Welcome to My World, Art & All

My long range goal is that you'll find INSPIRATION for your Soul, your Artful Endeavors, your Outlook on Our World, and Warm, Enduring Friendships. Welcome to my world.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Day (plus 2) after Art Show Opening

OK, I'm here, after telling a few folks I would be doing this. It took a couple days to recover (there's true, legitimate reasons why I'm on SSDisability) from Saturday's excitement, and getting the put off chore of cleaning the bathrooms finally done today (because the kitties refuse to learn), I can sit and "tell" you Saturday's story.

So, did you see the Friday Gwinnett Daily Post "Weekend" section? I was so very delighted that the cover was a picture of "The Barn", an awesome piece done for the show by my friend and resident artist at Tannery Row Artist Colony Judith Surowiec. The article, written by Deanna Allen, was a great write-up of what was coming on Saturday. And though she made no reference to her interview with me (ya never know what's going to be, or not be, included in the report) she referenced five different pieces of art in the show at the beginning of her article, and one of mine was in that group (referred to "A six of hearts playing card").
I thought THAT was kind of cool!

This "The Joy of 6" art show has 85 pieces of art for viewing (and for sale, btw). I was only one of 45 artists (over 20 are resident artists at TRAC; the rest were Guest Artists like me) and we were each allowed to enter up to two pieces of art. The show comprises three categories: Two-Dimensional (flat paintings), Three-Dimensional (sculpture, etc), and Mixed Media (what I work in). And, there was not two, but FOUR JUDGES from the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. I heard, and had a couple of them tell me directly after the reception, they had a very hard time making their final decisions because there was/is so much great art in the show!

I was so very, very blessed to have Jessica there with me, and here we are doing our Vanna White impersonations by "a six of hearts playing card", actually entitled "1x6= Love Multiplied". A number of other special people came up to support me. Thank You - Bill, Joni, and Aleah, Linda and Anna, Beth, Tim and Lollie, Maria, and two of Jessica's friends (so very sorry I can't remember names). I can't say enough on how much it meant to have ya'll there!!!

A LOT of people attended this Opening/Reception! I'm reading a book by Anna Deavere Smith called "Letters to A Young Artist" (written actually for artists of any age in all the various art forms) and in one letter she talks about how an Art Show (or a play, music concert, etc) creates a community out of people who do not know each other, but are there to experience something together. And that is what we had last Saturday evening. The place was packed with lots of people, some known by various artists, others no one knew, but all there to experience together viewing this incredible art show (and all the food we made and served, LOL). I will tell you now, a new Chicken Hors d'oeuvre recipe I created for this show disappeared so fast, with the artists giving me thumbs up on it, it blew my mind.

So it's time to go fix dinner. More details and up close pics tomorrow. For now I'll leave you with another little peek of part of "Motion Sixness". In the meantime,
add doing something creative to your day (I'm fixin to go make Boneless Pork Loin Marsala over Jasmine Rice) because it truly blesses your soul, and gives joy to your heart! ;)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

T Minus 48 Hrs before My First Art Show

How am I feeling going into my first ever Art Gallery Show????
Well, the artwork is all completed. I delivered the pieces to the gallery on the appointed day, Tuesday, Feb. 16. The process was started today, hanging all the artwork thoughout the gallery. I'll find out this Saturday evening where my pieces have been hung.

A very unexpected but cool (I thought) thing happened during the process of delivering my art to the gallery. I was interviewed by a Reporter there to do a piece about this special Art Show!!!!! After having been introduced to her, including a bit about my "credentials", she asked permission to "ask you a few questions". Well, I didn't see any reason to say "No", so I said "OK'. Thus began an intensive interview, where I was asked also about my artwork, the process for creating my pieces, and I don't remember what all. I remember a fleeting thought of "wow, this is how the athelets must feel when they get interviewed just before or after a big game!". I don't think I stumbled over my words, but foretunately no cameras were on me. LOL

Anyways, Check out the Friday edition of the Gwinnett Daily Post; Front Page of the Weekender section for the story about this Saturday's opening of the art show "THE JOY OF 6 - Celebrating 6 Years of Artistry" at the Tannery Row Artist Colony in Historic Buford, Ga.

As promised earlier in the week, here's a couple "sneak peaks" of my works.
This first one is a "sneak peak" of "1x6=Love Mulitiplied a.k.a. Diverse City".
There is a LOT of sympolism in this piece.
For all of the work involved, I had a LOT of fun putting this mixed media project together. I'll have to wait until Sunday to show you more of this 16" x 20" piece. But if you attend the reception on Saturday evening I can show you "up front and in person" the whole thing.
Each artist was allowed to create up to two pieces for this show, and each piece has to somehow reflect the number 6 (in celebration of the 6th anniversary of TRAC/gallery). My second piece involves six canvases painted individually almost to completion, then pulled together, identifying the juxtaposition of the whole and completing the project from there. This project was alot harder and really stretched me artistically. I am extremely pleased with the whole. Here's a "sneak peak" of one little section. I have to thank my dear friends Bill and Joni Morrill who helped me create the frame for this piece. Bill's handy "Table Saw" work cut the special shape/size needed for the finished piece. I love you guys!!

More later. I gotta go eat dinner and watch the Men's Long Program Iceskating/Olympics.

BTW - if you feel like making a comment anytime (and they are extremely welcome) all you have to do is click the comment place at the end of one of my posts, and you can do that. Cool, huh???

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Funny Little Valentine

I was in the studio here playing one night last week with my Golden Fluid Acrylic Paints, trying to relax and think about what I wanted to do on one of my projects for my upcoming First Ever Art Gallery Show. It has to be said, this is an awesome new step in my Artist Journey. When two of my artist friends asked me to be a "Guest Artist" at this show I gulped! One of them, Soonee, always calls me (with her adorable Korean accent) Brenda Jones. It's never just Brenda; always Brenda Jones.
She sat there repeating, "Brenda Jones, you can do this". Then Sabrina, my artist friend who is also with www.amigosforchrist.org chimed in with, "Absolutely, Brenda, you need to do this."

I've been blessed to have some of my Card Designs, scrapbook layouts, and altered art books published in hard copy magazines and e-zines. I am happiest here in my studio creating art. And, I want to paint more and pull different mediums that I love together. But, preparing for and being in an Art Gallery Show? Wow!

So, here I was playing, getting comfortable with some paints. Actually, you could call what I was doing "doodling with paint". That's what I call what I was doing. But, when it was time to call it quits for the evening, there was actually some "doodling" that I liked. And this is one of them, my Funny Little Valentine.
It actually wasn't funny at the time. In honesty, I started crying. And I guess that's all I'm gonna say about it for now. I really like the colors!
They're fun and cheery. I think I keep this "doodle".
Jess and I are going to have a Mother/Daughter Valentine Date next Wednesday night. It will be fun to spend time with her, and wind down from the pushing to get all the artwork finished and turned in to the gallery by Tuesday afternoon. For now, its back to the canvas that's almost complete. Yea!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Snow Day's A'comin????

Are we REALLY gonna have white stuff tomorrow?? Will there really be several inches of snow to play in and maybe even make a little snow man????

That white powdery stuff from the sky just doesn't show up much in this area (Atlanta). When it does make an appearance, we're like little kids. I mean we adults are even like little kids!!!!! I did a quick layout two yrs ago about the BIT of snow we had here.
It was meant to be a SIMPLE layout and when I look at it I can once again feel the snow flakes hitting my tongue. Of course I didn't end up keeping the layout quite so "simple". I did a LOT of paper tearing and layering, distressed the photo edges, and painted and/or stickled the metal snow flakes. Maybe I'll get to have some new pics tomorrow. We'll see if the weatherman is right.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Artist in Residence Working

Haven't written anything in a few (maybe a few more??) days, here nor on FB.
Last Friday evening I went with friends to a play downtown at Theatrical Outfit. It was the opening of a new one so we got the che Inexpensive tickets. Think the play was titled "Brownie Points", or Brownie something. Whatever. I didn't like it. One MORE play by them that's Racial in its theme. There was (being opening night and a new play) a "talk back" time after, and many in the audience were apologetic and ashamed of our White Race. The Anti-Defamation League members were obviously pleased. And this is all I have to say about that.

Saturday and Sunday were spent at the Heirloom Productions Stamp/Paper Arts Show. I got to meet face to face one of my new best friends. Here she is, (this is where you take a bow, Susan)
Susan is a LOT of fun, and I am so happy to call her my friend. She is the owner of www.PaperCraftersCorner.com, so you will just have to check her/it out. We had fun, and I had fun introducing her to different people connected with the show and all. Sunday I had a fabulous time working with Melissa Baldwin and her friend Valerie at Melissa's vendor booth, The Stamping Studio. It was like being back on stage as I spent the afternoon talking to/entertaining ladies as I walked them through making the adorable greeting card we had for them to make free of charge. Brenda Jean was just totally in her element there. The only bummer was that I got home and THEN remembered the camera in my purse. Rats! I have no picture of my wonderful day with M and V.
So, I'm back in the studio. Painting. Getting panicky. The opening reception of my first gallery show is SaturdaY, February 20, 6:00-9:00 p.m. at Tannery Row Artist Colony. We artists have just a few more days to finish our works. Aaaaaaaawwwww!!
Here's a pic of one piece "in process".
Ho-Hum. I KNOW, right??!!! Well, it's the background. Now I've gotta lay in the foreground for the piece to "speak" and say what I want it to say.

P.S. Did I mention how much I LOVE Golden products? Have been doing "experiment boards" trying different things with grounds and gels before putting anything to canvas. However, today I did gesso over part of another piece I'm working on for the show so I could start that one over. Oh well. No one was standing here saying "you can't do that" (thankfully) so I did it. Big W!!! N E Ways, its back to the paint for now.

What creative thing are you working on or doing? Remember,
it soothes the soul, and brings joy to your heart.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Our Little Ethan

I am so very proud of my daughter, Jessica, in so many ways! She was/is my Special Gift from God and, in spite of the difficulties of her teen years, I would not trade being her Mom for anything in the world!!!

At age 19 Jessica got pregnant. She wasn't married, and the night she told me of her condition she was terrified. Yes, the "news" was something to make me shake with fear of the unknown, however, I was able to calm this precious child of mine. And I was able to have even more pride in her as she verbalized all her fears, all her thoughts, and let me know that she was not willing to have an abortion, even though friends had recommended it. And as she went through months and months of being so sick from her pregnancy, my daughter held firm to her commitment, her CHOICE to give this baby life. My heart is almost bursting with the sense of pride I still feel regarding her decision and commitment. She chose to go against what our culture says is quite OK. What courage on her part!

Her "step of courage" went further, from the beginning. Jess knew she was not ready to mother a child, and knew that I was not physically, nor financially able to grandmother (care for) a child. So that same night, her decision was made, and I committed to standing/walking with her through the process.

There's no way I can say it wasn't/isn't painful to give up my firstborn grandchild. Back then and today still, there are many tears. Jessica chose a wonderful couple to love and care for her baby, however, and every year we get a new Update Letter and Pictures of our little Ethan. I love him, and them, from afar and pray for Ethan and his adoptive family every day. And, it is such a fun/funny thing, getting the updates, because Ethan has the wonderful, happy personality of his birth mother.

I just finished this scrapbook layout with one of the pictures we got last Fall. Ethan, like his birth mother, is a real ham in front of the camera, and this pic plays his delicious personality up so well.

For the scrapbooking audience, I did this layout using only what's in my "stash" here. The papers and circle journal tag are Quik Quotes and I chalk inked the edges of most everything since I prefer that dimennsional look. Also, you may know that Making Memories re-introduced their metal letters/words at Winter CHA last week. Of course they're updated, and of course the ever popular "bling" is added to many of the new MM "metal offerings". However, those of us who have stashes of the original metal letters/words can give them the "new look" real easy. I dipped into my stash of Class A'Peel Sticker Bling Dots by Stampendous!, and Woo Hoo!!! We are right off the runway here with "Smile". So if you're a scrapbooker reading this, my challenge to you is to do a layout using only what you have on hand. And let me know how it comes out. I'd love to see it.

For all of you, what Creative Thing have you/ are you/ will you do today?
Remember, doing so truly nourishes the soul and brings joy to your heart.
Until next time,
Brenda J ;)