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Song Bird Mixed Media

I have been using my art as therapy, which has been working pretty well, except I have been having a hard time focusing on what to do first.  This is a bit of a problem as I have an art show and class coming up at the beginning of April in Vermont and need to get cracking on my Goddess series.  So, I thought I would head over to the Collage Obesession website and see what the challenge was for the week.  EGGS.  Perfect, I thought, I shall work on my Song Bird mixed media piece I had been planning for the series.

I started with tearing out pages from a vintage bird book I received from my in-laws and covered the entire canvas with it.  Then covered it with a mixture of red and fuchsia paint.  I had a vision of what I wanted it to look like, but was a little afraid to just start.  Kind of unlike me.  Feeling a little shaky lately I guess.  I grabbed some stencils and jumped in.  Here is a work in progress picture.

Song Bird Mixed Media

Here is the piece in it’s entirety.  It is a bit of an ode to my oldest daughter.  She has always loved music and will sing everywhere and anywhere if given the opportunity.  Such a free spirit, I love it.

Song Bird Mixed Media2

She has blond hair just like Milah but this Goddess has birdcage pony tails like no other.

Song Bird Mixed Media4

I gave her a dress of real bird feathers and nest with eggs head piece to complete the look :)

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I finished it off with a Maya Angelou quote “A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song”.

Song Bird Mixed Media3

Do you have any song birds in your life????

Mixed Media Bridal Shower

I have been wanting to share a bridal shower I did a few months ago and I had promised the guests I would so they could see the finished product but, I had misplaced the memory card that the photos were on.  However, I just found it, YEY!!!

It all started when I met the nicest couple during Italian Week at the Preston Street Mercato this past summer.  They were both the kind of people that being in their presence makes your day brighter.  They were so sweet about my art and thought my party/showers were a great idea.  They took my business card and I didn’t really think anything more of it.  A couple months later I received an e-mail from Ann, a maid of honour saying her bride insisted I come teach at her bridal shower.  I was flattered and excited, although I wasn’t sure who the bride was.  After getting all of the details about the colours and general theme of the wedding, this is the invitation I made for all the guests.

The bride had seen my post on a previous bridal shower I had done and wanted the same sort of piece.  So, off I went to prepare the backgrounds for 35 pieces.  Yes, 35, it was huge.  I was excited to see how it would all come together though.

Once Cassandra (the bride) arrived at the shower, I instantly remembered her and was truly honoured she had wanted me to be a part of such a big day (I know, I am a sap, haha).  Here she is wearing the special vintage apron as the guest of honour.

With all of her bridal party (they were also the hostesses for the shower), holding the prepared canvases and ready to paint.

Everyone is hard at work.  They all just dove in and were so great it made my job easy. One of the birds in progress.More of the girls getting their art on in their Peaberry™ aprons.

The mother of the bride with her two pieces.  She made an extra one for grandma since she couldn’t make it.

Once everyone was done I took it home to outline everything in black and put some finishing touches to bring it all together.

Check out all of the depth and texture each piece has.  I always insist each guest sign the back of their masterpiece and write a little note to make each it even more personal.

Here are the two birds which represent the couple, Cassandra and Matt.  I made sure to bring some red papers and such as I heard that was Matt’s favourite colour (We must include the groom some how).  Ann also had me write a special quote on it before I delivered it to the bride and groom (as a surprise).

I hope they are as happy as I am with the way it turned out.  My favourite part of the day was when a few people who were a little sceptical about the whole thing were surprised by how much they enjoyed themselves.  Some had never done anything like this before and just wanted to keep creating.  Hopefully I have opened a little something in them that they will continue to nurture.  Makes my heart happy :)

Word of the Year for 2013

It is time for my word of the year but first off, I wanted to say HAPPY NEW YEAR and a huge thank you to all my subscribers and followers.  You are helping my dreams come true and are deeply appreciated.

I am a part of this amazing group of “Flyers“ and some of us have decided to do a blog hop to share our word of the year.  So, if you are starting with me, grab yourself a warm beverage and do the tour, I promise it will be worth visiting all of these talented ladies.

Choosing a word of the year may seem a little more difficult then having New Year’s resolutions, but I think not.  It is a good way to keep you focused and on task throughout the year.  Although, deciding on which word to go with was a little harder then I expected.  My motto which has come to me over the last couple of years is “Follow Your Bliss”.

(I finally got to do some painting today so I thought I would paint my motto and word of the year for when my studio space is ready)

In the past (prior to discovering mixed media) when people asked what I did for a living I would say, “I’m a paralegal, but I have yet to find my bliss”.  I am happy to report that I no longer say that.  My current answer is “My day job is as a paralegal, but I am an artist”.  It has taken me a while as it felt almost arrogant to say that, like “who do I think I am??”  Through the love and support of my man and friends, I have finally claimed ownership of my lot in life and man, does it feel great.  It has been a busy but amazing year and I am hoping that 2013 will be even better.  But I digress.  I kind of wanted to let you know where I was coming from when I say I wanted to pay homage to my motto and truly follow my bliss (practice what I preach, so to speak).  I kind of knew what I wanted it to be but couldn’t find a “pretty” word to my liking.  I then received my ”Daily Truth” from the Brave Girls.

“Dear Courageous Girl,

When clarity finally comes, it is so important to not be talked out of it by voices that are not our own. So often, when we are making difficult choice, other people, other forces and other messages are completely opposed to the decision that is best for our own life. Change is uncomfortable, and we resist change in others often as much as we resist change in ourselves.

Sometimes we just have to keep sacred things to ourselves until our resolve, decision or goal is not feeling so wobbly and timid and fragile. Sometimes we have to give it time to grow and to become strong and solid and clear before it is safe enough to share it.

Remember the peace you felt when the decision was finally made. Remember the clarity you felt when you knew the answer for sure. Remember that you knew it was right. What made it muddy was the outside opinions, preferences and judgments that really have no business making these kinds of decisions for your one beautiful, precious life.

Stay strong, dear girl. You know the way to go. You know what to do.
It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.

You are so very loved.
xoxo”

So, after reading that, flowery or not, I chose CHANGE.  I have realized that it does not have to be “pretty”, it is what I want for myself and my family in the next year.

(Chris made the awesome aluminum word plate for me and below is the entire painting.  Don’t you just love the felt rolls?)

Some of my favourite CHANGE quotes:

“Life is change.  Growth is optional.  Choose wisely.”

“Growth means change and change involves risk, stepping from the known to the unknown”

“We must become the change we want to see”

Now to make a -to do- list to help myself achieve all of this great change.  I think I might also make myself a bracelet with my word as a daily reminder.  Look out world, here I come!!!

Don’t forget to head over and visit the talented mixed media artist Michelle Hill and check out what her word is.

Bridal Shower Canvas

So, last weekend I was asked to teach and prepare a Bridal Shower canvas by a maid of honour.  Since I just happened to also be a bridesmaid in this wedding, I was more than happy to do it.  It also meant I was close to the bride and knew she was a fan of blues and greens.  Which, when you are planning an art piece that is hopefully going to hang in her love nest, is quite helpful.  Since their original wedding theme was going to be love birds, I thought that would be a good place to start.

Here is the background I prepared for everyone.  I drew in pencil a basic outline for everyone to follow.

I then pulled out papers, paints and embroidery floss.

I think it helped the nervous ones that cosmos were being served.

Each person got a piece of the canvas to do with what they pleased (or almost what they pleased, haha).  It was funny cause the bride ended up adding an extra bird to her piece as she somehow missed some of the instructions.  As I always say, there are no mistakes, only happy accidents.  In this case, it was entirely appropriate as the bride has a son who is a huge part of their lives.

So off they went.  They all worked hard and lovingly on their individual pieces.

Here I am with the bride.

Here is the piece once the guests were done with it.

I then took it home and added some finishing touches to it to make it a little more cohesive.

I added the word “LOVE” to it since that is what weddings are all about it, isn’t it?

Finally, the two love birds.

What a great way to spend an afternoon!!!