they other was remembering a great father whose passing was nine years ago. As I read both posts I cried for them, understanding the depth of that loss. I left a short message for both, and then remembered how much those little messages meant when my parents left this world, and when I grieved milestones with those losses. They were/are powerful and available to read and re-read. I suppose in that show of support I felt love, a cyber-hug! That is valuble and appreciated. My Dad passed 3 years ago, and my Mom was just last month, for both I will always feel a sense of loss.
My challenge to all of you has evolved from this. Be active in your facebooking. "Like" things, make a quick comment, or write a private message. It may be just what that person needs. As artists, it is sometimes lonely and isolated as we create. This forum is powerful to share what we are doing and support one another. So be a part of the positive force of social media...you can make a difference and be a part of the lives you have touched.
Have a lovely day!
Creative Painting was a wonderful convention again this year! As a school teacher it is hard to get away at this time of the year, but my dear friend Mert and I got to go for a few days to enjoy the trade floor and friends both old and new!
To begin the trade floor festivities, Andy Jones presented JoSonja with a proclamation of "Living Legend" from the National Museum of Decorative Painting. She is the Queen Bee in the industry and an idol of mine and many others. She is gracious, creative, and a wealth of knowledge...I was so excited to hear the news! Browsing her booth and watching her demo is a favorite convention pastime of mine...she is truly one of the treasures in this industry and our world is better because of her imagination and spirit!
We arrived at the trade floor on day 2 and let me tell you it was packed! That is great news for our industry and economy! There were many new things, lots of make it and take its, and familiar faces!
Our first stop was at Vines and Valhalla! WOW! The booth looked amazing! I was so excited to throw my arms around Jamie! Her support and guidance is tireless and I can not thank her enough! Loved seeing Flo, Don, and Jamie's sister Debbie too. What a nice group of people! The new book was waiting for me to buy it and it is incredible! Flo's photos are so well done and showcase Jamie's talent further! The surfaces were plentiful and seeing the finished product in person is so much fun! She is a truly gifted painter...beautiful!
I submitted two projects to teach next year...keep your fingers crossed that I am selected for one or both! If not, there will be two packets on the site very soon! :) I hear that you usually hear either way in the first part of April...better cross the toes too!
This was a great trip and made my anticipation of HOOT this August that much more exciting! It will be fun to visit a new area, a new convention, and paint, paint, paint!
Hugs to you all and happy painting!
What an fun few days! Thanks so much for your orders, thoughtful messages, and love! I am humbled by the warm reception and kind words...truly.
I was working on a new idea, when it occurred to me...what do you want? Perhaps it is a certain surface; signs, repurposed junque, furniture, laser designs. Or maybe what you really want is a certain theme to paint; strokework, snowmen, Christmas, Halloween, animals. Is there a decorating style that you would like to see more of?; beach, cottage chic, French country, primitive, folk art.
Please share your painting pattern wishlist... I find creative fuel in your ideas and that drives my designs and inspires me.
Please comment and share your ideas! I would love to hear your thoughts!