ART CAMP for Girly Tweens!

I know, I really should be blogging about my little trip away to Art and Soul.  But I had an epiphany today in art class and decided to share this instead!  This summer I am going to be offering Tween Girl Art Camps!!  In my home studio.  Woot!!! Woot!!!  I don't know why it hit me today and not like a year ago.  Well actually one reason did sneak up on me today.  I put out my art camp flyer for the summer here at school and already have had a great response.  I LOVE my little ones coming to camp.  I do.  But sometimes I worry that the older kids get the short stick because they take their time, finish things a little different and sometimes are rushed to finish since the little ones are done and crazy already.
So the dates...and the projects.  Well, the advantage to doing this in my home is I have a jewelry station already set up.  We will be making a stamped bracelet for sure like above, maybe even a necklace tag or two they can interchange.

And of course we'll be painting.  I'll be teaching the girls similar to my adult classes.  We'll start with a black background, draw with chalk, then bring the image forward with paint. 

Here are the details:

DATES:  Tuesday June 4th or Monday, June 17th (they can do both since there are so many options for subject matter in the painting and jewelry)
TIMES:  9:30- 2:30PM
BRING:  lunch, tennis shoes and towel
COST:  $55.oo per child
AGES:  5th grade and up only (and yes, just girls.  this time around anyways.)

We'll be walking down to our lake if weather permits for a picnic and some afternoon sketching by the lake.  If you are interested please email me at jennihorne@ymail.com.  I'll be glad to give you directions and more details.  Please feel free to forward this on to your favorite tween friends!  I am SO excited about this opportunity.    July dates will be posted at a later time.  I am super duper excited!!  I can't wait to meet your tweens.


The Obstacle of Fear

Monday afternoon William and I were driving in from football practice and found this sweet girl coming out of the lake path in our neighborhood.  Stylin' and profilin' right?  I should also mention the dog was running down the road towards the van as well.  Yep.  No parental guidance at the Horne house that afternoon!  Hahaha...(Billy was home mowing the lawn.)  I got so tickled seeing her out riding her bike that I had to snap a shot of it.  You see, the short story is that the kids got bike's as an end of the school year gift a long time ago.  Only they never rode them.  Ever.  So in the yard sale a few weeks back I pulled them out and put price tags on the practically brand new bikes.  Her's sold right away for $25.  Mailey and Julie came out to see what was going on during the yard sale and decided to try riding William's old bike.  She came back and said, "Mom, there's a great hill in our neighborhood for riding your bike down.  Can I get a bike?"  Me, "Why yes Mailey, I know that hill well.  It's not so fun running up or down.  And you can have a bike, sure.  That one!"  There was no hesitation, we ripped off the price tag and off she rode.  And has been riding everyday since.  I love it.  She says to me, "Mom, I'm going to ride."  She straps on her purse, and usually the boots like below and off she goes.  Usually around the lake and not for long.  Just enough to get the wind and air behind her back.  It brings her joy, like running around that same lake brings me.

Do you remember those days as a kid?  Boy I sure do.    My sister and I would ride our bikes all over Homewood, especially to the park.  I don't remember my Mother's presence in any of the memories, nor her ever seeming concerned or worried about our riding our bikes all over town until dusk.  It was a simpler life back then, yes.  But I wonder if we'd just let go of some of the fear, all of us, let go of a little fear that the world would become a little safer.  Like a pay it forward movement.  If you see my child riding you think, hey I should let my child ride too.  I think fear has grabbed our children's generation and stolen some of the simple joy we as children were allowed. 

Fear has become the norm.   I was slapped across the face with it the other day when I asked my 13 year old son if he wanted to run the Oakhurst 5K race May 4th with me.  His immediate response?  No way Mom, I don't want to get blown up.  I was struck so hard by his comment.  And now the fact that I am running it I know he has fear for me being in it.  Make sense?  It's a cycle we've started.  A cycle that honestly is very hard to break.

And then on instagram my friend Sara posted this:

This appeared the day William said he didn't want to run with me.  The day we found Mailey riding her bike with sheer joy and absolutely no worries in the world.  You see, she was exhibiting courage.  I love the quote above.....courage is just fear that has said its prayers.  So instead of living in fear, I intend to live in courage.  Won't you join me? 



The Great Road Trip

This afternoon Tiffin and I are hitting the road in the orange van.  For Virgina Beach.  I'm teaching at Art and Soul this Sunday, taking classes all day Friday, and participating in vendor night Saturday PM.   We are very excited about the potential this road trip has for junking along the way, catching up, deliberating life goals and all that other sorta gossip women folk discuss in length when given a rather lengthy period of uninterrupted time. 

This is the longest road trip I have ever taken.  Well, I guess I should count the time my parents drove me to Lynchburg, VA for my freshman year at Randolph-Macon Women's College in 1990.  Pretty sure they came to pick me up too.   But since that was like 23 years ago it kinda slipped my mind.  Anyhoo.....over 10 hours in the orange van.  It's ready by the way.  I took it last week for an oil change and they found a tiny injury.  Ironically enough I'd been complaining of this noise on the passenger side for like 2 years.  I'd taken it to literally 4 places asking about the noise and NO one could figure it out.  Basically said I was a crazy art lady hearing things.  Well, turns out I am not crazy (well maybe a little).  It is actually the lower ball joint. Yeah.  So when the Quick Lube guy was changing my oil he yells up from the pit, "Mrs. Horne!  You been hearing any sorta popping noise on the passenger side when you turn?"  Um YES FOR LIKE 2 YEARS!  He says back, "OH, well it's just a ball joint, needs to be replaced.  Boot is broken off completely."  Me, "Really????  I've taken this thing to literally 4 places and no one could figure it out.  And you, the quick lube guy figured it out in 5 minutes????"  "Yep, Mrs. Horne.  Want us to fix it for you?"  Umm..yeah.  So a mere $400 later we are rolling.  Yes, orange van should really be yellow.  Because since buying it I've about replaced everything in it including a windshield (which leaks).  But I love it so and all that it can hold.  And since we are hitting every thrift shop from Atlanta to Virgina Beach it's a good thing it has a large marge back end.

So send some safe travel love our way.  We are breaking the trip up to and from.  The retreat itself is so fun I can't wait to get there and see all the friends Mailey and I made last year again!  I'll be back next week with a re-cap of the adventures we have along the way.  Because with me, and driving...there's always an adventure.  Don't tell Tiffin that.  We wouldn't want to worry her.  Right?


A Little Daisy

The Daisy is my favorite flower.  Has been since I can remember.  After almost needing readers to finish the tiny bike and camper paintings I drew this up for fun not thinking it really turn out good.  But well, sometimes happy accidents happen in my studio.  And now I've got about 5 of these in the works!  Turns out simple, whimsical daisy paintings are good for me.  And you. 
Again, these are going to be available this Saturday night at vendor night during the Art and Soul retreat.  What is left (and yes, I'll probably be painting more of them) will be at the Dunwoody Arts Festival Mother's Day weekend.  Mark your calendars for this Atlanta show.  It's a great show!  Plus I'd love to meet more of my fun readers.  In fact, a few years ago I gave gifts to my blog readers that came by and said they read my blog.  That MAY be happening again this year.  Just a heads up peeps!


The American Still Life

I am gearing up big time to teach next week in Virgina Beach next week.  Have you ever checked out the Art and Soul Retreat website?  Seriously, if you've never attended an adult artsy retreat you need to add it to your budget.  Even if you save just a tiny amount each month you'll be able to attend in no time!  The best part of the retreat is meeting the artists/teachers you've admired for a spell in person.  Heck, I am beyond excited to be taking Jesse Reno's class next Friday!  I love meeting my students and getting to know them on a more personal level.  In fact, I have been to some of my student's houses in far away places we've gotten to be such good friends.  You see, when you attend something like this its a lot like camp.  You make these friends that literally change you.  And stay your "camp friends" forever. True story.  I can't wait to meet my new friends next Sunday in class.  We are going to have an amazing time painting together.

So what am I teaching in Virgina Beach?  I call the class the American Still Life.  I took one oil painting class in college where the teacher literally would pile on a table a bunch of crap.. I mean "Still Life Objects"....then she'd say "paint this....there's a critique in 3 days"....and she'd walk out and not reappear until the critique.  Yeah.  Great teaching right?  And since I had zero background grades k-12 in art going into a college level oil class was terribly scary.  I sucked.  So I thought.  The one thing I took from the class was that I hated still life painting.  Or so I thought.

You see, a still life in my mind now means taking a snapshot of a special memory and not only capturing it on film but also through paint.  When you paint something from a photograph you kinda change its meaning.  You give the photo a soul.  Ok...I've not gone all herbal wacko on you guys.  But what I am saying is that a photo is nice.  It captures a moment in time right when you want it to.  My still life paintings however, tend to capture more than a moment.  I've literally had people tear up upon seeing my truck paintings.  Not because it was so bad their eyes couldn't handle it, but rather because of the memory it brought to the forefront of their minds.  A memory from childhood mostly.  Of a time that was simpler.  Gentler.  And seemed to stream together endless summers where barefoot bike riding was always first on the day's agenda.  So in my class I guide you through painting these memories of your America. 

The chairs above?  Well my Grandmother always had these, one being a rocker we'd always get in trouble for rocking too far back in.  My sister and I hated sitting in these in the summer in Opelika, Alabama because it was hotter than hell there in the summer and the chairs always pinched the backs of our legs.  But that's what we had to sit on at Grandmother's house.  Being at her house for a week in the summer, every summer of my childhood means so much to my life.  It's a part of my American Still Life.  A part of what I want to capture with my brush.  So what would be your American Still Life?  Come paint with me and see.


Where's Clementine?

As a child I really loved the Where's Waldo books.  I could spend hours pouring over pages trying to find the little man in the red stripe shirt, hat and round glasses.  I suppose it's my artist brain, but I could always pick him out even on the hardest page.  I may not could have done fractions like Angie, but I could find Waldo.  Ha!
I bring Waldo up because recently I realized I could not for the life of me find my original Clementine painting.  And I needed it for something.  I called my galleries to see if they had it, looked in my Etsy sales, racked my brain about what I'd sold at Marist in November...notta.  Did someone steal her?  Surely no one came into my house and passed all the other sorts of goodies we had just to take an orange bunny painting, right?  And then this weekend while getting ready for the yard sale I found her.  You see her?
And just like a Where's Waldo book there was sweet Clementine.  Hanging on my bike painting wall.  She's not a bike painting, so why is she there?  Well you see the painting propped up behind my bird sculpture will not stay on the wall.  Period.  So I guess to keep her safe I hung her on that bike's nail.  Kinda like my square reader.  I keep it in a safe place that I'll remember.  Only I never remember and I get all in a hissy because I can't find it.  And then it magically appears where I thought it was to begin with.  Sometimes I feel like my life is a giant moving Where's Waldo book.
But quite honestly, I'd rather have this kinda life than any other.  Just sayin'......  So look for Clementine to be making a big girl debut.  Like BIG girl panty debut.  Oooo...secrets, secrets.  Just wait.  It's going to be super good.  I'll be letting you in on it hopefully very soon.  Let's just say she'll have her own blog and everything.  Yeah.  I'm a tiny bit excited.  Just a little.


Tiny Paintings

Sometimes I get cool ideas in my head.  Or so I think they are super cool awesome ideas that aren't going to take long so I over buy stuff for these ideas and finally get around to doing them.  Whew.  Yeah.  Like tiny paintings.  Around Christmas I bought a stack of 4" wooden panels.  Honestly I think they were for the ornament class that didn't go over so well.  Meaning, no one came.  Boo.  So what to do with a stack of tiny panels?  Black gesso them and start painting on them!  Yeah.  Only, I have found it takes me just about as long to finish this tiny painting as it does say an 8x10 maybe larger.  Darn.  So then comes the question of appearance of value.  This tiny painting next to say an 8x10 should cost what?  As a consumer I know what I am comfortable paying for stuff.  Sometimes that can be insulting to a fellow artist....for instance the artist in San Francisco that wanted like $400 for an 8x10 and I balked at that (of course in my southern charming way).  He was a freaking street artist!  Did I blog about this incident yet?  I should have if not.  None of his paintings were priced.  And before you could ask about the price of a painting you had to read his newspaper article written on him from the 70's.  Then he'd talk price.  It was a time consuming process to say the least.  Just tell me the price and I'll take it or leave it, right?  When I refused to give him what I thought was fair price ($150) he told me my deal would be $400 or so.  I politely said this was over my budget.  And tried to walk away.  Instead he got all in my face about how I had no intention of buying his art then and that I was wasting his time...blah...blah...blah.  He was so rude to me.  The next day I went by his tent and guess what, he'd sold NOTHING. 

Anyhoo....the moral of my story is, the above paintings will be priced at $35 at the Art and Soul vendor night.  Because as a consumer that's what I would pay.  And whatever is left will be for sale at Dunwoody Arts Festival May 11 and 12.  Super excited to be offering tiny paintings because you literally can put them anywhere.  Heck, attach it to your dashboard.  Start the trend. 


Art and Soul in Excelsior Springs

Last week I jetted off to Kansas City, MO for Art and Soul.  Turns out the retreat was actually in a tiny little suburb of Kansas City called Excelsior Springs.  I fell in love with this tiny town and its quirky charm.  I may even sign up to teach there again next year!

 My friend Renee, from Orlando, flew in to meet me and help me in the workshop.  Since I'm not feeling myself I was super glad she came along.  Even I need moral support on occasion!  We rented a car and quickly headed off in the direction of Kansas City's Plaza area.  We'd heard it was the place to go.  And it was!!  It was a gorgeous shopping experience.  Not that we don't have all the stores they had, but something about the architecture of it made the experience super cool.  I found 2 adorable dresses in their Anthropologie.  Did you see them on my instagram?  (username:  artsyorange)

Then we made our way to the hotel. Now to be honest, driving in we seriously thought we were headed to nowhereland. Because this town is kinda tiny, and deserted. But then we drove up to this:

Okay, so maybe the black and white photo makes it creepier than it really is.  It was built originally in 1888.  But this is the 3rd version.  2 fires and one renovation later it is supposedly burn proof. It is gorgeous.  I'd so go back.   The city was very rich in history.  Briefly I'll just say that the pioneers coming across the state didn't particularly like the area due to the muddy waters.  The story goes that a gentleman in the area had a daughter inflicted with some terrible skin disease.  He put her in the water and it healed her.  So you can imagine the stories of healing reached far and wide!  People came from all over for the healing waters.  They had public bath houses and a public water bar.   There were photos literally of rooms filled with tubs and people in them trying to get "healed".  Eventually it was proved that although the waters had good stuff in them, they were not healers.  And the town became what it is now.  BTW, isn't it ironic that I went to a city that was once known for healing waters when I'm not feeling so swell?  yeah....creepy.  It was a very sweet city with amazing homes.  I'd loved to have seen in one.
Thursday was teaching day.  Luckily I woke feeling AMAZING.  No pain, no pain....The class went flawless.  I had the best group of students eager to learn my little technique.  This class was called "whimsical landscapes".  Basically we talked about how to take common subjects and give it humor.  All 11 paintings are completely different.  I love that so much.  That they took the seed and made it grow in just a few hours!
 At lunchtime I was like "Where are we going class??"  It was funny....several students told me they'd never had their teacher offer that, or even want to eat with them.  I was like WHAT??  I see it as a chance to make 10 new friends.  I'm all over that!  We ate at the Mercantile, a yummy very fresh and organic cafe in downtown.  Seriously yummy.  And they kinda cater to the customer with wacko eating needs like me right now.
 Here are some of the finished pieces:

The group of girls below, Claire, June and Heather, and I really bonded.  And it turns out that we've been to several Art and Soul retreats at the same time, June and I were even in the same class 4 years ago!  They were all 3 in Virgina Beach last year when Mailey and I went.  Small world.
 On Friday I had the day wide open. Normally I take a class, but this time around I saw there was a spa in the hotel and decided to spend that mola on me instead. So I spent 2 hours relaxing here in the Grotto:
Best decision ever.  You gonna be so jealous after you hear this....You ever been in a grotto?  Well.....this one had a steam shower, hot tub, steam room and hot sauna.  In addition there were crazy comfy loungers, cooling towels soaked in peppermint oil and a scrub bar for the steam shower.  I also enjoyed a massage and time in the "quiet room".  They give you these giant fuzzy robes and shoes to wear around.  And there was gourmet hot tea in the relaxation room.  All I did was read, soak, and relax.  For 3.5 hours.  I'm not sure I even sleep that rested.  Seriously.  I needed that little treat.  Oh and the shower area had everything you could ever need...so I even showered in the locker room instead of my hotel room.  hehehe...

So next I'll be in Art and Soul Virgina Beach.  In two weeks actually!!  Hoping for warm weather.  I love art retreats!!



Okay...so I have a HUGE post about my trip.  But darn if the photos won't enlarge like I like.  So look for those later in the week.  I did want to share some news with you though.... last week I mentioned my not feeling well and all the trials I'd been through.  It was risky doing that.  I know.  I was exposing a side of me I don't like to reveal here.  But I am so very glad I did.  Because one reader emailed me, and being a very Godly person said after reading my story she felt the Holy Spirit guiding her to let me know about a condition called Candida......  I never ever ever would have known about that had I not reached out to you all.  I've read so much about this condition that I could write my own book.  I visited a local herb specialist who is guiding me through the process.  She even calls to check on me!  Right now it includes an insanely strict diet and a regiment of 5 herbal supplements.  It has not been hard.  Probably because I want to feel better so I will literally stand on my head if needed!  Want to know what I've not had in 10 days?  Well...gonna tell you anyways:  alcohol, caffeine, sugar, dairy, gluten, or meat.  Now, I'm gonna not lie.  I ate one cupcake last week on my trip and one helping of brisket ends and cole slaw on my trip.  But other than that I have been totally clean.  The caffeine I was crazy worried about.  But yesterday, finally I realized that I have an insane amount of happy energy.  Not my usual drive energy because I have to because I am a crazy motivated goal oriented person.  But an energy from within.  I am not as irritable either.  My abdomen pain is beginning to dull .  Since March 4th I've had abdomen pain beyond pain pill fixable....so this is a true blessing.  My story is long and entangled how I got to this point.  And more was revealed to me yesterday about what else might have caused me to develop such Candida overgrowth.  Since my endoscope and ultrasound came back clean....I've even more reason to believe that what I was feeding my body was literally making me sick.  So now that this is beginning to heal I've got to work on what is causing the bladder pain.  Yeah...I'm falling apart so to say.  But I am confident that the more I ask, the more I share and the more I let go of foods that are just not good for me (my favorite food group for one:  cookies) I can heal completely.  It's nutty that what you put into your body can literally poison you.  I'm taking back my life and body back though.  One day at a time.  Thanks so much for all the emails and kind words.  I really, really needed them!  Yipee for healing!


Whimsical Landscapes and Kansas

Well folks, as you read this my body is in Kansas City, MO!  Tomorrow I'll be teaching 12 sweet artists all about painting a whimsical landscape at Art and Soul.  I'm kinda excited to be away.  I need the break from my life a few days.  Selfish yep.  But true.  The kids are hanging with their Dad.  No telling what I'll come home to.  Hahaha...  I'll be back this weekend with some shots of the workshop.  Hope you're having a great week!



I painted this yesterday morning.  For you.  My lovely readers.  You are a blessing to me and this creative journey.  Thanks so much for all the kind words and emails regarding my not feeling so swell.  Just a little update, I'm having GI tests run tomorrow (not looking forward to) and took myself to the herb shop and started a rather expensive round of herbs and a diet recommended by the owner.  You know I want to feel good when I eat spinach salad naked and pinto beans for Easter dinner instead of my Mother-in-law's amazing cooking.  Yeah.  Something has got to work.  And if it means eating like a cave woman (actually no meat so like a vegan cave woman) for a few weeks then that's exactly what I am going to do. 

I've found my painting grove in the middle of all this which is a double blessing.  I literally painted 3/ 12x12 canvases Sunday.  They are so soft and lovely.  Looking forward to seeing more come from my hands over the next week.  It's the start of spring break.....thank goodness.  We all needed a little rest.
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