Time for Rest

Yesterday was exhausting.  Both mentally and physically.  And today I am dreaming of painting myself into this painting here:

Man I love this composition.  It calls to me to relax, take time for family (there are two chairs there) and refocus.  After the news yesterday I decided to pack everything I've worked on away.  Out of sight type of mentality.  Today I've cleaned the house and am now relaxing in the art studio doing the most mundane of tasks possible.....cutting beads off their strings and placing them into compartments in a tackle box.  Yep.  Mundane.    Next up will be darkening bezels and charms.  After that.....well I am sure the swimming pool will be calling my name.  Maybe with a margarita or two.  Because right now, I am feeling really sorry for myself.  And no one can really take that away or heal it.  Just time.  Of course the beach would help too.  And thank goodness for small favors.  We booked our vacation for the end of the summer this year on purpose....the thought process then was that I'd be done with Solo Show work and could finally relax.  Well, this relaxing is two fold now, and very much needed. 

So I'll be offline for the rest of the week.  I don't even have a cell phone, it got wet at the pool yesterday and I had to order a new one!  Talk about being totally cut off.  But I'll be back next Monday all refreshed and excited about new projects I'm working on.  Here's a hint:  in the car I HAVE to be working on something.  This past weekend I picked up embroidery.  Yep.  Loving it.  Again, small blessing in disguise.  I still believe everything happens for a reason and that in the end my show moving will reveal a bigger purpose. 

Hope you all have a wonderful, creative week!


Going on a Journey

I love a journey.  Seriously.  I can journey through blogland and be transported all over the world.  I can journey in my little orange van to adventurous places.   And I can journey through this art career.  And seeing how far I can go in one day isn't a challenge, but a rather an exciting part of being a creative type.  So whether it is a physical or a mental journey, being able to take the good with the bad is all a part of life.

And right now I have some bad news in my journey.  The Naked Art Gallery in Birmingham, which is hosting my Solo Show, is moving the gallery.  This is very exciting news.  It's a great move for Vero.  But the moving mentally and physically is just too much for Vero right now.  We've moved my opening date now twice trying to accommodate the move, but this morning I put on my "big girl panties" and said,  let's just cancel for now.  Yep, I said it.  Huge sigh......  I am beyond disappointed right now, but know that this journey does not have a dead end.  And hopefully we can reschedule for the spring.  The bright side, I am WAY ahead with original paintings.  And think maybe I'll fill up my etsy shop next week. (this week we are headed to the beach..yoohooo) 

So, what's your journey like right now?


What is Calling You?

I've been thinking about this post since Wednesday night, debating whether I should share these thoughts.  But since I tend to share the most authentic side of myself here....in other words I tend to spill my heart out right here on this little Dell, I decided to.  So this is about motherhood and what is calling you.  Wednesday night we had the opportunity to have dinner out at camp with the girls.  I rode with two girlfriends whom I've know for I guess 4 years.  We are from totally different walks of life, have totally different careers, and yet because of the bond our children share, we've built a bond.  I really love these women.  Really.  There's something about this friendship that always leaves me feeling fuzzy inside. 

On the way to camp they were both saying how much they missed the girls, hated they couldn't call them, etc... I was sitting in the back seat cutting out a million butterflies for my booth at the flea thinking, man....I don't miss Mailey the way they are missing their girls.  Is something wrong with me???? 

OK, now let me rephrase this.  I miss her in a sense that she's not here to fill my room with her roller coaster emotions.  She's not here to be cuddled and held at night.  She's not here to tell her stories.  She's not here for me to see her adorable freckles and giant new front teeth. 

So later that night after a wonderful visit with Mailey, who by the way was having the time of her life, I began to feel even more sure that my not missing her was a very, very good thing.  We have a very loving home life, don't get me wrong.  I'm not ready for them to head out the door to college anytime soon.  We are all hugs, kisses, I love you's, you're awesome saying type of family unit.  Billy takes William to play golf, I take Mailey to art things.  We do things together and we do things apart.  But we are also independent of our children and are trying to raise them to be the same.  Does this make sense?  Billy and I have well-rounded lives which include both family, friends and children.  They do not only revolve around our children and their lives.  Now Mailey and her apron strings was definitely in question for this trip.  But I knew in my heart that she was ready and that the "don't leave me" pulls would not be present.  And they weren't.  Because I know her, and she knows me.  And she knows that Mommy was going to be working this week towards her dream (which we talk about ALL the time) and that Daddy would be doing his usual working as well.  

So what is calling me?  I know I was called to be Mother.  I wanted a little one so bad I couldn't stand it.  We waited 6 years before we had William.  And Motherhood has been very fulfilling.  But I have other needs in my heart as well.  Now the trick is trying to balance all those needs.  Knowing when to put some needs aside while others are meet.  I often look at the success of other artists and notice a huge trend....many of the ones with bigger careers, bigger sales, etc have waited on family.  I know family takes a large chunk of my day and energy.  But I wouldn't have it ANY OTHER WAY.  Because without them, my art would not be as meaningful and this career would not be fulfilling.  Sharing it with them is what makes me complete. 

So this morning I am quickly finishing loose ends so that the afternoon can be devoted to hearing all about camp life.  Also, I can't wait to show Mailey my new paintings, I love to see her reactions and she's very honest.  And possibly help her finish the telephone painting she started before leaving.  Yep.  It's all good here in the Horne house.  And as much as all being apart this week was good for us, getting back together will be even better.


Road Trip!

Hey guys!  Well I'm back from my road trip....which was such a great idea.  I tell ya.... nothing better than the open road, sunroof open and MY music blaring.  I thought I'd give you a little photo glimpse of the days and share my finds and thoughts.  So here goes. 

Tuesday I drove to Birmingham to meet my Dad with William.  The plan was for William to stay with Dad at what we are calling "Camp Pawpaw" while Mailey went to church camp all week.  After the exchange I hit the ground running.  First stop, The Naked Art Gallery.  I had to talk with Vero about some of the Solo Show details.  And since we've moved the opening, wanted to see the new space.  (I don't think I've mentioned this yet, more later)

Next stop was out to Tarrant to a community center.  This is a HUGE project that I am 99% sure we are a go on.  I met with the owner Eric who loved my thoughts on how to involve the community in the rather large undertaking.  We are talking at least 12- 36"x48" canvases.  Like I said, HUGE.  I'd be an artist in residence for about 3 days completing the project.  To say I am excited about working with this group is an understatement!

Next stop was to downtown Homewood.  I wanted to check on a new shop carrying my work, Seibels.  I will post a blog just on them later, but here's a glimpse of store happiness.  I could totally camp out here a few days!

So there was a snack break at Savages Bakery before I began my little paparazzi run.  (peti fours, dolphin cookies and double doozie....I didn't eat it all in one sitting of course  Hehehehe...)  I have a few ideas swimming in my head for paintings.  So I drove around Homewood with the window on the van down snapping photos.  It was fun.  I got caught outside one house.  But after explaining my reason, they were like take away!

After the photo run, I was off to see Aimee's new house.  She and Will have done an amazing job of renovating an adorable house in Vestavia.  Then I was off to Mountain Brook to see Suzan and her husband John.  We enjoyed dinner, ice cream (man I ate a lot of calories this day!) and catching up.  So around 10:15PM I pointed my little orange van in the direction of home.  It had been such a productive day  I was literally singing out loud to MY music.  And then it hit me.  I was beyond tired and it was 2.5 hours until I'd hit my bed.  When I reached the Pell City exit the van just went ahead and turned off and pointed towards the lake.  I arrived to find Dad and William passed out asleep in front of the TV.  I borrowed a sleep shirt and toothbrush and joined them into the land of slumber.  You see, I had no intention of staying the night so I had nothing with me.  Waking up at the lake is so refreshing.  We always enjoy coffee on the deck and talk about the days plan.  And I had a plan alright.  I showered, put back on the clothes I came in and hit the road.  Only this time, I pointed the van in the direction of Opelika.

I found some more painting inspirations along the way.  Even got the attention of a rather large dog at one stop.  And got biten by something gigantic at another stop on the hiney....not allergic thank goodness, just itchy now.  On the way into Opelika to the famous Angel's Antique Mall there was a billboard for Harvest Thrift.  Hummmm....yep......Let's turn orange van.  I walked in and the angels started singing.  Literally.  It was a Christan based thrift store and the Christan singers were singing praises.  And I was singing right along.  Giddy actually.  New hot spot for sure.   I got so much fun stuff for my booth at the Flea.  See: 
The find of the day is here.  I can't show it all.  It's a surprise you'll have to just come see for yourself at the Flea.  So today I am getting all the goodies cleaned and priced so tomorrow I can rework the booth.  It's super quiet here in the art studio today.  With lots of ideas to work on and inspiration bountiful!


We're Growing Up

It has been a HUGE day in the Horne house.  This morning at 7:30am I dropped my 8 year old Mailey off for her first week long camp.  Yes, I said week long sleepover camp.  She was so excited, and quite honestly so was I.  Not because I'm getting her off my hands for the week, but because she was genuinely excited about doing this.  Going away from Mommy doing this.  This is super huge.  And as we Moms of the 3 girls below waved good-bye,  I was the calmest.  I think because Mailey and I are both ready for this to happen.  And she is going to have an amazing time.  I just know it in my heart.....

So as they say, while the mice are away the cats will play!  William and I conspired last week that today we would do something together super fun in Atlanta.  We packed ourselves up and headed to Marietta for a little day at Whitewater park.  Hardly ever do I get to enjoy things like this with just William.  And being with just him today reminded me how much I enjoy his little personality,  his sensitive side, and his kindness.  He's also a little chicken I found out today, not wanting to ride hardly ANY of the cool slides.  Man, I was bummed about that.

On a last note totally not about my kiddos but about good people......

So being in Whitewater today I was able to do some serious observing.  I mean this place is like a people watching mecca!  Now I've been in places with multiple people in swimwear like the beach, the club pool, etc.  But for some reason today it hit me like a brick what being in a place such as this does for showing your authentic outward self, and make you really look at your own self.  I mean no make-up, no hair, no shoes, and literally hanging out all day in bra and panty amount of clothes will make you stop and think about certain things.  I also noted an unusually large number of rather large tattoos on both men and women.  Now, I love tattoos and the artistry that goes into them, but since most people have them under the clothing you don't usually get to see so many masterpieces just walking around.  In a way though, we were all on very equal playing ground in this place.  There were no cars to compare, no blaring brands on bathing suits, no fancy jewelry, no hair styles, nothing to really make any one person stand out from another.  And although I am not suggesting we all start running around in our bra and panties without make-up or our hair done, I am saying that maybe looking past all the glam on the outside and getting down to the water park authenticity could be a very good thing for our society.  The best part of my people observing was the true happiness that exuded from everyone.  Even in the long boring lines people were giggling, holding hands, kissing, talking and just listening to one another.  I mean, you certainly can not take a cell phone or laptop into a wave pool.  You get unplugged and uninhibited.  You get to SQUEAL going down the flumes and you get to smile larger than life in a wave pool without getting a mouth full of salty water.  So if you have an opportunity to take your child or heck, go with your friends and enjoy and certainly observe.  Because my people watching today was surprisingly refreshing.  Now I am off to shower and rest, because the other thing about a waterpark is that it is indeed a work out!


Strength, It's Here

 I've mentioned before that I truly believe people come into my life for a specific reason.  I don't believe in chance because I know that crossing paths with everyone I come into contact is a part of the bigger plan.  These intersections continue to amaze and shape my character.  And this week was no exception.  From my adorable and very creative art students, to the new friends I made just last night, my life will be forever changed because we have now crossed paths.  And I am very thankful that these people became a part of a "series of events" as I like to call it......events which now have my strength renewed and my creative spirit in overdrive.

So, I know you are wondering why I'm spilling all this fortune cookie therapy stuff.  It leads to the first of the series of events....a fortune cookie that is.  For some reason, I tend to get really thoughtful fortunes in my cookies, and Thursday night was no exception.  It read, "Investigate new possibilities with friends.  Now is the time!"  I tucked it away into my wallet with the rest and smiled as I pondered these new friends I was about to meet.   

Friday during my art camp Valerie texted me some pictures of fun new finds she bought at the mart.  Immediately I knew the artist behind the most adorable cupcake line, Lisa Kaus!  (I have been following her work for years and took a painting class at Art and Soul Las Vegas in February with her.)  So I emailed Lisa Saturday morning and told her Valerie had picked up her line, that I was headed to the mart for the afternoon, couldn't wait to see it for myself, how tickled I was for her, and was she in Atlanta by chance?  Well, wadda ya know, she emailed me back and said to text her once I got to the showroom and she'd say hello.  Yeah.  You creative types out there know exactly what my tummy was doing on the way up.....butterflies.  I mean, this is an artist I respect, look up to and have followed as a model for my own creative journey for years.  So saying "HI", was sorta like my daughter Mailey meeting Selena Gomez.  Upon arrival I do gush over her line at Demdaco.  Seriously, cuteness is oozing from it.  And I'd have fabulous pics, but blondie here forgot to put the camera card back into the camera.  So I asked what her plans were and was she planning to walk around anywhere, she said yes Handmade, I said me too, and we were off.  The conversation was so easy, like she and I'd been friends for years.  She's just like that I think.  We spoke to several of her art peeps, I saw several art peeps too and the next thing you know Michelle Allen, a Lisa peep asked if I was coming to dinner.  Well, if you don't mind I'd love to!

So here's who was at the round table last night and why....oh why that little fortune cookie kicked off the most rewarding series of events I've had in a very long time.  Curly Girl Designs including Leigh, Amy, Molly and Katie, Michelle Allen, Steve and April of Catching Fireflies, Lisa Kaus, and me.   Yes.  Me.  It was so nice to be at the table listening to conversation about an industry I want to jump off a cliff into.  And I say cliff because that fear factor is still percolating inside me.  I imagine though, the landing would be just fine, I have lots of support now.  But as I told Michelle last night, I just haven't been ready to put on my big girl panties.   There is such a different mind set with building a wholesale line.  And it's one I have pondered since co-owning my own retail shop.  Strength.  It's in me.  And it's a part of this series of events.  I just have to decide now which door I'm going to open, because according to my fortune, now is the time.  Man am I excited about all of this right now. 

So sorry for the long windiness of this post, but I wanted to share....as always this journey is much better when shared with friends.  So thanks for listening.



Art Camp Wrap up

Hey folks!  So the camp in the end was such an amazing time.  The smaller numbers was a blessing in disquise because I was able to bring some smaller projects to work on as the kiddos worked.  I also made all the projects they did, and am totally going to work them into this upcoming show.  Wait til you see my plaster houses.....Yep....Pretty excited.  I am totally on a happy creating roll......got my game back.  In fact, last night I stayed up until everyone was really snoring in the house working on projects.  It's funny how not a last minute person I am, and yet here I am one week away form my solo show deadline and I am having to pull all nighters!  I didn't even do that in college for Art History exams! 

But we are here to talk about CAMP.  So here's what we made this week:  10x20 canvas painting/collage of a whimsical house, plaster houses and oil pastel drawing of Charleston's famous Rainbow Row.  I had ages 5-13.  And yes, that does work fabulous having that wide a range for class.  We met 3 days in a row for 2 1/2 hours.  And we spent every minute working on just these three projects.  Everyone's Mommy was beyond squealy when they saw the plaster houses, I'd have been too.  :)

Here's a sampling of the whimsical canvas paintings.


These plaster houses were inspired by the class I took in Las Vegas with Stephanie Lee.  The kids had so much fun with the plaster gauze.  The best part was they were all able to do this entire project (minus some hot gluing) on their own.

I know....I know.....I just love them too! 

And lastly, the famous Rainbow Row in Charleston.  Above is a sample from my oldest child, below is the youngest.  I absolutely love both.

So, if you are interested in your child attending an art class with me sometime, please email me so I can place you in the special camper file.  artsyorange@yahoo.com

I hope you have a creative weekend!  I am off to a pool party with Mailey then I've got my sight set on going to the Atlanta gift mart to check out new product lines and get more inspired!!  I'll let you know how that turns out.....


Puffy Heart Reminders

This morning I started my second art camp for the summer.  Saying  I was excited doesn't even quite fit.  The projects are AMAZING!  I could not wait for my munchkins to arrive and get started.  Anyhoooooo...for some reason 2 canceled on me last night and I had 4 no-shows.  Now let me tell ya.  This put me in quite a snit.  You see, unlike a banker with 9-4 paying hours, I have rather sporadic pay periods.  You creative types get where I am going with this? Yep.  No Apple for me right now.  pout.

So tonight I am reminding myself of what I BIG PUFFY HEARTED today.  Because despite the woes-me I did have some yeah moments.

1-  art making all day with very enthusiastic campers ages 5-12:  including plaster sculptures and super big canvas paintings
2-  surprise hello from a friend during camp....always nice
3-  PB&J sandwich for lunch on super soft wheat bread
4-  cruising the fabric aisles while eating #2 and then buying wayyyyy too much of this fabric for projects I am beyond giddy about starting
5-  drinking a cold one with a friend while our little girls ran in the sprinkler on the front lawn, adorable puppies ran circles around each other and big boys play pickle
6-  finished 9 frames for functional art part of upcoming show

So I'll probably be MIA from here until Saturday.  But when I get back I'll have camp love to show and finally all my paintings finished........I'm on 31 and counting!

PS.....I also knocked myself out with my car door, I have NO IDEA how. Seriously.  My right eye is a little twitchy and I am sure to have a shiny bruise on the forehead.  Thank goodness my children came running since husband was is on the golf course. 


Functional Art

As I mentioned in an earlier post, part of my solo show is what Vero calls "functional small wares".  These items will be in the middle of the room on pedestals.  Her philosophy on art is that unless it is hanging on the wall, it has to function.  No sculptures, no eye candy, it has to function.  And for some reason I totally draw a BLANK when it comes to stuff like this.  I've no idea why, but just like at Christmas with ornament making, I over think it and then usually make something kind of icky.  One of the items Vero suggested I do when I mentioned my quandary was to fine some wooden bowls at a junk store and paint them.  OK.  So at my local junking haunt I found this pile of bowls and since the seed was planted I bought them:

Yep.  They are pretty ugly.  But I immediately saw NESTS.  And this weekend during a lovely summer storm, I made them into just that.

Inside each bowl I stamped words I use on my nesty jewelry.  They've been sprayed with a good coat of clear spray which totally makes the colors illuminate.  Their function could be for your spare change, jewelry, keys, you name it!  You just can't eat out of them....maybe the next time around I'll find a food safe clear coat.  Next on the functional agenda, embellishing these amazing burlap lamp shades I found at another junk store eons ago!  This is so much fun!!!


I Have A Million Other Things To Do But.....

I just HAD to get these photos I took of my nephew Fielding uploaded and played with in my Camera Bag.  Man, this was a fun thing to do.  I am usually not that good at taking people pics.  I've got taking my paintings and jewelry down to a beautiful science, but people are always either blurry or otherwise just icky looking.  So I called my buddy Suzan today, who is quite the little photographer and said, ok....give me some pointers for people pics.  And well.......let's just say I could have uploaded about 100 for you to see (yes, I am totally bragging).  But I selected my favorites here: 

Of course I had to sneak a pic of my pretty girl in their for you to see as well.  William was too busy being babysitter to Fielding to take strike a pose for me.  Mailey gave me the total Elle model pose.  I am thinking I am in serious trouble.  She is only 8 you know!  Well, it has been a wonderful few days having Molly and her cuteeeeee-patoteeeeee baby here.  And man, is he one that I would love to have around more often.  Always smiling and giggling and talking.  Ahhhhh.......babies......(Now don't get ANY funny ideas.  We are SO NOT having another baby in this house.)

Bike Love

I just love to paint bikes.  Really.  There is something about the nostalgic feeling of riding a bike that makes painting them such a joy.  Arms up or feet out, the wind making my hair a matted mess, the whirly tummy when pedaling over a hill.  It's a great childhood memory.  And one I will continue to capture in my paintings.


Dreaming in Color

Last night I slept amazing. Seriously.  I have no idea what I did to deserve that night's sleep, but man it was good.  I am pretty sure my dreams had their own dreams.  So tonight I'll probably have a normal night, which really you don't want to know about....  This painting I am almost finished up with and since I'm talking about dreaming thought I'd share it with you!.

Stamped along the bottom is this, "i always dream in color.....it just happens to have a white picket fence".  It's funny that I still associate the "picture perfect" life to contain a white picket fence.  I'm standing next to Billy and we are holding our two precious children.  Lily of course is wagging her tail beside us both.  And there are plenty of daisies in full bloom.  I'm not so sure I'd want to ever paint a white picket fence for real, this happy fence is made from old library cards.  But it's such a happy thought in my little creative head.  So tell me, what's in your "picture perfect" life?


My Feet and Other Things

I hope you guys had a fabulous 4th of July weekend!  As stated in my last post, I was a bit of a veggie chick on Saturday.  I suppose I was mentally preparing for the next 3 whirly days....wanna know what I was up to and why I've neglected this favorite little spot of mine here?  Well here goes anyhoo.......

-had a cookout with my best friend from childhood, Miss Amy, who came down from Nashville with two of her 3 boys to see our small town fireworks display Sunday
-took a trip to IKEA on July 5th with Miss Amy (OK seriously, it was like an international airport on Christmas Day in that darn place)  BTW my SUPER GREAT husband watched ALL the kids while we did this.  xoxo
-also made a trip to my favorite art supply store in Atlanta and did some outdoor shopping at Atlantic Station
-enjoyed dinner on the patio at our favorite pizzeria with Amy and all the kiddos
-sorta enjoyed a grueling work-out with Kathleen since I may have mentioned that dinner this morning
-really enjoyed watching all our kiddos play together non-stop and even included Mailey in the baseball games while Amy visited the Atlanta Mart for some things for her business
-met Amy at The Varsity with all the kiddos and ate....well..... you really don't want to know that and I really don't want Kathleen to know about it! 
-got home and plastered 15 new heart sculptures and some small wishing hearts outside while listening to the Ipod
-took a nap with sweet Lily
-and now I'm here.  Ahhhhh......Hoping that my energy will spread to you and encourage you to spend time with friends, eat yummy fattening foods, hit the gym, and then paint!  HA!

So, about the painting above.   I've been trying to use some of my own thoughts in my newer paintings.  And this one is mine......being a leader is something I kind of like.  OK.  really like.  But with this role I have to continually be mindful of my words and actions.  And sometimes that's hard.  I've totally got the "foot-in-mouth" thing down to a science.  And although some may think what a terrible thing to be admitting to....really, if you think about it, saying what comes to your mind means you are sharing the most honest, sincere and authentic parts of yourself.   I do not have meanness behind my words, maybe some naivety, but not meanness.  Yep.  I am totally the one that's going to tell you when something is in your teeth, or better yet that they are a lovely shade of blue because you've just eaten a blue icey.  But seriously, wouldn't you rather hear the truth?  I know I would.  So I'll take my role, and my foot.  Besides, right now my toes are sporting an adorable pedicure complete with flags. 



In junk stores, antique stores and thrifty stores I am VERY drawn to this type of appliqued items:

I have absolutely no idea what the official applique technique is called.  It comes in many forms including pillows, wall hangings, clocks, etc. at very affordable prices.  While cruising through some magazines the other day I saw an idea where the artist took a cross-stitched piece, placed it in a bezel pendant and made a necklace out of it.  AH HA!  And the idea started brewing.  And this is the outcome:

This was not an easy thing to make.  Had I kept the article about how they placed the fabric goody into the bezel I might had faired a little better, but alas, I have no idea what magazine it was in and most likely it's still at Barnes and Noble.  After two failed attempts I was able to snugly fit this little piece of sweet applique into the bezel.  I then chain link connected some peachy beads, added the black chain and voila!  A fun new accessory for my jewelry drawer.  Yep.  I am really bad about making something and wearing it a bit before deciding to mass produce.  Feedback is everything for me when making jewelry.   See below the necklace on the left?

I know, it's really pretty.........still wearing it myself and keeping it in view to remind me that others just might be willing to buy and wear one too!  I'll keep you posted if they find their way to my etsy shop.

BTW, been painting away here.  Normally this is a very busy time for our family (being political and all on an election year).  But we've got a puny kiddo so I got to use that excuse to stay home and catch up!  It has been such a wonderful day......watch a movie, paint, watch a movie, make jewelry, watch a movie, blog.....yep.  Billy just went to get steaks and salad.  So next up....movie, dinner, movie.  How about you?


Painting Happiness

I guess it's the teacher in me, but I enjoy showing you the process I go through when painting.  First, before I start anything I have brainstorm sessions.  I had a session last night with the sketchbook and am literally jumping up and down at the new ideas!   I have a nice hardback sketchbook that I make little thumbnail drawings and notes.  On one page there might be 8 mini drawings.  I really do not like to draw, so these are quick sketches that basically just get the idea out of my head and onto paper.  I also have started trying to come up with my own words to add to the paintings, so those go in the book too.

Meanwhile, I've prepped the wood canvases with black gesso.  This is a fairly new technique for me.  I love the texture paintings (where I put the putty on and carve),  but was needing a new technique that wasn't quite so time consuming, but had the same outlined look.  I love black outlines.....

I use a white colored pencil to lightly sketch in the composition.  Then using HEAVY body acrylics, I paint the first layer of paint on really quickly.  I BIG puffy heart my heavy body acrylics.  This first layer is painted in a hurry and really loosely.  I leave a gutter around all the images to give it a natural outline.

After the first layer dries I start layering the paint.  I love to mix wet paint right in the canvas.  And yes, I use colors right out of the tube.  I never mix on the palette, just right on the canvas.  Once the paint has dried the collage elements are added and last but not least, the words.  So that's about it in nutshell folks.  At this point my head is so spinney with ideas it's crazy.  I've got about 20 paintings to go for my show and I have a feeling those paintings will flow seamlessly from the sketchbook to the canvas.  Look for more postings on how they all unfold!

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