Some Mini's and a New Color in the Palette

The Naked Art Gallery is hosting their annual mini-painting show in January. So to get ready for this, I tried out my texture technique on a much smaller scale. It was fun to shrink my usually large images onto this 6" x 3" wooden piece. I like the way the image transferred to the smaller scale and intend to do a series for the show. For now, I have this one below available as well as one with a white bird and pink flowers.
Here's a new piece using my little kissing flowers as the subject. This time however, I bought a new tube of red paint and va-va-va-voom, these kissing flowers are ready to pucker up! I also darkened the entire palette, steering away from the cerulean blue I love. I snuck a little blue towards the top, but it's a lovely gray blue I found at the bottom of my jar. This piece is 12" x 24" framed in salvage wood.


Making Lists

This week marks the last week of "I have a show this weekend" statement. Yep. Show season is coming to an end. I'll be at Braelinn Elementary in Peachtree City all day Saturday and Sunday I'll be at the wonderful Serenbe community Christmas bazaar. As usual, I've got several projects in the works and new products to introduce. I introduced glass ornaments at my November shows and belt buckles to last weekend. For this weekend I've made some cones to hold greenery (which I'll post once the greenery is added) and some felties that are guaranteed to keep you snugly warm! I think it's important to add new items to each show, even though they've been spread apart in distance. It keeps me fresh and keeps my buyers excited to hear it's a brand new item.

I also find that making lists of ideas and products to create help keep me organized. I also make lists of materials needed for upcoming projects in case a sale comes up or I happen upon something I'll need. I also can't go to the grocery without a list, ever. I'll end up with a buggy full of these items: While making my Thanksgiving dinner list, which was quite lengthy, Mailey asked, "Mommy, what are you doing?" "I'm making a grocery list." "Can I make a list too Mommy?" "Sure." And by golly, she took that list to the grocery store and checked off her items. Yes, I know they are mostly cavity builders, but she made a LIST. And well, right now I am really enjoying the hot choklit and tede grams!

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday. We have so much to be thankful here at the Horne house. Our day was brimming with joy and plenty of food!


Oh to Sip and Sell!

This past weekend I headed down to Sanderville, GA with my good friend Jill to her sister-in-laws house for what they were calling a "Sip and Sell". I had no idea what to expect, but I knew Jill's sister-in-law was kind enough to have me be a part of the event and stay in her home, and what could I possibly loose, really. Kelly's house is my favorite kind, a long brick ranch with large rooms and tons of personality. We arrived at the house around 8pm to find it overflowing with women busily putting out their wares. Now, this was not just an art show, as you can see below in the ginormous family room: Here's a run-down of the vendors that were literally all over the house: 3 antique dealers (I think one was a Scott's guy), a silver lady (and not silver jewelry either, I mean SILVER), pearl lady, kids room lady, hand-made beaded jewelry room lady, poinsettias lady, cookbook lady, homemade goodies and casseroles lady, old books lady, every type of decoration for your home lady, a fabulous topiary and bulbed plants lady, the Coach and Prada lady, a folk artist named Mrs. Thing, and then me. Yes, I stood out. And I sold and sold to those ladies yesterday. No paintings, but I did have 2 ask for custom paintings, so we'll see if they contact me.
Sandersville is a small town much like where most of my family lives in Alabama (Monroeville). There aren't many gift shops. So when Kelly decided to host this event it was very well received by the community. In fact, when I left last night they were talking about where to have it next year so there could be many more vendors. It was funny how they responded when I asked about a church fellowship hall. You see, it is a SIP and SELL. You can't SIP in a fellowship hall. So they are looking for an old vacant building or house. And in that town of fabulous historic homes and buildings, I'm sure they'll find one! I'll be back for sure!

Buckle Up Girls!

I've made bunches of buckles for The Vintage-Flea in the past. Mostly I'd use Amy Butler scrapbook paper and rhinestones. While getting ready for these last few shows I had one of those A-HA! moments....belt buckles with my bird images on them. And voila! Here they are:
I enjoyed making them and decided quickly that my little images didn't need any bling, they have enough personality on their own. Priced at just $20, they are a great stocking stuffer, or just a little "happy" for your wardrobe! You can purchase these at the Braelin Elementary School Christmas bazaar on Dec. 6th or at the Serenbe Christmas Bazaar on Dec. 7th! (you can also just call me!) Time to buckle up girls!


Another Sneak at Texture Paintings

Mailey and Mattie on the go in this painting. This one really shows the texture off. The peacock feather is prettier in person because you can see the gold edges better.
She stills needs a face I just realized. Well, best be off to do just that!

Give Me A Little Texture

In a need to do something more textural with my acrylics, I decided one day to add a little joint compound to my canvas. About 6 months later, and I am still enjoying this new technique. So here's the nitty gritty if you are wanting to add a little texture to your paintings. First, purchase a thin board and some joint compound from your hardware store. I use birch mostly. I've done this technique as large as 24" x 24", but smaller tends to be more manageable. Plan your design ahead of time so you can transfer the image in a timely manner.

1. Apply a thin layer of joint compound to your wood. Let this dry until you can carve into the compound without it being mushy. I use my dry point needle from printmaking days, but you can also use a sharpened pencil. Wipe the tip of your tool between each stroke to get a clean line.
2. Let dry overnight.
3. Use your pencil tip to clean out the etched lines and use a paper towel to wipe the rough edges away.
4. Paint using acrylics, at least that's what I use. The compound is super absorbent, so I really prefer my cheap acrylics from Michael's, you know the Apple Barrell kind. 5. Using a natural bristle brush, encaustic oil sticks, canola oil and a bit of patience, fill all the lines with color. I use R&F Pigment sticks because they apply very smoothly. It looks scary doesn't it? Covering all that painting, yikes!
6. Once all the stick is applied, begin rubbing lightly with a paper towel. You will also need to dab the paper towel in canola oil top really remove reside. Canola oil is your friend during this stage.

7. I use a ton of Canola Oil and even more paper towels.

8. Lastly, I use my Sennelier oil sticks to bring out the textured lines.
The finished product is always richly textured. I just love working with this medium! It has an almost encaustic appeal. I do like to paint in encaustic, but this gives me the texture I want and more control over the paint pigments. Now you try!

To Inspire

I found this tee at a local gift shop yesterday and just HAD to have it. OMG is that a great definition of inspire or what? So I am about to post how to do my texture paintings to hopefully inspire some of you out there to try something new.


Catching Rain Drops

Before I found the confidence to paint on canvas, I painted many murals on walls. My favorite place to paint was in a little girl's room. This was way before my own Mailey Grace came along. In fact, I can remember taking William in his pumpkin seat to sleep while I painted fairies and flowers on a wall. There are many houses in Newnan that now have my little fairies on the wall- silly hair, stripey tights and patterned wings. Always flying over big fanciful flowers. If I can dig up a picture of one, I'll post it later. So when I was in the mood to paint something sort of new, but not re-invent the wheel, I found the fairy file in my head and adapted it to create her. This is Olivia, Mailey says so. She's catching rain drops, which happen to be cut hearts from vintage registry paper. I had so much fun malking her, that I've already started a new one. The new one is holding a Mattie bird and is named Mailey, she insisted and I couldn't resist!
Details of the painting above and below. I love to put words together to make a little bit of poetry in my art.


Another Note to Self

This has been a weekend of magazines for me. I stopped at the local big box bookstore Friday night to enjoy coffee and glances through all the latest design magazines when I hit the jackpot on the latest art magazines! I found Somerset's Artful Blogging (which I just posted about), Cloth * Paper Scissors Nov/Dec issue and Cloth * Paper Scissors Studios issue. Yes, jackpot! Earlier in the week I'd found Somerset Studio's Where Women Create as well. So here's my brief re-cap of these amazing publications. I could move in and live with Sally Jean. Her studio space just speaks to me...it says come create with me in here! They had several other big name artists all whom I enjoyed seeing in their work spaces. Their space tells alot about them to me. In Cloth * Paper Scissors Studios I found creative spaces of crafters who are more at my level of fame and fortune. In fact I love what June Daley had to say about her space. June had admired the spaces of many before started her new room. After she finished her creative space, she stepped back and realized that she had gotten caught up in too much of what others had and not enough about what she needed and wanted for herself. She did a little changing up and voila! a fabulous space you can see in the magazine. I love seeing what others have, especially how they organize, but I love my space. Here I am with Mailey and lap dog Lily. It's about 10"x10" and ALL windows.
Actually right now it's a bit messy with piles of things to do. Seeing this makes me realize maybe it's time to clean-up a bit! I also found some great new ideas in the regular publications of projects for my students. I love that artists are so willing to share not only their artwork, but their techniques in those publications. What a wonderful source of inspiration! I'm off to clean up my space now! Have a nice evening!

The Art Of Sharing

This is a writing post, my thoughts are rampant right now in my head and I just have to get them down to remember why I am an artist and why I do what I do. So here goes. As an art teacher for nearly 13 years, I know what it means to be isolated. Not in the sense of being on a deserted island, but being the only art teacher on the school faculty. When trying to explain an exciting new project idea on complementary colors to my friends at the lunch table they kind of glazed over and prayed that my illustration of this will end ever so soon. They loved oohing and aahing over the students end results, but the process is something I have found that most people don't truly understand. That there is more to just painting a tree than just being able to draw. And if you are an artist reading this, then you understand just that.

As I stood at my booth yesterday and proudly talked about my inspirations and my work it hit me that once again I feel isolated. That maybe people just don't get it. I had a lady, who by no means meant to offend me, but she asked, "So what's up with the birds?" I giggled and said, "Well, it all started...." And her eyes kind of got that glazed look I remember the health teacher had those years ago as I explained complementary colors. You see, my paintings of birds aren't just birds anymore. They are an extension of me and who I am as an artist. The sweet innocence in my paintings reminds me that life is supposed to be this inviting, this lovely. My felties just make me happy with their silly wobbly legs and super lengthy beaks. Not perfect in any way, but adorable and simple. And as I sit here in my studio and look around at the works in progress my hope is that one day they will find themselves in a home that will make their families happy.

I think this is why I blog now. To not feel so isolated. There is this huge cyberworld out there that blogging links together. I find whenever I need a boost of creativity I'll pop over to Marissa, Sara, Katie, or Valerie and immediately I feel connected to an audience that really gets it. These artists and all their accomplishments inspire me to move forward and help full fill my dream of being a self supporting artist. I just finished Somerset Studio's Artful Blogging Winter 2008 issue. And I am inspired. By the women who create the magazine, and the women featured in the pages. Their stories are mine in a way. While it is only natural to isolate ourselves while we create, there is a wonderful opportunity to become a part of a larger community when we feel comfortable sharing. All you have to do is take the leap of faith and put yourself out there. I have found blogging to be a wonderful and very full filling way to do just that.

So, now I have several paintings which now require my attention and children to entertain on a crisp Sunday afternoon. I hope you have a creative one and feel comfortable enough to share it with your friends like me.


New Felted Birds

After the Norcross Art show I had to search for new cages for the felties to perch. The first batch sold so well, but finding those cages again was impossible. Valerie found these great cream ones for me. And now I can make a dozen! This is "Bingo Night" here. And this is "Suzie". I'm having so much fun adding the details with velvet ribbon, felted leaves buttons and vintage papers. Two more sit on my desk waiting for names from Mailey and 9 are perched on stands made of vintage jello molds. They'll be available this weekend at the Southcrest show. Come on by!

Mattie Ornaments

Here are my little Mattie ornaments ready to fly on over to your home for the holidays. They are hand painted and glittered...so fun! At $8.00 each, they are also a steal!
Here she is perched in a layered wreath. I'll be at Southcrest Church in Newnan this Saturday from 10-2 for their Holiday Market if you can make it! Have a creative evening! We are busting with new ideas here in this house!


Mailey's Creative Side

My 6 year old Mailey is always under foot when I'm at my art table. On occasion it makes me crazy. Other times, well let's just say she makes the coolest things! She is so darn creative. And really thinks outside the box. The other day she asked for the bubble wrap I had under my table....few minutes later with a piece of pink paper, scissors and double sticky tape she'd made the cutest astronaut! Another example of her creative mind at work is below: She made this collar for Lily from a sweater cuff, cut the red heart out, hot glued it and the stem to the band and voila! Adorable pet collar!
Is this the cutest dog collar ever? As I write this blog she is busy hot gluing (yes she uses a hot glue gun like a pro!) another one. This one is gray and has more of a flare. Hm mm....Maybe she should join me at Serenbe this year with her one of a kind creations.


Enameling is Great!

Okay, for some reason my pictures are uploading in order opposite of how they need to. Hummm.... So I guess we'll start at the end and work our way back! Valerie and I and our constant quest for artsy knowledge took an Intro. to Enameling class at Art Worx in Marietta last month. Every Wednesday we'd make the haul up to this amazing jewelers studio for class. Our instructor was super great and we learned alot about the basics. So of course now we have to take this artsy knowledge and run with it! On election day while the kids were home from school I headed over to Valerie's amazing studio where the enameling kiln awaited us. (Valerie has already bought the kiln of course ;)) Here's my crop for the day: A nest of course, a bird or course, some blue doughnuts, white discs, blue discs, red discs and a stamped disc that says "I am an artist", is what I have so far. Yesterday I wore my nest and earring set and my Mom said she liked it. And those of you who know Mom understand that this is a compliment of great importance! She is always painfully honest! I really liked making these jewels and plan to make a line of them for the Naked Art Gallery in B'ham. Vero has asked if I wanted to sign on as a jewelry artist as well as painter since I now have the nest earrings from a couple of post ago. Heck yeah I say!

This little birdie is awaiting to be placed in the kiln. Enameling is basically fine glass powder placed on top of a copper surface, which is then heated in a kiln of 1400' degrees. This temperature would just about melt anything I think, but definitely melts the glass powder. My favorite colors of the day were Robin's egg blue, yellow and white. I think too that even though it is jewelry, it is important for my work to have some consistency across the board. And those colors will help translate my paintings into miniature pieces of jewelry. I will be exploring more of the "painting" type technique I used to make the eggs in the nest to make some of my birds, flowers and branches which always appear in my paintings.
This is actually the first step: See how pixie dust looking the glass is? It is sifted onto the copper piece, which is then placed on the stilt like above and then placed in the kiln for 1 min. 30 sec. not long at all! Be looking for more of this style jewels from me soon!


The Husband of an Artist

You've met my 4 cats, dog, turtle, fish (have I blogged about the fish?), the kids, friends, the studio and so much more. But, I've neglected to introduce the biggest source of support and inspiration to my blog readers. This is the husband of an artist, Billy. Or, shall I say with a bit of a giggle, The Honorable Billy Horne. Yep. honorable all right. You see, he was just re-elected to the House of Representatives here in Georgia by an overwhelming 77%. Yeah!

Over the 17 years we've been together Billy has been supportive of my career changes and artistic whims. For example, our house has changed many times over the past 13 years, and it never seems to faze him. It's not uncommon for him to come home to me on top of a ladder re-painting our bedroom. He'll say, "I liked the blue". And I reply, "okay, but do you like the green?". "Sure". And so it goes. Those of you who really know him are laughing right now because you perhaps don't get that to me this is inspiration. But it is. You see, he's never once told me no, you can't do that nor has he ever stifled my dream of being a real artist. He never complains about the weekends I'm away for art shows, junkin', art workshops, and all the other crazy things I get myself into. His support of my life, the windy path I've chosen to lead, inspires me to be a better Mother and Wife for our family. He believes in me and what I can be. And that to me is what a solid marriage is ALL about. As a family we support and love one another, making decisions to better our lives and our future. He's proud of all my accomplishments and I his. Which lately, he's wayyyy heavy with the achievements.
Go Billy! Here we are, the happy couple on election night Tuesday.

Marist Holiday Traditions

I've been very behind on my blogging posts lately. The days seem to be getting shorter! I've also been a busy artist bee getting ready for the Marist show which was last weekend. I'd been told it was "the" show to be chosen to participate. And it was a HUGE show. But I think I'll keep my comments to a minimum about it being the "it" show. First, I found very quickly that it was more of a craft show, not an art show like Norcross. Ladies came out in droves for this event. And they were buying, and buying......magnet boards that is. So, a lesson learned and nothing lost only gained. I would participate again should I be asked. And this time I'll be better prepared and have my booth arranged a bit different. Thanks Mom for staying with me all day Saturday and for the yummy pimento cheese sandwiches! I had plenty of stock for this show. Magnets, prints, pendants, new glass ornaments, original works of art, felties and more. Since I've got a show every weekend in November, I planned ahead with the stock and am ready to go!
Here's a view from the aisle. We had exactly 9'x9' in which to sell from.

Inside my table was brimming with goodies. I was very proud of the display and can't wait for the Gifted Flea event this weekend!

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